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Silent Bob
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2,343 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello everyone, I'm looking for a good mess kit to take with me on hikes. I'm looking for something that is light and compact but durable. Any suggestions would be much appreciated.
 

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Wanderer
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3,269 Posts
The cheapest mess tin I know of is to go to FallApart or KameApart and buy a stainless steel dog dish of appropriate size. They are well made and durable, light, can be heated over stove or fire, and cost very little. With two you can make an effective dutch oven with some bulldog binder clips.
Other good kits are the traditional Boy Scout type mess kit, I'd get stainless rather than aluminum, but it's your choice. They're not very expensive at big box and sporting goods stores or online.
Military surplus mess kits are also good, inexpensive, but somewhat heavy. My preference is to the Swedish, Swiss and German style kits rather than the US GI kits. The USGI kit is mostly to eat off of, not much to cook with, while the European kits are intended for serious, comparatively, cooking. They are available on line and at various mil surp outlets and stores.
Hope that helps.
 

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Hunter
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2,994 Posts
Like Ed alluded to, get quality stuff, even if you only can pick it up over time.

What do you cook/eat?
How?

I'm a "one small pot" guy as i only have a pack stove when I take one, so I get a teflon one with a lid. From there, the food/drink is poured into one of those blue coated metal cups I have. When finished, I put the cup, dish rag, soap bottle, spoon, etc. inside the pan, put the lid on it then back into storage.
 

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Super Moderator
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12,550 Posts
I like the MSR designs. Pick and choose what you like. I have an older set I really like. I'd suggest the stainless steel Alpine 2 system. Two pots with a lid and handle. I think the lid would work as a fry pan. Get a plate,bowl, and a cup and possibily a teakettle and you're good to go.

One suggestion. If you go with titanium for the weight, do not get a titanium frypan. It has been my experience they stick like crazy, even with cooking oil. The titanium teakettle is great, though.

http://cascadedesigns.com/msr/cookware/category

http://cascadedesigns.com/msr/cookware/cookware-accessories/alpine-plate/product

http://cascadedesigns.com/msr/cookware/cookware-accessories/alpine-bowl/product

http://www.campmor.com/coleman-double-wall-mug.shtml


Just my opinion.
 

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Like MacGyver, but w/guns
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315 Posts

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Custom User Title
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2,969 Posts
It mostly depends on what you expect to be able to accomplish with your cookset. I'd recomend a cheap pot set like the coleman solo set. If you feel like spending less that $20 just go get an aluminum boy scout mess kit. These work just fine for most tasks.

Coleman Solo Cookset
http://www.coleman.com/coleman/colemancom/detail.asp?product_id=8552-115&categoryid=5140&brand=

Amazon.com: Coleman Aluminum Mess Kit: Sports & Outdoors
That kit is crap TBH. I could poke a hole in it with a pencil. And if you try to cook it over any type of flame, it warps out big time.
 

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Cajun
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77 Posts
If you aren't cooking, squishy bowls are easy to clean, light and very easy to pack. If you want to cook, a simple GSI Glacier Cup can get the job done. I like my Klean Kanteen nested in a Glacier cup with a lid I made for it. Search YouTube for user johncajunmanbrown and see the video I have of that...

Of course, what other guys were saying before me work as well.
 

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Hunter
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2,994 Posts
If you want to cook, a simple GSI Glacier Cup can get the job done.
I'll check into that. As I now pack with someone else, I had to go with a larger setup, thus the small pot with lid. We could be romantic and both eat out of the same pot, but I'd just as soon kick back and mine out of my own cup. No need to be that hardcore at this time--not to mention I spice mine up a lot more than the average bear can tolerate.

One thing that's VITAL IMO is the ease of cleaning. Thus, un teflon type coated materials is out. One should be able to use a rag and get all the stuff out of the pan. No scrubbing/abrasives.
 

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Cajun
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77 Posts
I'll check into that. As I now pack with someone else, I had to go with a larger setup, thus the small pot with lid. We could be romantic and both eat out of the same pot, but I'd just as soon kick back and mine out of my own cup. No need to be that hardcore at this time--not to mention I spice mine up a lot more than the average bear can tolerate.

One thing that's VITAL IMO is the ease of cleaning. Thus, un teflon type coated materials is out. One should be able to use a rag and get all the stuff out of the pan. No scrubbing/abrasives.
When I'm not alone, I take a GSI Duo (or Dualist) which has been outstanding. I think they quit making them in 2008 so I got mine on clearance sale at REI a while back. I cannot say enough good things about that setup! But you may have a hard time finding one for sale now... If you do find one, I suggest you buy it. I think it meets the needs you mention.
 

