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Reviews > Cook Gear > Stoves > Brasslite Turbo 1D stove 2014 > Test Report by Kurt Papke
Brasslite Turbo 1D Stove
|Height:||6' 4" (193 cm)|
|Weight:||223 lbs (99 kg)|
|Email address:||kwpapke at gmail dot com|
|City, State, Country:||Tucson, Arizona USA|
The main purpose of this report is to test the alcohol
stove. However, the manufacturer kindly supplied an 8 oz
(237 ml) alcohol dispenser bottle and an aluminum windscreen which
are also sold on his website. I will report on all three
components of the system, but the accessories will be addressed
only as needed. The following photo shows the details of the
stove in close-up:
||Turbo 1D Stove
||8 oz dispenser bottle
|Year of manufacture:||2014||2014
(only color available)
(only color available)
|Silvery, i.e. raw aluminum
(only color available)
||Brass, stainless steel
(pot stand), silver solder
|Plastic of unknown type
||2.65 x 2.25 in
(67 mm x 57 mm)
|3.62 x 6.25 x 1.75 in
(92 x 159 x 44 mm)
|6.37 x 28 in
(162 x 711 mm)
|Weight:||Measured: 1.7 oz (48 g)
Listed: 1.7 oz (47 g)
|Measured: 1.3 oz (38 g)
Listed: 1.3 oz (37 g)
|Measured: 1.7 oz (49 g)
Listed: 1.7 oz (48 g)
Features not called out on the manufacturer's website but obvious
New features with this year's model:
The stove comes with a full page of instructions for use, and the
windscreen with a half-page. Stove instructions included
sections on using a windscreen, acceptable fuels, lighting
instructions, using the simmer sleeve, and "tips". I found
the lighting instructions particularly useful, as this is the
first alcohol stove I've used that required priming and
lighting through an air port. The instructions were clear
and easy to follow, though I would have appreciated an
illustration or two for clarity.
I filled up the dispenser about half-way with denatured alcohol,
put about 0.5 oz (15 ml) into the stove, squirted a few drops in
through an airport as per the instructions, and lit it with a
match. It took off immediately, so I put the pot with 16 oz
(473 ml) of water on the stove and wrapped the windscreen mostly
around the package:
|November 13-14, 2014||Coronado National Forest near Tucson Arizona||Romero
|Sunny, 40-75 F
Little to no wind while cooking
|December 7-9, 2014||Saguaro National Park, Rincon Mountains, near Tucson Arizona||Tanque Verde
|Hazy sun, 40-75 F
|January 6-9, 2015||Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona||Clear Creek Trail
|Sunny, 22-60 F
|January 24-25, 2015
||Saguaro National Park, near Tucson, Arizona
This was just a simple "get
into the mountains" overnight backpack. It was a little bit
longer than my typical backpack up the canyon, as I hiked to a
campsite that I like at a higher altitude. The campsite is
nestled down into the canyon so it is protected a bit from the
winds, but it is up on a cliff that allows the cold air at night
to drain down canyon and away from where I sleep.
My campsite eating area is shown in the photo at left with the
Brasslite stove cooking merrily away. Barely visible in the
photo are the series of vent holes I punched into the bottom of
the windscreen with a paper punch.
I measured out 1/2 oz (15 ml) of fuel by pressing on the sides of the alcohol dispenser bottle with the cap off, and poured it into the stove. I squirted just a small amount into the reservoir of the dispenser, and dispensed it into the air ports per the instructions. It lit right up with a match; I placed my kettle containing 16 oz of water (473 ml) on the stove, and wrapped the windscreen around the assembly. It was calm enough that the windscreen was not strictly required, but since I am still learning how to calibrate my fuel usage with the stove I thought I'd be conservative.
Several minutes later my water was boiling nicely, and shortly
thereafter the stove ran out of fuel. Perfect!
I used the stove again the next morning to heat water for
coffee. I was using instant coffee, so I really didn't need
to bring it to a boil, but I did so anyway. It was a little
chilly in the morning, about 40 F (4 C), and I didn't keep my
alcohol warm in my sleeping bag, but everything fired up with no
All around this was a very successful inaugural outing with the
This was a pleasant
3-day/2-night backpack up into the Rincon Mountains on a trail
that I had a hankering to return to after a 5 year absence.
