Stove Dilemma: Replace, Repair or Retrofit?

I've taken this stove everywhere. And left it sitting outside in the elements, way too often.

 Total price: About $115

Total price: About $115

The Coleman 414 is generally known as a beast of a camp stove. The kind of thing that sits in your garage for a decade but still works. It's one of those items you remember from childhood, and then buy again.

Among the advantages: You can use the cleaner-burning "white gas" fuel, which can be tricky to find on the road, or regular unleaded gasoline. The regular gas can leave a black soot on the outside of pots, but it's also a cheap fuel you can find anywhere. It's powerful enough to boil water on both burners. And on whole, it's a fairly inexpensive piece of equipment.

I've been using this stove for three years now, and for much of that time it's been my daily-use, full-time stove. This is probably not what the folks at Coleman envisioned, but until recently it's just kept on kicking.

 Replacement generator: $30~

Replacement generator: $30~

Lately, however, the stove spurts and burns unevenly, takes a very long time for the flame to regulate, and seems to leak fuel from some joints. I take some of the blame here -- I've used it pretty hard and have not always cared for it properly, which has helped result in this problem.

My efforts to repair it have not been successful. The "generator," the piece which does most of the stove's heavy lifting, has apparently sealed itself tightly shut over time, making it impossible to clean the inside. 

 Time to go with a new system?

Time to go with a new system?

So here's the question: If a new stove is $115 and the generator is $35, but the rest of the stove is looking pretty rough as well ...

It doesn't have to be portable, though I like that about the 414. I've also been considering going to propane.

If anyone has thoughts on a next stove setup for fuel source for daily use at a camp or homestead, I'd love to hear your experience.

It's not that the costs involved are high, but that whatever decision will be one I'm stuck with for a while. The 414 stove has been a great stove, and I'm tempted to just replace it outright, but I also wonder if there aren't better options out there.

Posted on April 25, 2016 and filed under Food, Homesteading.