Optimus stoves

(Yet another Swedish backpacking gear company…)

Optimus trivia

  • A Swedish firm, established in 1899, recently purchased by Katadyn Group.
  • Optimus stoves include the famous Svea 123 stove. Back in 1970, Optimus acquired the Svea 123 brand.

Optimus stoves are quite varied...

...They got the cool stove-in-a-suitcase (8r/111/hiker).

...They got the Nova and Nova + for liquid fuel.

...They also got some really small gas stove - the Crux.

Let's go.

Optimus 8r/ optimus 111/ optimus hiker

optimus-8rThis is a real cool stove. On the one hand, it's meant to be used on the campground. On the other hand, it's quite small. It is basically a stove in a suitcase. BUT - It is neither small enough nor light enough to carry it on the trail.

It started as "Optimus 8r". Later on came few versions called "Optimus 111". The 111 got few variants that use different fuel types.  You can still easily get one on ebay.

optimus-hikerNowadays, Optimus sells it in the stores as "Optimus hiker +". It's burner is the same one as the Nova's. The great thing about it, is that it can run on all kinds of fuels.

  • Weight:  56Oz/ 1590gr
  • Fuel tank should be enough for about two hours.
  • It can use Optimus Arctic Fuel, white gas, kerosene, diesel and jet fuel.

Optimus Nova and Optimus Nova+

The Nova is the multi fuel Optimus stove. It got a newer version named Optimus Nova plus. The "Plus" stands mainly for the new control valve. The valve now seats on the connection to the fuel bottle. Both Novas are expected to run for about 2.5 hours on a 450ml bottle. On most cases, The Nova Plus cost a few bucks more.


  • Weight: 15.34OZ (435gr)
  • Can run on Optimus Arctic Fuel, white gas, kerosene, diesel and jet fuel

More on Optimus Nova...


  • Weight: 15OZ (425gr)
  • Can run on Optimus Arctic Fuel, white gas, kerosene, diesel and jet fuel
  • An improved control valve that uses the fuel hose on the connection to the bottle.

More on Optimus Nova plus...

Optimus Crux and Optimus Crux lite

This is Optimus' canister stove. It got two variants. The "lite" is a bit lighter but doesn’t fold as small as the other one. The lite should be about 15$ cheaper.
Personally, I'd go for the "heavier" version. It folds really cool. You can actually tack it on the bottom of the canister.


  • Weight: 2.92OZ (83gr)
  • Folds so nicely, you can store it in the bottom of the gas canister.
  • Get one here. Verify you get the Crux, not the Crux light.
  • More on my favorite Optimus stove...
Crux - Folded 

Crux - Assembled

Crux lite

  • Weight: 2.54OZ (72gr)
  • The few grams missing is the lack of the folding mechanism.
  • Besides that, it practically got the same abilities of the Crux.

Svea 123

And now, applause to the classic - SVEA 123 ! It's not exactly an Optimus stove... Optimus bought SVEA in 1970. The stove hasn't changed since then.

  • Not the lightest, not the most efficient, but undoubtedly, the most classic of them all!
  • Weight: 19Oz (550gr)
  • Diameter: 3.9inch (10cm)
  • Expected to run for about 50 minutes on it’s built in tank.
  • Runs on white gas only.