200A and 202 reproduction
frames back
in stock.
Milspec87
I am looking for a good stove to take with me on a small event and I have only used a 502 in the past or just a fire pit.  Would a 442 or the Peak 1 (55b) be an improvement as to performance and durability or not?

I know the USMC were using those 550b units for awhile, but I never saw one in person.  In my day you ate everything cold or maybe had a sterno can if you were lucky.

Interested to hear pro's / con's of each from those using them.

(Should have listed the 400 as well)
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scl
in scout's we used the peak 1 stove's and had no issue's. the 502 is good but the peak 1 stove's are easier to pack with the fold up leg's and all.
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ke4ljh
I have used the 550b's and they are nice and reliable with good simmer control for actually cooking other than just boiling water. I also like the current 533 single burner stove it has a larger tank and no legs and also a good reliable stove and is also the current dual fuel single burner stove still available and costs half of what a new 550b will cost. The 550b's are no longer in production.

The 550b has a second generator that is for kerosene if you like. I have found that for the stoves, stick to the coleman fuel for far fewer maintenance issues and the best overall reliability.....

The 550b has about 70 minutes of burn time per fount. that's not a great deal of capacity.

You didn't say if you would use the stove mostly for backpacking or not. If that is the case the 550b has less than half the fuel capacity of the 533 making it lighter than the 533. But then you would need to carry an extra fuel container with fuel losing the advantage of weight savings of the 550b.. In my opinion one is not better than the other they both have there applications. Which one is right for you.

For all around use I would choose the current 533 dual fuel stove. Just get a new one, This stove is also far more robust than the 550b's. Take good care of it keep it clean and dry, and you will never need to buy another one.

Just re-read your post. The 502 you currently have should be all you need unless it is one that you are thinking about minimizing it's use as it is no longer made or due to it's size. If you want a stove more compact, give consideration to the current 533 stove.

The 533 will be considerably lighter than the 502 and much more compact yet retain enough fuel capacity for four to eight hours of burn time. The higher number assumes mostly medium to low heat settings where cooking is done. Take a wind screen to minimize fuel consumption as well.

Fashion your own heat drum with carry bail just like the 502 and it will make a nice heater for a hunting blind and allow hot drinks when you need them in the field during the winter months with enough fuel capacity to get through the day in the field at winter time.

Best deal I have found for 533 is wally world online.

If truly compact and light is a must given the limited fuel capacity of the 550b about 70 minutes and the high cost, I would give consideration to an alcohol stove before I would spend the money on another 550b. Here is a link to the one I use. I have others I have made and a triangia but this one has it's own pot stand and about 2/3 more fuel capacity than a triangia, the small ones anyway, an O ring lid seal so fuel can be left in the stove without leaking and a simmer ring. It is the same size as a can of sterno. Carry a few yellow plastic bottles of "HEAT" fuel treatment for fuel. This one has enough fuel capacity to cook for an hour with simmer control using the simmer ring. It will cook hambergers!

https://www.selfrelianceoutfitters.com/collections/stoves/products/stainless-steel-alcohol-stove-the-best-backpacking-stove

I would go 533 or alcohol stove.

Stephen - Florida
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Milspec87
Thanks for the insight.  I hadn't thought about the 533 so that is something to look at.

I am a bit of an enigma when I camp.  I am veteran of several survival schools and like to get by with minimal equipment, but find that in the cold weather being able to boil water is a very important thing.  That is about as far as I go with a stove and had terrible luck with an Optimus stove that I swore off all the lightweight 2 piece stoves on the market.

Even though I take a minimalist approach, I don't worry about weight if the item performs.  You can't get a Marine to carry a featherweight gas mask, but they will carry a 5 lb. E-tool all over the world without complaint.

I will take a look at that 533.
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ke4ljh
I forgot to mention in my previous post that alcohol stoves are warm weather stoves. When winter arrives gasoline is a must.

If you still have your optimus fuel bottles use them for extra naptha for your 533 if you choose to get it.  Stay away from RUG in that stove unless you just can't get the naptha or Colman fuel or Crown camp fuel.

