I hate to admit it but I squealed with joy like a little girl this past week - twice. The first when my latest camping gear arrived and again when I used my new Gas One brand dual camp stove. It's 'dual' because unlike most camp or portable stoves that use either propane or butane, this one can use either.
Many people already own portable camp stoves, however in all these years, I've never wanted one. I never wanted to haul 'extra' gear with me; space and weight is always an issue when doing any kind of camping. I've also always felt cooking over a campfire is not only true 'camping' but fun. I also never really knew anything about them since I've never been interested.
So, what happened to make me change my mind?
An upcoming camping trip that includes an area where open fires are not allowed but small cook stoves are.
And we are going to be there 2 days and nights.
After pondering a few options for food and water during these two days I suddenly had one of those light bulb (stupid) moments where I asked myself; "Why in the heck don't you just buy a small camp stove?"
It's always been so far off my radar that it didn't even occur to me to want one.
But we're going to have our car; we don't have to carry everything in our backpack so a small stove made all the sense in the world! In addition to this, if it's raining or storming the rest of the trip, we'll have an option to boil our water (for coffee!) and cook our food when we can't get a good fire going. The icing on the cake is we will have yet another cooking option at our home in an emergency situation where the power is out.
It was time.
It was time to research and purchase a portable camp stove.
And I'm SO incredibly happy and thrilled with the one I chose! I spend a lot of time researching my purchases and I finally decided to go with the Gas One brand GS-3400P Dual Fuel Portable Propane or Butane Camping/Emergency Gas Stove Burner with Carrying Case. It's pretty lightweight, it's pretty sturdy and stable with good quality, it's a cool gold color and best of all it works with EITHER an 8 oz. can of butane or a 16.4 oz. bottle of propane.
Product description from Amazon;
Now for my thoughts and lots of photos...
Although the small bottles of propane are easy to find, it can be much more difficult (based on where you live) to find the cans of butane. It uses the 8 oz. size which is the size of a typical can of hairspray - not the smaller cans of butane that are sold for torches, etc. I went ahead and ordered a 4 pack of butane at the same time I ordered my stove. The butane burns a little cleaner and hotter as well as takes up less space than the 16 oz. propane tanks. (You can order them through Amazon like I did or look for them locally where you live.)
When you open the case it comes in, you will find the propane attachment stored inside the canister space.
To use the stove, remember to flip the pan support over so the supports are facing upwards. It lays flat to store and flips over for use.
If you've never used a portable stove before and are wondering how to use the cans of butane - it is EASY and quick. I swear.
In the front of the stove make sure the 'lock' 'unlock' level is in the unlock position.
You just LAY THE CAN DOWN in the fuel area with the nozzle facing the brass fitting on the end. It lays 'loose' and you don't need to attach anything. The only thing you have to do is line up the open space on the rim, with the little lock down level on top. (See the next photo)
Here is a close up showing the small space that is open on the rim of the can of butane that you lay facing up so this little lock level with the spring is setting above it.
Now push the lever down to 'lock'.
The stove pushes itself into the canister nozzle and seals tight.
If it doesn't, you probably forgot to lay the canister with the open space on the rim facing up. Check and try again.
Now you are ready to go!
Just turn the dial down to the ignite position until you hear and feel it click.
At this point the little blue flame will be going on high. Just turn the dial to lower the flame to where you want it to be.
If it's an extremely sunny day it might be hard to see the flame so be careful. It burns hot obviously.
One of the options sold with this stove on Amazon (where I purchased mine) is a wind screen.
To turn it off just turn the dial back to off.
Push the lever back to 'unlock' and the canister unlocks and you can lift it out.
You can store the propane adapter back inside the unit to store.
Flip the burner back over flat to store. And do not store with a butane canister inside the unit.
So here is the one I ordered and tested twice - and I love it. No regrets at all - I like everything about it.
The case it comes in is pretty thin plastic - pretty cheap I suppose but it's lightweight.
I plan to use mine primarily with the hotter burning butane, however, because it can be hard to find in parts of the country and propane is easily found at sporting good stores, Walmart, etc. I am always storing the propane attachment with my stove so if I ran out of butane while traveling I can pick up a bottle of propane and carry on.
I bought mine through Amazon but they sell these in many different places. IF you are interested in the dual propane/butane style be sure to read carefully. Most stoves are only propane burning so you have to be sure you are looking for the dual option. The gold colored stove by Gas One is dual.
GAS ONE Propane or Butane Stove GS-3400P Dual Fuel Portable Camping and Backpacking Gas Stove Burner with Carrying Case Great for Emergency Preparedness Kit (GOLD)
You might also be interested in checking out some related products from Amazon;
Portable Camping Stoves,Werleo Ultralight Foldable Collapsible Windproof Outdoor Backpacking Stove Propane Butane Small Camping Gas Stove Burner Mini Camping Cookware Cookout Stove for Picnic Hiking
GAS ONE GS-3900P Dual Fuel Propane or Butane Portable stove with Brass Burner Head, Dual Spiral Flame 15,000 BTU Gas Stove with Convenient Carrying Case (Stove)
GAS ONE 50411 Propane Adapter Replacement Hose for Gas One Dual fuel Stoves GS-2000, GS-2300P, GS-3400P, GS-3900P, GS-800P