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by Eric Mad-townfromVery basic cookwareWouldn't recommend these. They are basic and if you have a sink/soap handy, they'd be fine. But if you're on the trail and can't use soap, then you'll have to deal with scraping off the burnt on food. Buy something that's non-stick
Date published: 2007-10-09
Rated 3out of5
by CC RiderfromAbout AverageThis is your basic aluminum cook set, pretty much like the ones you may remember camping with 30 years ago. Construction is good, cleans up well and works just as mess kits have for decades. I have three complaints... 1) The fry pan handle screw isn't fixed, so if you're not careful, it could fall out and get lost. 2) The measuring/drinking cup is plastic, so it cannot be applied to a burner. 3) $25 is way too much for this simple, stamped aluminum set. It's not a good value.
Date published: 2014-05-08
Rated 3out of5
by AKcampfromget what you pay forI knew exactly what I was getting when I bought this set. I was heading out for a weekend camping trip and needed an inexpensive set. This is the same style set I remember using 20 years ago in Scouts and it hasn't changed at all. It is functional, compact and has what you need. It's a bear to clean, on the outside anyway but hey, that's the outside. You don't buy this set because it looks pretty. Overall it's a decent product for a decent price.
Date published: 2013-07-17
Rated 4out of5
by pack leaderfromGood for appropriate use.You have to be realistic about he uses of mess kits. This is a sound and safe basic mess kit for camping. It is also one of the few kinds that you'd want to actually cook on a camp fire with. You need to avoid using teflon coating cooking on campfires because the teflon breaks down into a dangerous chemical (just google "teflon overheat"). If you're just trying to cook a basic meal, nothing fancy, this will get the job done. Does food stick? yes. use lots of oil or butter. If food does get stuck, use natures abrasive -- sand -- available in any river or stream. Just swish it around it it will work great.
Date published: 2008-07-18
Rated 4out of5
by tonsoffun86fromhate to love themi am a hunter/backpacker in washington state.. i have been using this set since i was about 13 and have never had much of a issue...yea food sticks in them a little. but the pay off of how light and handy they are makes me pack my set every time.. theses are well worth picking up for 20 bucks and under
Date published: 2009-02-08
Rated 4out of5
by DenLeaderfromGreat long term investmentI still have this exact set from when I was in scouts (about 25 years ago) and still used them every time I'm out backpacking. They're a bit scruffed up, got some melted plastic on the pans, lost the lid to the pot, replaced the cup, but they definitely do the job. I was pleasantly surprised to find them still being offered as I was looking for a set for my own two 7yo boys. Needless to say, I'll be picking up two sets this weekend in preparation of taking them on their 1st backpacking trip in two weeks. A very good value for the money.
Date published: 2009-06-22
Rated 4out of5
by eat sleep hikefromopen countru mess kiti first got this because i started getting sick of cole freeze dried meals and cold drinks in the morning. so far its been great! its compact, light weight and perfect for things from heating up water to cooking egs on the campfire. my only concern is that it needs a coating of soap on the bottem to stop it from piting and its not easy carying a thing of dish soap when your a minimalist. but overal, for the price its great!
Date published: 2010-01-11
Rated 4out of5
by EBasilfromGood item for Cub Scouts and Boy ScoutsThis is the classic, "Scout style mess kit" and it's pretty much exactly like my 35 year old version. It's excellent for CUB Scouts learning to camp "Boy Scout Style" and it's great for BOY Scouts for car-based camping.
The strengths of this product are the simple design, the excellent little plastic cup with measurement marks inside it (even though many car campers despise this cup, it's a secret gem for later), the high-sided plate/fry pan with handle and the small pot that can be used either to heat food or as an eating bowl. The aluminum is soft and easy to engrave -- and you should, since they all look the same. It's excellent to introduce the concepts of cleanings one's own gear and of using a mess kit in general.
This kit is sometimes compared to similar kits made from stainless steel and some even with a "copper clad" appearance on the bottom of the outer shells. Here's my take on that: the steel kits look much prettier and their shells are more useful as a plate than this kit's are, when car-camping. The fry-pan side of the steel kits suffers from a very flimsy handle and isn't as useful as the aluminum version. The plastic cups are the same, but the cooking pot/bowls are not-- the steel pot/bowl is much more shallow and is not adequate for significant cooking. It's okay as a shallow bowl, but not as good as the deeper bowl/pot in this kit. The aluminum is indeed made from evil aluminum (depending who you believe) but the interior pot is much, much better than the steel ones. If you want your mess kit to grow or last with a youth, I think the aluminum kit is a better buy, albeit not nearly as good looking.
The weaknesses of this aluminum Scouter mess kit are that it includes things you really don't need for backpacking...such as the fry pan/plates, and it's bulky because of it. (In a group, you don't need a fry pan and another plate for each person.) The fry pan is also pretty much the opposite of non-stick, perhaps an "all-stick" if you cook with the fry pan. Finally, as noted, it is untreated, not-anodized, raw, soft aluminum. It scratches, it dings and it might impart a metallic flavor (like with tomato sauce for sure) to things. It is also very not-trendy or cool: it's not hard-anodized like the neat GSI stuff, nor equipped with all the cool innovations some of the really neat mess kits now have. It has old-school cred, but isn't new or cool looking, at all.
The pot does black up nicely (a blackened pot heats more quickly)and will hold the neat little cup inside it with the lid on. Repeated boiling in the pot also tempers and hardens the interior surface, just like other old aluminum water pots you've seen.
Now here's how this mess kit can grow and have utility for actual backpackers: that little pot/bowl and the ultralight measuring cup that fits within it. Those two items make for the core of an excellent mini mess kit that can enable each Scout or camper to boil water or even cook food in the amount needed for individual meals, drink from a cup that doesn't burn your hand when it's full of steaming cocoa/coffee and, if you want to, be combined with a home made "cozy" insulator for high-country cooking or holding hot food in cold weather after it's been cooked in the larger "main pot".
Add a "Light My Fire" spork-thingy and this kit is an excellent starting point for any Scout or camper and it can be used for many years without further investment.
I use the pot and cup from my 35-year old version of this, along with a "reflectix" cozy and a spork as the core of my ultralight/prepared cookset for high country backpacking. I only use the pan/plates at car camps. Our Scout-aged son has done the same from 8 years-old and up.
Date published: 2011-06-30
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