If you use the stove a lot, the savings of RUG cost's pays for new generators. If you clean and service the generators as apposed to just throwing them out then you will save even more money. There is nothing wrong with RUG as long as you realize your generator maintenance increases ten fold.

If you plan to use RUG just cut to the chase and get three spare generators right of the bat Just like the coleman milspec lanterns did for the same reason.

I try to keep no less than 5 gallons of coleman fuel or equivilant on hand at all times that way I know I have what I need as I live in hurricane alley in south Florida.

Stephen - Florida
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ke4ljh
I just sent you a private message about the 533 stove.

Stephen - Florida
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cptuap
Heck!  If weight is no problem, go for a 500A.
Charlie  ICCC#1375
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ke4ljh
I found some dimensions for the Coleman Sportster II 533 stove to compare to your 502 stove.




Lasts up to 2 hours on high on 1.1 pints of Coleman Liquid Fuel

Lasts up to 8 hours on low

Weight  2.0 lb dry weight

Weight with 1.1 pints of fuel approximately 2.7 lb

One 10,500 BTU burner





Stephen - Florida
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Stan_D


A buddy of mine was with The State Department. He spent a year+ in Afghanistan using a 550B. He gave it to me. I don't see any government markings on it. I don't use it much, but I keep it because of it's history. It has the squared aluminum case that double as pans.
Einstein, when describing radio said "Wire telegraph is like a very long cat. You pull his tail in NY and he meows in LA. And radio works the same way: you send signals here, they receive them there. The only difference is that there is no cat."
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Loganeffecto
just thought I'd through this out. My 533 will not simmer. Not even close. I don't know if this is a problem with all 533s but if simmering is important, the 502 wins.
Logan, formerly known as Fester. (It means to rot)
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fuel brained
How about the peak I 400b. I have used the 400, 400a, 400b, 502, 530 pocket stove, rogers 1950. Depend on your need. the Coleman 530 pocket stove and the rogers 1950 are good for water boiling. the others are good for cooking. I current have all and use all the above stoves. For a single lung I prefer the 502. It is a bit bigger but has a larger fuel capacity and a bigger base. Just mtc worth.
God bless. Pastor Jeff
gleaming-silver-jesus-fish-smiley-emoticon.gif 
Pastor Jeff
God said "Let there be light" so He let His Son shine.
SoCal and Lovin' It
US Navy Submarine Cold War Veteran
MilSpec Ops #1960 "Feel the Roar"
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Milspec87
All good advice.  Simmer isn't a big issue although some of the other stoves that I have just have one setting....burn the crap out of it.  My needs are to heat up water and some soups, but I do prefer a slow boil process over the flame on approach of many stoves.

I considered the 400 pretty seriously, but it is another discontinued model.  Unlike the 502, newer stoves seem to become obsolete with no parts available rather quickly.

In the end, I might have to track down a couple different models and try them out before committing to one.  Good grief, this much be how collecting begins.
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dave
I keep a 533 in each of my trucks in case of emergency, the get hotter than a 502 and simmer well.
275 Apreciation Syndicate Member #0019 dave !

COLEMAN, AMERICA'S TOP OF SALES LANTERN IN THE USA!!
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jacobsdad



Brian

 P.S. My favorite Coleman are still my 3-burners

" I checked into the Hokey Pokey Clinic and I turned myself around"
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mikew
Loganeffecto wrote:
just thought I'd through this out. My 533 will not simmer. Not even close. I don't know if this is a problem with all 533s but if simmering is important, the 502 wins.


My first single burner is a 533 I won on the bay several years ago and still have it.  Works perfectly and simmers just fine.  However, Tim Pruitt (Tdrrp) bought one used in decent condition that will not simmer.   As soon as the lever is moved from HIGH it shuts off like a switch was flipped.  We tried my spare genny on it with no change.  Then changed out the fuel tube and schrader and again no change.  We punted and guessed the issue must be with the valve.  This one will be a water boiler only. 

