Bike packing is great but the gear can be costly. Some things I would suggest buying unless you are skilled on the sewing machine and have lots of time to spare. Well made bags are worth the money and will stand the pounding bike packing can doll out. But when it comes to cooking the “penny stove” is an easy project to turn some aluminum cans into an efficient and lightweight cooking apparatus. You can use a variety of fuels including denatured alcohol, HEAT or any 190 proof alcohol and it only takes 10-30 minutes to make depending on which design you choose.
This article from www.bikepacking.com outlines how to make 5 different designs all using the same basic principles. We have a stove similar to #1 on the list that has served us well for our past trips into Wyoming and Colorado. The only downfall has been that it uses quite a bit of fuel so I am going to experiment with the “sideburner” can stove to see if I can get a better fuel efficiency. It has been taking about 3-4 ounces of fuel to boil about 5 cups of water and I am hoping to get it under 2 ounces for our trip on the Baja Divide Route this winter where we will need to carry possibly 7 days of fuel between resupplies. I will post an update once I finish and test the new stove.
If anyone has made there own DIY bike gear out of PUM, send a picture to email@example.com if you want it featured on the website. I’m always looking for ideas and potentially useful material that others have come across.