Solo Stove: a Lightweight Cooking Solution

solo stove wood-burning stove

I’d like to announce a new advertiser on Today, we added Solo Stove, a wood-burning backpacking stove that can also be used with alcohol burners as a backup. The Solo Stove boils a quart of water in about eight to ten minutes using sticks, twigs, pine cones or other burnable items. It weighs 9 ounces and fits inside a 4.5 inch by 4.7 inch pot. Both the pot and stove weigh just over a pound when taken together. This is only an ounce heavier than a PocketRocket stove setup (without the fuel) and it comes close to a popcan stove setup if you include the fuel for the popcan. On longer trips, the Solo Stove offers significant weight savings in fuel vs. both systems. Only in the last few days of the trip does a popcan setup win out. This seems like the perfect little stove to carry either as an emergency stove on day trips or as a primary stove on longer kayak and canoe camping trips.

The Solo Stove is similar to the Bushbuddy, which we reviewed before (Bushbuddy Stove Review), but there are differences that I think are significant. Both primary differences deal with construction. First, the Solo Stove is constructed from a thicker stainless steel, which makes it more durable while only weighing 2.5 ounces more. Second, the Solo Stove simplifies construction by using fewer parts, which translates to fewer welds, approximately 200 in the Bushbuddy and 20 in the Solo Stove. Fewer welds means fewer possible failure points. A third difference may seem minor, but the Solo Stove uses a three vs. four prong system for supporting your pot. The three prong system helps eliminate pot wobble and makes for a more solid cooking platform.

Solo Stove Demonstration Video

This video demonstrates the basics of using a lightweight wood-burning stove.

Solo Stove Specifications

Fast to boil: 8-10 minutes to boil 32 fl oz of water
Fuel: Burns sticks, twigs, pine cones and other biomass
Packed size: Height 3.8 inches, Width 4.25 inches
Assembled size: Height 5.7 inches, Width 4.25 inches
Weight: 9 oz
Materials: Hardened 304 stainless steel, nichrome wire

Price: $89.99 (as of 3/13/13 it was on sale for $69.99)

More info: Solo Stove

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  • Last spring I bought two of these stoves. They save weight and money by not needing to buy and carry fuel. They work great! When the wood is wet, the solution that I have found is using firestarters by Coughlins or Coleman. You can also use alcohol tablets or hand sanitizer. When primitive camping sometimes you need to figure answers to your problems. I purchased these stoves as I need to save weight for the numerous portages in the backcountry of the Adirondack Mountains. I strive not to waste time by making more than one trip portages.

    • I’m glad the stove works out for you. I didn’t care for it. I’d rather start an open fire in the rain with wet wood then try to start and futz with this thing in the rain. For me, it sucked the joy completely out of camping.

      I almost never do double portages and my current kitchen is down to 5 ounces without fuel. It’s 1.5 ounces per 4 meals and I only cook one meal a day, so on a 10 day trip, I’m at 9.5 ounce, which still lighter than this stove with an easier pot to cook in and I don’t have to worry about wet wood, etc…

      But I’m glad it works for you. Do you carry both at once?

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