Have about 6 of the 502s and have yet to see one that would not simmer.  A couple of them were very ratty and I custom restored them.  The extra brass on brass shut off valve is a plus to me.  I have never had to buy a new genny for one of them either.  The straight 502 genny can be disassembled, cleaned, and put back in service.  I don't think the 533 genny is serviceable due to its shape and pricker design, but could be wrong.  The 533 does seem to burn on high a little hotter than a 502 and the 533 easily fits into a red plastic Folgers coffee container for storage.  Have no experience with the 550 series, so can't comment.

If size and weight is not an issue, the 500 is the undisputed, uncontested, heavyweight champion of the single burner class IMO and it's not even close.
Mike
"... at evening time, it shall be light." Zechariah 14:7

Slant Saver #05; Milspec Ops 0045
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dave
I have 2 533 tha would not simmer, had to reflair the genny tube to shorten the outside length and they simmer fine now
275 Apreciation Syndicate Member #0019 dave !

COLEMAN, AMERICA'S TOP OF SALES LANTERN IN THE USA!!
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sabre7cu
502 all the way. Boils quick and the heat control is great.
Stan White
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ke4ljh
The 550b Exponent that I have is a great little stove, I am glad that I have it, however for winter time use I feel it does not have enough fuel capacity to get one person through the day with no less than three hot meals a day plus all the hot water needed for drinks to keep the core body temperature up when it is cold.

If your plan is to melt snow for water, it takes twice as much fuel for that than just boiling water. Again, for winter use it just doesn't have enough fuel capacity for winter use.

The greatest weakness of this stove is the collar that supports the burner. Look at the collar and notice the tiny little aluminium feet that are left both top and bottom of the collar after cutting and forming to make room for air flow to the burner.

That collar burner support is so weak, if you look at it wrong it will bend and you have a lopsided burner support. Not good when your life depends on it in the winter.

This can be remedied by replacing that collar with your own, leave the upper and lower edges complete without cut outs for air and then drill 1/2 holes in the center of the collar for airflow. The collar will be a much stronger support.

In my opinion only, this stove is too fragile for harsh winter conditions when your life depends on it.

This is why I suggested the coleman 533. It has twice the fuel capacity of the 550b exponent and it is A ROBUST stove, you can count on the 533.

The generator can be cleaned and re-used. It's just like the 550b exponent stove. There is a wire inside the generator tube that pulls out just like in a lantern and both can be cleaned. If only coleman or equivalent camp fuel is used singularly you may not ever need to change the generator unless you get a great deal of use out of it. This stove is very reliable if only coleman fuel is used. You can count on the 533 stove.

The 550b exponent stove is for fair weather backpackers and simple over nighters.


Stephen - Florida
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Silvuhboolit
I am a huge fan of the 400, 442 and the 508 stoves. Unfortunately, the 400 and the 508 share the same generator which is no longer in production and just went through the roof in price. But the 442 is basically the same stove and I have one as well. It is a fantastic operating unit with almost no troubles. The generators for it are readily available and relatively inexpensive. I think you would be happy with it. It has a fantastic simmer as well as a full blast and anything in between.
Here is my 400 with a big old fat Farberware percolator sitting on top. I never pump this thing up all the way...here it is pumped up maybe 20 times and it will roll the flame up the sides. If you pump it up tight, it will really crank out the heat, singe hairs on your hands and put on a fantastic display of blue flame up the sides of your coffee pot. It will also melt a handle that is a C shape.
Definitely satisfies the need to cook and watch a flame do it’s thing. They are truly a very dependable stove.
And if you want to just burn something, it will happily oblige.
The old Aladdin thermos Is something my mom gave me over 30 years ago, it has been on many adventures and will still outperform the crap they make today. Click image for larger version - Name: E50BF706-6B39-4C69-B51A-058B70C9A762.jpeg, Views: 1347, Size: 101.65 KB


From the moment I slapped eyes on this hombre, I smelled trouble...and re-fried beans.

