Best all stainless steel thermos bottle?

Discussion in 'Homesteading Questions' started by HermitJohn, May 2, 2004.

  1. HermitJohn

    HermitJohn Well-Known Member

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    Are they pretty much all alike or are some truly better performers? I mean all stainless, double wall vacuum, not plastic or glass lined, and not insulated in some other cheaper way. I want to brew pot of coffee and have it stay hot all day. Right now I'm leaning toward getting an old Uno-Vac in pristine condition, but others like Stanley, Nissan, or Thermos and claim they are superior to anything else. Confusing. Then there are the no-name China and Korea knockoffs although I'm sure probably all thermoses are made there now. Really need somebody like Consumer Reports to actually scientifically test them under same conditions. Ideally you would think if vacuum is acheived then size of stopper and insulative value of stopper would be only difference since that is where heat transfer is going to occur. In real world there probably are performance differences not accounted for by this. Thanks.
     
  2. Bob in WI

    Bob in WI Well-Known Member

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    I had a Thermos brand stainless steel bottle for many years working as a construction worker. It kept warm things warm and cold things cold. I cannot tell you how many times this bottle was dropped or knocked down, but it still always worked, and still does to this day.

    There may be a better one, but I yet to find it.
     

  3. HermitJohn

    HermitJohn Well-Known Member

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    How many different brands have you owned? See I've also heard this from Stanley owners, Nissan owners, and Uno-Vac owners. Think all these are something you buy once and it lasts a lifetime short of somebody running over it with a Mack truck or shooting it with a high power rifle. Or you marry a fussy woman who cant stand to see a dented thermos around. So if you only own one and it works adequately... how do you know its best or does it really matter as long as it does the job? Actually I used to have one of those ancient Stanleys with regular steel painted exterior and it finally rusted. It worked fine I guess. Certainly better than any of the glass lined thermoses which were lot cheaper to buy. I dont even remember tossing the Stanley since just outside was rusted, not the bottle itself, but guess my now ex did while we were married. Havent seen it in years anyway.
     
  4. Shrek

    Shrek Singletree Moderator Staff Member

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    I got 28 years service out of my green stanley so far.
     
  5. vickinell

    vickinell Well-Known Member

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    I had to get up and go check the brand. I have an L.L.Bean stainless steel thermus, made in Korea. It has a punch in lid so you don't have to unsrew the top to open it. I used it for my coffee when I taught school. I liked it so well I bought a large one for when we went on trips and a smaller one to take soup in for my lunch at school.
     
  6. Jaclynne

    Jaclynne Well-Known Member Supporter

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    DH used to be an over the road or longhaul trucker. He used several different brands but stuck with a green Stanley for the last several years til it died in a truck wreck that thank God he was spared in. I went looking for a new Stanley to replace old green. Couldn't find one so I got the all stainless version of Stanley. DH says he can fill up with coffee in the evening and it will still be hot for breakfast. Sounds good enough to me. I know the old green one didn't preform that well.

    Life is good! :) :) :)
    Halo
     
  7. Blu3duk

    Blu3duk Well-Known Member

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    Tis an excellent question, I have a 2 quart Stanley about 10 years old, a 1 litre nissan medium mouth about 7 years old, a Thermos brand 1 litre about 17 years old.
    I had a uno-vac that was old when i bought it at a yard sale 20 years ago, sold it in another yard sale about 5 years back [replaced it with the nissan] to keep anything warm for any length of time i used a pair of old poly propolene socks on it and used the coffee out it first during the day... the whole unit outside was stainless, and would be toasty warm not to long after the boiling coffee was placed inside.... the vaccum seal probably was not proper on it although when submursed it never gained any water inside.

    The 2 quart stanley was purchased because my mother worked at a hardware store and could get it for cost [then $35] instead of retail of $55, thought it would replace 2 - 1 liter/quart bottles.... wrong.... coffe stays hot, but as it is drank, the remaining coffee gets cooler and over 8 hours for the going home drink of coffe at the end of the day is luke warm. Mom bought 3 of those, and 2 of the 3 were that way, the other one held a few degrees better... of course she sold that one cause dad and i did not need 3 units!!!! A friend had one fall off his back hoe, and 3 days later it was just as hot as it was the day he buried it [found it when he was back filling the ditch] again showing that if insulation is added, it holds heat longer.

