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Hikin_Jim

Stove of the Week: MSR Rapidfire

OK, so this week's stove is a bit of a "sleeper" in the sense that it's not a stove that you would expect a lot from -- unless you knew better.  But you'll have to read on to find out what's so interesting about this week's stove, the MSR Rapidfire.



HJ
obie

Jim,

What's the lightest, strongest material to use for a windscreen?

I have a MSR Pocket Rocket and it appears I'm going to need some protection out in JTree this weekend.

From what I can see on this posting:  alum.foil, stove-top burner tray, paperclips and.....what is it that you form the foil around?  Or, is the foil freestanding?

Thanks.  Very useful info, as always:)
Hikin_Jim

obie wrote:
Jim,

What's the lightest, strongest material to use for a windscreen?

I have a MSR Pocket Rocket and it appears I'm going to need some protection out in JTree this weekend.

From what I can see on this posting:  alum.foil, stove-top burner tray, paperclips and.....what is it that you form the foil around?  Or, is the foil freestanding?

Thanks.  Very useful info, as always:)
Obie,

Be super careful if you use a windscreen with a PR.  A PR is an upright canister stove which means that the burner mounts directly on top of the gas canister.  The windscreen and pot can trap heat.  If too much heat gets trapped, the canister can explode.   That would be bad.

Manufacturers say "never use a windscreen" with upright canister stoves.  Of course they're more worried about being sued than about cooking.  The fact of the matter is that you can use a windscreen if you're really careful.  REALLY careful.  You have to constantly touch the canister with your hand.  If the canister feels hot, TURN IT DOWN.  For upright canister stoves, it's best to provide only about 300 degrees of windscreen coverage.  In other words, don't surround the stove 360 degrees like you see in my photos of the windscreen for the Rapidfire.  Leave a gap so some air can circulate.  That in fact is why I'm saying the Rapidfire is somewhat special -- because you can surround the stove 360 degrees with a windscreen on the Rapidfire whereas you shouldn't with most gas stoves.

The lightest windscreen material is titanium, but that's a bit hard to find and typically expensive.  Heavier gauge aluminum foil (about 36 to 38 gauge) works well.

For car camping though, you could get something like this:  http://www.amazon.com/Coghlans-8566-Windscreen/dp/B002C3RNMG  It's a bit more durable and it's free standing.  it's also easier to prop open so that you get some air flow so your canister won't overheat and explode.

Too bad you're in Costa Mesa otherwise I could get you one of my custom windscreens for the PR.  A little tough to get it to you in time for this weekend since you're in Orange County -- unless you'll be in Pasadena tomorrow.

For this weekend, double (or triple) folded heavy duty aluminum from the grocery store could be improvised into a windscreen.  You can stabilize it with spare tent stakes and duct tape (the wind may want to blow it around).  You can also go to the market and get one of those lightweight aluminum baking pans, the disposable kind.  Those can be cut up/configured into windscreens.  

HJ
obie

Hey Jim

Thanks so much!  Glad I talked to you first.  Will go with 300 degs. of coverage with alum.foil.

All I want is a hot mug of coffee and some oatmeal!   Let those winds blow!

Later.
Hikin_Jim

obie wrote:
Hey Jim

Thanks so much!  Glad I talked to you first.  Will go with 300 degs. of coverage with alum.foil.

All I want is a hot mug of coffee and some oatmeal!   Let those winds blow!

Later.
Cool.   Cool

Seriously though, pick yourself up something a little beefier than a PR for car camping.  A Rapidfire can be had for a cheap, if you're patient.  There's at least three on eBay right now.  They can be used with a 360 degree windscreen, and they're a lot more stable with a bigger pot, the kind of pot you might want to use for two for car camping.  Yep, the Rapidfire is a "sleeper," but don't underestimate this stove.  It's a lot of stove for the money.

HJ
Johnny Bronson

Jim,Make more videos of your reviews please =D
Hikin_Jim

Time, dude, time.  I'll do what I can, but it takes a heck of a lot more time to shoot a vid and get it where it's even half worth watching than it does to do a review with photos.  With photos, I shoot 30, chuck out the 10 that are utter garbage, pull out the best ones, and then write some text.  Still takes several hours, but it's semi-manageable. Vids?  Oy vey.

I'll post what I can though.  I agree vids are far more compelling, particularly in demonstrating things like set up and use.

HJ

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