I cooked five meals with the Brasslite stove, consuming about 4 oz
(118 ml) of alcohol fuel. The photo at right shows the stove
doing its thing on the trail, heating water for a ramen noodle
lunch. I temporarily removed the wind screen to be able to
see the stove in action. To the left of the stove &
kettle in the photo is the alcohol dispenser laying on the ground;
at first I was a little leery of leaks, but it seems to seal well.
Everything with the stove worked flawlessly. I did scratch
my head a bit on the first evening figuring out how to work the
simmer ring. I was making couscous, and after adding the
pasta I wanted to simmer it for a while. I ended up pushing
down on the top of my pot while moving the ring with my titanium
The red bandana in the picture was used to wrap the stove in when
storing the stove inside my cooking pot. This worked well to
minimize any rattling or scratching from movement while being
jostled around on my back in my pack.
By the end of this trip I was starting to get into the routine of
using the stove, use was becoming natural to me and effortless.
During the course of this
four day trip I cooked a total of 8 meals using the Brasslite
stove. I filled the alcohol dispenser to the brim before I
left, so I averaged about 1 oz (30 ml) per meal. Conditions
were mostly quite calm, but I cooked a few meals on exposed
ridgelines where there was a pretty good breeze. The Turbo
1D stove performed well under all conditions, both temperature and
By the end of this trip I became very comfortable and confident
using this stove. I have long been a little wary trusting alcohol
stoves in remote areas of the backcountry; if my stove fails, I
could get pretty uncomfortable eating raw food until I returned to
civilization. After this trip with the Brasslite stove, I am
now ready to truly depend on it.
As can be seen in the photo at left, I now have a small "wrinkle"
in the flange along the bottom. I don't know how it
happened, but it is strictly cosmetic and does not impact
In late December, before I took the Brasslite stove back out into
the field again, I wanted to test a few of the pots I have to see
which one I should use. The one I've been using so far is
the Primus Trek Kettle. I originally purchased this for my
white gas stove for winter use, so its not really optimal for an
alcohol stove. It is very light, due to the titanium
construction and has a non-stick coating.
I also have another aluminum pot, distinguished by its
dimensions: it is very short and wide, almost like a frying pan.
In addition, I have the pot from my old Jetboil. I thought
it would be interesting to try the heat exchanger with the
Brasslite. I also like to carry this with me on overnights
as I have the French Press accessories to make great coffee in the
Lastly, I purchased a small Esbit titanium pot on sale at the end
of the year to use with the Brasslite.
Here are the results:
Manufacturer's spec = 5 in (12.5 cm)
16 oz (473 ml) water
||4.5 in (114 mm)
||8.6 oz (244 g)
|Wide Aluminum pot
||7.5 in (190 mm)
||12.3 oz (349 g)
|Jetboil pot with neoprene sleeve removed
||3.6 in (91 mm)
||7.2 oz (204 g)
|Esbit 750 ml pot
||3.9 in (99 mm)
||3.8 oz (106.5 g)
My take away from this little experiment is that wider is
generally better from the perspective of boil times, but of course
things get a bit "tippy" with a wider pot. Though my Jetboil
pot was designed to work with its integral isobutane stove, the
boil times were quite acceptable, the weight is good, and I had no
tipping issues with it during the test. It is at the other
height extreme from the wide pot, so that presents its own
susceptibility to instability if fully loaded.
Interestingly my Jetboil heat exchanger ring fits nicely around
the Brasslite 1D stove stand, so it won't slide off.
My guess is the very thin titanium construction of the Esbit pot
led to the nice boil time.
The point of this exercise was not to create a definitive boil
timing study, but just to demonstrate the wide range of pot sizes,
materials and designs that will work just fine with the Brasslite
This was an overnight backpack along a new trail for
me on a very windy weekend. I cooked two meals with the
Brasslite stove: dinner and breakfast. Breakfast was just
boiling water for coffee, but dinner was a Salmon Corn Chowder
made from dehydrated vegetables. It was the first time I
used the simmer ring extensively. First I heated the water
to boiling, then added the dehydrated vegetables. I covered
the pot with a cozy, then left them to rehydrate for about 15
minutes, then added the salmon. I then added 1/2 oz (15 ml)
of alcohol to the stove, lit it, then closed the simmer ring
fully. I put the pot back on the stove until the alcohol
burned off completely. I didn't time how long the stove
burned, but it was a *long* time (maybe it just seemed that way
because I was starving!) During the last few minutes the pot
was simmering nicely.
