Wednesday, May 6, 2015

Prudent Prepping: Gear Test

The dust has settled and the First 72 Hours have passed. Now we concentrate  on what to do in, and how to plan for, the long term via Prudent Prepping.

Testing the Power Pot

I am always looking for gear to add to my collection (like that tent which is so close but still so far away). Other items that are always needed are cooking pots and pans, and finding a dual-purpose item is a bonus. Which brings me to the Power Pot (mentioned by Erin here), found on sale in several places for $99, such as Amazon or at REI.

From the company website:
The PowerPot combines the benefits of a lightweight cooking pot and a portable USB charger. Power any of your mobile devices all while heating up a meal on your trusty backpacking stove or campfire. It even comes in handy as a backup charger for a power outage or another emergency.
  • 1A on-demand USB power for mobile devices 
  • Real-time power meter for optimal charging 
  • Works over any stove or heat sources 
  • 1.2 Liter hard-anodized aluminum pot for cooking
Setting Up

This is the 5W version (10W is also available), showing everything as it came out of the box: mesh bag, 2 pots (power generator and lid/saucepan), power cord and USB adapters.

There is a power output meter built into the cord, which shows how much power is being produced depending on your heat source. One bar means the unit is producing 1W at this time. When attached to a device, the red light turns blue to indicate charging.

Here is a picture of my buddy's Samsung phone being charged with the Power Pot.

Using It
I wanted to test the Power Pot with the Whisperlite stove I mentioned last week, but this stove of mine has not been used since Clinton was in office, and there is corrosion on the valve and needle that is preventing it from working correctly. (I need one of those maintenance kits for Whsperlite stoves,) Looks can be deceiving, so check out your items thoroughly before needing them!

Rigged on a BBQ grill with briquettes in my Vargo folding stove, the power light came on in about 5 minutes. I was able to get 12 oz. of water to boil in approximately 20 minutes. I think boil times could have been shorter if it was less windy, or a barrier was put up to block some of the gusts. 

Something mentioned quite prominently in the directions is not letting the pot run dry. The built-in thermocouple can be damaged if the pot overheats, so leaving a small amount of water in the pot and allowing it to cool down before emptying and storage is a Very Good Thing. I have a new friend that might be interested in hiking and camping this summer, so having everything sorted and working sooner than later is best

Other Items
Still looking for a good, used 3 season tent. I have found one locally but times and dates have not worked out for everyone to allow me to see it in person.

No other purchases were made this past week.

Power Pot charging set. Not the lightest pot I have, but worth the benefit of charging and cooking at the same time. $99 and up. I have to give this 5 stars.

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!

NOTE: All items tested were purchased by me. No products have been loaned in exchange for a favorable review. Any items sent to me for T&E will be listed as such. Suck it Feds.

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