Metal thermal flasks^

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Bards
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Metal thermal flasks^

Post by Bards » Thu Sep 30, 2010 9:10 pm

The last couple I've had have been laughably ineffective and let steaming hot liquid go tepid in no time. Any input on which one if any I should go for? Not that fussy about capacity, but refuse to spend silly money. If I have to drink ambient-temp Laphraoig neat, and do away with adulterating it with hot coffee this winter, then so be it...

I never had this problem with old-school tartan clad glass flasks back in the day as a pre-paddler; should I go back to them and just be a bit more respectful, not using them to bang in tent pegs any more, or are they entirely too fragile for a serial swimmer to take out? I suspect having read my own post they may be making a comeback in my kit, but what's the word on the street here?

bards

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Jurassic
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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by Jurassic » Thu Sep 30, 2010 9:25 pm

The steel flasks seem to vary a lot in terms of performance and price doesn't always seem to have any relation to how well they work. I have a small one that my dad gave me that he got as a freeby and it works pretty well but one of my friends paid a premium price for a name brand one which turned out to be hopeless. Most (if not all?) rely on a layer of foam to provide insulation (as opposed as the double skinned vacuum in a traditional flask) and this makes them very prone to becoming less effective if they are dented (insulation is compressed reducing effectiveness). If I have enough space I just take a traditional thermos as it performs so much better and I've found the modern plastic shelled ones to be reasonably robust if I treat them with a little respect.

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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by tg » Thu Sep 30, 2010 9:30 pm

Hello Bards,

How's it hanging?

I've given up on flasks especially now Winter is upon us. I carry a lightweight stove (meths; so I can get fuel almost anywhere), a plastic cup, coffe etc. and a little extra water. Weighs little more than my Thermos and instant (almost) hot drinks. I am also able to offer French Onion Soup followed by Nasty Pasta Sauce Thing should anyone get the chills.

Tim
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Bards
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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by Bards » Thu Sep 30, 2010 9:46 pm

Hear what you're saying, Tim, but I think winding up my Dragonfly for a brew-up would have the crew rolling their eyes in the same way I do whenever a Blackberry/IPhone App/ other such complicating frippery makes it's presence felt...! BTW things have been hanging by a fatigued thread of late, but failure to stare down and deal with 'it' is simply not on the agenda... Let me know the next time you're likely to haul your pear-shaped ass down this way...;-) Oh, by the way, down on The Sunshine Coast we're barely into Autumn yet... errr, well the water's still warm, anyway ;-)

Thanks, Jurassic - I'm going to seek down a willing victim in a second-hand charity shop on that basis; your words confirm my general impression and will save a few poorly-aimed Sheckels... the metallic failures have been mid-range and not dented...

Bards

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MikeB
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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by MikeB » Thu Sep 30, 2010 9:48 pm

Look at the Stanley range - very, very good. 24 hours after filling with boiling water, the contents would still be usable for making coffee. But not a cheap flask.

This old discussion has details and a few other thoughts.

Mike.

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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by Bards » Thu Sep 30, 2010 10:37 pm

Thanks and apologies, Mike - I usually do the 'search' thing, however to make the thread valuable, could I invite opinions as to whether the 'food flask' situation is similar, and the Stanleys keep things hot for a good while despite increased neck area? In for several pennies, in for many pounds...

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MikeB
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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by MikeB » Thu Sep 30, 2010 10:52 pm

No prob - an ex-colleague had one of the food flasks and while all she ever did was bring soup into our shared office, I do recall her frequent complaints that it was always still too hot after about 5 hours!

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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by TechnoEngineer » Thu Sep 30, 2010 11:02 pm

My experience of the stanley food flask, using soup, is that the soup next to the plug becomes lukewarm (after 6 to 8 hours), beyond that it's warmer, and the rest is hot. This was at Loch Ness in April, with the flask surrounded by bubblewrap and stored in a drybag, inside the hull of a SOT.
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CONTADOR
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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by CONTADOR » Thu Sep 30, 2010 11:05 pm

Never had a problem myself. I've got a cheap one that I evosticked camping mat to and it's still going strong after 15 years (I shit you not). They lose their performance once dented so the walls touch or if punctured..

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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by Grahamd » Fri Oct 01, 2010 9:09 am

I have found the stainless steel flasks from Tescos to be good and very well priced.
One tip is not to get the ones with valves that can be opened for pouring with the lid in place, but to stick with a simple screw in lid. Also many of the screw in lids are hollow and can be accessed by lifting the top peice of plastic. I have found filling this space with polystyrene has increased the thermal efficiency.

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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by MartinG » Fri Oct 01, 2010 9:36 am

Another vote for the Tesco flasks. Ours are 350ml and have a top that you partially unscrew for pouring. I think the longest I've left stuff in them is about 12 hours and it's still been too hot to drink straight off. I think they spent that time wrapped in a towel in a dry bag though. I like the top they have because it's easy to clean. The ones with a button where the liquid goes through the lid are a pain to clean.