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Christian
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39,500 Posts
I like the MSR designs. Pick and choose what you like. I have an older set I really like. I'd suggest the stainless steel Alpine 2 system. Two pots with a lid and handle. I think the lid would work as a fry pan. Get a plate,bowl, and a cup and possibily a teakettle and you're good to go.

One suggestion. If you go with titanium for the weight, do not get a titanium frypan. It has been my experience they stick like crazy, even with cooking oil. The titanium teakettle is great, though.

http://cascadedesigns.com/msr/cookware/category

http://cascadedesigns.com/msr/cookware/cookware-accessories/alpine-plate/product

http://cascadedesigns.com/msr/cookware/cookware-accessories/alpine-bowl/product

http://www.campmor.com/coleman-double-wall-mug.shtml


Just my opinion.
Once again the master at the source of all things survival....Mr Jerry Young! Thank you sir. :thumb:
 

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the survivalist
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214 Posts
It mostly depends on what you expect to be able to accomplish with your cookset. I'd recomend a cheap pot set like the coleman solo set. If you feel like spending less that $20 just go get an aluminum boy scout mess kit. These work just fine for most tasks.

Coleman Solo Cookset
http://www.coleman.com/coleman/colemancom/detail.asp?product_id=8552-115&categoryid=5140&brand=

Amazon.com: Coleman Aluminum Mess Kit: Sports & Outdoors
You beat me to it. I just picked up one of those last week. Have already cooked in it.
 

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Founder
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I would go with titanium all the way. Super strong and lightweight but the price tag on it makes you want to throw it across the store when you look at what they want for even a small cup. If you plan to just boil water get aluminum its cheap and lightweight and who cares about a small dent here and there. But if you plan to cook with it, aluminum suck everything you cook sticks and its a pain in the neck to clean. But I carry the MSR soloist it fit the price and is durable but i only boil water for dehydrated meals.
 

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Hangin in There
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820 Posts
I suggest a Stansport stainless steel mess kit. You can get one for under $25.

It comes with a frying pan, 2 cup pot with lid, and a plate that can be used to cook with too. The frying pan has a folding handle which is used also as a locking device to keep the kit as a one piece unit. Don't get anything aluminum other than maybe a bigger pot just to boil water with.
 

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Hello everyone, I'm looking for a good mess kit to take with me on hikes. I'm looking for something that is light and compact but durable. Any suggestions would be much appreciated.
Easy answer: the ubiquitous GI Canteen Cup....available in aluminum or steel. Bombproof, cheap and easily found on eBay.

Better answer: I'd recommend that you carefully consider how you will cook before getting a kit. If you want to use a stove of some sort then figure out what stove and then find a kit of adequate size to allow you to nest the stove inside the kit. If your coking over an open fire try a billy pot (Zebra to be specific). As stated by earlier posters, Ti is awesome, aluminum is cheap, and to that I would add stainless, which is nice for open fires because it dissipates heat well and the soot cleans up easily.

My first choice now is a titanium Snowpeak 3-piece kit which nicely contains my Trangia alcohols stove with mini stand/windshield
 

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Passed away March 22, 2011
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I always use a stainless canteen cup, either Australian or US Army.

I use also, depending on what food I've taken on the trip, either Dutch Army stainless mess tins or a MSR Alpine Stowaway stainless pot.

So I would suggest a stainless canteen cup and a stainless pot with lid, that should cover most of your hiking cooking needs.
 

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If I'm by myself, I use a SnowPeak Trek 700 and a Ti spork. If I'm out in the backcountry with my girlfriend I use a GSI Dualist cookset.

I really like both, but I must say the GSI cookset has really exceeded my expectations. It comes with a 2 bowls, 2 insulated bowl/mug combos, 2 sippy-lids, 2 tele-sporks, a large pot with a pasta strainer lid, and a camp sink/stuff sack. It all packs inside of the pot (also leaves enough room for a small canister stove), and is very light weight. Here is a link to some info and reviews of the GSI Dualist cookset: http://www.trailspace.com/gear/gsi/ultralight-dualist-cook-system/

If you don't need a mess kit large enough for two people, I know GSI also offers a solo cookset that offers many of the same features.
 

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I have a Jetboil with 2 cups. This way only one stove and two cook pots. Depending on how you would be cooking, I also use my MSR Dragonfly and the Alpine cookset with the frypan and tea kettle. The MSR stuff is heavy but built rock solid and will last for years.
 

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When I'm not alone, I take a GSI Duo (or Dualist) which has been outstanding. I think they quit making them in 2008 so I got mine on clearance sale at REI a while back. I cannot say enough good things about that setup! But you may have a hard time finding one for sale now... If you do find one, I suggest you buy it. I think it meets the needs you mention.
Hey John, REI does still carry these the duelest ,and soloist bot very well made and have both won awards for gear choice of the year from backpacker magazine..
http://www.rei.com/product/783287
http://www.rei.com/product/784114
 
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