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MSR QUICK 1 COOKSET
TEST SERIES BY ARNOLD PETERSON
MSR Quick 1 at the end of test
MSR Quick 1 at the end of test

LONG-TERM REPORT

INITIAL REPORT - May 14, 2009
FIELD REPORT - August 03, 2009
LONG TERM REPORT - October 05, 2009

TESTER INFORMATION

NAME: Arnold Peterson
EMAIL: alp4982(AT)yahoo(DOT)com
AGE: 71
LOCATION: Middlesex County Massachusetts USA
GENDER: M
HEIGHT: 5' 8" (1.73 m)
WEIGHT: 165 lb (74.80 kg)
SHOE SIZE 9

Backpacking Background: Presently almost all my experience has been hiking in New Hampshire, Florida, Colorado USA, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia Canada using an 11 lb (5 kg) day pack. I have backpacked on Mt. Washington and at the Imp shelter located between North Carter and Mount Moriah mountains in New Hampshire. The gear I will be writing about has been used for hiking mostly all year around in New Hampshire. I have completed the forty-eight 4000 footers (1219 m) of New Hampshire. My day hikes have been as long as 12 hours covering almost 20 miles (32 km).


INITIAL REPORT

PRODUCT INFORMATION & SPECIFICATIONS

Manufacturer: MSR Corporation
Year of Manufacture: 2009
Manufacturer's Website: www.msrgear.com
Model: MSR Quick 1
MSRP: $US 79.95
Listed Weight: 10.7 oz (303 g)
Measured Weight: 10.4 oz (297 g)
Listed Capacity: 44.5 oz (1.3 L)
Listed Mug Capacity: 12.5 oz (0.4 L)
Other Measurements Not Listed
Cook Pot Weight: 3.7 oz (107 g)
Cook Pot Lid Weight: 1.4 oz (42 g)
Cook Pot Handle Weight: 1.3 oz (39 g)
Mug Weight: 3.8 oz (109 g)
Mug Lid Weight: 0.4 oz (13 g)
Cook Pot Height: 3 in (8 cm)
Cook Pot Diameter: 6 in (16 cm)
Cook Pot Handle Length: 6.5 in (17 cm)
Mug Height: 3.5 in (9 cm)
Product Color Code: Red
Materials:
Cook Pot: titanium
Cook Pot Lid: aluminum
Cook Pot Handle: aluminum coated with Teflon with plastic release button
Mug: stainless steel coated with plastic
Mug Lid: plastic

Product Description

The titanium pot is round with a 6 in (15 cm) diameter and 3 in (8 cm) height. The pot has 2 items riveted to the upper edge and opposite each other. One is a formed piece of stainless steel to provide a latch and support for the aluminum lid. The other is a formed stainless bracket with a plastic roller on which the handle hinges. The handle is flat with the center carved out so that it fits snugly onto the lid lift knob when the handle is in the folded position. The pot lid has a double row of strainer holes on one side near the outer edge, and on the opposite side, a single vent hole. The mug has four sides and no handle. The black plastic lid which fits snugly into the top of the mug has a sip hole and vent hole. Because three sides of the mug are short and straight and the remaining side is a lot longer and curved, I would describe it as looking like a section of pie where the where the center point has been cut off. The mug is insulated with red plastic and all parts of the MSR Quick 1 System except the pot and mug lid have a red plastic part.
assembled
assembled

top view
top view

bottom view
bottom view

connection end of handle
connection end of handle

hinge for handle
hinge for handle

lid pivot
lid pivot

lid suspended from pot
lid suspended from pot

INITIAL IMPRESSIONS

This is my third MSR cooking pot and the second one to be made of titanium. All the parts of the MSR Quick 1 cookset appear to be sturdy and the workmanship seems excellent. There are no sharp edges that could tear things in my backpack. It appears that when I need to inspect food being cooked, the lid can hinge on a support. There will be no need to find a clean surface on which to put the lid. The mug feels comfortable in my hand. I think I will like using the handle on the pot. I can hardly wait to get on the trail and put this cook system to work.

