MSR Windburner Duo System

Ive done a few trips with this now, and feel I know the Burner sufficiently to offer comment that could be of help to people, albeit not at altitude yet - West Coast, Gifberg, Grootwinterhoek and Cederberg. Ive gone through over 1250gms of gas so far

Firstly: at up to 1600m asl it boils 1.8l of water in 5 minutes. this is what its meant to do quickly boil water using as little fuel as possible.
The issue here is understanding when the water has boiled, Im pretty sure I leave it for an extra 45 seconds or so. Ive not monitored how long the gas lasts me daily as each trip has different family demands! Kids and I Oat-so-easy Wifey and I coffee, Kids Tea. then more coffees and then lunch duty, then dinner duty, kids tea and boozy coffees.

The gas cylinders get very cold when using them (even after 3 minutes), so much so that this affect the mixture of gas on 1/3rd full (and less) cylinder. if you shake the cylinder It changes the fuel mix and roars back into life. Inverting the cylinder has stopped this, but I did experience some (Im guessing icing) when doing this with a CADAC gas cylinder. I stripped to the jet and noticed white stuff (ice, or gunk who knows) once blown clean and wiped with a Cotton tip all good again.

The mixtures inside the Gas cylinder are a proprietary mix, each gas evaporating (changing from the liquid mix to a gas) at a different temperature this in turn affects the burn rate. Placing the gas canister in a bowl of water maintains a more consistent temperature, and positively the water gets a little cooler after 10 minutes of cooking
Up in the Cederberg, it was awesome to be able to have boiling water so quickly, in fact faster than we had the food prepared, which introduces a conversation with all sorts of other issues about water wise foods!

#Sorrynotsorry about the legs and feet, it was hot out there that weekend.

Im not a fan of proprietary mounts I note that the pot has tabs for locking but the burner does not.
I have a GSI Outdoor 2l Silicon heat exchange pot that I thought Id have to carry an extra burner to simmer foods on. - Not so I made an aluminium crosspiece that allows the pot to sit on the burner see below.

Fit Cross piece to the Burner top

It fits on the inside of the GSI pot heat exchange unit like so theres a small vertical gap, but most of the breathing takes place between the lip of the burner and the outer edge of the pot exchange unit.

Well happy with the net result.
In this it boiled 1L of water in 3&1/2 minutes.
putting your hand besides the vents on the pot whilst its on full blast, very little heat was spilling out here, the fins capture so much of the heat transferring it back to the base its amazing.
They weigh next to nothing and fit inside the pot with the gas cylinder and heat exchange unit.

On the windburner with its own pot, theres no real noticeable heat control, but with the pot there is an element of reduced heat, effectively three stops, Full on, 1/2 way and off But I wouldn’t say you can maintain an unchecked simmer.

All in all its bloody expensive, but really awesome and wish Id brought one earlier. Wind has no effect on the stove at all, in fact probably makes it hotter! The only issue is starting, you need an ignition source, using matches requires an interesting combination of 3 hands worth of tasks:

  1. Hold match
  2. Hold Box to strike match
  3. Turn on stove whilst applying match to top and not burning face off.
    I thought for a brilliant unit, either this was an oversight, or I have an inadequate number of arms with hands.

As a frame of reference I also have a Coleman “dual fuel” Featherlight pressurised petrol stove and two Fire Maple stove heads. I love the ticking bomb aspect of the Coleman Dual fuel and that it shares petrol with my motorbike, so no carrying extra fuel sources. Its just a bit heavier than necessary for long hikes. (plus theres the, “its 20 years old and might explode” aspect to consider)

The Coleman boiled 1.5L of water in the GSI pot in 3 minutes…admittedly with a minutes warm up.

Jazz and Vivo thanks for your input and the inspiration

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I’ve had my 1l WindBurner for almost five years and it still works like a charm. There is a specific use case though, as you mentioned it is difficult to simmer and make food like pasta but it is amazing to boil water. I have the Coffee Press Kit which works really well and I can make just about enough coffee for 6 people at a time. For bigger groups or fancier food I use my Whisperlite or PocketRocket.

I like the plan you made to use “normal pots”.

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