Review: MSR Whisperlite Internationale Stove

Alee December 26, 2013 2
  • Functionality
  • Durability
  • Value for Money

The MSR Whisperlite multifuel stove has been a favourite for bicycle tourers, hikers and travellers alike, for both it’s simplicity and versatility. We literally use our Whisperlite 700x per year (at the moment) and having never had a single issue with it – it seems nothing can break it!

Although lighting it takes time, and it’s a bit dirty when cleaning up (after using petrol), we find it’s ability to burn any fuel in any country more than makes up for this.

Our only gripe sometimes is that we can’t change the heat level while we’re cooking, but more on that below.

The Why:

- You can burn almost any fuel available all over the world (we use petrol because of it’s abundance).

- We haven’t yet replaced a seal in the pump or stove, despite using the stove for four or five years. Due to the Whisperlite’s simplicity and sound construction, it seems like it will genuinely last a lifetime.

- It’s silent compared to other multifuel stoves with simmer control (eg. MSR Dragonfly).

- Super easy to clean and rebuild.

- Burns very cleanly and efficiently with high quality fuels such as ‘Shellite’.

- Doesn’t require aluminium cans (like a gas canister stove) which can be a pain to find and a waste of resources (aluminium waste) in our opinion.

The Why Not:

- You have very little heat adjustment at the control valve when you’re cooking. If you know your Whisperlite well, it’s possible to pressurize it toalow level (for simmering a curry) orhigh level (for boiling water)when you start it up. But once it’s on, you can only increase the pressure and therefore the temperature. However… we have a solution for this problem, the SIMMER RING!

- The most recent model has teeth on the top of the legs to keep your pot secure when cooking. The problem is that the legs are sharp and tend to cut through the stove bag (or whatever the stove is packed next to).

- When using petrol, it’s dirty compared to other stoves. We blow off most of the black grime after use and store our stove in a plastic ziplock bag to prevent it making everything dirty. To combat this issue, it is possible to use a clean fuel (eg. Shellite) to prime the stove (preheating the metal so that the fuel instantly vapourises) before turning the control valve to do the cooking part with petrol.

Price:

$150 USD

Similar products:

- MSR Whisperlite Universal (multifuel + canister stove)

- MSR Dragonfly (heat adjustable)

- Primus Omnifuel

 

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  • Andy

    Have you heard of this mod?

    http://etrike.wordpress.com/2012/11/20/msr-whisperlight-alcohol-mod/
    Supposedly, if you file down the valve screw to a conical tip, the stove suddenly becomes infinitely more adjustible. I have no experience with this myself, but came across it when I was researching stoves. Maybe something to think about…

    • http://www.cyclingabout.com/ Alee Denham

      Thanks for the heads up! Might have to see what happens on a rainy day sometime soon. ;)