READING THE INSTRUCTIONS

About the only thing I learned from the packing is that the MSR products are color coded. My MSR PocketRocket came in a red plastic container and it fit easily into the mug. The color coding probably indicates product compatibility among the MSR products.

TRYING IT OUT

The Quick 1 Solo cook system has several innovations I had not seen before, so it was not easy to pick which one to try first. Since it was morning, I quickly decided to use the mug for my morning percolated coffee. The first thing I noticed as I poured hot steaming coffee into the mug, was that the operation was very stable. Reaching for the cup was almost like shaking hands with it. I placed my thumb on the curved surface, the next 3 fingers on 2 of the shorter straight sides and my little finger on the bottom. Because the curves of the mug fit neatly into the curves of my hand, holding the mug is very stable and comfortable. The critical test is how the beverage tastes in this mug. My favorite for taste is my ceramic mug and this compares very well. I did find the insulated mug more comfortable to hold because there were no hot spots and the beverage stayed warmer longer. I noticed a couple things while drinking my first cup of coffee. The vent hole is placed on the right side and it is slightly higher than the sip hole preventing leakage while drinking. This means for a person holding the cup in their right hand the vent hole is slightly higher than if the vent hole was placed on the left side. I, being left handed, tend to hold my cup in my left hand and now the left side of the cup is slightly higher than the vent hole. Having the vent hole in the center would make sipping ambidextrous and the vent hole would be centered above the MSR logo. The lid of the cup has a small tab on the left side of the cup which I did not notice until I used the cup in my right hand. Before I noticed the tab, I was using the edge opposite the sip hole to remove the lid. These are very minor details and have no bearing on the comfort and great taste of enjoying my morning hot beverage.

I will probably be using the MSR PocketRocket stove rather than my alcohol stove since the alcohol stove does not fit inside the cookset with the mug inside. I will not be needing a windshield if I am using the PocketRocket. I prefer the loose fittng pot lid as it is easily removed without disturbing the contents of the cook pot. The plastic knob on the lid serves to lift the lid and secure the handle when it is in the folded position. Although the lid looks insecure when it is resting on the support, when I shook the pot, the lid did not fall. When the handle is attached to the pot, it feels a little loose; however, this does not affect the stability when moving the pot on and off the stove, especially when there is something in the pot. The 0.5L and 1 L markings on the inside of the pot may eliminate my measurement requirements.

SUMMARY

I am looking forward to using the MSR Quick 1 cookset as it has some innovations that my current cookset does not have. I am pleased with the quality and thoughtfulness that went into the design.

This concludes my Initial Report. The Field Report will be amended to this report in approximately two months from the date of this report. Please check back then for further information. I wish to thank backpackgeartesters.org and MSR Corporation for the opportunity to test the MSR Quick 1 cookset.


FIELD REPORT

FIELD LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

Day hikes

I did three day hikes in forests in eastern Massachusetts. Temperatures were in the 65 F (18 C) to 80 F (27 C) range, and the humidity was high on all these hikes.

Backpacks

I backpacked 3 times in forests in eastern Massachusetts. These backpacking trips were for one night each. Temperatures were between 55 F (13 C) and 75 F (24 C). There was heavy rain during one of these trips. There was little or no wind during these trips. The forest was a mixture of mostly older hard wood trees. The ground was moderately rocky with rolling hills.

I backpacked in a forest in northern New Hampshire for 2 days. Temperatures were between 50 F (10 C) and 70 F (21 C) amd there was no wind or rain. This was a bushwhack as there had been a lot of rain and all the streams were a lot higher than normal. This trip covered about 14 mi (23 km) with an elevation gain of about 3600 ft (1.1 km). The woods were moderate to thickly populated.

