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I haven't been around much lately. :( I had a few financial reversals (lost a job I had held for 21 years). The only work I could find for a while was in the next county over, which was a bit of a drive and didn't leave much time for reviewing backpack type stoves.
I'm still doing a lot of commuting, but thankfully now working in the same county in which I live. I probably won't have the time I once did, but I thought I'd present a review that might be of interest here, a review of a remote canister stove that can handle running with the canister upside down.
Why might anyone care about which way the canister points? Well, running with the canister upside down gives one about a 20 degree cold weather advantage over conventional upright canister stoves (when using an isobutane/propane mix).
So, if you like canister gas stoves but want something that can handle a little bit colder weather, the Kovea Spider is worth checking out.
Basically, inverted canister stoves are a lightweight alternative to liquid fueled (gasoline or kerosene) stoves in cold weather, down to about 0F/-18C when using an isobutane/propane mix. Not only are they lighter, but they're more mechanically reliable. In my latest blog post, I review a good one, the Kovea Spider.
I've found it to be a really nice, compact stove.
The Monatauk Gnat (left) and the Kovea Spider (right)
For the future, I'd like to see Kovea do more to lighten the 5.9oz/168g Spider stove. I'd like to see a good remote canister stove down in the four ounce range, but this is such a nice little stove that it's hard to complain.
The diminutive Kovea Spider
There is a lighter, by about 3/4 ounce, stove on the market, the FMS-118 Volcano from Fire Maple, but there have been some complaints about the Volcano when in inverted canister mode, and I don't think the Volcano packs down anywhere near as small. I can get the Kovea Spider and a 110g canister of gas into either my 780ml Snow Peak pot or my MSR Titan kettle.
A Kovea Spider inside an MSR Titan Kettle
If this sounds interesting, here's the full review: The Kovea Spider (KB-1109) Remote Canister Stove. Have a look if you like.