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Optimus Polaris Optifuel

photo: Optimus Polaris Optifuel liquid fuel stove

Specs

Price MSRP: $179.95
Current Retail: $179.95
Historic Range: $48.99-$179.95
Reviewers Paid: $150.00
Fuel white gas, LP Gas, gasoline, kerosene, diesel, jet fuel
Boil time for 1 L of water, 4 minutes
Weight 475 g

Reviews

2 reviews
5-star:   0
4-star:   1
3-star:   1
2-star:   0
1-star:   0

Lightweight, well built stove. Excellent flame control, even better than my Whisperlite. Good boiling times. It is loud, so I'd recommend buying a a silencer cap. Have enjoyed using it with the cap. Hike and camp in the Colorado Rockies.

Pros

  • Easy lighting
  • Accurate flame control
  • Simmers well
  • Handles different fuels well
  • Good boil time with all fuels
  • Same jet for all fuels
  • Simmers even better with silencer

Cons

  • Noisy
  • Needs a third party silencer cap

Bought this after reading and researching a lot of stoves. Was not happy with my WhisperLite Universal, which although better than my old Coleman in some ways, was not as good in others.

Was tired of needing to change "jets" when changing fuels.

This solved my issues and I've been very happy with it.

As I mentioned in the cons, it's a noisy stove without a silencer cap, so I got the Polardawg one. Now it's nice and quiet.

I was amazed at how well the flame adjustment worked with all fuels, liquid or gas. The silencer cap added better control to an already great simmer capability.

Boil times are better than average. If you're in a hurry, though, don't use the silencer cap and it really boils quickly. Timed it when I first got it and it was well above average, but have forgotten the actual times since then. But, I haven't been held up waiting for the stove.

The curved legs add more stability than you get with straight legs.

Mine does well in the wind, but as always, when it gets windy enough, it's time to break out the windscreen, which it came with, along with a ground heat reflector. I like to use windscreens in the cold, even when it isn't windy, to concentrate the heat. So there's another use for the windscreen.

The connections to gas and liquid are easy to do. With the fitting on the pump, you don't need to swap adapters.

Experience

Have used this stove fishing, camping, hunting, and on work sites. Has been a great stove and reliable too.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $150

Alicia MacLeay TRAILSPACE STAFF

Thanks for the helpful review of your Optimus, Sam!


3 years ago
300winmag

I very much like the ability to simmer as it saves fuel. I sold an MSR Dragonfly, a great simmer stove, B/C it was just too heavy. And I DID get an MSR Whisperlite Universal 3 fuel stove mainly for winter and car camping. It works very well and changing jets before a trip is not a problem. But yeah, I wish it could simmer. :o(


3 years ago
300winmag

BTW, It looks like the "SilencerCap" makes the Optifuel less efficient. Is this correct?


3 years ago

Well built. Needs an additional silencer cap to achieve its potential.

Pros

  • Solid build
  • Excellent pump
  • Innovative, easy and quick way to de-clog the jet
  • Compact
  • Easy to service

Cons

  • Very loud without silent cap
  • Poor performance with canister gas
  • Tendency to pulse

I bought this recently as an alternative to my Coleman 442 and to replace a Primus Omnilite

I tested it with its normal flame spreader boiling half a litre of water with canister gas, white gas, and kerosene. Apart from being very loud, which I expected, I found the performance on canister gas disappointing. It took a full minute longer than the other fuels to boil half a litre, and simmer control was poor, having a tendency to go out altogether when turned low. 

On white gas and kerosene, it was considerably better, although pulsing occasionally. 

The Polar Dawg silent cap, though expensive, transformed the stove. Simmer control was vastly improved particularly with canister gas, and boil time with this fuel was improved to something similar to the other fuels. Noise was reduced by half and the pulsing was all but eliminated.

The only drawback with this setup was pre-heat time taking longer, particularly with kerosene. This was done with alcohol to avoid sooting, and took about a minute and a half to two minutes, depending on ambient temperature, by which time a cheap gas stove would have boiled the water ready for your brew. The silent cap also takes a long time to cool. 

Despite this, I like the stove. Its build quality is excellent, the all-metal pump, superb with its attachment big knurled knob on the pump body easier to operate than the Primus setup. Its multitool is effective for stripping the stove, and contains the magnet which makes unblocking the jet quick and simple. 

The single jet I found was both a blessing and a drawback. It is optimised for white gas and the stove is at its best with this fuel. While it is nice not to have to fiddle around changing jets with numb fingers, using fuels other than white gas is a compromise, the size being too small for canister gas and too big for kerosene. 

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: £125

Alicia MacLeay TRAILSPACE STAFF

Nice review of your Optimus, Dimitrios!


9 days ago

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