Coleman Cascade Classic Review
Cons: Slow boil time, average wind resistance, below average durability
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Coleman Cascade Classic
$100.00 at REI
|$169.99 at Amazon|
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|$44.89 at REI|
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|$30 List||$60 List|
|Pros||Piezo igniter, fuel efficient, reasonably priced, easy to clean||Large cook surface, powerful, burly, impressive wind resistance||Lightweight and compact, easy to use and set up, inexpensive||Great simmering, inexpensive, lightweight, auto-ignition||Affordable, fuel adaptor threads on easier than other stoves, windscreens are adjustable, compact dimensions|
|Cons||Slow boil time, average wind resistance, below average durability||Heavy, bulky, on the pricier side, closures not durable||Minimal wind protection, slow boil time||Boils water slowly, can be hard to find butane canisters, no wind screen, you burn through lots of fuel cans (lots of waste)||No auto-ignition, lower BTUs, small burners prone to hot spots|
|Bottom Line||An affordable, portable, and fuel efficient two-burner stove with slow boil time and low wind resistance||A wind-resistant stove that features powerful output but also impressive simmering abilities and easy maintenance||This lightweight single burner butane stove is reasonably priced, portable, and easy to use||Versatile and low cost, this single-burner stove cooks well, cleans up easily, and weighs the least of all the models we tested||This is a simple and straightforward two-burner that provides everything you need for basic meals at a very nice price|
|Rating Categories||Coleman Cascade Cla...||Camp Chef Everest 2X||Eureka SPRK+ Butane||Gas One GS-3000||Coleman Classic|
|Time to Boil (20%)|
|Wind Resistance (20%)|
|Simmering Ability (20%)|
|Ease of Set Up (15%)|
|Ease of Care (15%)|
|Specs||Coleman Cascade Cla...||Camp Chef Everest 2X||Eureka SPRK+ Butane||Gas One GS-3000||Coleman Classic|
|Weight||9.71 lbs||13.97 lbs||4.94 lbs w/case, 3.49 lbs stove alone||4.1 lbs||9.8 lbs|
|BTU per Burner (from manufacturer)||10,000||20,000||11,500||9,000||10,.000|
|Boil Time (1 quart of water, wind from a box fan)||7 min 56 sec||3 min 25 sec||13 min 10 sec||13 min||6 min 25 sec|
|Boil Time (1 quart of water, no wind)||5 min 23 sec||3 min 17 sec||4 min 36 sec||4 min 30 sec||4 min 45 sec|
|Cooktop Material||Aluminized steel||Nickel-coated steel||Stainless steel||Enamel Coated Steel||Aluminized steel|
|Packed Size||21" x 13" x 3.5"||27" x 15.5" x 8.25"||15.3" x 13" x 3.6"||14" x 12" x 3.5"||21" x 13" x 3.5"|
|Cooking Surface Dimensions||20" x 12"||21" x 9.5"||9.5" x 9.5"||8.25" x 8.25"||18.75" x 10.5"|
|Distance Between Burners (center to center)||11"||12.25"||N/A||N/A||7.75"|
|Number of Burners||2||2||1||1||2|
|Type of Model||Tabletop||Tabletop||Tabletop||Tabletop||Tabletop|
Our Analysis and Test Results
The Cascade Classic is a reasonably priced tabletop stove. While it features below-average wind resistance and a slow boil time, it is compact, easy to use, and simmers well. It wasn't a top performer in any of our metrics, but it does well enough to be a decent option for the budget-minded car camper looking to get a stove without breaking the bank.
Time to Boil
To evaluate boil time, we set up each stove in our windless garage at 5,000 feet in elevation and timed how long each stove took to boil 1 liter of 58° F water in a 1.7-liter tea kettle. The Cascade Classic took 5 minutes and 23 seconds, which was the second slowest performance in our review. Several other stoves with 10,000 BTU burners performed better in this test. We think the slow boil time is due to the gap between the cooking grate and the burner; this means the burner has to work harder to heat up your pots and pans.
We subject each stove to a 2-4 mph wind test in our garage "lab" at 5,000 feet to test this metric. The Cascade Classic took 7 minutes and 56 seconds to boil 1 liter of 58° F water in our wind test, which was a fairly average result. The great design of the Coleman windscreens is likely why it did better in this test than in the standard boil test. The windscreens can be adjusted for better wind protection or extended to accommodate larger pots.
In addition to evaluating each stove for windy and windless boil times, we also took a look at fuel efficiency in the course of these tests. To measure this, we first weighed a brand new green propane canister, performed our wind test, and then remeasured the canister. We repeated this process for the non-wind test and then averaged the results. The Cascade Classic consumed 23g (0.81 oz) in the windy test and 16g (0.56 oz) in the windless test, for an average of 4.37% (19g / 0.67 oz) of the fuel per boil. These results rank this stove as the most fuel-efficient tabletop stove in our review. It may have sluggish boil times, but it uses fuel very efficiently, a boon for anyone looking to conserve fuel, reduce waste, and save money.
For this metric, we made a pot of rice to see how well the stove could handle maintaining a low enough flame to produce fluffy rice. The Cascade Classic performed pretty well in this category. We could absolutely dial down the knob to get the burner to produce a low enough flame to cook rice. The burner is somewhat recessed in the stove body, which means that the low flame was decently resistant to gentle breezes when used on low. All of this is fantastic if you want to cook sauces or rice at a reasonable price.
Ease of Set Up
The Cascade Classic is as intuitive and straightforward as they come. The regulator pairs easily with its receiver, which is critical to avoid cross-threading the delicate brass threads. The igniter is an easy-to-turn knob on the front of the stove. It worked fairly consistently; while these tend to wear out with use, we were able to get it to spark within 2-3 rotations nearly every time we tried to light the stove. The closure latch also works well, though we wish there were two of them to ensure the durability of the closure system over time.
This stove did not score higher in this metric because the windscreens take a little effort to slot into position. Once disassembled, there is nothing to hold the windscreens in place, so you have to hold them to close the lid. While neither thing is a dealbreaker, this kept the Cascade from earning perfect marks.
Ease of Care
The Cascade Classic is easy to clean, lift the cooking grate and wipe down the drip pan. For the most part, there aren't any holes for noodles to be forever lost, but you will want to be mindful of the large circular hole at the back of the drip pan. We were also disappointed with how the aluminum drip pan puckered at one of the corner seals. Over time, this could be a point of failure and if it gets worse, it could also attract errant food scraps.
The Cascade Classic weighs just 9.71 pounds and features a generous carrying handle, making it a very portable stove. The stove's packed dimensions are 21" x 13" x 3.5", which means it will command very little space in your kitchen kit, owing to its trim dimensions.
We think the Cascade Classic is an ok value. It is a reasonably priced two-burner tabletop stove with excellent fuel efficiency and simmering ability, but that boils slow and has slightly below average wind resistance. There are other stoves that boil faster and have better features for not too much more, but this is a decent improvement in quality from other budget stoves in our review.
While the boil time and wind resistance of the Coleman Cascade Classic leave something to be desired, it is an affordable and highly fuel-efficient stove with some good features. If you are a budget-minded car camper looking for a decent stove for summer camping, this is a good option.
— Mary Witlacil
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