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Reviews > Cook Gear > Utensils > Fozzils Solo Pack > Test Report by David Wyman

Fozzils Soloist - Ultra-light One Person Bowl/Cup/Spoon Set
Test Series by David Wyman

Picture of assembled bowl, cup, and spoon



Test Phases:

Initial Report - April 22, 2009

Field Report - July 14, 2009

Long Term Report - September 15, 2009



Tester Information

NAME David Wyman
EMAIL wyman(AT)wymanhq(DOT)com
AGE 31
LOCATION Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
GENDER Male
HEIGHT 5' 10" (1.78 m)
WEIGHT 175 lb (79.40 kg)


While I've been camping for years, I've only been backpacking for a short time. I'm trying to find the right equipment, alternating between tent and hammock. My dog usually comes along on the longer hikes, and my wife and toddler join me on the shorter ones. I tend to carry more gear that I need resulting in a heavier pack, but I'm working on that. When I hike with my dog and/or my wife and son, we take it a bit slower, stopping frequently to enjoy the forest. I rarely hike fast unless I'm trying to make up time.



Initial Report - April 22, 2009

Product Information

Soloist set packed in storage case

Manufacturer Fozzils
Website http://www.fozzils.com
Product Fozzils Soloist - Ultra-light One Person Set
Year of manufacture 2008/2009
MSRP Not available
Measurements:
Weight Listed Measured
Bowl 1.3 oz (37 g) 1.3 oz (37 g)
Cup 1.25 oz (36 g) 1.2 oz (34 g)
Spoon 0.2 oz (6 g) 0.2 oz (6 g)
Total N/A 2.7 oz (77 g)
Volume Listed Measured
Bowl 20.4 oz (600 ml) 21 oz (621 ml)
Cup 12.24 oz (360 ml) 12 oz (355 ml)
Color Tested: Blue


Initial Impressions

The Soloist consists of three items (bowl, cup, and spoon) that are stored flat and folded, much like origami, and snapped together for use. The instructions for assembling each item are printed on the packaging and are fairly straightforward for the bowl and cup. The spoon took a bit longer to fold correctly due to the item being small and the folding more complicated. The packaging also snaps together and functions as a storage container for the three items. The packaging is rather large but hopefully, due it being flat, it will still pack nicely.


Closeup of bowl Bowl

The bowl assembled easily and is a decent size. It sits in the palm of my hand very nicely and holds an acceptable amount of food - worked very well for my normal morning bowl of cereal.
Making a bowl of oatmeal worked well, though I had to let it sit for a bit before I could pick up the bowl - the heat transferred through it pretty easily. They do warn on the packaging that "hot foods or liquids will soften product" and they were right.
Closeup of cup Cup

The cup also assembled easily and is an average size. It is easy to hold but a bit awkward to drink from - the sides are a bit too wide and because the rim is wavy, the corners are not easy to drink from either. I found that I had to squeeze the sides of the cup in a bit in order to drink out of it easily.
The cup also had the same issue as the bowl when used with hot liquids.
Closeup of spoon Spoon

The spoon was the most difficult to assemble, but once it was snapped together, it was much sturdier than I had originally expected. It worked very well for cereal and oatmeal and for stirring tea. It would be nice if it was a little larger so I could take bigger bites, but that's a relatively small issue.



Field Report - July 14, 2009 Trips Taken

I was able to fit one three-day backpacking trip, one overnight car camping trip, and one day hike in during the month of May. The day hike was along the rivers in Pittsburgh for a bit more than 4 miles (6.5 km) on the Riverfront Trail. It looked like it was going to rain but never did and the temperature stayed in the upper 60s F (20 C).

Both the car camping trip and the backpacking trip were in Raccoon Creek State Park. The weather for the car camping trip was excellent - no rain, temperatures in the low 60s F (16 - 18 C) and cool breezes. The backpacking trip didn't fare quite as well weather-wise. The temps over the three days ranged from low 60s F (16 - 18 C) to the upper 70s F (24 - 26 C) and there were numerous, short rainstorms.

Thoughts and Impressions

One of the simple pleasures I enjoy while backpacking is a hot meal at the end of the day. Some sort of liquid-based noodle or rice dish, supplemented with foil pouches of chicken or tuna, is my normal dinner while on the trail. My morning routine will usually include a cup of coffee and, occasionally, hot oatmeal or something similar. I tried using the Fozzils items with all of these and had mixed results. The biggest drawback of the Fozzils utensils is that they are not insulated and that they tend to soften a bit when used with hot items. As a result, the cup and bowl were unusable with my morning coffee or with my dinner. The cup and bowl were too hard to handle while hot without a cozy of some kind and, when I did use a cozy, it was difficult holding the cup and bowl in the right shape to keep the liquid from splashing out. Foods that were more solid, like my oatmeal, fared better. A cozy was still needed but it was easier to keep the food inside the bowl and cup.

Cleaning all three items was easy. The fact that they unfold made it easy to wash them - especially after oatmeal which tends to stick in the corners of normal bowls.

I also found them very helpful was with temporary storage. While preparing dinner, it was nice to have an extra bowl or two to hold the portions of items I was going to mix together. I also used them to hold a single serving of trail mix or other snacks which meant that I (or anyone else) didn't have to keep sticking my fingers into the main bag.

After several rounds of assembly/disassembly, I haven't noticed any significant wear. The bowl and cup are quite easy to assemble and the spoon is still a bit harder (though I'm getting better at it). The snap closures haven't shown any signs of loosening and they hold together quite well when assembled. There are slight stress marks along the fold lines but they don't appear to be any weaker than when I first put them together. I will be keeping an eye on those to see if the wear marks start to affect the performance.



Long Term Report - September 15, 2009 Trips Taken

During August, I was able to squeeze in three overnight backpacking trips. All of these were in Hillman State Park and Raccoon Creek State Park. All three trips involved a late morning start on a Saturday with a 5 - 8 mile (8 - 13 km) hike and finishing late morning/early afternoon on Sunday with a short 2 - 4 mile (3 - 7 km) hike.

Thoughts and Impressions

I've eaten quite a few meals using the Fozzils bowl, cup, and spoon and I think I've figured out how they best work for me. I've had the most success using the bowl and spoon for oatmeal in the mornings. The bowl holds up well with the more solid foods and, while it does get pretty hot, the heat is easy to control with a simple bandana or by using a thin glove. I've also found them ideal for snack foods. Having something in which to put a small serving of trail mix or fruit has come in handy more often than I had expected. After previous unsuccessful attempts at coffee and hot soups, I decided to limit my use of the Fozzils to oatmeal for the three breakfasts and for a half dozen snacks around camp.

Summary

Unfortunately, I don't think that these items will replace my normal cook set. My dinners are usually some sort of rice or noodle soup and my morning drink is usually coffee. As I found in my Field Test, the bowl and cup don't work too well for these types of foods. I will continue to bring my titanium cup, bowl, and spoon for these types of meals. However, when car camping with a two year old, it is nice to have an extra bowl for him to carry around and not have to worry about him ruining it.


This concludes my Long Term Report. Thanks to BackpackGearTest.org and Fozzils for this opportunity.


Read more reviews of Fozzils gear
Read more gear reviews by David Wyman

Reviews > Cook Gear > Utensils > Fozzils Solo Pack > Test Report by David Wyman



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