Looking for 6/64 birthday lantern.
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Milspec87
My Father bought me that same thermos back in '85 when I got a job working construction.  Great thermos, but I left it in a guy's truck and couldn't get it back for 5 days.....still full of clam chowder....in August!

I never had the courage to open it up to clean it out.  I think it remained sealed up in the garage for decades before being sold at a garage sale.  Any bastard that bought it without inspecting it would not have been pleased.
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Milspec87
I am chasing my tail on this one.  All the inputs have been very helpful, but it looks like I need to get my hands on some to find out what works best for me.  I do have a nice 413g, but I am not packing that thing, so I am down to a 502 or a 550b at this point based on hours of reading and reviews.

With just 2 models to consider, I should be able to find a couple at a decent price and then just compare side-by-side.  The 442 was a good suggestion, but there were about as many negative reports as there were positives which leads me to worry about inconsistencies in the product.  I never find negatives about the 502 other than being a little bulky and heavy which places it in the lead at the moment.

So, thanks again to all those that took some time to share their thoughts, I do appreciate the wealth of knowledge around here.
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Chucker
550b for overall performance. 502 can do it but at fewer BTU's. Own them both, used them both including winter.
Chuck
"Stop being angry, and forget about getting back at people; do not worry -- it only causes harm." Ps. 37:8
Eye-SEE-C-C Member #1333 -- MilSpecOps #003
"Michigan - from the Ojibwa word “meicigama,” meaning “great water.”
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ke4ljh
The coleman 550b exponent will do a great job for you. It is a "HOT" burner and will melt snow for water. It also has good simmer control.

Just watch out for bending the feet on the aluminium collar burner support. They bend very easily.

Take a philips head screwdriver to fit the screw holding the burner on so the aluminium collar can be removed and the feet straightened if one of them bends.

That is the only week part of this stove. It will do what you want it to do. That aluminium burner support collar can be changed any time if necessary.

Look at the photo of the 550b Peak 1 shown in this thread above. At least one of those aluminium feet I mentioned is bent over in that photograph. That is a cock-eyed burner! That is the same collar on the 550b Exponent stove. The burner supports are fragile.

Although, now that you know about that weak burner support it should not be a problem. You will like the exponent stove.

Have fun, take pictures and show them to us later.

Stephen - Florida
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ke4ljh
One last comment. In so far as Coleman stoves are being discussed. One stove is not better than the other. They each have their strengths and weaknesses. Sometimes it's only weight.

The difference in weight between the 550b Exponent and the 533 is just under 3/4 of a pound dry weight.

533 Sportster II weight: 2 lbs.
550b Exponent weight: 1.33 lbs.

The stove you choose from the arsenal depends on what conditions you will be using the stove in, what you need to accomplish and at times what country you will be travelling in. Sometimes fuel choices determine which stove to use.

Beyond that, it usually gets down to weight and fuel availability.

Less, can be more at times.  More, can at times be less.

Have fun.

Stephen - Florida
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Milspec87
Fuel choice is a consideration....I am still angry over the loss of the Coleman Powermax fuel for my Peak 1 xpert stove years ago.  

I think a comparison posting will be in the very near future.
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ke4ljh
The Coleman 533 has the equivalent burn time of 8 hours on low as the Power Max fuel with the Peak 1 xpert stove had.

The 533 is a self contained unit and has more BTU's per volume and weight due to the use of coleman camp fuel or it's equivalent.


If you really like the concept of the Peak 1 xpert stove, Primus is the best similar choice, not Optimus. Take a look at Primus multi-fuel stove. Much more durable than Optimus.

The system you liked years ago is still available and now uses coleman fuel for even more BTU's than the Peak 1 xpert with the power max fuel.

Stephen - Florida
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Milspec87
I did like the xpert stove with an added windscreen, but I have sworn off all the external fuel bottle connections as they seem too fragile and invite trouble (tend to leak more).  I am all-in on the self contained stoves instead as a result.

I just found a good deal on a 442, so that one will be part of the testing event.  A 550, 502, and 533 will also likely be invited depending on what I find around here.  Probably stick with a couple of them and sell off what ranks low.

