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Coleman 533

rated 4.5 of 5 stars
photo: Coleman 533 liquid fuel stove

Rugged stove that works well under all conditions. Easy to use but can be finicky in adjusting the flame.

Pros

  • Rugged
  • Easy lighting
  • Durable
  • Size

Cons

  • Cost (2024) is pricey over $100 - I paid $35.00 a while ago.
  • Replacement parts still available.
  • Large coffee pot can be unstable.

My Coleman 533 is about 30 years old.  Used frequently on camping trips to perk coffee and cook simple meals. 

Lighting the stove is easy.  If the stove is full, frequent pumping is necessary until fuels burns off to maintain a larger air volume in the tank.  The flame control does not work all that well.  The low heat "sweet spot" is hard to find and if you don't monitor it, the flame will go yellow and the stove will go out.

A full large coffee pot has a tendency to be unstable due to the small footprint over the burner.  If you are careful however, it heats water quickly and coffee is ready in no time.

Other than replacing the pump in 2020 and the generator in 2024, there has been no issue with the stove lighting or staying lit in most weather conditions, high winds are tricky.  The new generator purchased at "Old Coleman Parts" was cheaper than anywhere else and works far better than my old one.

Not a backpacking stove, but a wonderful addition for cooking a one pot meal, warming water, or making coffee.

Background

I have used Primus, Optimus 8r, and Coleman stoves for over 40 years. Each has pros and cons. I have had the 533 for about 30 years. The only 2 issues are the pump and generator that needed replacing. The stove has never failed on a camping trip of which I have been on multiple times a year. I have also used this stove as an emergency stove during hurricanes and other disasters.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $35.00

If you are a weekend walker, I agree, buy the compressed gas stoves that litter the top of this stove review list. If however, you are spending time in places where 'mom & pop' camping stores are a little harder to come by a multi-fuel burner is essential.

If you are going out in nice summer conditions where you can prime a stove in a well ventilated area where the wind gently kisses the summer flowers and lazily wafts their sweet scent past your nostrils, I again agree, buy a Primus.

If however you can not be certain of either, then Coleman products are best by a long way. No priming, will light in a tent or in windy conditions and give a strong adjustable flame. The 533, 422, and even the expensive Fyrestorm will do you well in pretty much all circumstances you can throw at them.

My one criticism is that Coleman could do with improving quality control as too many products seem to leave the factory with glitches. When you get yours test it at home. If it does not light first time, has a weak flame or appears temperamental in any way, send it back, because when you get a good one you won't look back!

Price Paid: £40

Pros

  • I used a pair of these while long haul trucking and wilderness camping for a few years, and they will put out the heat and cook a good meal in a household size skillet or boil a gallon and a half of water in a cast iron crockpot. And, of course, gasoline is readily available anywhere. And if a generator is malfunctioning, but not plugged, the flame height can be adjusted by varying the tank air pressure with the priming pump

Cons

  • DO NOT EVER put super unleaded or mid grade gasoline in these stoves!! The additives will plug up the generator, so use the cheapest gasoline you can get if whitegas is not available. The priming pump is another weak point, and requires frequent oil. Always keep a spare. Generators were hard to find when these stoves were in production.

A review eh? Well.

These can be very tricky in a backpack, as liquid fuel carry is, and has always been, an issue. You gotta love these stoves to really contend with them. Now, on the other hand, gasoline is plentiful, and most people cannot refill butane/ propane cans, so when you're out of fuel, you will need to find a store, burn wood, or eat cold food. Gasoline is everywhere.

These stoves are at a disadvantage in terms of pack space, weight, and fuel safety...their day has come and gone. However, if you're going to be out awhile in a specific area, or with more than one person, and a vehicle they can be a valuable asset.

I am a bit nostalgic about things such as these from a period in life that has long since past, but even I, blend butane/ propane fuel for my Jetboil backpacking stove. They don't weigh anything and fit in a pack pocket.

Background

Lots and lots of soup, dry goods and hamburgers

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: 30 dollars

Bulky but worth it!

Pros

  • Dual fuel
  • Large tank
  • Good fuel consumption
  • Cheap

Cons

  • Heavy
  • Bulky
  • Caseless

You can still find these stoves online for about $30. I wasn't a fan at first but found that other camp stoves were not rugged enough to endure the abuse I gave them. I tried out this stove because of how cheap it was and figured I would not be at a loss if it was a bust.

Well, several years and tons of trips through all kinds of weather and terrain later, this little reliable stove has proved its worth. If you do not mind the weight and bulk I highly recommend this stove.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $45.99

I just pulled this stove out of storage. It's been out of use more than five years. There was fuel in it so I tried to light it. Fired right up! First try! Enough said.

I will be using it for an emergency stove for my truck. Stove is over twenty years old!

See the summary, says it all.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: Don't recall, > than $50

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You May Like

Coleman's model 533 dual-fuel stove has been sold under many different names over the years, including "Dual Fuel 533", "Sportster II Dual Fuel 533 1-Burner Stove", and "Guide Series Compact Dual Fuel Stove". They are all the same stove design.

The 533 replaced the Coleman Feather 442 Dual Fuel Stove.

Specs

Price Current Retail: $109.99
Historic Range: $109.99-$113.99
Reviewers Paid: $30.00-$45.99
Product Details from Coleman »

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