BackpackGearTest
  Guest - Not logged in 

Reviews > Cook Gear > Stoves > Primus OmniLite TI stove > Test Report by Bob Sanders

Primus Omnilite Stove

Primus Omnilite Ti Stove

Test Series by Bob Sanders
Initial Report: June 27, 2015
Field Report: October 13, 2015
Long Term Report: December 8, 2015

PERSONAL INFORMATION
Name: Bob Sanders BobBackpacking Background: I went on my first backpacking trip as a Boy Scout at the age of 16. Over the years I have hiked the Wonderland Trail in Washington and section hiked parts of the Florida Trail, Appalachian Trail, Colorado Trail and 740 mi (1191 km) of the Pacific Crest Trail. I continue to backpack and hike year round in the Colorado mountains. I have evolved from a heavyweight backpacker to a lightweight backpacker and sometimes reach ultralight weights. My three day winter/spring solo adventures (using a tent) have me hovering around a 15 lb (6.8 kg) base weight.
Age: 57
Gender: Male
Height: 6 ft 1 in (1.85 m)
Weight: 210 lb (95 kg)
Email: sherpabob(at)mac(dot)com
Location: Rollinsville, Colorado USA

INITIAL REPORT

June 27, 2015

PRODUCT INFORMATION
Manufacturer's URL: www.primus.se
Year of Manufacture:
2015
Made in:
Sweden
MSRP:
$179.95 USD
Listed Weight from Website (Stove Only):
8.4 oz (239 g)
Measured Size (Collapsed): 4.4 x3.6 x 2.2 in (112 x 92 x 55 mm)
Measured Weights:
   Stove:
7.8 oz (221 g)
   Fuel Pump:
3.5 oz (101 g)
   Windshield/Heat Reflector:
3 oz (85 g)
   Empty 0.35 L Fuel Bottle w/Lid:
4.3 oz (123 g)
   Storage Bag:
6.9 oz (196 g)
   Multi-tool & Grease: 1.8 oz (50 g)
   Complete Package (Everything Supplied in Bag): 28.4 oz (806 g)
Listed Output:
8900 BTU/h (2600 W)
Listed Boiling Time:
2:40 min (+ preheating 40 sec) (1 L)
Listed Burn Time:
100 min with 230 g (8.1 oz) gas canister

Primus Omnilite Ti Stove
Complete package showing stove, fuel bottle, cap, pump, windscreen, tool, lube & bag.

Initial Impressions:

Let me say first that this is a serious stove. The package comes complete with instructions, the stove, a .35 L (11.8 fl oz) fuel bottle with cap, fuel pump, windscreen, heat reflector, multi-tool, tube of silicone grease and storage bag.

Primus Omnilite Ti Stove: This stove is reasonably light at 7.8 oz (221 g). It is designed to be a multi-fuel stove. This stove can burn LP gas (propane/butane), gasoline/petrol, diesel, kerosene/paraffin, and even aviation fuel. To accommodate each of the fuels a separate fuel jet nipple must be installed. The kit includes 3 different sized jet nipples that are removed and installed with the included multi-tool. Titanium is used for the folding pot supports and the stove central windscreen. The rest of the stove is made from what appears to be stainless steel and brass. It is very stable sitting on the ground. It will accommodate pots ranging from 3 in (76 mm) on up. It is rated for 4 season use and I can see why. I will not be melting any snow during this review but should give it a good workout. The flame control knob/wire is large enough to be used with gloves on.

Primus Omnilite Ti Stove
Primus Omnilite Ti Stove

Fuel Bottle and Cap: Both of these units seem well made and robust. The bottle is aluminum with a nice grippy texture. The cap is thick plastic with a rubber O-Ring.

ErgoPump: The pump is well made and consists of an aluminum pump tube, a brass fuel tube, a plastic bottle attachment fitting and a brass fuel line stove attachment. When attached to the bottle the pump assembly angles upwards slightly so it is possible to pump the bottle while it is lying on the ground. No need to pick the bottle up to add a few extra pumps. This is a nice touch and my assumption is why it is called the ErgoPump.