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

A test of fuel consumption

I have had a lot of experience with a smaller MSR titanium pot and I was interested in seeing if this larger pot would consume more or less fuel. I timed the heating of 1/4 liter of same temperature water in each container using the same flame setting. I was surprised to find that the larger pot reached a boil in about 15% less time. I think the lager base on the bigger pot captures more of the heat before it is lost.

Choice of stove

I chose to use my MSR Pocket Rocket with the largest canister base I could find. I picked the Butane/Propane fuel stove over my alcohol stove for more stability. The diameter of the pot is about 1/3 larger than the diameter of my canister. This has proved to be a stable cooking situation for my MSR Quick 1 pot. With the MSR Quick 1, I was able to fit the MSR Pocket Rocket inside the stainless steel mug which fits into the pot. The mug lid did not fit with the Pocket Rocket inside. The alcohol stove I own does not fit into the mug. Keeping all my cooking items in the same place is very handy.

Setting up to cook

Up to this time I had used other people's stoves and there was always a tent platform to use for a cooking surface. For these hikes and backpacking trips there were no tent platforms. Thus, I would put the stove down on the ground and level by eye. Then I would put my cook pot with contents on the stove, center it, and check for stability. Then I would light stove and watch during cooking. This is not like cooking in my kitchen and I didn't have a lot of extra food in case of accidents.

Day hikes

Initially I hiked on 3 one day hikes in forests in eastern Massachusetts. Temperatures were in the 65 F (18 C) to 80 F (27 C) range. The humidity was high on all these hikes as we had had rain almost every day during this period. On these hikes, I used Kashi pilaf which is heavier to carry and used a tuna in a foil pack. More detail is provided below.

Backpacks

I moved from day hikes to 3 one night solo trips in forests in eastern Massachusetts. Temperatures during these backpacking trips were between 55 F (13 C) and 75 F (24 C). Humidity was high and it rained heavily on one of the trips. Meals on these trips consisted of an evening meal and a breakfast of oatmeal in the morning. The evening meal was composed of a variety of instant noodle and foil packed tuna or salmon. More details are listed below.

2 person backpack

This backpacking trip was in a forest in northern New Hampshire. Temperatures during this trip were between 50 F (10 C) and 70 F (21 C). The humidity was high but there was no rain and very little wind. This backpacking trip was planned to be a 3, possibly 4 day trip. We were both carrying heavier packs than we normally carry. The first day of hiking was mainly a bushwhack and we setup camp at about 4:30 PM. When we woke in the morning, it was obvious that we had overexerted ourselves the day before and we decided to return. It was probably a good choice since it ended up raining heavily that night. While on this trip, we cooked all our meals in my MSR Quick 1 pot, which turned out to be a very good size pot to cook 2 meals at once, and to still have some extra space. For our meals we had noodles and 2 foil packs of tuna flakes. More details on meals provided below.

Cooking breakfast

My standard breakfast is instant oatmeal. I cooked both 1 and 2 servings in the pot. I could not have used my smaller pot for 2 people. Because I use stream water, I put in more water than is called for so that I can boil the water for sterilization. The extra water helps with hydration and also makes cleanup easier. Once the boil of about one minute is over I add the oatmeal and let it stand for about 5 minutes with the cover in place before taking the lid off for eating. The first time I cooked for 2 people, I took the lid off and placed the lid on some rocks. One of the rocks fell on the lid and bent it slightly. The lid is made of aluminum and does bend easily. The good thing is it bends back into shape almost as easily. I have found that with the larger diameter pot it is easier to eat from the pot, and this turned out to be true also for 2 people.
oatmeal breakfast for one
oatmeal breakfast for one

