The MSR Whisperlite International has the simplicity and great features that are found on the original Whisperlite, with the additional ability to burn multiple fuels for international trips.
The Whisperlite Family: (L to R) International, Original, and Universal.
The Whisperlite's design is simple and pure. Although it is unworthy of inclusion in the Times' Fashion section, it provides a stable three-legged base for a large central burner. The stove is controlled by a valve on the fuel pump, which sits 6-8 inches from the burner unit. MSRs Shaker Jet allows you to clean the jet with a simple vertical shaking motion. The Whisperlite is completely field maintainable. You can disassemble, repair, and reassemble the stove anywhere in the world.
Some complain that this stove is incapable of simmering. Fortunately, however, this is not the case. The Whisperlite must be depressurized in order to achieve a constant simmer. Here's how: prime, light, turn off, release fuel pressure, pump three times, and light again. We've made dozens of slowly simmered culinary delights with the Whisperlite. These include bread, pizza, calzones, and brownies. If you want an even easier simmer capability, try the Whisperlite Universal with canister fuel. It simmers easily, which is unlike any other small canister stove we have used.
As the name indicates, the Whisperlite International has the added benefit of being a multi-fuel stove so you can bring it on international expeditions where white gas may not be as readily available. It will burn white gas, kerosene, and unleaded fuel. The original MSR Whisperlite can only burn white gas, but is a great choice for trips in the USA and Canada.
The MSR Whisperlite International is equally fuel efficient as its original and Universal Counterparts.
The International took 2 minutes and 42 seconds to boil half a liter of water. It took us 1 minute and 17 seconds to prime it, although this time is subjective. This Is about average with the rest of the liquid fuel stoves we tested. The priming process involves releasing a small amount of fuel into the fuel cup, lighting it, and letting it burn down. This heats the fuel line enough to vaporize the fuel. While this isn't instantaneous, we don't think you'll be late to your next appointment.
When testing boil times we also timed how long it took to prime each liquid gas stove.
Weighing in at 11.5 ounces the MSR Whisperlite International is small and light enough to accompany you just about anywhere in the world. The whole Whisperlite family weighs the same.
The MSR WhisperLite Universal, International and Original all weigh the same when stripped down to their bare bones. The 11.5 ounce weight is when the other important extras are added.
The International is slightly more stable than its original brother, the Whisperlite. For some reason MSR uses a different leg design that seems more stable on the International and Universal models. These legs don't seem as apt to warp or bend in the same way that the original legs would, and are much easier to take apart and re-assemble than on the original Whisperlite. We were pleased to see this change.
The Whisperlite International is a very reasonable 6x4x4 inches, and will fit easily into a 2L pot.
The Whisperlite International really can conquer it all from international high altitude expeditions to backpacking trips in the sunny Sierra.
Priced at 99.95, the International is a great deal. It is $10 more than the original Whisperlite and is slightly more stable and versatile. It is $40 less expensive than the Universal model and the only difference is that the International cannot use isobutane canisters.
The Whisperlite International is a great addition to the Whisperlite family and is an excellent choice for any backpacking trip or international expedition. We love the newly designed legs that are stable and easy to take apart. We would consider choosing the original Whisperlite if we knew we were going to stay in North America, but for $10 it's not a big deal to upgrade to the International.
Whisperlite Expedition Service Kit
- Includes all replaceable parts and instruction manual
- Allows for dissasembly and repair of a damaged Whisperlite stove
MSR Fuel Bottle
- Mandatory for any trip where the stove is an essential safety kit
- Mandatory part for using the stove that is not included with the stove itself
- Recommend medium or large size
- Strong, airtight seal with cap