Cookset for fire and stove? My First Topic.

4:52 p.m. on January 19, 2010 (EST)
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Hi folks -

Greetings from a Scot in Nigeria.

Me and my girlfriend have found so much useful information on this site over the past few months that, now having a query that we just cannot resolve, we reckoned we should sign up and ask it.

We are gearing up (in both senses of the term) for a hopefully long bicycle tour beginning in April in Scotland and heading... well we'll see.

We have researched a lot and are aware of the differing weights, heat-dispersal qualities and costs associated with different cookset materials. For cooking on our stove (Primus Omnifuel), we'll end up getting a medium-to-large non-stick hard-anodized aluminium pot with a lid that's also a frying pan, e.g. Primus' own pots. Or maybe the GSI ones with a lexan strainer. No worries.


But, we also want to make use of open fires when we have them. Can we use these non-stick coated hard-anodized aluminium pots on open firecoals? There is scant information about this on the manufacturers' product pages. Most only go as far as saying their pots are 'designed for stove use'.

Has anyone used these pots in this way for extended trips? Is there some obvious reason not to use them on campfire coals? I know, I might melt plastic utensils, but GSI claim most metal utensils are OK on their Pinnacle pots. Or we could use lexan or wooden tools.

If we simply can't use these type of pots and pans on fire, is there a non-sticky lightweight alternative? We really want to avoid scrubbing and scouring - I eat porridge! Titanium?

I apologise if this seems awfully close to previous threads, or if it overlaps. I did look for a long time before posting, and I think this is a new question.

Ed and Anya

5:47 p.m. on January 19, 2010 (EST)
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i have a set of primus anodized aluminum pots, they have a nonstick coating. have used them on stoves, they are great. no experience with open coals. I see no reason why non-stick coatings can't be used on coals for normal cooking. if you plan to use this as a dutch oven, parked in the coals for a long time, i would forget about the non-stick coating. intense heat isn't great with non-stick coatings. not only can it ruin the pot, but it can also generate chemical fumes.

6:55 p.m. on January 19, 2010 (EST)
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Welcome EdC,

I do this from time to time and have no problems as long as you keep the pan or pot wet. You need a little water, oil, broth, etc in the pot. Don't put a dry pan or pot on a fire, especially titanium.

I agree with leadbelly, don't use them as an oven by burying the cookware in coals if you have a non-stick coating.

I have done this for years on both twig fires and wood coal fires which I prefer to twig fires for cooking.

It wouldn't hurt to contact the manufacturer of your cookware and just ask them. All I can do is tell you I haven't had a problem myself.

10:51 a.m. on January 20, 2010 (EST)
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Great guys, thank you.

We have no intention of using the pots dutch-oven-style in the fire, so it looks like our stove pots will be ok if we don't abandon them on the coals.

Thanks again. And I will email the manufacturers too.

Still open for any additional cautionary/encouraging words from others...

7:10 p.m. on January 20, 2010 (EST)
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Being descended from a long line of Scots, I felt I had to weigh in, Ed, so here goes: Yeah, what they said.

I've got some MSR non-stick pans that have done well over both stoves and fires. Only issues arise when morons clean 'em. (Where'd that SOB even GET a steel scrubber pad in the middle of nowhere, anyway?) In fact, I used one of these pans--forget exactly which--to prepare a splendid breakfast of oatmeal over a fire in the Bitterroot Mountains some years back. Second best bowl of oatmeal I've ever had. (The best came with a special guest, and, er, well, never mind....) And no, it wasn't "quick" oatmeal, either. It was the leave-it-on-the-heat-simmering variety. Took some attention, but worth it. Yeah, the clean-up was a bit of a chore, but significantly lessened by the non-stick nature of the pan.

Of course, as I'm sure you know, and as they say in the fine print of the Viagra adverts, "individual results may vary". (Not that I'd know anything about that....)

7:29 p.m. on January 20, 2010 (EST)
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Ah...I met that guy too Perry!!

He ruined (I was a little upset) my new (4-5 yrs. old) non stick pot-set.

We had backpacked together a few times and he was a little rough around the edges, but great guy.

I told him that he scratched my non stick!

Then he said in a gruff U.S.M.C. voice: "Lighten up man...we're campin' just try to have fun."

So I told him if I weighed another hundred pounds I would kick his -you know what-.

He laughed and we're still good friends, but as soon as he buys some non stick cookware though.........I'm gettin' even.

5:24 a.m. on January 23, 2010 (EST)
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Oh and happy Burns Night Perry - it would be pretty easy to do your haggis, neeps and tatties on the stove I reckon. I guess one would hope that 'Burns' would refer only to the bard, and not to the cooking, or to any kerosene-based mishaps...

11:09 a.m. on January 23, 2010 (EST)
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And we'll be hopin' ye hae a verruh grand Burns night, too, Ed!

And yes, let's keep Burns out o' the pot!

Ne'er tried haggiis 'cept on a Burns night, so I canna speak to its preparation o'er a fahr. And though we've never had a kerosene mishap, various other "fuels" have made the rounds....

And Trouthunter--know exactly what ya mean!

11:18 a.m. on January 26, 2010 (EST)
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I have used a couple of non-stick aluminium cooksets over wood fire, and have had no issues. Of course as others have mentioned, placing a dry pan on the fire would end badly...but the same goes for placing a dry pan on your stove as well. Oh, and cooking over the coals rather than the flame of the fire is a lot easier. The wood flames leave a nasty residue on the sides of your pot.

I dinna ken 'wat bade ma forget that last 'twas an eve ta raise the glass to good Robert!

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