Fuel bottle, pump and cap
Fuel bottle, pump and cap

Windscreen and Heat Reflector: Both are made from very thick bendable aluminum. Both come folded. In the future I will be rolling the windscreen around the bottle. Makes it much easier to deploy the windscreen around the pot when it is rolled.

Multi-Tool and Silicone Grease: The multi-Tool is made of metal and is heavy and robust. It serves the function of taking the stove apart for maintenance. It has a hexagon shaped tube for exchanging jets, hex shaped slots on the side for removing brass nuts, a 2 pronged tool for removing the bottom nut and a cleaning wire to clean and unclog jets. The Silicone grease comes in a .17 oz (5 g) tube which is used to lubricate the pump.

Tool & Grease
Multi-Tool & Grease

The Bag: I saved the best for last. This thing is big, heavy and way overkill. Flat it measures 11 x 16.75 in (28 x 42 cm). It could easily be half as tall and still accommodate everything. The zippered pocket on the outside is 11 x 6 in (28 x 15 cm) is also way too big. For me the only thing I would put in it would be the jets, multi-tool and the grease tube. To keep them from floating around in the bottom of this huge bag. The fabric is a heavy duty waterproof Cordura nylon, probably 1000 d. The bag also has a roll top with a metal clasp. What I find odd is that the bag is built like a dry bag but the seams are not sealed. Who needs a dry bag for their stove? I am going to say right now that I will not be carrying this bag in the field. I will carry the stove, windscreen and heat reflector inside my cooking pot. The pump and fuel bottle will go in an outside pocket in case it leaks.

Nylon storage bag
Nylon storage bag

Conclusion:

I will be using the stove with both screw on gas (isobutane/propane) canisters and white gas (Coleman). I won't need to switch out the jet as both of these fuels use the same jet. I may try the stove with gasoline but it will not be my primary fuel.

Thumbs Up:

  • Lightweight for a multi-fuel stove
  • Comes with everything you need to use and maintain the stove
  • This stove would be superb for international travel where fuel choices will vary

Thumbs Down:

  • Storage bag is way overkill (too big and too heavy)


FIELD REPORT

October 13, 2015

Primus OmniLite Cooking dinner
The Primus Omnilite Stove using white gas set up for dinner using windscreen and reflector.


I have carried this stove on two backpacking trips and on one day hike to boil water for lunch. This stove is kind of overkill for just boiling water (especially for a day hike) but it did the job and it did it quickly. The water was boiling in approx. 3 minutes. For both backpacking trips I used the stove to boil water in the mornings for coffee and to cook breakfast. And the again each evening to prepare a meal.

Testing locations and conditions:

Day Hike: During this test period I have been on numerous day hikes but I only carried the stove once. The hike was 8 mi (13 km) in the surrounding foothills near my home. Elevation ranged between 7500 to 9500 ft (2286 to 2896 m) Temperatures ran between 50 and 75 F (10 and 24 C) during the day of the hike.

BackpackingTrip #1: Drove up to Lefthand Reservoir for a quick overnighter. Hiked in on the access road and then completely around the Reservoir to the other side. Total distance was 4 mi (6.4 km). Elevation was 10,666 feet (3,251 m).  I had the whole place to myself. After exploring the surrounding area I settled down for an evening meal. Supper was a simple noodle meal with some extra goodies thrown in. The water boiled quickly and the stove was easy to turn down to the perfect simmer. Nothing burned and the meal was perfectly cooked. Breakfast was as simple matter of boiling water. In the evenings I'm not much in a hurry and meal preparation seems to take a while. In the mornings though I'm always in a hurry to get that first cup of coffee, so the fast boil times are great.

BackpackingTrip #2: Headed out to Woodland Lake west of Nederland, CO (USA) for a two day trip. Total distance was 8.6 mi (13.8 km) with elevations from 9,000 ft to 10,900 ft (2,743 m to 3,322 m) Temperatures were about 65 F (18 C) during the day and at those altitudes is was about 35 F (1.6 C) in the morning. I cooked supper that night and breakfast the next morning. For food the only thing different from the previous trip was I did cook a sausage patty and a couple of eggs for breakfast. The simmer feature again came in real handy and breakfast turned out great.

Performance:

The Omnilite stove has worked flawlessly with no hiccups, sputters or failures. It has primed, started and burned with each attempt.

