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Trail Designs Gram Cracker

rated 5.0 of 5 stars
photo: Trail Designs Gram Cracker solid fuel stove

This little titanium ESBIT/FireLite fuel tablet holder is simple, ultra light and actually increases the burning efficiency of fuel tabs. It does this by restricting the flame to the top and ends of the fuel tab.

A plus is that you can load two tablets (side-by-side) and double the burn time. Use it in any ESBIT stove, but the BEST use by far is in a Caldera Cone stove.


  • Increases ESBIT/FireLite burning efficiency
  • Very light
  • Disassembles for better packing
  • Helps any ESBIT stove


  • Base can be deformed by unwise packing
  • Pieces can get lost

The Gram Cracker comes with every Caldera Cone. Mine came with my CC Sidewinder titanium multifuel stove (ESBIT, alky and wood).

This fuel tab holder is the key to burning efficiency. Probably 30% of the efficiency gain with a Caldera Cone comes from this simple fuel tab holder.


The one failing of the Gram Cracker is that it lets valuable liquid fuel residue run down and collect into a gooey blob on the ti tray beneath the Gram Cracker tab holder. With this situation only a 7 minute burn time can be expected from one ESBIT tablet.

If you go to "Brian's Backpacking Blog" and search for "titanium ESBIT tray" you will find plans for folding sheet titanium (purchased from The Titanium Goat) into an ESBT holder tray that captures all of the ESBIT liquefied residue. This tray/tab holder DOUBLES the ESBIT tab burn time to 15 minutes! This means less fuel to carry by half. Amazing that this has not been discovered before.

So by combining

1. Caldera cone stove

2. Brian Green's redesigned ESBIT Gram Cracker fuel tablet holder/burner

you can have a solid fuel stove that, with fuel, is far lighter than an alcohol stove and fuel for the same amount of burn time. Plus ESBIT burns a bit hotter than alcohol. Do the numbers yourself for a 5 or 7 day trip based on your own cooking needs. ESBIT easily beats alky for fuel weight. And is there any alky stove as light as the modified Gram Cracker burner? Nope.

In addition ESBIT tabs can be blown out and re-used for the next meal meaning no wasted fuel.

Yeah, there's the dark brown ESBIT residue on the pot bottom but just wipe it off and deal with it. The upside is worth it.

Source: bought it new
Price Paid: came with CC Sidewinder stove

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Price MSRP: $14.95
Historic Range: $12.71
Weight 3 g
Product Details from Trail Designs »

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