Overall I rate this experiment with the simmer ring a
success. It brought my vegetables back to life, and warmed
up the fish without overcooking it.
The picture at right shows the simmer ring in action with the
windscreen temporarily removed for photo purposes. As
always, it is quite difficult to see an alcohol flame during
daylight, but careful examination shows a wisp of a flame in the
Somewhat visible in the photo is the fact that some of the
ventilation holes in the stove will be open just slightly no
matter how the simmer ring is adjusted. The hole on the left
side of the stove is open just a crack, the one on the right
completely sealed. If I adjust the simmer ring by rotating
it slightly and closing the hole on the left, a similar sized
opening is created by the hole on the right. I don't know if
this is by design or accident, but it seems to work just fine.
Over the course of the last two months I have become comfortable
trusting an alcohol stove for the first time in my backpacking
career. My concerns with tippiness of the narrow diameter
pot stand have proven to be unfounded - I have had no incidents of
my cook pot sliding off the stand. I've experienced good
boil times with the Turbo 1D stove, no problems with lighting, and
conservative alcohol fuel consumption rates.
The stove, alcohol dispenser and windscreen form a complete
cooking system. All I needed to add was a pot, some alcohol
|February 2-5, 2015||Grand Canyon National Park, Arizona||Tanner
and Beamer Trails
|35-70 F (2-21 C)
Mostly sunny, occasional hazy clouds
|March 8-9, 2015
||Coronado National Forest near Tucson Arizona||Romero
|40-70 F (4-21 C)
Sunny, light breeze
During this 4-day/3-night backpacking trip I cooked seven total meals with the Brasslite stove consuming 6 oz (177 ml) of alcohol. I had no issues or concerns with the stove on this trip, it continues to perform very well.
The most challenging use of the stove is shown in the photo at left. My campsite on the last night was atop Cardena Butte - the view was glorious, but the exposure meant the wind was howling through the campsite. I made a makeshift windbreak using some flat rocks to protect the stove. My thinking was to help the windscreen maximize fuel output, keep from having the matches blow out on me while lighting, and lastly to keep the stove and pot from tipping over in the wind. As can be seen by the number of discarded matches in the lower left it took some doing to actually get the alcohol lit (note that these matches were left to cool, then transferred to my refuse bag to be packed out. Leave No Trace!)
Despite the high winds, my water heated up in about normal time
with the usual amount of alcohol fuel.
Another anecdote from the trip: on night one I shared a campsite
along Tanner Beach with another hiker doing the Escalante
Route. He had a white gas stove, and as he pumped up his
huge fuel tank, lit the primer to a roaring blaze, I mused on how
much more compact and user-friendly the Brasslite alcohol stove
was. Of course there is no replacing a white gas stove for
sub-freezing temperatures, but I rarely hike in those conditions
This was just a quick sub-24-hour overnight to get
out and enjoy the wildflowers in bloom.
I tried something different with simmering using the Brasslite
stove on this trip.
First, I used the stove with full heat to bring the water to a
boil with the dehydrated meat and vegetables. I let this sit
for a while after the alcohol ran out so the food could rehydrate.
Then, when the stove had cooled down, I adjusted the simmer ring
to fully closed, added another dose of alcohol, re-lit the stove,
and added the pot with the dried rice on top.
This simmered for a long time. Eventually the rice
absorbed all the water in the pot, and I wanted to avoid burnt
rice on the bottom so I removed the pot from the stove, which
continued to burn for another five minutes or so.
This worked out very well. I didn't have to attempt to
adjust the simmer ring with alcohol burning in the stove. It
was a great meal.
Amusing anecdote: that night a Ring-tailed Cat snuck into my
campsite, knocked over the stove, pot and windscreen, and stole my
pot lid. It was a beautiful animal, I was able to catch it
with my headlamp, but I was not amused to have my new Esbit pot
My bottom line is the Brasslite Turbo 1D alcohol stove has become
a trusted companion on my backpacking trips.
Thanks to BackpackGearTest.org and Brasslite LLC for the
opportunity to contribute to this test.
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