MSR XGK II (Pre Shaker Jet) White Gas Stove backpacker review

Alex Wierbinski's picture

By Alex Wierbinski - Posted on 18 November 2014

MSR XGK II (Pre Shaker Jet) White Gas Stove backpacker review
MSR XKG II operating during Winter at high elevation.

About 18 years as of 2014, and I bought it used.

I've taken it on 5 Tahoe to Whitney trips, countless Tahoe to Yosemite hikes, dozens of snow trips from Fall into Winter through Spring. This stove has seen thousands and thousands of miles, all weather conditions, falling down bunches of times, and has even burned various fuels successfully, if not cleanly.

It burns in driving rain, pounding blizzard, blowing windstorm, basically in all temps and conditions.

The MSR XGK II (Pre-Shaker Jet) white gas backpacking stove.

I get five days of full use of the stove out of the  24 ounce fuel bottle ( .71 liter) and seven days of fuel out of the 33 ounce fuel bottle. This works out to about 4.7 ounces of fuel per day during Summer conditions.

During the seasons we must melt snow for water brings the 24 ounce fuel bottle down to three days and the 33 ounce bottle covers five days. This capacity includes three hot meals a day, including generous amounts of coffee and hot chocolate, as well as melting snow for drinking water.

I estimate my Summertime use of 4.7 ounces of fuel a day rises to 6.6 during Winter conditions.

Check out this interesting look at old and new white gas stoves:

20 Year Old MSR XGK Edges Out New Version In Snow Melt Test

Drawbacks: Must be properly maintained. Residual build up in steel stove tube and body must be cleaned out every couple of seasons with a big carb-cleaner soaking in an old coffee can or properly modified beer can.

Cleans internal build up out of MSR white gas backpacking stoves.
I bought a big can of carb cleaner years ago for my once every year or two cleaning of the metal stove body with its steel feed tube, as well as its internal cable.

The heat of the operating stove deposits a residual plaque inside the metal feed tube between the pump and jet. As these deposits builds up over a few years the pressure and power of the stove gradually reduces. A good multi-day soaking in carb cleaner breaks down the plaque and restores like-new performance.

 I generally fully submerge the steel stove unit in a coffee can full of carb cleaner, but you can see a beer can works in a pinch. I got the soaking started in the beer can while I hustled up a can that big enough to submerge the whole stove unit.

Getting the MSR stove ready for the upcoming backpacking trips.

The leather seal on the pump arm must be lubicated and and pump tube must be maintained with routine cleaning and lubrication. There are two rubber O rings, one sealing the pump to the fuel canister, the other sealing the steel stove tube to the pump that must be kept effective or replaced.

The small bottle of baby oil in my personal kit is good for cleaning and lubing the seals.

Post up your comments and/or experiences with the old MSR white gas stoves below through the comments link.

Members can post their own stove reviews here, gear reviews in the Gear Forum, or trip and trails reports in the High Sierra Trails Forums.

Update: Leak and Fire in Upper Clarks Fork.

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