I’ve been testing a very inexpensive canister stove with piezo ignition that I found on Amazon.com for the past 2 weeks. It only costs $9.95 and doesn’t even have a name except Ultralight Backpacking Canister Camp Stove.
But still, that’s more than 80% less expensive than a comparable ($50) Snow Peak Gigapower Auto, so I thought I’d check it out. At that price, I figured it (the Orange Amazon stove) would be a good buy for a beginner backpacker or boy scout that wants good gear at a bargain price. The question in my mind was what you have to sacrifice for the price break and what kind of value the Orange stove would provide.
Weight-wise, the Orange stove weighs 3.3 ounces and comes with with a protective orange plastic carrying case weighing 0.6 ounces. In comparison my Titanium Gigapower weighs 3.0 ounces and comes with a 0.8 ounce plastic carrying case, so the two stoves are pretty comparable in terms of weight.
The Orange stove comes with a collapsible pot stand that folds away accordion style for storage. The stand has tiny feet at the end of each support member that rotate out to help hold a wider pot.
Unfortunately, I found that the stability of a narrow pot filled with water isn’t ‘t that good, and you can’t take the lid off the top of the pot, without worrying about whether it will tip over. In fact, the bottom of a narrow pot doesn’t even come into contact with the feet and instead rests on top of the metal rivet that fastens them to the vertical support member.
Wide pot stability is much better however, and the bottom of wider pot has complete contact with the feet, so you can open the lid and peak inside without having to worry about your dinner spilling out. This is a consideration for younger campers who might be a little less coordinated than adults in such matters.
With a narrow pot, the Orange Ultralight Backpacking Stove boils 600 ml of water in 4:45 and in 3:00 in a wider pot. As a point of comparison, the much more expensive Titanium Snow Peak Gigapower takes 5:30 to boil 600 ml in a narrow pot and 8:45 in the wider pot. That was an eye opener for me!
I attribute the difference in the boil times to the size of the stove burner on the Orange Amazon stove, which is much flatter and wider than on the Snow Peak. This also explains why the Orange stove’s boil time on the wider pot is much faster than on the narrower pot, because less heat escapes up the outside of the pot.
I’m very impressed with the performance of the “Orange” Ultralight Backpacking Canister Camp Stove.
At $14.95, it’s a great value for any backpacker. However, to take advantage of it’s speedy boil times, I do recommend that you use a wide pot like the Titanium Non-Stick 1.3L I used for testing this stove, to take advantage of the stove’s larger burner surface area and improve it’s efficiency.