Looking for a great way to do two things at once, checkout a great prepper stove and heat up some Thanksgiving leftovers, all without making another mess in the kitchen. Thanks to the people at ecozoom who sent me their Zoom Versa outdoor wood/charcoal stove I get to do just that.
This is one substantial, solid outdoor stove that I tried with wood at home a few days ago, and the cheap pot you see in the picture below, and it was quick, efficient and best of all, smokeless with the seasoned wood I used. They recommend cast iron pots and pans and for good reasons. While excellent at heat distribution they also require the least amount of cleanup, and they mesh well with the stoves cast iron heating surface.
The makers list it as “light & portable” and at 15.6 lbs. I will leave that to your discretion. What impressed me most was the absence of smoke from the wood fire and efficiency of the combustion as it produced a lot of heat. The lower door functions as an air-flow adjustment allowing some management of the heat level being produced. This and the type and amount of fuel give any cook good control of the heating temperature.
One of the things I especially like is that it has a small, almost undetectable footprint. Unlike cooking over an open fire, or a gas or charcoal grill, cooking can be done efficiently and without leaving a long-lasting footprint (of flame, smoke or odors) for persons unwanted to smell, see and zero in on.
If you look close at the above picture you can see the two chambers which are employed when cooking with either wood or charcoal and this video does an excellent job of demonstrating the operation with the different bio-fuels.
The cast iron top is solid, excellent at facilitating the distributing of the heat from the fuel and can support large cooking pans and pots. The handles are insulated and far enough from the surface to be used to move the stove, even in the middle of the cooking process, should that suddenly become necessary though I am certain the makers don’t recommend this, but, in a hunkered down situation where avoiding detection is job number one, they work.
The company that produces them is very much a model of corporate responsibility, I am impressed with their commitment to helping others, take a look at the “Impact” link on their home page and their Donate A Stove program. As preppers we gravitate towards those who actually walk the walk. Available on eartheasy.com as well as on Amazon, I think every prepper should invest in this excellent product for either hunkering down at home in a SHTF, TEOTWAWKI or just getting through the critical first 72 hours after a natural disaster, or as necessary equipment if you have to bug out. I am adding them to my resources page.
As for this particular stove well, it has found a home, and in the future it will be watched in envy by my less efficient charcoal grill. The real selling point is the efficiency of the burn and as such, something that will be at home, getting me out of the blazing Southwestern sun in summer as efficiently as possible. And it will going with me when I Jeremiah Johnson it in the near future.