School me on the kelly Kettle pls.

Discussion in 'Outdoor Gear, Survival Equipment & More' started by uluapark, Jun 25, 2015.

  1. uluapark


    Aug 10, 2013
    Does anyone own a kelly kettle, are they any good? looking to add one to my 34L pack would be nice.
  2. gadgetgeek


    May 19, 2007
    I have an uncle that uses one on trail rides. works pretty well, but heavy to carry (his horse doesn't complain much) Probably more efficient than some twig stove designs, but at the cost of weight. depends all on your needs I guess.
  3. IUKE12


    Nov 25, 2005
    As a base camp water boiler it excels. I have a large capacity model, forget exactly how much it holds. I can have water on a boil within minutes. It takes up a lot of real estate in a pack however.
  4. JohannD


    Jan 20, 2015
    The Kelly kettle is well worth it

    her is some more info



    Johann D

    A man without a knife is a man without a life. - Nordic Proverb
  5. Quirt


    Oct 10, 2005
    I have the smaller version of the Storm Kettle. Same exact design made in the same country. I wanted one in the black coating for hunting purposes for my all day stand in the winter. It works amazing!! Boils water super fast, uses far less fuel than I original thought and I cannot say enough good things about it. It is heavy and bulky for a pack. But fine for short hauls. I've had animals walk close by as I boil water - they're used to fire/ smoke. The black coating is peeling off the fire base but other than that is one of my favorite kits. Limited to just boiling water but does it very effectively.
  6. Mannlicher


    Nov 19, 2008
    I have used a Kelly Kettle several times now. Less than impressed, at least for what I need it for. Too bulky, too big, too much effort to bring out, set up, boil a bit of water, pack back away.
  7. sideways


    Feb 19, 2013
    I would rather carry a trangia stove.

    I don't like the Kelly Kettle for the same reasons as Mannlicher. Also, I don't like to carry sooty things.
  8. B34NS


    Dec 30, 2013
    They're a pretty novel concept, but too heavy/bulky. Good for car camping and pack outs. Doesn't offer any other uses around camp. 1.3lbs for 17oz of water is a hard sell for the lightest one they make.

    I usually just carry a toaks 750ml ti pot (4.7oz) with an emberlit fireant (2.8oz). If I'm travelling with someone, have them bring an extra 750ml pot and you can boil almost the same amount of water as the large kelly kettle in the same amount of time. Bonus you can cook and eat from them too. Does end up costing a little more than the kelly kettle, but not by much for the added portability and versatility. Not an ounce counter myself, just like practical wide application tools in the ol' kit.
    Last edited: Jun 26, 2015
  9. pinnah


    Jul 28, 2011
    Beans, do you find the Emberlit is OK to use the dry Sierra with all of the fire restrictions?
  10. fmajor007


    Apr 1, 2010
    I have two Kelly Kettles - the smallest size (.5 liter) from aluminum and the largest size (1.6 liters) from stainless steel.

    I take the smaller one on fall/winter day hikes from time to time and the large one on "family" camping trips every time.

    Some of the criticisms noted above are true - the kettles do take up a fair bit of space in the pack and so are bulky and I also don't like "sooty" things.

    These criticisms notwithstanding, I thoroughly enjoy using my kettles. For winter hikes/snowshoeing I really enjoy building a small fire in the fire-base and just slowing down to enjoy the time out. For family camping stuff, the large kettle is outstanding as I can boil water for drinks while the camp stove is used for the meal. Boil times are quite good, though in all honesty my gas stoves are faster.

    If you're buying one, I would get a stainless steel version though not because my aluminum one has failed in any way, simply that I think the steel fire-base (and the kettle in general) will hold up to negligence/abuse better. The steel fire-base on my larger kettle is much more robust than the aluminum fire-base on the smaller one, but in the 5 years I've had the smaller one I have had nothing bad happen.

    I'm considering sewing another carry-bag for my kettles even though the nylon one they came with has been adequate. I guess for no other reason than I don't like soot and a thicker fabric carry-bag would contain any residue "better" (again, not that I've experienced any shortfall from the original bags).

    On my larger one I did buy the "cook" kit basically for the ability to use the fire-base as a grill. Otherwise, the kit's components are of marginal use.

    I'll look around in my files to see if I have any pics of my kettles in operation though I don't think I have any....

    I hope this helps...

    ETA: It is a truly amazing design - I don't want to steer you toward my obvious bias for the kettle and acknowledge the short-comings I've noticed with it. On another note I discovered that I can use my kettles even when there is a "fire/burn restriction" in effect (at least here in the Rockies) because the fire is completely contained within the kettle. I LOVE IT!!!

    ETA 2: A little history about the Kelly Kettle. When I bought my 1st one I spoke several times with Patrick Kelly the great-grandson of the company's founder (there were some potential Customs difficulties with mailing it to Bosnia where I was living at the time). He said his grandfather invented the 1st kettle and used it for his clients on his guided fishing trips. Patrick also told me that his grandfathers design was copied early on by other guides in that area of Ireland who had heard of it from the merchants where his grandfather bought the copper material to make them. So, pretty much right from the beginning there were design borrowing/rip-offs (something not uncommon today really). Patrick didn't seem bitter at this reality and in general was just a nice guy selling a great product.
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2015
  11. B34NS


    Dec 30, 2013
    Longtime no see!

    I've had great experiences with it so far in peak fire seasons in the sierras. As long as there aren't any park specific restrictions for the day under 9,600FT, they're fine to use. The only exception being wind, I'd highly advocate using a windscreen on windy/gusty days (or just bring a canister stove of some kind instead). It's done a good job of ember management (better than other similar stoves, vargo, etc), as well as being slightly raised doesn't scorch underneath surfaces in sensitive wilderness areas. Plus you have to actually put the fire completley out before you can breakdown the stove, or risk sizzling some fingers.
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2015
  12. duxdawg


    Jun 7, 2013
    Here in the Upper MidWest I use a windscreen and put a square of heavy duty aluminum foil under my SS EmberLit or my FireAnt. Very few coals fall out, but why take a chance? Much safer than most other wood burning stoves that I've used.

    As for the Kelly Kettle, it's a one trick pony: boils water. Seems to do it well from what I've read and watched. If that is what you want, go for it!

Share This Page