    The nissan was purchased actually for taking soup out overnight on hound hunts, when I figgered out that noodles swell larger if left over night, i did not use noodle soup in it again.... however it holds heat the best of all the jugs I have, the lid on this model has a problem, it is not a one piece and it pops apart for cleaning, and has an additional pour spout screw in lid, if the lids do not fit just right it pops apart when tightening them down.... and of course mine is warped but that has not affected its preformance in retaining heat..... I chose it over the wider mouth stanley at the time because of the additional pour spout even though it was to be a soup jug.

    The thermos jug was a gift, and still holds heat better than the big stanley 2 quart, the Thermos has a lift out pour tab, that can be pulled apart and washed when it starts to leak, I generally do not use it and just unscrew the lid to pour, from fear of breaking the tab off or wearing it out... which is probably unfounded but a person ever knows.

    The cup that came with the Thermos actually is the biggest of all the units, with the uno-vac being a close second followed by the nissan. The stanley cup is the small traditional looking cup ..... i should say i hardly ever use any of the cups except for holding in heat, i have a stanley/alladin [could be prejudice here] insulated "go" cup ive had for about 10 years... gets washed once a year unless wife finds it sooner, and then it tastes bad [like soap] for a month.

    So in answer as to which is best, from my limited experience with only one of each, I have to say over all the Thermos has held best, And i know of people who hav had the 1 quart Stanleys that wore the cup out and the units still hold heat better than the 2 quart models.

    And i still want to try the 1 litre Stanley wide mouth for rice cooking and such www.kurtsaxon.com <---- site you suggested a couple years back... and the reasoning behind the wide mouth is that a spoon can get into one of those easier.... i still think heat loss might be a problem with the wider mouth as they are only plastic/nylon construction for the lids. and at $20 +/- it really would not be a bad investment and problably could be sold for at least half at a yard sale ifin it didnt work out.

    The "stop and robs" around here have stainless pump pots that see to keep the coffee hot, and are larger, can be purchased at resaurant supply houses, do not know anything of the cost except that usually the cost of commercial equipment is somewhat higher than consumer units.
     
  8. mightybooboo

    mightybooboo Well-Known Member

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    Only one Ive used is the stanley.I like it,sure is durable,mine is 15 years old,but i dont use it a lot anymore.Seems very well built.
    BooBoo
     
  9. HermitJohn

    HermitJohn Well-Known Member

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    Took quick look for my old stanley in storage shed yesterday, but figure its long gone or if it isnt, I'd rather buy another thermos than dig deep looking for it.

    Thanks all, but Blu3duk, you come closest by far to having wide experience with thermoses. And from your description, I glean two things, first thermoses vary quite a bit individually within a brand and model, meaning brand probably doesnt mean alot. Second, small mouth one liter are probably more efficient than any 2 liter. Yes I also been thinking about the thermos cooking ala Kurt Saxon. And he said the small mouth is more efficient despite being pain in rear to get food out and to clean it. Sure wish there was a super efficient large mouth thermos. As I said in first post, the weakness in any thermos that has a good vacuum bottle is heat transfer through the stopper/neck. Bigger the stopper, the faster the transfer. And I agree with your prognossis that the individual uno-vac that you got hold of didnt have good vacuum. They were small manufacturer, gone I'm sure, but had a loyal following and as I said, some swore by them as the best. I'd toss any thermos that got warm on outside quickly after filling.
     
  10. j.r. guerra in s. tx.

    j.r. guerra in s. tx. Well-Known Member

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    I've only had four differnent thermos bottles in my life, and aside from a leaky Stanley I bought in a yard sale ($2 - j.r., you was had :eek: ), all performed to spec. Isn't nothing like getting up a 4:30 a.m. in deer camp and getting a hot cup of coffee right from your sleeping bag. :cool:

    I like that cooking with thermos method - saves a bunch of time, both preparing in morning and not having to make a fire later on to cook with. Oatmeal is my favored dish for this. To clean in the field, a cup of water and a hand full of clean rocks rocked gently back and forth to scrub for a minute or so, and empty out.
     
  11. fin29

    fin29 Well-Known Member

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    I agree with vickinell-I forgot my LL Bean thermos in the car, and three days later, the coffee was still very warm. Mine came with a big cover to use as a mug, as well as a little white plastic bowl that fit inside it, in case you wanted to share.
    Biggest bonus-if it ever breaks, even if your great-grandson runs over it with his first car 50 years from now, LL Bean will replace it, no questions asked.
     
