Primus Eta Lite
Might be one of the most overlooked stoves out there. Singles and couples would do well to research this stove for its ease, portability, weight, and design.
- Self contained
- Mug locks in
- Insulated holder and lid
- For 1 or 2 people max
- Igniter stopped working
I LOVE my Primus ETA Lite. As a backpacker I've used this on three major multi-day trips and several shorter trips. The self contained design (fuel canister and stove all fit in mug with locking lid) makes it easy to throw in the pack.
The mug locks on the stove so that you're not worried about stability, but it also includes a stabilizer for the fuel can if you're on rough terrain. What's also nice about the locking mug is that it is less exposed to wind. So you don't worry about the flame blowing out or working less efficiently.
The adjustable flame makes for a really quick boil, like 1-3 minutes depending on temps outside. I personally use it to boil water for my Mountain House and similar meals. It boils enough for the 2-3 person serving bags and then while my meal is "cooking" in the bag I boil more water for coffee that I can drink straight from the mug. The insulated sleeve makes it easy to grab right after a boil and not worry about burning yourself.
My one issue is the igniter stopped working about 6 months after I got it. This is a universal problem and it doesn't bother me as it's just as easy to use a lighter or matches. When packing up the handle unattaches at one end and flips over the lid and reattaches to keep the lid and its contents secure.
At 12.7 ounces for the stove and mug it's not a bad deal at all. I've researched lighter options and once you add the pot it's just not a big enough difference to switch to something else. It has about an hour of burn time on the smaller canister so that's easily a long weekend to close to a week for one canister.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $100
A very good affordable stove.
- Great pot attachment system
- Pot a little small
I bought this to replace my Eta Solo, which had a larger pot. This stove is very fuel efficient. It carries a small isobutane canister (7+ ounces). When carrying a fuel canister in the pot during a multi-day trip, use a plastic bag to prevent rust/discoloration caused by a wet canister.
The stove comes with a piezo igniter, but this can not be relied on. Plan on lighting it with a lighter.
Above: Breakfast on a rock. Primus Eta stove, Snow Peak single wall mug, Sea to Summit Alpha Lite long spoon, Nuun Active, Mountain House Scrambled Eggs, Camelbak Chutes .75 liter, and Platypus Soft Bottles (1 liter).
The Eta Lite is pretty much a 1 person stove. You might be able to re-hydrate two entrees with one pot of water, but to re-hydrate two breakfasts and make coffee you'll be boiling water twice.
Always have the strainer hole pointing away from front of stove. It prevents water from boiling over where you need to access the knob to turn the stove off.
The Eta Lite is a good, affordable stove that is very fuel efficient. I would recommend it for solo backpackers and couples day hiking.
Source: bought it new
Price Paid: $55 Sierra Trading Post
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Historic Range: $34.99-$114.95
Reviewers Paid: $55.00-$100.00