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Stove of the Week: The Caldera Cone
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Stove of the Week: The Caldera Cone
“This week's stove is the Caldera Cone with 10-12 alcohol burner from Trail Designs.
The Caldera Cone with 10-12 burner is a stable, efficient, and wind resistant ultralight alcohol system that packs well inside a standard Ziploc container that doubles as a bowl.
Believe it or not, everything in the second photo is also present in the first.
I've written a review which is now available on Seattle Backpackers Magazine and there's a supplemental post with further information on my blog. Both can be accessed via this link.
“I just added some more photos and a technical appendix listing weights to the blog post.
“I'm gonna smoke some crawdads, but first I need a little pot....
“Jim, are you sure you're a real hiker? Your fingernails are conspicoisly clean....do they have dirt in Seattle?”
“lol. Probably because I was wearing mittens most of the previous day (and slept in 'em too). Do you see all the rain spots on that stuff sack that the kit is all packed up in? Plenty of mud and wet that trip. Dunno how my fingernails stayed so clean.
Here's me shortly after that photos was taken, looking considerably less fresh.
Note matted hair.
“Yeah you got the hiking helmet for sure, lol
I'm just messin with ya man. The stove looks pretty sweet”
“"Hiking helmet." lol. Yeah, that's a good name for it.
It's a really nice stove. It's super stable -- you're not going to be knocking the pot off with the edge of your sleeve or anything. It's very efficient. It's got good wind resistance, AND it's light.
I really enjoyed using it on my trip last month. Set it up, fire it up, and then go take down my shelter. Yeah, alcohol stoves take a little longer, but they're so trouble free.
“That permanent marker on your fuel bottle will be gone the first time you spill some of the denatured alcohol down the side, you might want to cover the words with clear packing tape. As for the heat shield, you may find its easier to work with heavy-duty aluminum such as from a dryer vent, which can even be folded to fit into a tight spot.”
“I don't think HJ has an issue with losing the marking off the fuel bottle and using it in error as a after dinner hit. Or two.:) The pee bottle would be more of an issue.
HJ, you should post about the Clik stand here, not sure many know of its qualities.
Duane is correct. I'm more worried about someone like my little daughter grabbing that fuel bottle and taking a drink. *I* know it's fuel. So, I made it look as little like a drink bottle as possible by removing the label and writing all over it.
You are correct though, denatured alcohol washes permanent marker off in a flash.
I haven't experimented with dryer vent type material. I did post a video on my blog of how to make your own Caldera Cone.
Here are a couple of quick links for those who might be interested in the Clikstand alcohol stove system:
= The Clikstand Alcohol Stove System -- Introduction
= Clikstand vs. Caldera Cone Tests
“And safety is the reason I was suggesting a more permanent solution to your permanent marker, which is otherwise not so permanent.”
“Speaking of safety, I saw this photo on the web:
The two flattened bottles fit in together, but it's unlikely that anyone would confuse them with drink bottles. You'd have capacity and safety at the same time.
“Weight looks pretty good, the whole kit (including the kettle and lid) with 3.75 oz of fuel at less than a pound.
Jim: I saw on your site that someone complained that it was fragile. How legit is that complaint?
last edited: 11/02/11 12:16:05 PM”
“The specific complaint was that the "dovetail" that joins the windscreen to itself got bent out of shape.
I have not had problems with mine, but I'm not rolling mine as tightly as he was.
I don't know if you saw it further down in the comments, but Rand Lindley (owner of Trail Designs) actually posted a reply (talk about customer service!). He said that they now reinforce the dovetail joint with titanium. Sounds like they've got it covered.
The stove itself is a Pepsi (or similar) beverage can. Yes, it can be crushed, but it's not anymore fragile than any other pop can type stove.
“I picked up a Caldera Cone with 12-10 stove for a new REI .9 ti pot in late July and used it for 8 days in Sequoia NP early August. The seam is very well reinforced, should not be an issue unless you are rough on gear. As most UL gear, it may not last a lifetime. I enjoyed the simplicity and lack of moving parts. Unlike the easy to assemble MSR Pocket Rocket, this took a little more time to set up and take down, but was I in a hurry on my vacation? I usually used it for dinner so it was packed up after dinner after it all cooled down, so it was not an issue for a quick AM departure.
“Yeah, a Caldera Cone is a tad more work than a little gassie like the PR, but it's not bad. WAY better than a closed jet alcohol stove that you have to prime (thumbs down).
Once it's set up, it's "fire and forget." It just sits there heating away while I go off and do something else like pack up or set up.
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