I don't do much cooking really, just boiling water or soups so I can get by for a long time on a tank of fuel.  I usually go out 4-5 days before resupply so it isn't any long expeditions any more.  The keys are good burners, durable, stable, and with good availability of parts.  Weight and size are not a huge issue to me within reason.
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HercL4D2
The 502 is by far my favorite stove. It has the big valve wheel and the cool looking simmer lever with nice brass tubing like a big steam Locomotive. The 502, 508 and the 533 are of the same diameter tank. The 508 has a true simmer lever opposite the valve. The 502 has a heaver duty Grill than the others. These stoves were Born when the 500 stove met a suitcase stove, fell in love and propagated.

I do have all the 400 series, a Canadian 505B and 2 USA 576. Military stoves collected also. Still Id go with the 502 above all.
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ke4ljh
If reasonable weight is not the issue, Stability, robust construction and parts availability is the issue?


How will you factor in the abuse and clogged generators from previous owners burning RUG in their second hand stoves for your test?

None of the Coleman stoves should rank low provided they are tested in as new condition. Not second hand. Consider them all to be reliable. It's the same system. Testing Pot Luck second hand stoves is not a test.

The only stoves that will rank low are the second hand stoves with problems someone else caused with abuse and/or using RUG?

RUG IS THE KILLER OF RELIABILITY IN THESE STOVES.

Duel fuel stoves were never intended to be run singularly on RUG! Duel fuel Coleman stoves and lanterns were designed to run on Coleman fuel.

RUG is just backup when one doesn’t plan right for the occasion and fails to bring enough Coleman fuel.

How large of a pot will be used to melt snow / boil water / cook? A a mall cup, a billy pot or something larger? On different occasions what might you want to do?

What other uses might you have for the stove later in other senario's ? Will reliability, stability, serviceability and robustness still be important?

Is it your intention to minimize the use of the 502 stove due to no longer being able to replace generators?  It weighs how much? Does it back pack well?

Yes, it is the heaviest stove of the group you are considering.

Parts are not available, the 502 is a vintage stove.

The 502 that you already have is a great stove. What is the dry weight of the 502?
Is the 502 heavier than you want to pack-in?

Will your back pack reasonably accommodate your 502 stove and remain comfortable to carry? How far do you plan to pack in? A few miles or a few days?

502
Dry weight 502:  ? Help with this number please
Fuel Capactiy: 1.1 pints
Stability: wide stable base FORM Factor of fount
Parts Availability: No longer available
Very Durable

533
Dry weight 533: 2lbs
Fuel Capacity: 1.1 pints
Stability: wide stable base FORM Factor of fount
Designed to be packable, retain stable platform w/out folding feet to break.
Parts Availability: Current Production Parts available. Generators.
MOST DURABLE (over the 502, only because parts are still available.)

550b Exponent
Dry Weight 550b Exponent: 1.33 lbs
Fuel Capacity: 1/2 pint
Parts Availability: Generators still available, Stock up
       Fragile aluminium burner support. Replace with your own.
Least Durable

442
Dry weight 442:  ? Help with this number please
Fuel Capacity:   ? Help with this number please
Stability: narrower unit w/ fold out feet to make stable / moving parts to damage or break.
Some consider the stove to be somewhat more packable due to it's narrower form factor, diameter.
Parts Availability:Generators: See Below:

My understanding is that the generators for the 508a, 440, 442 and 533 stoves are all the same generator. Generators are still available buy 533 generators.

That being said: Generators, burner assemblies, control valves, pumps and fuel caps are identical for these three stoves. 440,442,533.

Therefore, serviceability, (generators available), reliability, and BTU’s are identical for all three stoves! 440, 442 and 533 stoves.  

( I would also add for BTU’s only, 550b Exponent.) Generators available, weak aluminium burner support, and moving legs to break or damage. The 550b exponent is the least robust of the stoves at issue. But it will work for you if you understand it's weak points and take care not to damage the collar or feet. It is the Lightest option with a great burner BTU output and flame control. The weak collar can be replaced with your own. Mine is not bent yet. But when it does I will just make my own to replace it. Carry extra fuel containers with it.) It is a nice stove.

