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Backcountry Kitchen The Backcountry Kitchen forum is for the discussion of food and cooking gear related topics for backpacking trips (e.g. menus, recipes, stoves, fuel...).


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  #1  
Old 08-11-2014, 03:00 PM
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Reality Reality is offline
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ContainsImages Olicamp ION Micro Titanium Stove Preliminary Report

Nearly a decade ago, I started nesting a canister stove stove in a titanium mug (along with gas canister, lighter,...) as a compact cook system. There was just enough space to fit everything in the mug with a lid.

I remembered wishing the stove was just a little bit smaller, but realized I was already quite fortunate to have a stove that was compact enough to fit in my 600mL mug with a small gas canister.



A few months ago, I started using the Olicamp Ion Micro Titanium Stove. It's significantly more compact and lighter than other canister stoves I've been using. [Note: The Ion Micro doesn't have a piezo (press - ignition), but I prefer to carry a more versatile tiny lighter and firesteel).]

While I'm a proponent of lightweight backpacking, I'm also keenly aware that weight is only on factor to consider. My personal preference and the item's efficiency are a couple other worthy desires.




After several uses, I'm convinced that the tiny Ion Micro gets the job done just as good as my other stoves.

I, initially, test stoves in a controlled environment. If the stove doesn't perform well there, it's unlikely to in wilderness conditions.

Controlled testing (room temperature, tepid water,...) brought two cups of water to a rolling boil in about 3 minutes. Outside, 3-season, testing produced similar results with colder water at under 5 minutes. These results coupled with the lightweight, compact design make it an attractive and practical option for a backpacking cook system.



During my preliminary testing I used the Olicamp Spacesaver Mug (weight: 3.8 oz; capacity: 20 oz) that can be bought separately or as a stove/mug combo (Olicamp Ion + Spacesaver Stove Combo).

The mug is made of hard anodized aluminum. The handle is larger than what I'm used to with other mugs, which could serve to keep a hand back from the flames when handling on and off the fire. It does not come with a lid.

The Spacesaver easily holds 2 1/2 cups of water, and a 100g gas canister nests inside, upright on the bottom of the mug when stored.



If you're looking for a 1.5 ounce canister stove (1.25" x 2") that brings 2 cups of water to a hard boil in a competitive time, check out the Olicamp Ion Micro Titanium.

So far, it's been working great for me in the wild and on some country excursions. I'll keep you posted with any pertinent updates.

Reality
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  #2  
Old 08-11-2014, 09:20 PM
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dsuursoo dsuursoo is offline
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How would it hold up with a bigger/wider piece of cookware?

Most of the tank-top stoves are pretty binary for heat, how does this one measure up?

Looks like a torch-type pattern on the burner? How is it in wind?
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Old 08-12-2014, 11:40 AM
© 2006-2016 Practical Backpacking™ / All Rights Reserved
Reality Reality is offline
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Good questions!

Quote:
Originally Posted by dsuursoo
How would it hold up with a bigger/wider piece of cookware?
IMO, this stove is more efficient with (and designed for) a mug system. The flame does spread out some along the bottom of the mug, but I wouldn't go with a pot much wider than the aforementioned mug.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dsuursoo
Most of the tank-top stoves are pretty binary for heat, how does this one measure up?

The manufacturer states this stove's output is 8,900BTU. The valve is not so much on/off. It will allow for simmering.

As with all stoves, how the heat is harnessed and focused on the target (mug) is going to make a difference.

Quote:
Originally Posted by dsuursoo
Looks like a torch-type pattern on the burner? How is it in wind?
Yes, it's torch-like - yet there is a "flame spreader."

To date, I haven't tested it in much wind other than a slight breeze, but I'm sure it will be much like any other type of stove in that the wind (if allowed) will decrease the overall efficiency. I will say that the torch-like burner might work better in the wind than a stove with a more gentle, spread-out flame pattern. [Windproof lighters come to mind.]

The manufacturer has designed the Ion Micro Titanium stove to be the "smallest, lightest, and most compact canister stove" in the world. So, that says a little something about the target market for this stove - i.e. people looking for a minimalist design that still gets the job done.

There are only so many variables to play with in stove and other gear design. Getting the right balance or formula of those variables is key - but also narrows or focuses the scope of interested users (e.g. a slimmer sleeping bag design saves weight, but is likely to only appeal to those that want a slim or snug fit).

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