View Full Version : MSR Whisperlite - a better way to carry this thing?

10-06-2007, 10:02
I have an MSR Whisperlite (well, two), with two 22 ounce fuel bottles.

So far, I've always kept fuel in both bottles. One has a lid. The other is capped by the pressurizing valve. But the pressurizing valve could leak, I think, and it seems silly to carry 2 fuel bottles when I never use all the fuel in 1.

But if I take the pressurizing valve in and out each time, I have to figure out what to do with the fuel that clings to it, and I don't want it getting mixed up with the rest of my pack.

My first thought is to continue to carry the one bottle, with the fuel pump in it, keeping it upright and not worrying too much about leaks. But something inside me says there should be a better way ... anyone know what it is?


10-06-2007, 10:17
If you need more fuel than one bottle can hold here's a proven way to do it. First, fill your fuel bottle, install the pump and leave it in until you have to refill the bottle. As long as the o-ring on the pump is in good condition, and the valve is closed, it won't leak. Each time you put the pump in or take it out you chance tearing the o-ring so the less you move it the better you are. If you need to carry extra fuel you can do it in a left over soda, or other drink, bottle. Just make sure the cap seals well. I've had white gas in plastic bottles like that for months and they don't leak. Just make sure you mark the bottle well so no one tries to drink the stuff.
I hear it tastes awful :eek:

And if you are worried about the bottles leaking carry them on the outside of your pack.

10-06-2007, 10:20
I've used two methods. In a large ziplock inside my pack or carrying it in one of my water bottle holders on the outside of the pack.

Outside the pack you want to be sure it won't pop out and get lost. One method is to wrap a length of duct tape around it. Take about a 1.5 inch piece of duct tape and stick that sticky side to sticky side in the middle of a length of duct tape to go around the bottle. Tape the whole thing to the bottle, but let the tape sort of sag where the back to back tape is. You can put a sharpie in the loop to make a gap. You can hook the bottle with a small caribiner this way, or even just a loop of string. I've had stuff pop out there and I'd hate to lose my fuel.

Another thing to do is to unpressurize your bottle. I find this is messy though and can put strain on the pump when unscrewing. I cracked my buddy's pump once so I am leery of repeated unscrewing.

10-06-2007, 10:30
you have to -depressurize- the fuel bottle, and the pump can be left inside,if is leaky replace the 0 ring and pump seal,refer to instruction manual,i also use a foam insulating mug cover over the pump and bottle for protection ,the 1$ type

10-06-2007, 10:54
gaga is right, depressurize the the bottle/pump combo by * s l o w l y * turning the entire pump assembly until you hear the whoosh of air escaping. If you do this too quickly you'll get a whoosh of raw fuel, too, which may be suboptimal under certain conditions (e.g. sitting around the campfire.) Then retighten the pump and it shouldn't leak. I kept mine upright in an outside pocket anyway.

Of course, the best place to put the Whisperlite and fuel bottle are out in the garage, where they await your joyous return while you use an alcohol stove on your hike. That's where mine is, anyway. <grin>

10-06-2007, 15:25
In many years of backpacking trips, winter climbing and snowshoeing trips, I have never depressurized an MSR bottle durng a trip, unless I was refueling. they were made to hold pressure. I wouldn't think of dong it any other way - The less you fuss with your bottle and pump, the better off you are.

Check your O-rings and plunger valve (It always helps to carry spares) and make sure the pump is tight on the bottle and the valve is shut tightly and no worries.

I have been on a couple of trips where we had a woman who always worried about a pressurized bottle and would dissamble the pump from the bottle, put the cap back on and put the pump assembly in their pack in a couple of ziplocks and then reassemble and repump at camp. I'd already have hot coffee before she even had her stove fired up.

I also carry my duct tape on my fuel bottle - just wrap 3 feet around the bottle and your all set. Duct tape also makes it easier to hold the bottle and pump when it is 20 below zero in February in the mountains.

10-06-2007, 19:12
http://www.msrgear.com/stoves/whisper_intl.asp to better carry the bottle...depends on your backpack and how you pack it,on internal frames if the bottle is full put it close to your back around the middle of the b.p.whit other heavy things(stove, water f. food...) i have a 33oz that i fill to30oz,i cook a lot( from powder milk and eggs to freshly caught trout...) + for priming. ,, ds0tm,, is right, after you use it the pressure is low,here is my "jumbo":D bottle , guess where is the pump!

10-06-2007, 19:29
I have carried a Whisperlite thousands of miles without incident. I have carried the fuel bottle in an external pocket on my pack. I have never had spillage.

I also have found it unnecessary to ever carry more than an 11 oz fuel bottle. The only time I would see that necessary is if you were hiking with someone else and sharing the stove.

10-06-2007, 19:40
There's 2 of us for 3 days, so I think I'll stick with about 20 ounces, which is what I have left ;->

I generally figure 1/2 cup per person per day is sufficient for meals, coffee/tea, etc. Probably less if you're cooking shared food. A lot more if you're melting snow ...


10-06-2007, 19:48
2 for 3 days? Don't fill the bottle. 11 oz should do, as long as you don't just leave the stove burning.

10-06-2007, 20:11
You know, I always do have lots left over ;->


10-06-2007, 20:21
By myself, 11 oz of fuel used sparingly will last 9-10 days. It's a learning process.

PJ 2005
10-06-2007, 20:38
easy solution: quit using a whisperlite ;)

10-06-2007, 20:48
easy solution: quit using a whisperlite ;)

In favor of what? I've thought of using a Supercat, but the ability to control the heat on a Whisperlite is nice for those of us who like to cook ....


10-06-2007, 20:51
In favor of what? I've thought of using a Supercat, but the ability to control the heat on a Whisperlite is nice for those of us who like to cook ....


Jonathan, I use a soda can alcohol stove sometimes. I still carry the old reliable whisperlite from time to time though. Especially when I backpack with my daughter.

You can go lighter cheaply. It's all about what you're willing to carry, and how good you are with change. The Whisperlite has served many thousands of hikers well.