The only difference is weight, fuel capacity, moving leg parts to damage, weak burner support and form factor (diameter).

Narrower diameter may be considered by some, easier to pack but with moving legs to break,

What is the fuel capacity of the 440 and 442 stoves? Diameters (form factor)?

These stoves are all reliable if purchased new. Second hand stoves are sold, why? RUG/Rust.

How will you factor in the abuse and clogged generators from previous owners burning RUG in their second hand stoves for your test?

None of the Coleman stoves should rank low provided they are tested in As New condition. Not second hand. Consider them all to be the same and reliable. It's the same fuel delivery system! Identical! Testing Pot Luck second hand stoves is not a test.

The only stoves that will rank low are the second hand stoves with problems someone else caused with abuse and/or using RUG?

RUG IS THE KILLER OF RELIABILITY IN THESE STOVES.

And……..The Runner Ups are!

Form Factor (diameter) for back packing.
Fuel Capacity

442 series
533

Would someone chime in with some of the fuel capacities, weights and diameters of the following stoves? Check my numbers for the 502, 442, 550b Exponent and 533 stoves.

I believe they are all ½ pint capacities except the 502 and 533 at 1.1 pints?

An interesting note:

Coleman knows a good thing when they see it. Coleman went all the way back to the form factor, fuel capacity and reliability of the parent stoves.

The 500 and little sister, the 502 who together have spawned junior, the 533 stove. A little smaller a little lighter but with a big big BTU bite.

The 533 stove is the modern current production equivalent form factor, reliability and fuel capacity model of the 502 stove.

The 533 stove is the Most Durable (over the 502, only because parts are still available.)

One of them is a little bit lighter, a little bit smaller form factor for packing, and generates more BTU’s

If reasonable weight is not the issue. Stability, robust construction and parts availability is the issue?


AND, THE WINNER IS?

Would you please, all chime in here on what your thoughts, thinking and ideas may be  regarding the logic test for the stoves at issue. 502, 442, 550b Exponent and the 502, again? (What I really intended to say was, 533)

Would all of you please help select the WINNER, from your perspectives, where with all and experience for todays modern Coleman back packer?

Any one from Denmark, Norway or Sweden with experience with any of these stoves? The Norseman!


Stephen - Florida
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Milspec87
That is a lot to respond to....

I actually located an unfired 442 for this test to go alongside the 502.  Sure, the 502 is not new at all, but that does not mean that it can't be fixed up to be able to run like new.  Besides, the comparison isn't about which one was the best when new, it is which one do "I" like best for my purposes.  A cleaned up and serviced 502 is what I have today so that is what I have for consideration unless there was a NIB stove laying around.

I haven't ruled out the 533 yet, but I am partial to pre-2005 stoves since Coleman started to out-source at that time.  It may not mean anything, but I prefer to go with US built units and the 400 series has been around for a long time so it has proven itself.  The only reason for the 442 specifically is because the parts seem to be readily available and inexpensive compared to the others in that series.

I am also still considering the 550b (silver clad version which should be the US made one) for comparison if one turns up that is priced right.  Again, not to find out if it was the "best" stove Coleman ever built, but if it is the one that I would prefer now.

I don't think anyone can ever say what is the best of anything is as people all have different variables to consider, but one can certainly state which one they like best.  That is all that I am seeking to accomplish which means there will be ones that I like less than the others (rank lower) so their will be units that I will not likely keep since I have little desire to stock-pile stoves.

