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Old 05-12-10, 05:21 PM   #1
gcasillo
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Solo cookset recommendations

I'm in the process of gathering some gear for some touring I'll be doing this year. Mostly overnighters and weekend trips, but I might do a multi-day tour if I can swing it too. After a good bit of searching these forums and elsewhere, I'm usually able to find a consensus for items like tents, sleeping bags, etc. that people like. However, I'm having trouble deciding on a cookset.

While I know I can get food where ever I go for short trips, I'd like to do some camp cooking as well. I'm going to use either a Primus Omnifuel or Micron stove. I'd like to be able to prepare a variety of foods like scrambled eggs, pancakes, bacon, and do on. Probably more than just boiling water. I'm looking for a cookset that would accomodate this. A small fry pan/lid, pot, mug, and eating utensil(s) would seem a good start, and I'm very partial to non-aluminum cookware. Lightweight would be nice, but I'm happy to tote the extra weight for stainless steel.

Anyhow, does anyone have any recommendations particularly with my stove and food choices in mind?
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Old 05-12-10, 06:21 PM   #2
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i like the MSR stuff with the clamp-down lids, so I can store leftovers if need be.

like this stuff:
http://www.backcountryedge.com/msr-s...utm_medium=cpc
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Old 05-12-10, 09:01 PM   #3
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MSR makes nice cooksets. I've sold their stuff for years, and I think it's some of the best you can get your hands on. I'm partial to steel as well, I think you should go with it. A small fry pan, a 1.5 liter pot or a 2 liter pot will get you through hell and back. I like bringing silverware from home, and my steel single-wall mug can be used to boil water for tea or coffee.

You can use those simple things for a mind-bending variety of things. Get a lid for the pot and use it as tupperware, or to store food and strap on the outside of your pannier. You can eat out of the pan while cooking a second course in the pot, or even use the pot lid as a plate alone with the pan when cooking for two. I like going simple on my mess kit.
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Old 05-12-10, 09:32 PM   #4
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I've used a version of what's now called the MSR Alpine 2 pot set for >10 years, and it's worked well, though lately I have lost my patience for full-fledged cooking (and especially cleaning), which led me to switch over mainly to just-add-boiling-water meals. For that I've had good luck with the REI Ti Ware Cup and Pot set for $55.
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Old 05-13-10, 04:53 AM   #5
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I second the MSR cooksets....this one is nice too though

My sister has it, and we used it for numerous backpacking trips.

http://www.rei.com/product/783287

only drawback is that it only comes with one pot, but the price tag is nice
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Old 05-13-10, 05:37 AM   #6
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I've got the GSI Pinnacle Backpacker. I like having both a 1.5/2 liter pot and a fry pan even when I'm by myself. I like to cook. It's got one of the best non-stick surfaces. (Although I question the claim of being able to use metal utensils -- been there, done that) When I'm by myself I just take out the extra cup and it leaves me enough room to pack my stove and utensils. If you're not going to actually cook -- just boil water -- I'd go elsewhere as you would have unnecessary bulk.

John
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Old 05-14-10, 10:23 PM   #7
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I am a big fan of the REI Ti pots. I have a .9 liter and the next size up. They nest well together. I can fit my canister Primus stove, Lexan spoon with handle shortened, lighter, and small camp towel inside the .9 just barely. You can't beat these things for weight and cost when compared to other Ti pots. I actually went a little lightweight geeky and spray painted the outside of my pot black with high temp BBQ paint.
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Old 05-14-10, 11:35 PM   #8
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I'm a little thrifty when I tour. Go to the garage sales and get one small pot or maybe two. Use that. When you can afford the better stuff, then get it. But start out low-cost.
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Old 05-15-10, 11:19 AM   #9
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MRS is great for long distance touring. For weekend tours where fuel refils are not a problem I found that an alcohol gel stove or solid fuel works fine.
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Old 05-15-10, 06:22 PM   #10
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One more vote for MSR cooksets, they're very sturdy. The pots in the Alpine cookset nest very nicely, the lid makes a decent frying pan, and you can fit an MSR Whisperlite Internationale inside the pots. You'll need a pot gripper, which will also fit inside the cookset.
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Old 05-15-10, 07:22 PM   #11
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I use a GSI Pinnacle Soloist that I really like. Better and cheaper than MSR.
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Old 05-15-10, 08:10 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Newspaperguy View Post
I'm a little thrifty when I tour. Go to the garage sales and get one small pot or maybe two. Use that. When you can afford the better stuff, then get it. But start out low-cost.
I'm kind of the same way. I found a stainless pot with cracked handle at a thrift store for $2 and they threw in an aluminum lid for free. I had to use a broken spoke for a loop (lid handle) but I've used the same pot/lid for 12 years. I did break down and buy two new MSR pot grabbers when the handle broke.

If I was going to buy new, I'd probably go MSR. I've had great luck with every other piece of MSR gear I've ever purchased.

I think everyone would agree...stay clear of aluminum pots (unless lined). They are porous and can retain bacteria. Nothing worse than a bad stomach 1000 miles from home. Ti is awesome...but a little pricey for my cheap arse.

Jerry H
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Old 05-17-10, 08:32 AM   #13
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Coming from the Civil War re-enacting hobby where a cookset is typically a tin can fitted with a bailing wire bail, a frying pan improvised from half of a canteen, a spoon and a pocketknife, this bike-packing stuff is derned luxurious ;-) I have and like one of the MSR Alpine two pot sets, with a Whisperlite liquid-fueled stove. I also carry a small folding frying pan which serves double duty as frying pan and plate when so needed, and a drinking cup.

For overnighters or short trips where I pack along those little Mountain House dehydrated meals, I like a JetBoil... and even on short daytrips I'll sometimes pack along the JetBoil to make coffee or soup at at a rest stop or whatever...
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Old 05-17-10, 10:26 AM   #14
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Thanks to all for your input. I fell back on my backpacking experience and decided to go with a lightweight gas canister stove and cookset combo, an Optimus Crux Weekend HE cookset. It's very light and packs compactly. For myself on the overnight and weekend trips I'll be taking most of this year, I expect this to be more than sufficient for cowboy coffee and the occasional boil, tear open, and stir meal. I also have a folding Ti fork and spoon. Where I can't find food at a local establishment, this should be a very nice plan B. When I start venturing farther out and doing longer trips, I'll probably add a stainless steel pot or two to my gear.
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Old 05-18-10, 02:04 PM   #15
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Nice. That is a hot looking little set up you got yourself there (pardon the pun of sorts). It appears there is a little windscreen of sorts, which is a very nice feature and one that most canister stoves lack.
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Old 05-21-10, 07:53 AM   #16
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I also use the GSI Soloist and the non-stick surface is awesome. The only drawback with these is that you can't easily fry in them. I would have prefered a lid which doubles as a small frying pan. Right now I mostly make noodles with mine.

I use the Optimus Nova+ stove. It's great.
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Old 05-21-10, 08:07 AM   #17
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You can try to find some Ti cookwear, not AL and like steel but a lot more expensive... Wont rust...

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