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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by NorthBank » Fri Oct 01, 2010 9:41 am

Grahamd wrote:I have found the stainless steel flasks from Tescos to be good and very well priced.
One tip is not to get the ones with valves that can be opened for pouring with the lid in place, but to stick with a simple screw in lid. Also many of the screw in lids are hollow and can be accessed by lifting the top peice of plastic. I have found filling this space with polystyrene has increased the thermal efficiency.
My experience is Tesco's flasks are rubbish hence very cheap. I bought one and returned it as I thought it must have been a bad batch but the replacement was the same. I use Thermos flasks and find them to be great - good price and does the job very well.

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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by sleepybubble » Fri Oct 01, 2010 1:07 pm

I'm using a lifeventure flask, it seems to be working well so far, its had about 6 months daily use. If don't drink the contents then the coffee in it is too hot on the lips straight out of the flask the next morning i.e. 24 hours later. I have had plenty of the cheap £4.99 off the counter of a petrol station bargain flasks before and non of them have been much use. Hence I splashed out this year and spent some money.

I've noticed that other folk around me seem to be using them too now. However that might be down to a limited choice up here when it comes to flask shopping.

Mark

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Jim
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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by Jim » Fri Oct 01, 2010 3:25 pm

Have had various experiences over the years, main worry for me is that if you brim the flask, often the lid will pop out so you have to leave a small air gap.

My current flask has taken a few knocks (or so the dents in it suggest), which usually ruins stainless flasks, but it seems to still be able to keep water hot for all of a long day (unopened - any flask cools down after the first cuppa is drawn off). I think it is a Vango but would need to try and remember to confirm that later..... Whatever it is, it either wasn't full price, or was a bargain - I don't like to pay too much due to the hit and miss nature of stainless flasks! IF I could be sure it would work well and last, I would pay more, but I'm just not convincable any more.

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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by Nick P » Fri Oct 01, 2010 4:41 pm

I've also had numerous s/s flasks over the years. Almost all have eventually failed, usually due to abuse (rolling around in the bottom of a dive boat, or chucked about in a rucksack).
The latest victim was a Lifeventure thermal mug/flask thingy:
http://www.lifeventure.co.uk/htm/cookwa ... l-mug.html
This lasted about 2 years of almost daily use before it died. However, Lifeventure do come with a 'lifetime warranty', but it excludes damage caused by misuse. SWMBO has an identical mug which has received no abuse, and that one has now also packed up - so we shall see if the lifetime warranty is as good as it says.

Nick

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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by David A » Fri Oct 01, 2010 4:59 pm

Hi Bards
tg wrote:I carry a lightweight stove
I’m with Tim on this one. However, the only advice I can offer is buy a large flask, if space is of no concern. Something to do with larger mass = slower heat convection!!

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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by naefearjustbeer » Sat Oct 02, 2010 5:15 am

I have had a selection of cheapy stainles flasks and all have performed well any time I use them. However I always pre heat mine before use by filling with boiling water for about 5 minutes before pouring out and refilling with whatever hot liquid I want to take with me, usually soup or hot chocolate. if I want a brew of hot tea i always use a stove and boil up a fresh batch.

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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by chykensa » Sat Oct 02, 2010 9:18 am

Paddling buddy and me both have Tesco metal flasks - no problems, keep coffee too hot to drink straight off for at least 6 hours. Other mate has a Coleman flask which he's had for years (also a stainless steel) and he swears by it too. Strange - we were talking about flasks only last Sunday morning sat on the shore opposite Penryn!

Apparently the Stanley flasks are good, but they are about £20 most places, if not more. Might be worth a go though!

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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by Chas C » Sat Oct 02, 2010 9:49 am

naefearjustbeer wrote: I always pre heat mine before use by filling with boiling water for about 5 minutes before pouring out and refilling with whatever hot liquid I want to take with me
Likewise, I've had a Thermos light compact metal flask for about 12 years and its still going strong.

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Re: Metal thermal flasks

Post by john-c » Sat Oct 02, 2010 10:07 am

I've also tried a number of metal flasks and found generally they don't keep hot very long, ok for 4/5 hrs if it's cold. Best flask I've had is a primus that I bought last year. Keeps hot overnight and easily good for 12hrs. Not cheap-just under £20 I think but I've spent more than that on cheaper ones that finished their days at the charity shop.

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Re: Metal thermal flasks^

Post by John N » Sun Oct 03, 2010 9:25 am

I too, have had a no. of metal flasks. But I've never bought another since I got one of the STANLEY 'outdoor' range. The sprog uses a Primus one, which to be fair isn't bad, but personally I think it's a way of the Stanley.

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Adrian Cooper
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Re: Metal thermal flasks^

Post by Adrian Cooper » Mon Oct 04, 2010 3:10 pm

Thermos have a brand they call Thermax which supposedly holds heat for 24 hours. I have a flask I bought about 15 years ago which is still good although I think it is their standard. Thermos also do a Thermax Workflask which look suspiciously like the Stanley one. I guess they are all made in the same factory in Korea.

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Re: Metal thermal flasks^

Post by Big Ade » Tue Oct 05, 2010 6:20 pm

Bards wrote:... I invite opinions as to whether the 'food flask' situation is similar, and the Stanleys keep things hot for a good while despite increased neck area? In for several pennies, in for many pounds...
I think you'll have to have the Stainless Steel version. The Plastic (Stanley)version as found in Aldi occasioanlly with built in spoon is rather poor and a complete waste of £6.
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