I simply asked the question to seek input from knowledgeable people to help me narrow down the test subjects.  I think all those that responded have done a good job with that goal.  I don't know why this has created so much emotion for some, but I still value the views.
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Chucker
No worries about some worked up "emotions" Robert. Do what you wish and don't look back!
Chuck
"Stop being angry, and forget about getting back at people; do not worry -- it only causes harm." Ps. 37:8
Eye-SEE-C-C Member #1333 -- MilSpecOps #003
"Michigan - from the Ojibwa word “meicigama,” meaning “great water.”
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Milspec87
As an aside, I have packed damn near every corner of Europe and most of the US, but always used a lightweight skeleton-style stove with external fuel bottle.  Some were good and reliable (Coleman Powermax ones were) and some I despised, especially in just the slightest breeze.  They were very lightweight and fold small, but you had to add a windscreen to it and the bottle weight made them about as heavy in the end anyway.  They were a must though for international travel by air if you intended on keeping it....they would confiscate an all-in-one style stove in a heart beat.

I just want the simplicity of having a single unit with no braided hose to kink or weak pump to break, that will fire up reliably, hold up to some abuse, and has parts available to service.  It will come to which one feels right (set-up, construction, controls, etc.) for me and the only way to do that is to try them out in person.  Some will shine over the others "for me" and that will be what I go with.....at least for hiking within the US.
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mikew
Just because the 502 is out of production doesn't mean that no parts are available.  Coleman probably made MILLIONS of them.  I kinda think fettling the "pot lucks" was what this business and forum is about anyway.

The 533s on ebay are selling new for $75-$85.  For that money, I can have 4 or 5 502s which in effect gives me runners AND all parts with change left for fuel.  OCP as well as about seven venders on ebay currently have the generators listed.  I have also seen them at a Coleman outlet last year.  So no shortage of them.
Mike
"... at evening time, it shall be light." Zechariah 14:7

Slant Saver #05; Milspec Ops 0045
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ironeagle1958
The 508 is an extremely good stove.  Easy to control from simmer to high and belches out some heat.  These can be found on the bay of evil, craigslist or at yard or garage sales.
The generators for the 508 can be found on the bay of evil or you can find these generators at http://www.oldcolemanparts.com.

Cheers
If I knew what I was doing I wouldn't call it an experiment.
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Milspec87
Now that I have been running around in search of stove specs, I see what Stephen was getting at in his earlier post.  Here are the specs that I have found online via multiple sources to get what I suspect are fairly accurate numbers.

442

  • weight is 24 oz
  • 11.8 oz fuel capacity
  • 7,500 btu

550b

  • weight is 20.8 oz
  • 10.3 oz fuel capacity
  • 8,000 btu

533
  • weight is 44 oz
  • 17 oz fuel capacity
  • 10,500 btu
502
  • weight is 38.8 oz
  • 17 oz fuel capacity
  • 5,000 btu (Some note 7,500)


I don't have the numbers for the 508, but I don't think I will include it in these tests.  On paper, the 533 does produce the most heat with the same fuel capacity of the 502, but also heavier than the 502.  That last part was a bit of a surprise, but the number kept popping up in various literature, so for now I have to accept it until I can get an actual weigh in.

BTU output is only part of the equation in boiling or cooking as the quality of flame is also important.  That will show up under testing as will all the features and construction quality, but the specs indicate that the 533 should be considered.  So, even though I have reservations based on many reviews regarding construction and leaks along with a personal bias against non-US construction, I would be making a mistake by not including it for consideration.

I guess I have some more shopping to do for a 533 and a 550b yet.  This is starting to get expensive, but at least I will not have to wonder if I selected the right stove in the end.
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dave
I can tell you that my 502's all take a long time to perc my 9 cup and 550b and 533 take a lot less time
275 Apreciation Syndicate Member #0019 dave !

COLEMAN, AMERICA'S TOP OF SALES LANTERN IN THE USA!!
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Milspec87
I am guessing the numbers support that experience Dave.  Right now, I should have my 502 and 442 ready for test in a couple of days.  I did order a 550b and will likely purchased a 533 local when I am ready for the full side-by-side test.  I am really looking forward to finding out which one(s) that I prefer and then buying a second as back-up after selling off those that I didn't like as much.

Nothing like personal experience to eliminate the questions.
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offrink
Make sure you test the 550b with coleman fuel and switch generators and use kerosene. Like all the mutual talking.