For the first trip I did carry a full bottle of fuel. I used the same bottle for all subsequent trips and I did not add any additional fuel to the bottle. When I first filled the fuel bottle (per the instructions) I added 20 strokes of pressure to the bottle. For each trip later on I only added 10 additional strokes of pressure using the pump. I left the pump screwed to the bottle between trips and basically just added some lost pressure between trips. I think I guessed pretty good and I did not have to add extra pressure for each meal. At the end of this test period my guess is the fuel bottle is still about 2/3 full. That appears to be pretty good fuel economy.

The stove and all the accessories appear in excellent shape. The stove itself is a little sooty under the burner from the priming. The soot brushes off easily.

Summary:

I really like this stove. I really wish I could test this stove in really cold weather to see how it performs. The stove is very robust and can produce a lot of heat. For summer time use it is a bit of an overkill. This stove would rock in the winter melting snow for water.

Pros: The simmer feature is excellent and will produce a small enough flame to keep meals from burning.
Cons: The carry bag is large and heavy. In the future the bag will be used for storage, not for carrying in my backpack.

LONG TERM REPORT

December 8, 2015

I have carried this stove on one additional day hike and one additional backpacking trip. For both of these trips I switched to a gas canister (isobutane) to see how well the stove performed with a different fuel.

Testing locations and conditions:

Day Hike: The hike was 8 mi (13 km) in the surrounding foothills near my home. Elevation ranged between 7500 to 9500 ft (2286 to 2896 m) Temperatures ran between 25 and 45 F (-4 and 7 C) during the day of the hike. I stopped for lunch and heated some water for a hot beverage and soup.

BackpackingTrip #1: Drove up to Lefthand Reservoir for another quick overnighter. Total hiking distance was 4 mi (6.4 km). Elevation was 10,666 feet (3,251 m). While using the stove in the morning and evenings the
temperatures ran between 20 and 40 F (-7 and 4 C). On this trip I got a chance to melt snow for water and to cook several meals. In all instances I used a 1.3 L (34 oz) titanium pot with lid. I camped in a sheltered area and used the included windscreen.

Performance:

The Omnilite stove has
worked well using both white gas and with an isobutane gas cartridge. I had no issues using either fuel. I always used the windscreen and I believe it is a good idea even if it is not windy. It helps contain some of the heat around the pot and helps with efficiency. Melting snow was easy. I only wish I had brought a larger pot so I wouldn't have had to keep adding snow to the pot so often. In colder temperatures and at higher altitudes this stove excels. For simmering, the use of the gas cartridge made that task easier and more controllable. For both of these trips I used the same gas cartridge which was full. I believe I used less than half of the cartridge. The majority of the fuel was used for melting snow.

Summary:

This stove is a winner.
Being a multi-fuel stove means it is a great travel stove and can be used internationally where fuel choice is limited.

For me, future use is going to be reserved for group use and cold temperature, higher altitude use. If I expect to be melting lots of snow and just boiling water then using the stove with white gas is the way to go. If I expect to use the stove to prepare meals for myself and a small group then a gas canister would be my choice. It has better simmer capabilities than using white gas. For simple solo excursions this would not be my choice for a stove. I have simpler, lighter and smaller stoves for those trips.

Pros: Multi-fuel capability. Heats water quickly and efficiently.
Cons: The carry bag is large and heavy. I will only use the bag for storage. The stove is loud when using white gas. Much quieter when using a gas cartridge.

I would like to thank BackpackGearTest.org and Primus for the opportunity to test this stove.




Read more reviews of Primus gear
Read more gear reviews by Bob Sanders

Reviews > Cook Gear > Stoves > Primus OmniLite TI stove > Test Report by Bob Sanders



Product tested and reviewed in each Formal Test Report has been provided free of charge by the manufacturer to BackpackGearTest.org. Upon completion of the Test Series the writer is permitted to keep the product. Owner Reviews are based on product owned by the reviewer personally unless otherwise noted.

If you are an avid backpacker, we are always looking for enthusiastic, quality reviewers. Apply here to be a gear tester.


All material on this site is the exclusive property of BackpackGearTest.org.
BackpackGearTest software copyright David Anderson