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  1. #1
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    Smile Has anyone used the Esbit cookset with solid fuel?

    I posted a thread a while back about stove advice. I've really been researching and came across the Esbit Solid Fuel setup. Have you used it or know someone who has? Thoughts? Im going to be doing warmer weather (above 30 degree) week long hiking. No high altitudes either. Any advice and thoughts would be great!! Thanks so much!!

  2. #2
    Registered User moof53's Avatar
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    Used old Esbit long ago in the military and they worked great. Light, easy to carry and burn even when wet. One tab burns about 12 minutes, enough to boil water or heat some C-Rats. Still use them from time to time because it is easy and plan on carrying a few next year when I thru hike as a backup. There are many videos about them in Youtube.

    It is my understanding however from reading here that they may not be readily available all along the AT.

  3. #3
    Registered User scope's Avatar
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    I assume by cookset you mean this...
    http://www.campmor.com/ags-esbit-stove-cookset.shtml?source=CI&ci_sku=84858&ci_gpa=pla&ci _kw={keyword}

    Yes, I've had that now for about 3 years. I love the size of the pot and the fact that its marked up to 500ml. Great solo kit, works just fine but definitely needs a windscreen. One negative is that the burner/pot stand is a good bit heavier than the other stove they make, and a lot heavier than an alcohol stove which is the direction I'm going in. Other thing might be that carrying a bunch of the tabs would be heavy and bulky. Sometimes I want about a full pot for rehydrating a meal, and then I might want hot chocolate or coffee, but I can only get 1 boil on 1 tab, so I end up using another half to full tab. So, let's say you're on a 7 day trip, you really need at least 3 tabs per day to be safe - that's a lot of tabs to be carrying.
    "Come on sunshine, what can you show me
    Where can you take me to make me understand
    The wind can shake me, brothers forsake me
    The rain can touch me, but can I touch the rain"
    - Gordon Lightfoot

  4. #4

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    Nature Girl,

    I used esbits on a thirty day hike a few years back. They start quick, they burn hot, and they are great fire starters if the wood is damp at the shelters on the campsite.

    The bad news is that they leave a black soot on the bottom of the pot that gets on everything in your pack and is as poisonous as anything know to mankind. I even tried to put the pot in a plastic bag but the soot ends up on the bag, on the top and ultimately inside the pot.

    I gave up esbits (other than using them for fire starters) and went to a pocket rocket. No problem with fuel along the trail, small and lightweight, and heats up quickly and can simmer. I eat a lot of soups, almost every night, and the ability to simmer and cook longer than 12 minutes is why I prefer to use the gas stove.

    Good luck.

  5. #5
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    If your going to go with a solid fuel set up I would buy the Weber fire starters. It will save you some money.

  6. #6
    Registered User jcazz's Avatar
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    I've used esbits on all my section hikes. They are light, compact and bomb proof. I ditched the heavy stand and made a lighter set up with the bottom of a soda can and some dryer duct -you can find the design online. The residue on the bottom of the pot is easily cleaned -I used tea bag and a little water just don't break bag by scrubbing too hard. I stored everything in my MSR Titan in a stuff sack along with the cubes. Don't buy the knock off brand cubes or you will be sorry -they are cheaper for a reason and will end up in a hiker box. I found it was easy to plan out how many fuel cubes i needed per day, plus you can blow them out for later use
    .

  7. #7
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    I use Esbit on most of my warm weather shorter hikes. I have one of those titanium wing stoves than weighs a few grams. Use aluminum from one of those disposable oven liners as a wind shield. My pot of choice with this set-up is a Snow Peak 600 mug. Works great and takes up very little space. My stove set up with several fuel tabs fits in a plastic snap-lid Countrytime leamonaide container that held the "tubs" of leamonaide. Very neat, well protected from being crushed, and contains the odor while in my pack. My SP 600 fits over the bottom of a 1 liter Poweraide bottle and takes up NO room while riding in the side water bottle pocket of my pack. I use wet wipes to clean up before eating. When I'm done, I take the used wet wipe and clean off the residue on the pot, then burn it. Use about 3/4 tab for 12oz of coffee in the morning and about 1/2 tab to boil about 8 oz of water in the evening. Love this setup!

  8. #8

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    Last year was on trail for 3 weeks using Esbit tabs in a Caldera Cone stove setup. Worked fine for me. Can be hard to light in high wind: use a little Vaseline on part of a cotton ball next to your Esbit and no worries. I double-bagged the Esbit and mailed it to my mail drops. This is not officially OK, but I had no problems doing it. It's kind of like mailing a candle IMHO.
    Find the LIGHT STUFF at QiWiz.net

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  9. #9
    Registered User Toolshed's Avatar
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    I have used Esbits on and off over the past 15 years. I have used both the square esbit fold-up stove as well as my flipped over Pepsi Can "PC"stove (I made a little grill out of hardware cloth that sits over the convex bottom and the esbit tab sits on the grill, above the bottom of the PC Stove.
    I like esbit for durability, ease of use, quietness and it makes a great backup for a day or two if you runout of alcohol or butane/propane for your Pocket Rocket. I can boil 2 cups on one tab. Each tab weighs 1/2 oz, I use 2/day so I normally carry 20 tabs (10 oz) with me for a week-long trips, which as you can tell includes a couple of backup tablets..I love simplicity, but I am also a gear hound, so I tend to rotate things in and out of my trip gear depending on my mood or weather. but all in all, I enjoy using Esbit. I agree with the pot bottomn comment, but then again, it isn't really a bother to me. I would caution to avoid the coughlins or Coleman brand fuel tablets (Round white tabs) - they do not burn as long and it takes 2-3 to boil 2 cups of water. Stick with the original!!
    .....Someday, like many others who joined WB in the early years, I may dry up and dissapear....

  10. #10
    Registered User GlazeDog's Avatar
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    Another vote for the Caldera Cone Ti-Tri: which can use esbit, alcohol, or even wood. Very versatile.
    Start a huge foolish project, like Noah. It makes absolutely no difference what people think of you.----Rumi

  11. #11

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    I love my Esbit stove. It is the lightest weight of all stoves. It is very good for boiling water, to add to anything instant, not too good for prolonged cooking. You can very easily clean the bottom of the pan used on the esbit with some damp leaves or grass - no need to carry anything special for this. I fold the stove up into a plastic bag, and carry it inside the cooking pan, along with the tablets, and lighters, everything very compact.

    Bessie Breeze

  12. #12
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    I went from alcohol stove to esbit to no-cook. Carry one Esbit in my 1st aid kit for an emergency fire, have learned from serial thru-hikers - eat in town, ton of no-cook food options.

    Vargo titanium stove works on what's in the woods, bought one - have never used it.

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