20 Responses

  1. avatar
    Antonio Ávila at |

    Thank you, for the detailed information.

  2. avatar
    DanDan the Camping Man at |

    Really great article. So helpful and informative. Thanks!

  3. avatar
    Chris W at |

    You mention weighing the canister to determine fullness… I just switched to Iso Butane I used to use coleman fuel back in college and just bought new gear to start back up.

    Not sure if stuff changed since you read the article.. BUT…


    to the left of the MSR Iso Pro label you can see a pic of the canister in water… and an E and F with lines between them… float a full canister… it lines up with F… as you use gas the weight of the canister changes but it’s volume does not so it’s buoyancy changes… which is reflected in how deep it sits in the water giving you a gauge.

    This is handy because you can measure it out in the woods… or in your kitchen sink.

    I was fairly impressed by that… not sure how recent the labeling changed but it’s awesome…

  4. avatar
    David Lagan at |

    Thanks for sharing yhat info. My wife (58) and myself (64) heading out on a 30 mi backpack/flyfishing hike
    we figure will take us 7-8
    We really had no realistic idea what to expect from
    an 8 oz cannister.
    Thanks to you we now are much more confident
    as you have given us a
    much better feel for what
    cook times to expect.
    Good job. Dgl

  5. avatar
    Matt at |

    I’ve used one of the 8-ounce canisters the last couple weeks for boiling 16 ounces of water to make coffee and tea. So far, I’ve boiled 3.4 gallons in total and believe there’s enough left in the tank to get to 4. These things are great.

  6. avatar
    Kevin at |

    Warning re: SVEA stove. The gasket on the fill cap failed (age), which resulted in a leak, which resulted in a huge fireball that burned until the tank ran out of fuel. This once left me stranded on a long remote trip with no way to cook my food.
    Lesson 1: Operate stove away from tents, backpacks etc.
    Lesson 2: Carry a spare replacement gasket.

  7. avatar
    steve at |

    Really great article and comments all round.
    We were thinking about this issue a while back and decided to create a “Gas Canister Calculator” to allow people to fairly accurately estimate how many gas canisters they will need (and whether small, medium or large) based on number of people, number of days, hot water requirement and type of stove (canister top, integrated and remote canister).
    We calibrated for our three different class of gas canister stove with data from real outdoor usage over several years (rather than using unrealistic laboratory data).
    Our calculator enables you to change various variables e.g. type of stove, size of canister, to work out the optimum stove and canister combination for your trip.
    Check it out here: http://mercatorgear.com/index.php/frequently-asked-questions/canister-calculator
    Any feedback, or suggestions or questions would be welcome. Meanwhile, we hope this is useful, and keep up the great work!

    1. avatar
      Steve at |

      We are an outfitter looking to change from white gas use to isobutane for our customers. A calculator for estimating fuel use with a variety of group sizes would help. How do I get a calculator?

  8. avatar
    courtney at |

    I’m confused by this statement: “Now, if you’re a Ramen ultralighter who only boils water to make those noodles soft enough to slurp, you won’t get even close to that much time out of a fuel canister.”

    Are you saying it takes more fuel/time to boil water for ramen thats barely cooked than it does to sautee fish etc?

  9. avatar
    Marc Ritz at |

    You don’t need to cook ramen. Ramen is pre-cooked and dehydrated. You could eat it cracker-dry or just soak it until it’s soft.

  10. avatar
    J.Murray at |

    N1, really appreciate this article & the adjoining comments – learnt a lot & looking forward to doing my own field tests.
    My thanks.


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