View Full Version : Jet Boil thoughts

Mtn Scout
09-09-2011, 21:15
i have been making my own stoves for about a year. i have a system that i absolutely love. BUT today i was at a hiking store and was checking out the jetboil. i have know about this stove system but never really looked into it. i played with it and checked it out forever while in the store. i will always keep my homebrew because of the fact i made it. But we are planning on doing more hiking this year and i am always up for new toys. i really like the jetboil but i have never used it and it will be slightly heavier than what i carry now. the bog kicker for me is it cuts the boil time in half from what i currently use. i am looking for your opinions on jetboil systems. the good, bad, and the ugly., have you exp trouble, anything you can provide about the system

Northern Lights
09-09-2011, 22:02
I like my jetboil, but I'm a Venom stove convert. I can't say anything bad about either stoves.

09-09-2011, 22:07
...i am looking for your opinions on jetboil systems. the good, bad, and the ugly., have you exp trouble, anything you can provide about the system

I have an older Flash and now I have the AL SOL.

The good:

Very easy to use.
Can use other pots with the pot stand.
Can be hung.
Can hold in your hand it while its running if you can't find a place to set it down.
The SOL is much lighter.
With the SOL and Flash the cozy has a temp indicator that turns color when it is about to boil (saves fuel and helps prevent boil over).
No need for a wind screen.
Packs into itself.
Comes with it own measuring cup.
The cups from the SOL fit the Flash and vice-versa.
Boils water killer fast.
Uses very little fuel.
Stupid simple to use.

The not so good:

It is tall so if you do not have a good place to set it, it is a bit tippy.
The cozy on the SOL is a little on the flimsy side.
The igniter is not that reliable but works most of the time if you point the wire in the right direction.
When you pack it up you need to remove the canister from the stove (to fold in the valve handle).
Below 40F the Flash takes significantly longer to boil.
I have not tested the SOl in colder weather yet, it has a regulator that is supposed to keep it going in colder temps.
The optional pots and fry pan are very heavy and way too expensive.
Not great for real cooking.
Boils over very easy if you don't keep an eye on it.

Overall I am very happy with the Jetboil for 3 seasons. I go back to my WhisperLite in winter. I have used alcohol stoves and always go back to the Jetboil. I am willing to carry a little extra weight for the ease of use. No need to worry about draining or burning off excess fuel, no need to find just the right flat spot out of the wind and set up the wind screen, etc...

My kids (2) and I did a 6 day trip this summer with just the SOL for the three of us, and we never even finished off one canister. We used the SOL for most meals (boiling water only, no real cooking). In this case I think we saved weight over an alcohol stove.


Mtn Scout
09-09-2011, 22:43
i only boil water for cooking, shaving etc. i do not cook meals in my current set up nor do ithink i ever will. i know its old news to people but i really cant figure out why i like the system so much. i am probably going to end up going with the sol if i buy one. they one thing i do not like about my current set up is the fuel issue and wind screen. and temp takes a huge effect on it. 40+ weather i am around 5-6 min.

Mr. Bumpy
09-10-2011, 08:49
I've used enough stoves over the past 20 years and recently had been getting a lot of use out of Ezbit tabs, but last year I went out with a friend and his Jet Boil and used it for a few days. The lightbulb went off so I did some shopping and ended up with the MSR Reactor system. I have got 30-40 nights by now with it and am very happy. It's a bit pricey, bulkier, and heavier but it is way more versatile than the Jet Boil. It is probably a little much for a solo kit, but most of my hiking is with my family. Mostly we just cook water, but we have also prepared noodles and rice. If you have a big group it would be great because it boils so quickly that every time someone turns around they can have a hot liter of water.
I've always thought that I will keep 3-4 stoves around, but now I might be changing my mind. I'll never get rid of my Pocket Rocket, but the Reactor will be my go to stove for a long while.

Serial 07
09-10-2011, 11:00
the jetboil is great! the fastest way to cook a meal that i've seen...during the early and later months of a thru, the jetboil is the best and will get you eating much faster than any alcohol stove will...but in the summer months, when cooking hot meals isn't an everyday event, i used the jetboil both with an alcohol stove and directly in a fire...the cup is very versatile...

09-10-2011, 11:08
I have a jetboil and have no complaints. With that being said I switched to an alcohol stove for weight reduction. The quick boiling time is great for the jetboil but I am never in that much of a hurry on the trail to need it. I would rather the weight savings twist.

Mtn Scout
09-10-2011, 11:45
from you guys that have used several cans of fuel through them. roughly how many boils did you get out of 1 can of fuel?

The Snowman
09-10-2011, 12:43
I like my Jet Boil mostly for car camping trips were I'm not really planning to cook but still want to make coffee and maybe a can of soup.

Mr. Bumpy
09-10-2011, 13:01
For the MSR Reactor I just completed 5 nights cooking for two. I used it twice a day, was very liberal with it and cooked and boiled a lot. A fresh full size can did the job and I'm sure there are still a couple of minutes in the can. I had one of those little half-size cans as a spare. I regularly take it for long weekends with three people and get 3-4 of these type of trips out of a can. I'd make a guess that if I were to take it solo and tried to stretch it then I'd plan on two weeks using it twice a day. I'd still carry the back-up can.

09-10-2011, 13:02
from you guys that have used several cans of fuel through them. roughly how many boils did you get out of 1 can of fuel?

I don't really know. My hikes are usually 5 days or less. One canister lasts for two hikers for five days and still has some fuel left at the end of the hike. I use the Coleman canister which is a bit larger than the Jet Boil Canister.