Great for boiling water/melting snow
Review by: climbingaggie03, 2007-12-29
I bought a Jetboil used, I figured it was cheap, I could use it for big wall climbing, and I had been intrigued by the design for a while so why not try it out.
I haven't had it on the trail yet, but I've boiled about 15 liters outside my house for various hot drinks and I'm really impressed with it. The boil time is amazingly fast, even with some moderate winds and 30-40 degree temperatures it never took more than 4-5 mins to boil. Once I filled it with ice cubes and just enough water to keep from scorching the pot, it took about 8 mins to boil. I love how the whole thing snaps together and I can pick it up by the pot or the fuel canister. It seems to be pretty fuel efficient. I have just used an old 220 gram canister that was mostly empty to begin with and 15 liters later it's still boiling.
When I bought it used, the lighter was broken, I have replaced it and the feature is really nice but I have heard that these things break and so I would never carry it without a lighter (or matches) as a back up. It does seem like it is a bit unstable on uneven ground and top heavy, but no more than any other canister stove that stacks on top of the canister. I'm not sure how it will deal with elevation and extreme cold, I've had bad experiences with canister stoves in the past, and I don't see anything about the jetboil's design that will fix the cold/pressure problem that is inherent to canister stoves. The pot is a bit small for my taste, I'd like to be able to boil about a liter and a half of water. The jet boil isn't the lightest thing on the market, It weighs 15.2oz (pot and stove) and my pocket rocket/titanium pot combination weighs in at 9.2oz. (fuel and lighter weights are irelavant imo because both stoves require fuel, and I wouldn't leave home with either of these without a lighter) so the jet boil is 6 oz heavier than my other set up and slightly less flexible since it doesn't do much other than boil water and make soups.
The jet boil is great at its intended purpose and that is boiling water as efficiently as possible. If I were only going to own 1 stove, this would not be it, because I like to eat real foods instead of ramen or those dehydrated msg packages. However it is a great tool for short mountain trips, or any other trip where all you need is hot water and you want it with as little fuss as possible.