oatmeal breakfast for 2
oatmeal breakfast for 2


Other meals

Most of the meals I prepare have 2 major components, carbohydrate and protein. I have found 3 varieties of Kashi 7 whole grain pilaf. The varieties of Kashi pilaf are Our Original, Fiery Fiesta, and Moroccan Curry. I found them all acceptable. Other possibilities are various types of quick cooking noodles. For protein I use tuna or salmon in foil packages. The fish comes in fillets or flaked. I found when I used the Kashi pilaf that I used more water than was called for and I cooked until the water started to boil and let the mixture stand for about 10 minutes. The extra water and the rest time allow the grains to absorb more water and which I prefer. With 3 types of Kashi pilaf, 3 types of noodles and 4 varieties of fish I have 24 different meal combinations.
lunch off the trail
lunch off the trail

supper of tuna filet with 7 grain pilaf
supper of tuna filet with 7 grain pilaf


Cooking experience

First of all I like the markings on the pot. I used the markings for all my liquid measurements and it worked well and saved from having to carry a measuring implement. The cook times were fast enough that I did not feel the need to leave the pot unattended. Another reason for not leaving a pot unattended is that, I was warned that a titanium pot can do strange things if left to boil dry. It did happen once with my other MSR Titan pot. The pot turned some vivid colors, but did not change shape. It probably was not dry very long. I stayed with the pot and although I don't like squatting while cooking, it was not long enough to become too uncomfortable. The feel of the handle on the pot takes some getting used to since there is free play between the handle and the pot. It feels like the pot and handle will separate, but it never did. My feeling of uncertainty decreased with use.

The insulated stainless steel mug

I can reach for the mug with either hand and it fits naturally. When I first started using the mug, the lid fit firmly into the cup. After a couple weeks, the lid was fitting loosely when it was at room temperature. When I added a hot liquid, the lid would fit firmly. This was also the time when the hot liquid was too hot to drink. This worked well on backpacks when I was using a coffee bag. I poured boiling water into the mug, dropped the coffee bag in, put the cover on, let it stand about 5 minutes, and the coffee was about the right temperature to drink. What a great way to start the day on the trail. The insulated cup prevented my hand from getting burned.

Cleaning up

The cleanup was simple and easy. There are no nooks and crannies for food to hide in. I have found I cannot tell the differences between cleaning stainless steel or titanium. I packed several paper towels which I used for cleanup and this worked very well.

SUMMARY

I am extremely pleased with the results of using the MSR Quick 1 cookset. The larger pot turned out to be more efficient in using fuel than I expected. The hinged lid worked well and is very useful. In the MSR cookpot, I am able to store the stove, mug and fire lighter. One or 2 people can eat relatively easily out of the same pot. Getting used to the loose feel of the handle is the only slightly negative thing .

TESTING STRATEGY

I will continue using the MSR Quick 1 cookset on all my day hikes where I will be cooking and also on all my backpacks during the test period.
I am looking forward to getting accustomed to the looseness of the handle on the pot.

This concludes my Field Report. The Long Term Report will be amended to this report in approximately two months from the date of this report. Please check back then for further information. I wish to thank BackpackGearTesters.org and MSR Corporation for the opportunity to test the MSR Quick 1 cookset.


LONG-TERM REPORT

LONG-TERM TEST LOCATIONS AND CONDITIONS

I backpacked in forests of northern New Hampshire with a friend on 2 occasions toward the end of August and early September. Both trips were for 3 days. The forests were moderate to thick and there was very little wind and no rain.

The first trip was for about 7 mi (11 km) with an elevation gain of about 3000 ft (914 m). Temperatures were between 82 F (28 C) and 95 F (35 C). This was the hottest and most humid trip. This hike was steep almost all the time with great views and easy access to water that could be filtered.

The second trip was for about 8 mi (13 km) with an elevation of about 4200 ft (1280 km). Temperatures were between 60 F (16 C) and 72 F (22 C). This was close to an ideal temperature for summer hiking. There were many small stream crossings which could provide water if required. Most of the hike was moderately steep and the end part required a lot of scrambling over large rocks.

In early October, I backpacked in forests of southern New Hampshire with a friend. The forests were moderate to thick, with temperatures between 46 F (8 C) and 65 F (18 C), and no wind or rain. We set up camp near a small pond and cooked on a nearby sandy area.

