As usual, I have been playing with more cook kit combinations. I have a number of cook pots in my arsenal, ranging from as little as 475 ml to 1.8L, made from titanium to hard anodized aluminum, and of course, a number of beer can cook pots. However, the one that I have been tinkering around with lately has been my 0.9L “UL” Evernew titanium cook pot. This is a short, squat pot which does not have a nonstick coating inside it (hence, “UL”), and obviously has a 900 ml (or ~ 31 fluid oz) capacity. The pot (w/ handles) & lid weigh in at 4 oz, sans stuff sack.
I actually like this cook pot for a number of reasons. Being that it is short and squat (larger diameter), this cook pot does a great job at maximizing fuel efficiency. And of course being made from titanium, it is a rather durable cook pot. Last, but definitely not least, it has a large enough capacity so that I can boil all the water I need for both a meal and a hot drink at the same time! Some other nice features about this pot is that it does have handles which are capable of supporting the weight of a full pot, and it has graduated markings stamped into the side that does well to serve as a point-of-reference. As a bonus (for me), there is no lining inside the cook pot to scrape off over time or to add extra weight… it’s just plain old titanium baby! As far as weight is concerned, considering the feature-set of this pot, it is a respectable weight, although, I was still able to cut a nice chunk of weight from the cook pot…
So, the first thing I decided to do with this cook pot was to drop the heavy lid, which accounted for a whopping 1.1 oz of the total weight. (For those mathematicians, that is just over 25% of the total weight!) To replace it, I pulled out a scrap piece of titanium foil which I had purchased a while back and simply traced around the stock lid right onto the titanium foil. Then I simply cut it out (slowly) with a pair of household scissors, trying my best to keep a circle… Once I cut the lid out, I grabbed a hole punch and punched a single hole (for pressure relief) and then used a short strip of aluminum tape to make a pull tab on top.
Believe it or not, I managed to drop 0.8 oz from the weight of the lid simply by doing this! The newer (granted, less durable) lid comes in at only 0.3 oz, as compared to 1.1 oz for the stock lid. Now, the cook pot (still w/ handles) and the new lid comes in at a total weight of 3.2 oz as compared to 4 oz (still sans stuff sack). However, as I mentioned, this did come at a price. The new lid is less durable than the stock lid, and while I think that the new lid fits quite nicely (due to my fine scissor-cutting skills) the stock lid does have a more secure fit. To be fair though, I feel that this is because the stock lid does not flex like the ti foil lid. But, don’t count the ti foil lid as being weak. This lid is made from 0.005″ thick titanium foil, which is a thin piece of metal, but is surprisingly strong for its size. It does a great job at holding it’s shape, and doesn’t get all bent out of shape like aluminum foil does at the slightest touch. While this foil can suffer from bends, it will take a considerately larger amount of effort to do so.
The next thing I did to drop some weight was to change out the stuff sack that was supplied with the cook pot. To be fair, I cannot remember the exact weight of the stuff sack, but it was at least 0.7 oz, or maybe more. So, I decided to use my ZPacks cuben fiber stuff sack that is made specifically for the 0.9L Evernew cook pot. Luckily, I already had this on hand since I also have the same cook pot, but the lined version. I purchased the stuff sack for it a while back, but since the pots are the same size, it will work with either. The weight of the stuff sack is 0.1 oz, which is much lighter than the stock stuff sack, and brings the weight of the cook pot, lid and stuff sack to a total of 3.3 oz. Not to shabby in my opinion…
Once I had made these simple, easy changes, I decided to worry about the rest of the cook kit. I also happened to have a roll of hardware cloth, as well as some more of the tooling (aluminum) foil on hand, so I made a pot stand from the hardware cloth and a windscreen from the foil. The combined weight of both items (including a tyvek sleeve which I wrap the pot stand in) came to a total of 1.2 oz. And of course, I was sure to make these items so that they could all pack inside the cook pot. Easy, and done.
Next I dug through the overflowing box of stoves in my gear closet and tried a few of them. Of course they all worked, but to be honest, I had grown interested in the Starlyte alcohol stove which Zelph sells, and so I ordered one. (At only $14, it was an easy decision.) What drew me to this stove the most was that it did not need to be primed, unlike so many of my other alcohol stoves. However, this stove also offered a few other interesting features, namely that it came with a lid which can help contain any unused fuel (although, I am still leery about that) and that it is so compact.
Once the Starlyte stove arrived, I gave it a try, and was impressed. So, I started playing around with different amounts of water, as well as with different amounts of fuel. This of course made me start thinking about another piece of gear that I found interesting… the Sidewinder Caldera Cone for this cook pot… Needless to say, it didn’t take me long and I had also ordered the Sidewinder cone…
Once the cone arrived, I was like kid at Christmas. I filled up my Nalgene, grabbed the cook kit and my new cone, some fuel and took off outside! To be honest, I even forgot about weighing it before heading out to use it…
Since then, I have used it about 6 times (in the yard obviously), and each time it has worked beautifully. I am very happy with this set-up, and it will definitely be going with me later this month on my Foothills Trail thru hike.
Anyway, here is a video of me using the set-up this morning to boil water for coffee:
Also, here are the weights of the entire system:
- 0.9L Evernew “UL” Ti Cook Pot w/ DIY Ti Foil Lid: 3.2 oz
- ZPacks Cuben Fiber Stuff Sack: 0.1 oz
- Trail Designs Sidewinder Caldera Cone & Foil Ground Protector: 1.3 oz
- Zelph’s Starlyte Alcohol Stove w/ Lid: 0.6 oz
- Lightload Towel, Measuring Cup & Mini Bic: 0.6 oz
This is a total weight of 5.8 oz (although, when everything is set on my scale it will rock back and forth between 5.8 & 5.9 oz). As I said before, this is pretty lightweight, however, it is not the lightest. For example, I have an entire cook kit (counting spoon and cup) that comes in at only 2.9 oz, however, when comparing them, this cook kit is much more durable. Is it worth double the weight? Well…
As far as the Caldera Cones, I love them. As can be seen in the photo above (and below) these are beautiful pieces of kit. But, it doesn’t stop with just looking good, they also perform just as beautifully. They block wind better than any other windscreen I have made, functions as both the windscreen and the pot stand, and are simple to use. No real parts to break on these things, just slide the 2 ends together and done. Of course, depending on what sort of fuel is being used, a pair of stakes may have to be inserted through the cone, but this is simple as well. And oh yeah… being that it is made from titanium, it can withstand the heat from even a wood fire (which aluminum cannot). Also, being made from titanium, it will keep its shape, rather than fold up and crease like aluminum. And as a bonus, this entire cone will simply roll up and fit inside my cook pot, and still allow me to have room for everything else I have listed, and more if need be… Need I say more?
This is my second cone, my first one is for the 1.3L Evernew “UL” cook pot, and I love it just as much. And I gotta say, I also have the 600 ml “UL” Evernew cook pot, and can you guess what will very, very likely be in its future???
So, this is my newest cook kit, and as you may can tell, I am pretty excited about it. I know that I will be using this thing more and more in the next few weeks, and then as I said, on my next hike. Also, considering the entire feature-set, it has a lot of potential to becoming one of my go-to cooking kits…
Thanks for reading everyone!
Disclaimer: Other than the 0.9L Evernew “UL” cook pot, I paid for all items in this write-up with my own money. The cook pot was won in a drawing last year. I am not affiliated with any of the companies represented in this write-up, and am under no obligation to write about any of their products. I just like them enough to do so.