  12. BCR

    BCR Well-Known Member

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    Hermitjohn, campmor.com aften has several brands in several styles for decent prices, including Nissan and Thermos.

    That said, I have a Stanley green which is fine for my purposes. But I think it is heavy and awkward sometimes. I am thinking of buying a different brand and sized bottle to make it easier for me to drag around with me when walking.
     
  13. MelissaW

    MelissaW Well-Known Member

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    I vote for the LLBean thermos too. We take ours camping, and when I dump out the coffee on Sunday night, it is still warm. Ours must be ten years old, and it still looks good and works great.
     
  14. HermitJohn

    HermitJohn Well-Known Member

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    Found the perfect "cooking" thermos. Its a Zojirushi 1.5 liter WIDE MOUTH (model: sf-bae15) that still holds food that started out boiling to 135'F after 24 hours. Thats few degrees higher than 1 liter narrow mouth Nissan (for all practical purposes, about same temperature retention) according to CoffeeMarias.com that sells both. Just stumbled on these when looking up some coffee info. How come the other sites dont give useful info like this?. Did I mention this is a WIDE MOUTH thermos? Not horrible price new at $40 plus shipping although slim to none chance of finding a used one cheap.

    Ok, cheapest total delivered price I could find is $36.01 at everythinghome.com if anybody is interested. Isnt the internet wonderful? A wide mouth thermos as efficient as narrow mouth is going to get me to try it at that price. Dang, I wanted to find quality used thermos in good shape for around $14 or less delivered price.
     
  15. Oregonsparkie

    Oregonsparkie Well-Known Member

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    One thing to remember on any thermos is to preheat or precool the thermos prior to placeing anything in it. If you want it hot then put the hottest water you can get and fill the thermos, leave the top off and let it sit for about 10 minutes. This will keep things hotter - longer. Do the same for cold, just use ice water if you want to keep liquids colder.
     
  16. BCR

    BCR Well-Known Member

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    Hermitjohn-maybe you'd feel better if you ran the numbers. As you are probably good at making things last this figure will be much higher, for guesstimating, figure a useful life of 5 years (what most warranties seem to be). Let's say you use it 50 weeks a year, 3 times a week (150 times in a year X 5 years= 750 times). At $40 for 750 happy uses, that's under 6 cents a use. Now is it worth it? I think it will last longer than that.

    Check out some well written reviews about the Nissan products on Amazon. Lots of good input there.
     
  17. RAC

    RAC Guest

    My Stanley with the corroding base is still going strong, but as someone mentioned, the weak point will always be the opening, size-wise, or the cap is not sturdy enough after repeated twisting on and off. I'm sure many of the steel ones that start to go would be fixed with a new cap.
     
  18. Blu3duk

    Blu3duk Well-Known Member

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    OK a 1.5 litre vaccum bottle for $40 pequed my interest....... http://www.sweetmarias.com/prod.travelmugs-bottles.shtml was actually where i found it...... perhaps HJ was hiding the fact of where to git one cause he was figgering on cornering the market to hisself!!!!! <-----joke I say that was joke, put down that thar machete!

    I shall have to ask the misses if i can can have one of these..... and one of those.... and some of them coffee beans too!!! [hot air popcorn popper works for roasting coffee beans on the frugal scale]

    William
     
  19. Bretar

    Bretar Member

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    Bought a Stanley in '77, sold it today in a yard sale. Kept coffee hot for at least eight hours, just stopped being able to get the bottom clean.

    Had one of my forklift operators run over his, he used it for the rest of the week with no problems other than ribbing from the crew.
     
  20. HermitJohn

    HermitJohn Well-Known Member

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    Here is link to where I ordered my same thing for a total delivered price of $36: http://www.everythinghome.com/zosft...kw=Zojirushi+SF-BAE15+Tuff+Wide+Vacuum+Bottle

    By way ebay is cheapest place to get quality green coffee beans although if you can stomach the S&H, Marias is good place to deal with to buy pound of few varieties to try. If you order from them try their cheapo pound of coffee you are not suppose to like. Actually when I ordered, this coffee was "ye olde coffee" some Honduran premium coffee past its prime. I thought it wasnt bad and would have ordered more at cheap price they offered it but they limit you to 1 pound.