When looking for outdoor gear, I prefer multipurpose products. This way, I can make the most of my investment. It’s a strategy to save money and space, too. This way, you do not need to spend so much on bulky gear that can only serve one purpose.
If versatility is also one of the factors that influence your purchasing decision, then the Solo Stove Campfire Camping Stove is a worthy addition to your camping essentials. Aside from its multi-functionality, this wood-burning stove is packed with the right features to make your outdoor and cooking experience extra convenient.
The Solo Stove Campfire is a camping stove that uses biomass like twigs and sticks for fuel. This sleek stainless-steel burner weighs 1kg and packs to a compact 18cm x 23cm, making it very portable. But what makes this stove popular among campers is its unique airflow and dual combustion system.
With this patented design, you’ll be enjoying several benefits like little smoke, faster cooking and less ash when making your favourite camping recipes. This camping stove can also cook meals good for four people. Hikers on a tight budget, however, may have to think twice when considering this quite expensive stove. What other features make the Solo Stove Campfire worth buying?
Best Features of the Solo Stove Campfire
It may appear too compact and light for some serious outdoor cooking, but the Solo Stove Campfire is a well-built stove. Its construction and unique design, in particular, make this wood burner simple to use yet efficient, whether you’re whipping something delicious or boiling water for coffee. Check out the detailed description of its features that make it a standout.
One of the things I like about the Solo Stove Campfire is its unique airflow system. With this patented design, the stove is more heat efficient when compared with other wood-burning stoves or an open campfire. This burner has two rows of air holes at the top and bottom. The bottom holes suck in cold air, where half of it goes under to feed the ember while the rest goes to the double wall. Here, the air becomes warm then released into the firebox from the top for secondary combustion.
The result is a more efficient fire burn with the following benefits:
- Use of small sticks, pinecones and bark for fuel
- Less wood consumption than an open campfire
- Little smoke emission and odour
- Less ash for quick and easy clean-up
Aside from this exceptional airflow setup, the Solo Stove Campfire also has parts designed to enhance its heat power. Its cooking ring, for instance, has an angled top lip that helps concentrate the fire in the steel canister and prevents heat loss. This feature makes up for its lack of a windshield. Also, the stove has a heat shield at the bottom that protects the ground from scorching.
Cooking equipment fit for outdoor use should be very durable and able to stand up against all sorts of elements; otherwise, it will be money down the drain in just a few short years. To ensure that the Solo Stove Campfire lasts for a long time, the manufacturer used premium-grade 304 stainless steel for its body. This type of metal is not only durable but also rust-resistant, so exposure to moisture or weather changes won’t be a problem. It requires no technical cleaning instructions or special maintenance either.
Pressing the exterior of the stove with your fingers won’t cause any dents, so you know it’s pretty solid. It can even safely hold the weight of your 30cm cast-iron skillet or 25cm Dutch oven. Also, the body used only one piece of metal for seamless construction. The lack of seams, screws or welds adds strength and leaves no room for dirt build-up. Inside the canister is a grill-like part for holding and combusting your fuel. This part is nichrome wire that can withstand high heat up to 1400C. It surely has selected the right materials to resist wear and tear and hold up to frequent use. Plus, the lifetime warranty coverage is an excellent add-on for users’ peace of mind.
Easy to Set Up and Use
The Solo Stove Campfire only has two parts: the body and the cooking ring. To start using it, all you need to do is to set it on flat ground, fill the stove with dry biomass, light it, then place the ring back. You don’t have to screw on any gas canister or pour liquid fuel into a spout. The cooking ring also has a large opening, so you can easily feed your stove with more fuel without having to remove the pan or pot on top.
Eco-friendly and Easy Maintenance
This wood-burning stove only needs dry hardwood, leaves or pine cones for fuel, and thanks to its complete burn system, there’s less smoke and pollutants produced. There will be no extra expenses for fuel, too. It only makes a small amount of ash after use, so cleaning is a breeze as well. You can safely wash the stainless-steel body with warm water without worrying about valves, plugs or corrosion.
Light and Compact
You’ll have no trouble carrying this light 1kg stove for backpacking or car camping. Some say it’s a bit bulky for long hikes, but it’s still very portable considering you won’t have to lug propane or butane canisters with you anymore. Also, the cooking ring conveniently nests inside the stove body, and both can easily fit in the drawstring bag included for easy transport. You can place it inside your backpack or tie it at the bottom of your pack.
Another excellent feature of the Solo Stove Campfire is its optional cooking accessories. Its two-pot set, for example, includes a 1.5L pan and a 3L pot. This way, you won’t have to stress about finding the perfect pan size for your stove. Also, with varying pot sizes, you can cook sautés, soups or stews and adjust your cooking volume with ease. Both pots use the same durable stainless steel and come with fold-out handles and lids with rubber-lined lift tabs. I especially like the idea that they can nest together with your camping stove inside the carry sack. Another great accessory worth considering is the cooking tripod. This one works with the 3L pot, so you can safely hang it and control its contact with the heat below using the adjustable chain included.
Users also love how this stove can double as an emergency device. You don’t have to limit the Solo Stove for your outdoor adventures. It also works as a cooking alternative in case of power outages or if your family want to toast marshmallows at home. It’s not as big as an open campfire, but it’s the next best thing to keep you and your friends warm while in your backyard campsite.
Things to Note
While packed with excellent features, the Solo Stove Campfire has a few downsides. Keep these in mind when considering this camping stove.
Compared with other wood-burning stoves, the Solo Stove Campfire belongs to the high-end price range. It does have the durability and above-average quality that you may not find in similar products, but some users may not be willing to spend that much for a camping stove.
No Option for Flame Control
This stove lacks knobs or levels to control the flame. Without these, it will be a challenge to protect your food from burning without keeping a close watch on your stove the whole time. The tripod may solve this issue, but some users may prefer using their existing cookware over buying more camping accessories.
This drawback is common among wood-burning stoves. It’s not that much of an issue as you can easily clean it up with water. It would have been better though if the ash pan is removable, so you can tap and wash it thoroughly if you need to reuse the unit.
Requires Constant Fuel Refill
The design of this stove makes it very efficient when burning fuel and generating heat. However, your fuel also burns quite fast that you have to fill your camp stove with more wood to prevent the fire from burning out. You wouldn’t want to restart your stove midway while cooking your tasty soup.
Takes a While to Cool Down
Be extra careful when cooking with this camp stove. The steel material tends to retain heat and may take a few hours before you can safely touch and pack it.
Unstable Cooking Ring
The top ring doesn’t have any tab to secure your pan while cooking. Make sure to test out the pan you’re using before you start cooking. Also, always cook on a flat surface to protect your pot from sliding off the stove.
Difficult to Start Fire
Starting a fire with this stove may need some figuring out, especially for first-time users or campers used to automated stoves. However, it won’t be a problem after a few tries.
The Solo Stove Campfire may lack some useful features and not your best option for ultralight camping, but overall, its smart design makes it reliable whether you’re out in the wilderness or having a great time with family at your backyard. Yes, it is quite expensive.
But then again, using organic material for heat is more cost-efficient than spending on store-bought fuel every time. The top-notch construction and lasting quality of this stove, not to mention the years of delightful outdoor cooking, makes it worth the cost.