PERFORMANCE IN THE FIELD

During this test period I backpacked 3 times with a friend and cooked a total of 11 meals that we shared. I used the MSR Pocket Rocket for all these meals. The fuel was a Butane/Propane mix and was in a 4.5 in (11 cm) canister. I had no problem with the Quick 1 pot being stable on the stove. My method was to first stabilize the canister and stove, then center the pot with contents on the stove. This worked well with no spilling problems.

Dealing with a slightly burned breakfast

On the second trip we discovered we had Cream of Wheat instead of oatmeal. The outcome was that some of it burned on the bottom of the pan. We were not well prepared to deal with this kind of situation. We scraped the pan as best we could with our spoons. The pot was then packed with the remaining cereal in the pot. The next meal was to be a packet of Ramen and a foil packet of tuna. After the water came to a boil, the Ramen was added and I let it soak for about 5 minutes. The tuna was then added and we shared the pot. When we finished eating there was little evidence that the previous meal had burned. There was no noticeable difference in taste. Pots made with thin metal are more prone to having hot spots and extra attention helps to avoid burning.

Meals

On the shorter backpack trip for 2, I tried using precooked brown rice which is heavier to carry. I used a 20 oz (567 gm) plastic wrapped precooked brown rice and a 5 oz (142 gm) foil packet of tuna filet. The rice was put in the pot and then water was added to cover the rice. This mixture was brought to a boil. The excess water was strained using the lid of the pot. I was pleasantly surprised when not one grain of rice passed through the holes and the strainer did not get clogged. See picture below.
supper of brown rice and tuna filet for
supper of brown rice and tuna filet for 2


The pot with a hinged handle

When I first held the pot empty in my hand, I was skeptical about the looseness of the feel. After using it for 11 meals for 2 people, I am no longer concerned about the looseness. I think the added weight of the water or food makes the difference. I feel I have about as much control with this handle as I have with a regular kitchen pot of about the same size.

Decreased cooking times

I mentioned in my previous report that I found the time to reach boil was about 15% faster than a smaller titanium pot. I still think that is a good number and is probably conservative. When I use a larger pot for the same amount of liquid, the depth of the liquid in the larger pot is less and that also contributes to faster cook times.

The stainless steel insulated mug

Other than having to be careful about the loose lid after the contents cools, I really like using this mug. It holds about 3/8 L ( 12 oz) of water and this is the amount of coffee I have in the morning. It was also useful to use as a bowl for eating a meal when one of us had forgotten a bowl to eat out of. The cup also serves as a measuring device to supplement the 0.5 L and 1.0 L markings on the cook pot.

Cleaning.

I found the cleanup to be quick and easy. There are no nooks or crannies for food to hide in. Using a damp paper towel has worked well for my cleaning needs with the pot as well as the mug. There is a small amount of discoloring, far less than on my other titanium pot which I have used almost daily for over a year.

Off trail uses

I cooked five minute oatmeal for 3 at my house and found there was still enough space at the top of the pot to avoid overflow while cooking. There was no problem with burned oatmeal in the pot. I have also used the pot to boil water for 2 cups of coffee which is about 3/4 L (24 oz) of water.

SUMMARY

The items I like best are:

1. The pot and mug easy to clean.

2. Fast boil times.

3. Lightness and that everything but the canisters fit into the cook pot.

The items I liked least.

1. The pot lid could be bent easily.

2. The looseness of the mug lid.

CONTINUED USE

I expect to use the MSR Quick 1 cookset for all my 2 person backpacking trips and some of my solo trips. I will also be using the cook pot in my kitchen to reduce energy usage. The main uses will be for boiling water for coffee, oatmeal and other small cooking pot needs.

This concludes my Long Term Report. I wish to thank BackpackGearTesters.org and MSR Corporation for the opportunity to test the MSR Quick 1 cookset.

This report was created with the BackpackGearTest.org Report Writer Version 1.5 Copyright 2009. All rights reserved.

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