My favorite single burner for non hiking is the 500 speedmasters. For backpacking in the winter it would be the 400’s. The 550b’s are nice and I like the use of kero, but I would use lighter canister stoves for summer and also not going to use kerosene in the winter.
Ben
Coleman 275 Appreciation Syndicate Member #0035
Looking for B-Day dates of 6/80, 2/84, 3/11, and 12/13
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Milspec87
I was never a fan of kerosene use in any stove.  I like the fuel in various heaters, but they never seem to burn very clean in a hiking stove.  Still, the curiosity is strong with me and so I will likely test that.

I had hoped to have all my test subjects ready to go for this weekend, but the seller for the 550b flaked out on my at the last minute, so I have to go over to the likes of fleabay to find a replacement.
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xdmkii
I have most of these models listed here and I would rank them in this order: 533, 400, 550B. My 550B was NOS and finicky. It works after fettling, but after going through it I don't feel it's sturdy enough to depend on. 
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Milspec87
Interesting.  I just ordered a 550B (military surplus NOS) and plan on picking up a 533 local when I have everything ready to test side-by-side.

I keep hearing issues with the 533 and 550B flooding, so I am really interested in what I discover.  So far, I am really impressed with the design and footprint of the 442.

Curious...was that 550B made in the USA?
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Milspec87
Okay, I am too impatient to delay this longer and ordered a 533 tonight.  So, I should have them before this year ends and hopefully will get down to testing before the New Year.  All of them except for the 502 will be new, unfired units going into the comparison.  I will likely fire them up first to make sure they are all working properly since I have read some complaints about both 550b sometimes missing the second o-ring in the valve assembly.

It might end up being an arctic test though as the temps will be single digits or lower for the next couple of weeks unless I crank the construction heater up first.
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xdmkii
I wasn't aware Coleman made any stoves overseas. I will check the 550B when I get home. I believe the date was 2003 on it. It has exponent branding.
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Smudge
Here's an interesting video about the 533:
"If all the beasts were gone, men would die from a great loneliness of spirit, for whatever happens to the beasts,
also happens to the man. Whatever befalls the Earth, befalls the sons of the Earth.” - Chief Seattle

ICCC # 1726  -  Bernz0matiC Appreciation Club #057
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austin65uri
As a Marine, you should be looking for a Coleman 501 or 501A.  They add an essential element of danger and excitement when in use.
S.F.
Bill.
ICCC#1601
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ke4ljh
Coleman has 533's on sale right now for $58 with free shipping. That's the best price I have seen in a long time. If your interested in one, just grab it. They won't last long at that price.

Those 533' are used all over the world.

I carry and store mine in a 16cm zebra billy pot. Perfect size.

Stephen - Florida
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xdmkii
I just checked, my 550B is stamped "08-03 Coleman USA"
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Milspec87
ke4ljh wrote:
Coleman has 533's on sale right now for $58 with free shipping. That's the best price I have seen in a long time. If your interested in one, just grab it. They won't last long at that price.

Those 533' are used all over the world.

I carry and store mine in a 16cm zebra billy pot. Perfect size.


Well that figures...I already bought one at $10 more.  Timing is everything.
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Milspec87
xdmkii wrote:
I wasn't aware Coleman made any stoves overseas. I will check the 550B when I get home. I believe the date was 2003 on it. It has exponent branding.


I don't actually know if any were made over-seas, but when the ownership changed 2005, there was some production moved out of the US.  Which items or parts of items I don't know, but I was not impressed at all with the Northstar units produced today and doubt they were US built.  The stoves...I don't know.

I do know that military contracts often stipulate US made products only, so the surplus Peak 1 or Exponents should be US products.
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Milspec87
austin65uri wrote:
As a Marine, you should be looking for a Coleman 501 or 501A.  They add an essential element of danger and excitement when in use.
S.F.


My milspec lantern was exciting enough and I still remember the smell of my arctic tent when it caught fire.  We had to smother it out using our old socks that were hung up to dry.

Not an easy smell to forget.
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