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PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2017 6:57 pm 
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Hello all,
A while ago, I purchased a few of the German Mess Kits, as well as silverware and folding Esbit stoves. I've attached a photo for reference:

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Is anybody using one? Any tips, techniques, or recommended equipment to go with them?


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 12, 2017 11:06 pm 
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Sorry, I have a serbian mess kit but am in the same boat I haven't used it yet.

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PostPosted: Mon Nov 13, 2017 9:20 pm 
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I have a few. Does yours have the alky stove and windscreen stand?

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PostPosted: Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:43 pm 
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Woods Walker wrote:
I have a few. Does yours have the alky stove and windscreen stand?


No, I have two kits with an Esbit for each kit. I do have windscreens stands for each; they're the folding type that come with the 3 packs of USGI cooking gel. I've only used the USGI cooking gel as a fire starter; based on my experiences with it, I consider Esbit more foolproof.

All of the reading that I've done recommends Esbit for heating water, maybe boiling soup/noodles/Mountain House/MREs. I bought these kits to do that, but also to cook over an open fire if necessary.


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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:15 am 
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I used it while in the army. It's a decent kit. We mostly used it as trays for precooked food, but occasionally we cooked in it, too. You can also make bread in it by burying it in warm coals. You can hold the whole set in one hand if you put it together right. Of course you have to "entklapper" (de-rattle) it in that case, so the enemy can't hear you. We always used our handkerchiefs for that. It's not the lightest cookware out there, but being tough and out of aluminum it's quite decent. There is no alcohol stove and wind screen for the original German version. The Swedish mess kit on the other hand has those and they should be compatible, because the Swedish version is pretty much the same. We always used a wood fire or the official Esbit-cooker.

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PostPosted: Wed Nov 15, 2017 8:42 pm 
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bloodpet wrote:
I used it while in the army. It's a decent kit. We mostly used it as trays for precooked food, but occasionally we cooked in it, too. You can also make bread in it by burying it in warm coals. You can hold the whole set in one hand if you put it together right. Of course you have to "entklapper" (de-rattle) it in that case, so the enemy can't hear you. We always used our handkerchiefs for that. It's not the lightest cookware out there, but being tough and out of aluminum it's quite decent. There is no alcohol stove and wind screen for the original German version. The Swedish mess kit on the other hand has those and they should be compatible, because the Swedish version is pretty much the same. We always used a wood fire or the official Esbit-cooker.



What was it like to cook with Esbit? Were you primarily heating rations, or cooking actual food?


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PostPosted: Thu Nov 16, 2017 12:22 am 
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echo83 wrote:
Woods Walker wrote:
I have a few. Does yours have the alky stove and windscreen stand?


No, I have two kits with an Esbit for each kit. I do have windscreens stands for each; they're the folding type that come with the 3 packs of USGI cooking gel. I've only used the USGI cooking gel as a fire starter; based on my experiences with it, I consider Esbit more foolproof.

All of the reading that I've done recommends Esbit for heating water, maybe boiling soup/noodles/Mountain House/MREs. I bought these kits to do that, but also to cook over an open fire if necessary.


IMHO Esbit is awful though there is little to go wrong. You can make ( or buy an alcohol stove) a Pepsi can stove plus wind screen to fit that and it will boil soooooooo much faster and cheaper than Esbit. I have several of these mess kits one of which is Stainless.

These mess kits also very effective for cooking and boiling over an open fire.

Image

Image

Image

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 18, 2017 11:13 am 
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Woods Walker wrote:
echo83 wrote:
Woods Walker wrote:
I have a few. Does yours have the alky stove and windscreen stand?


No, I have two kits with an Esbit for each kit. I do have windscreens stands for each; they're the folding type that come with the 3 packs of USGI cooking gel. I've only used the USGI cooking gel as a fire starter; based on my experiences with it, I consider Esbit more foolproof.

All of the reading that I've done recommends Esbit for heating water, maybe boiling soup/noodles/Mountain House/MREs. I bought these kits to do that, but also to cook over an open fire if necessary.


IMHO Esbit is awful though there is little to go wrong. You can make ( or buy an alcohol stove) a Pepsi can stove plus wind screen to fit that and it will boil soooooooo much faster and cheaper than Esbit. I have several of these mess kits one of which is Stainless.

These mess kits also very effective for cooking and boiling over an open fire.

Image

Image

Image


First off, great photos! It's awesome to see this gear in action. To your point, I'm not sure that I trust Esbit for anything more than boiling water. None of the recipes I have read begin with, "First, light a single Esbit cube."


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PostPosted: Sat Nov 18, 2017 11:46 am 
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echo83 wrote:
bloodpet wrote:
I used it while in the army. It's a decent kit. We mostly used it as trays for precooked food, but occasionally we cooked in it, too. You can also make bread in it by burying it in warm coals. You can hold the whole set in one hand if you put it together right. Of course you have to "entklapper" (de-rattle) it in that case, so the enemy can't hear you. We always used our handkerchiefs for that. It's not the lightest cookware out there, but being tough and out of aluminum it's quite decent. There is no alcohol stove and wind screen for the original German version. The Swedish mess kit on the other hand has those and they should be compatible, because the Swedish version is pretty much the same. We always used a wood fire or the official Esbit-cooker.



What was it like to cook with Esbit? Were you primarily heating rations, or cooking actual food?


You can hardly warm up a big portion of food with it. Cooking with it is not really feasible. When we cooked, we did it over a fire. We just warmed up our EPa (MRE) with it. When it was windy, even that was not always successful. You can warm up some tea or coffee, though.

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PostPosted: Sat Nov 18, 2017 6:42 pm 
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These come in green (military) and gray (civil protection).

I happen to have a gray one in my BOB. Plus one on the "de-rattling". I have mine stuffed with a few packets of tissue, to serve as napkins and toilet paper.

It's a good mess kit. Heavier maybe than modern civilian outdoor equipment, but in no way shape or form inherently different from any other nation's military surplus.

The only other piece of advice I can give is: Don't buy an original surplus utensil kit to go with it. The German utensil kit is heavy, the spoon is too large, the can opener is awful, and depending on what lowest bidder government contractor made yours, the "stainless" on it might be a lie.

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PostPosted: Sun Nov 19, 2017 11:03 am 
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mzmc wrote:
The only other piece of advice I can give is: Don't buy an original surplus utensil kit to go with it. The German utensil kit is heavy, the spoon is too large, the can opener is awful, and depending on what lowest bidder government contractor made yours, the "stainless" on it might be a lie.


I always carry a P 38 can opener in my wallet, and I bought some GSI cutlery for my kits. I like how the issued cutlery is designed to nest in the pot, but I also like to keep my knife, fork and spoon separate.

Also, the size of the issued spoon is pretty ridiculous. Maybe the military wanted everyone to finish their meals in three bites?


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PostPosted: Sun Nov 26, 2017 7:04 am 
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Bought a couple of those. Cleaned them up but havent gotten to use them yet. for what Id need, they seem like theyd work great. hence purchase.

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