I’ve been finally able to do a little camping this past week, and that comes with an added perk. I had carried an old Svea 123 camping stove for years in my backpack, and I had that taken from me several years back. I finally broke down and replaced it, and I’ve been able to break it in a little bit of late.
The 123 has been around for decades, and at one time was the most popular alpine stove out there. Newer models, particularly the butane stoves, have taken away from it’s popularity, but in my humble opinion, it’s still the best white gas backpacking stove out there. It’s bullet-proof design, leaves little to go wrong when you are out in the middle of no-where and relying on a stove.
It’s simple design means that there is no pump to prime, so you have to prime the stove before using. In this day of instant gratification, that’s enough to keep some people looking elsewhere for means to heat up their food.
I usually use fire paste to prime. There is a little dimple on the top of the stove base that I place some fire paste into, and then light. The heat of that, pressurizes the stove tank. One can also use a little white gas placed in that dimple.
The roar of the little Svea in action is once again back at my campsite.