MSR Whisperlite?

Discussion in 'Cooking & Water Purification' started by rbinhood, Jun 20, 2019.

  1. rbinhood

    rbinhood Scout

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    Looking at a MSR Whisperlite and wondering what people think of them? Reviews suggest some folks are critical of their inability to simmer easily, others have had problems with the pump getting a good seal with fuel bottles(does not seem to be an issue if you use an MSR fuel bottle).

    I need another stove like I need a hole in the head, but they are currently on sale at Back Country Edge at a very good price.
     
  2. xrayit

    xrayit Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    I like the Wisperlite, have owned one since mid 80’s that still works perfectly, I did buy a new pump assembly after 18 years and do general maintenance on the pump every couple years. Bought the universal version a couple yeas ago and have been happy with the performance. If I am going to be actually cooking a meal I will choose another stove and not typically take the Wisperlite although I have cooked many lunches using the Wisperlight and a stainless steel MSR pan.
     
  3. hillst1

    hillst1 Supporter Supporter

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    I have two and they have never failed me.
     
  4. tomcfitz

    tomcfitz Supporter Supporter

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    From what I'm aware, the Whisperlite, or Whsiperlite International are pretty much the gold standard for liquid fuel backpacking stoves.

    I've never had a single issue with mine, but I did get a Kovea Booster+, since I like that it can use canisters as well as liquid fuel without any modification or changes.
     
  5. Guttersnipe

    Guttersnipe Supporter Supporter

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    I've had one for over 20 years and think it's a good stove.
    Recently acquired the international, multi-fuel version, but haven't had the opportunity to use it yet.
     
  6. Red Yeti

    Red Yeti Mostly Harmless Hobbyist Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    Pretty much the same experience as above. Have used them for ..gosh 30 years.. excellent stove. I have no real issues with lower simmer levels, just need to keep the pressure up in the tank and keep your attention on cooking.

    It is easily maintained and field repair is fine if you have some extra o rings. It is pretty compact. Long cooking time, and alot of heat for boiling water or melting snow.

    This has been my go to stove for cooking hundreds of meals in the wilds. If you want a liquid fuel stove, I would totally recommend a whisper lite. MSR is a good CO to deal with too if you ever do have a problem.

    Good luck!

    :38::38:
     
  7. SmilinJoe

    SmilinJoe Supporter Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    I just picked up a Whisper lite at a garage sale a couple weeks back. Had the box and everything, didn't even look like it was ever fired. So am I able to buy some kind of conversion for canister fuel?

     
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  8. Ohio_Steve

    Ohio_Steve Lost again... Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    I have had my Whisperlite since the early '90s, and it has always worked well. I did let it sit for several years, and needed to rebuild the pump. The seals had dried out, and it leaked under pressure. But that was from my negligence, not the fault of the stove.

    Simmering works fine. But there are times when you need to keep it high to keep it from blowing out in the wind, or that you want a really low heat. For that (as wells as on my Coleman white gas stove and on my JetBoil), I use my grandmother's ancient stove top heat diffuser, like this one. I keep it in the trailer cooking kit.

    (Google image)
    heat-diffuser-gas-hob-only-in-stainless-steel-cm-plate-for-stove.jpg
     
  9. rbinhood

    rbinhood Scout

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    https://www.facebook.com/marketplac..._62035381819_309665515643_pla-703735347113_c_
     
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  10. Forestree

    Forestree Treeforest Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    My dad bought a whisperlite back in the mid 80s to replace an Optimus box stove (not that there was anything wrong with it). I continued to use the whisperlite up until maybe 2000s? when I bought a simmerlite. Pretty much the same stove and uses the same pump but can cook at a lower intensity much better. The whisperlite is like a jet engine and can bring water to a boil in a jiffy, but doesn’t “simmer” very well from my experience. Mine still works and I’d imagine it will last forever.

    Never used the international or multifuel version so I can’t comment on that as I’ve always used mine with white gas.
     
  11. winter1857

    winter1857 Supporter Supporter

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    I've had mine 15+ years now. An excellent small stove. It's one of those things that are so well made and perfect you JUST KNOW they'll stop making them sooner or later.
     
  12. BradGad

    BradGad Supporter Supporter

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    I own the Whisperlite International. (I can’t find it right now, or for the past six months, dammit, but I OWN it and have used it a lot.)

    It’s a great stove. The best. MSR is incapable of making sub-excellent gear and their customer service is top notch.

