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Wednesday, March 19, 2014

The First 72 Hours: Gear Review and Update

Part 6 of a continuing series on prepping for a disaster, with an emphasis on how and where to start while on a Blue Collar budget.


Gear Review and Purchase Updates

I had the opportunity to try a stove mentioned in a comment to a previous post, either here or on the Blue Collar Prepping Facebook page. If you don't belong to that group, please apply, the comments and new information available there is great!



So, on to the stove. What I tried was the JINYU Butane canister stove, available in several of the Asian food stores in my area. Retail prices were around $20 for the stove and 4(!) Butane canisters. My friends use it for camping and to fry fish and to cook on their patio other items too smelly to do indoors.



Plus 
  • Very light weight- less than 2 lbs with canister installed. The stove comes in a molded plastic box with flip over catches for storage and transport.
  • Very fast cooking- less than 5 minutes to boil 1 qt. of water. Probably a lot less, but the old proverb, 'A watched pot doesn't boil' and some beer came into play and I missed the boil point. This was tested in a standard kitchen 2 1/2 qt. pot, and as hot as it got, my expectation is in my light-weight camping pot it should be equal to or faster than my old WhisperLite due to burner size.
  • Low cost fuel- 1 canister is less than $2 and can run (I am told by the owners) over 2 hours. YMMV, and all those other disclaimers! 

Minus
  • Very light weight- I can see that packing this very far or using it heavily could be an issue. The case will prevent damage to the stove but the molded-in latches are a problem I've seen before on some of my job's accessory boxes. The stove itself, while light weight, seems sturdy enough to hold larger pots within reason.
  • Fuel Supply- The compatible gas canisters have to be used. I can see this stove used in a short term disaster situation, but for longer term I personally prefer dual-fuel liquid stoves.
My vote is a YES, with very minor qualifications.

SUPPLY UPDATE

Those of you NOT on Facebook are missing out! One member questioned my inclusion of sea salt in my food stores, due to Iodine (in table salt) being a required nutrient not found in sea salt. The reason sea salt was purchased (Asian markets rule!) is that it came from the factory in a heavy duty vinyl, zip-lock bag. My planning has to expect stored items may/will be crushed in an earthquake, so packaging has to be resistant to those forces. And I do have table salt in my stored items.

Coffee and Tea
Trader Joe's has 10-count instant coffee packets (with cream and sugar included) for $1.99. I bought two.
Also at Trader Joe's I found various teas 10 for $1.99, so I bought two boxes of them as well.

And for the last item, the Trader had 1 qt. cans of olive oil for $10.99. Pricey, I know, but since they come in a very crush-resistant can, I had to buy one.


As always, if you have comments, suggestions or corrections, please post them so we all can learn. And remember, Some Is Always Better Than None!

The Fine Print


This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution- Noncommercial- No Derivative Works 3.0 License.

Creative Commons License


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