Ration packs - your questions answered.

Preparatory training for Op Jedburgh but open to all
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BedsnHerts
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Re: Ration packs - your questions answered.

Postby BedsnHerts » Tue Apr 13, 2010 9:45 pm

Pete_59 wrote:With regard to cookers, I was thinking of getting one of these http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI.dll? ... K:MEWAX:IT any comments?


I bought one to try out and my comment is that they're rubbish. They're so small and the cooking ring is so unstable that a brit mess tin is in constant danger of falling off it, even on a flat concrete surface. German mess tins might be better because they're not so wide at the base but it would still be a risky exercise.

The heat output is also laughable. Half a large pan of cold water takes about 4 minutes to properly boil on a normal gas hob. An Esbit / hexamine cooker will do it in around 5 minutes. After 12 minutes (and half the fuel) this cooker was still only just simmering the water and I got the feeling that this was the limit of its ability.

The best thing about them is that they come with a 1980s era matchbook featuring a picture of a German man with a big moustache.
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Re: Ration packs - your questions answered.

Postby Chomley-Warner » Tue Apr 13, 2010 9:55 pm

I'd guess that, just like using hexi tabs, it is better to drop the assembly into a small hole and put your pan resting on the earth rim. Concentrates the heat and stops the slightest breeze wafting the meagre heat out sideways.
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Re: Ration packs - your questions answered.

Postby BedsnHerts » Tue Apr 13, 2010 10:20 pm

I doubt if it would make much difference. Unlike esbit tabs the gel is shielded by the sides of the can so the flame isn't blown around that much anyway. To concentrate the heat any more and to make it more stable as a platform you'd have to make a hole at least three inches deep so the cooking ring is level with the ground. That would then make it trickier to extinguish as you're supposed to smother the flame by moving the lid in from the side to fully cover the opening. The bottom like is that the calorific value of the flammable gel is nowhere near as good as hexamine so why not just use hexamine and be done?
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Re: Ration packs - your questions answered.

Postby Chomley-Warner » Tue Apr 13, 2010 10:29 pm

True enough! (I guess it was the 'tommy cooker' idea that appealed to Pete?)
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Re: Ration packs - your questions answered.

Postby webby » Fri Apr 16, 2010 1:46 pm

Poacher wrote:Does anyone eat the puddings?
Looking like I do you would think I did but I dont. Horrid!


I ate a chocolate pudding one at Crich the other week, was rather tastey actually! :)
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Re: Ration packs - your questions answered.

Postby Pete_59 » Fri Apr 16, 2010 2:04 pm

I now have a Menu 4 pack on it's way, £5 + £5 P&P off ebay, as to the cooker I may still buy the gel fuel one, Dave's right the 'Tommy Cooker' aspect appealed to me, I'll test in out and if it's as bad as B&H says what I'll try is to use hexi blocks in it so that I have a more authentic looking cooker but with the greater efficiency of the hexi fuel
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Re: Ration packs - your questions answered.

Postby Chomley-Warner » Fri Apr 16, 2010 2:28 pm

Its better value than this: http://www.tommyspackfillers.com/showit ... mRef=VS015
Looking at Pete's purchase it works out at £9 extra for a couple of labels!
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Re: Ration packs - your questions answered.

Postby Sgt.Heide » Fri Apr 16, 2010 2:43 pm

webby wrote:I ate a chocolate pudding one at Crich the other week, was rather tastey actually! :)


You're welcome to my spare choccy pudding then! I hate that one : sick :.
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Re: Ration packs - your questions answered.

Postby BedsnHerts » Fri Apr 16, 2010 4:42 pm

Pete_59 wrote:Dave's right the 'Tommy Cooker' aspect appealed to me, I'll test in out and if it's as bad as B&H says what I'll try is to use hexi blocks in it so that I have a more authentic looking cooker but with the greater efficiency of the hexi fuel


That's a good idea. You'll need to burn off the flammable gel first as I wouldn't want to chuck "pocket napalm" into the bin or down the drain :D

The instability of the whole setup is a real concern though. It's clearly designed to heat up metal mugs rather that brit mess tins and the whole thing will tip over given the slightest chance, drenching the surrounding area with very hot water.
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Re: Ration packs - your questions answered.

Postby Steiner » Sun Apr 18, 2010 3:57 pm

My Yorkie bar will be up for swapsies, if anybody's interested. (Had to laugh at the "not for civvies" wrapper. :roll: )
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Re: Ration packs - your questions answered.

Postby marsha » Sun Apr 25, 2010 6:07 pm

recived my ration pack and mananged to fit everything im my breadbag most impessive
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Re: Ration packs - your questions answered.

Postby Yith » Tue Apr 27, 2010 10:36 am

I've used a gel cooker quite a few times. With a change of label on the tin they are pretty much completely authentic right back to the Great War.

Me and Lardy used one to cook our goulash at Loop. :)
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