    I use a twig stove more, and sometimes an alcohol stove, or sometimes just a fire... because I like to be all simplistic and bushcrafty...

    But, for performance, efficiency, convenience... the Whisperlite can’t be beat.

    It simmers fine. Or rather, it goes low fine. A soufflé aficionado might prefer slightly finer control.

    (I also own four other white gas stoves.)
     
  13. Sigmalite

    Sigmalite Scout

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    I also have a whisperliye international and it has never failed me. I also have a micro rocket but I usually end up with the whisperlite in the pack.
     
  14. rbinhood

    rbinhood Scout

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    I wound up buying the Whisperlite from Backcountry Edge. I'll get one of the heat diffusers to use with it when I want to simmer.
     
  15. Forestree

    Forestree Treeforest Supporter Bushclass I Bushclass II

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    The only way I’ve been able to simmer with the whisperlite is by having really low pressure....to the point of going out. I’ve found that pumping the bottle once or twice every 30 seconds or so can keep it going enough to simmer, but it’s been a dance for me.
     
  16. Lars

    Lars Angry German Supporter

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    Great stove. I use a titanium heat diffuser from Four Dog Stoves to simmer with it (which I rarely do).

    36235478-94D2-451C-AE2B-4D2A1C9F487F.jpeg
     
  17. .356luger

    .356luger Scout

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    i have both the whisperlite and dragonfly. the whisperlite has a base plate option that is great for bigger pots wierd terrain etc. i boiled 5 lobster on mine in december (christmas eve) with that base. worked great. cooking can be a little difficult controlling heat on the thin pans. larger cast pans work fine. i use the lift method aka to hot lift it off for a bit or hold it above. ive never had issues with it cooking, though the dragon fly does simmer considerably better in my opinion.

    https://www.msrgear.com/trillium-stove-base

    ^ thats the base plate
     
  18. gargoyle

    gargoyle Scout

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    Great stove.
    They do need periodic maintenance.
     
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  19. Bobsdock

    Bobsdock So long, and thanks for all the fish Supporter

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    I've used my whisperlite for a lot of years now. It always works and is my go to stove in winter. A side from routine maintenance I've never done anything to it. It does not simmer very well but that's not what it was designed to do.
     
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  20. Sigmalite

    Sigmalite Scout

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    I suppose if you’re cooking something very delicate then simmering might be an issue. But one of the things I cook most when out is rice, so it’s high heat up to a boil and then lowest heat setting for 15-20 minutes depending on air temperature, wind etc. That’s on a 1.8 Mors pot most of the time and the largest MSR stowaway sometimes, which are not the thickest-bottomed options. Not once have I had burned rice on the botton of the pot.
     
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  21. Sigmalite

    Sigmalite Scout

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    I forgot to mention that the one disadvantage that I find in the whisperlite is that the pot supports are quite far apart so it’s difficult to use small cup/pots like my 750 ml titanium pot. Not sure if they resolved this in the universal version. Not a deal-breaker though.
     
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  22. ko67

    ko67 Tracker

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    I have the Whisperlite Universal. Great stove with good flame control. simmering is no problem. With a few adaptors and a few mods, can burn pretty much any fuel available.
     
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  23. leghog

    leghog Guide

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    My son now has and uses the Whisperlite International I bought myself about 25 years ago. Never repaired but still keeps on going.
     
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  24. rurik

    rurik Scout

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    I have a wisperlite and it is a good solid stove as everyone else has said. It is robust and ubiquitous which is always a good sighn. However I do find myself reaching for my Primus Omni lite or Ti more often though. I prefer the the simmer control on these which is something it need since developing an allergy to some preservatives used in a lot of easy cook shelf stable food.
     
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  25. fixits

    fixits Noble Savage Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    In my opinion they are awesome for cooking during emergencies and for outdoor stuff with multiple people.
    I think there are better options for a one person cook. I love my international. A bit of a learning curve though..almost burned down my garage on my first attempt. YouTube is your friend.
     
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  26. Traditionalist

    Traditionalist Guide

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    I’ve got a stove addiction, (all types), and of my liquid fuel stoves with remote/detached bottles, the Whisperlite is probably my favorite for a “one stove option.” It’s can crank out enough heat to turn snow into boiled water, but also cook at lower heat with a little experience and a soft touch. It’s also quiet, which I really appreciate. Not alchy quiet, but good enough to keep things feeling tranquil.
     
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