Expert Review: Jetboil Flash Stove
This review is my honest opinion of the stove, which I purchased with my own money in May of 2020.
About this Review: This review is my honest opinion of the stove, which I purchased with my own money in May of 2020.
The Jetboil Flash is a fantastic stove for those who only need it for boil-only. The Java kit is an exciting kit and suitable for those who really want french press coffee.
About the gear
- Model: Jetboil Flash Java
- Average Boil Time: 100-120sec, a few minutes in sub-zero temperatures
- Fuel Type: isobutane/propane mix. I used the Jetboil branded cans. The smaller cans fit within the pot and the stove for a very compact kit.
- When I bought it: May 2020
- Days tested: 14
- Where I’ve used it: New England and in the Rockies
- Seasons I’ve used it in: Year-round
- Weather conditions I’ve used it in: Warm and sunny to cold and windy, I used it in all sorts of conditions.
- Used for: All sorts of camping, from backpacking to car camping
- What I’ve primarily cooked in it: Boil only
- Experience: 5 years of camping and hiking
How it performs
What I was looking for
I was looking for a fast-boiling, compact kit to make coffee, tea, or rehydrate dried meals/foods.
Why I chose this gear
I chose this gear simply because I got this Jetboil Flash Java kit for a reasonable price. I bought it in a lightly used condition in May 2020. I’m a college student at the University of Connecticut and the president of our Outing Club, one of the largest student-run outing clubs in the country. I love to hike, backpack, and bikepack, so this Jetboil has seen a fair amount of use as a boil-only stove for me.
What I love about it
- Durability: Very durable stove, showing little signs of wear overall. I also got it when it was lightly used.
- Time to boil: 100-120 sec to boil, quite close to the advertised time (dependent on altitude and temperature)
- Fuel Efficiency: Amazingly efficient where one can easily last me multiple shorter trips. I use 100g cans of Jetboil fuel, and they easily fit into the pot
- Heat control: relatively easy to control the heat with the dial built-in, but at the end of the day, its taller cylindrical shape lends more to using it as boil-only
- Stability: I do not use the canister stabilizers as they did not come with mine when I bought it. It still sits nicely on the fuel canister on various surfaces in my use, but it will end up rumbling/vibrating a bit when it starts to boil. The vibrating is not a huge issue, but make sure it's in a safe area not to tip over.
- Wind resistance: It performs incredibly in the wind with its shielded design. The wind can sometimes reduce its performance slightly depending on how it blows onto the stove, but overall, it performs very well in the wind.
- Portability and Packability: Everything packs down nicely into the pot (maybe with the exception of the canister stabilizers). Use the 100g cans of Jetboil fuel to pack nicely into the pot. Portability becomes simple as I only need to factor in the size of the pot
- Ease of use: Incredibly easy to use as a boil-only stove. The outer sleeve makes it easy to pick up the pot and pour the water.
- Features: The push-button ignition and french press plunger make this a perfect backpacking stove for the coffee lover.
- Backpacking: Great backpacking stove for its packability and portability for boil-only contexts.
- Other: I’ve only used the Jetboil branded fuel, but any EN417 nozzled can of fuel should work for the stove.
Issues I’ve encountered
- Car Camping: Not too suitable for car camping where more significant or complex meals should be cooked in larger pots with larger stoves. The one positive is that if I want fast boiling water or a cup of joe, this is nice to tuck into the car for a trip.
- Winter Use: The stove struggled in below-freezing temperatures with a higher water fill but still was able to boil water after a few minutes. Expect higher fuel usage the colder it gets.
Favorite moment with this stove
My favorite moment was using the jetboil to make some tea on a cold morning in flagstaff Arizona last summer.
Value for the money vs. other options
Compared to most other options, this is an excellent value for those who will get a lot out of the features it brings. Other options such as MSR Pocketrocket can be smaller and cheaper, but you have to bring your own pot, and the Jetboil design gives it a very fast boil time.
The Jetboil Flash is a very fast boiling, compact stove kit that can also make french press coffee with the “Java” version. Overall, if you’re looking for a stove that does one thing well, boil water, this is an excellent option for you.