Primus Eta Express
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The Primus Eta Express stove is a smaller and lighter version of the cleverly designed Eta Power. The stove fits on top of a gas cartridge while the shield and "heat exchanger" pot (1000ml) and frying pan aids fuel efficiency. Amazingly, everything (gas and shield) manages to cram into the pot for easy carrying. This is the ideal stove for lightweight camping trips or bivis.
Primus Eta Express Reviews
Reviewed by Jane (UK) on 2009-04-02:
General comments: I admit the first thing I did when presented with the Eta Express was compare it to my much-loved Jetboil. The Jetboil was a revelation in terms of lightweight hill catering with massive fual efficiency due to the heat exchanger on the underside of the pan, and this pan set has one too. After just a couple of camping trips I have become quite taken with this really compact and, dare I say, 'cute' little stove kit. Although the Express is a tiny 25 grams heavier than the Jetboil at 430 grams (including gas), the cooking system is more versatile. It has two pans with good handles, plus a windshield that helps to speed up the very acceptable 2-3 minute boil time - and all for the same price and at a similar size to the Jetboil.
Pros: Fast, light and versatile.
Cons: Nothing yet.
Reviewed by Lance (Darlington) on 2009-08-18:
General comments: I was give this set as a birthday present this June. Used it over Five day on the Cleveland way in July.
Pros: Great boil times which means less gas used over week long trips.
Good 1ltr pan for evening meals and a lid just the right size for poaching eggs.
Cons: The wind shield is OK but not as good as a allround one. The pan sits a little tall on the stove. You can store the windshield, gas and stove in the pot, but be carefull not to scratch the inside of the pot!
Reviewed by Angus Orkney (Scotland) on 2010-07-15:
General comments: Primus ETA Express. Genius. I did a lot of research before choosing a stove and kept returning to this one. Quite simply it offered everything I was looking for without breaking the bank. My previous experiences with stoves has always been one of fiddly bits and pieces, match/lighter flames being extinguished before the gas is lit, burned fingers, trouble finding sufficient shelter to get the gas burning and not enough control over the flame. The ETA Express looked to solve all these issues in one package - and having used it on a number of occasions over the past couple of years I can gladly report it does just that.
For starters using a 250g gas can the whole thing (gas, burner, wind-shield) packs away into the ~1 litre pot which is then stored in a mesh sac. Then there's the electronic ignition, it doesn't always light the gas first time (usually after not being used for a while or if it's damp) but it hasn't failed me yet and it's a real luxury after years of fumbling with matches/lighters with cold/gloved hands. It boils a litre of water in ~3-4 minutes. The windshield works as you'd expect it to and does allow you to control the flame even in a brisk wind. The pot is the ideal size for a single meal for one and the tiny frying pan is perfect for a perfect fried egg (yes I did once carry an egg on a trip). The pot and pan are non-stick coated so I take good care of them by using only plastic cutlery and wash them out "in the field" with the sturdy cloth provided - the cloth is also used to line the inside of the pot when storing the gas can and windshield to prevent scratches. The handles on the pot and pan are also insulated - a small detail usually omitted by many camping pot designers, not to mention the handy spout on the pot. As to stability, so far I have yet had a problem in the Scottish Highlands, but then in the Highlands there's always a spare rock or two if needed to hold the gas can in place on uneven or spongy ground.
In a nutshell it's a very well thought out all-in-one cook system. I can't really fault it.
Pros: All-in-one cook system. Ingenious design. Lightweight. Excellent build quality. Perfect for the solo hiker.
Cons: None I have found so far although it would be nice if it were 200-300g lighter (titanium?) but then the price would probably be three times higher.