Optimus of Sweden Nova+ Stove Review

IMG_1058

Base stats:
– BTU:  9,725 (on white gas)
– Weight:  15 oz with pump (not including bottle)
Stove comparison chart

2013 November:  I just picked up the Nova+ at AnyMountain.  There have been some bad reviews of the Nova+ but so far, I can’t find a real fault with it.  Since I already own the Primus omnilite ti (and now a few others), I can compare the two.

[NOTE:  Since this review, I have gathered a few more.  Check the Optimus Polaris Optifuel review for more comparisons with this Nova+. https://somecampingstoves.wordpress.com/2015/04/15/optimus-polaris-optifuel-801408-campinghiking-camp-stove-w0-4l-fuel-bottle/

The Optimus Nova+ has a few interesting innovations compared to my other multi-fuel and some others I’ve tried:
– A cleaning needle is integrated into the jet.
– The maintenance tool has a magnet used to move the needle
– One jet for all fuels.
– The stove side throttle is integrated into the fuel line itself
– The stand/pot support is curved to wrap around the heat shield
– The splash guard is extra wide like older white gas and kerosene stoves
– The jet bolt does not need to be changed for different fuel types.
– The fuel line connects to the pump via the same twist-and-lock mechanism found in BNC connectors on electronic components
– The direction the fuel bottle is laid down turns off fuel and removes pressure

The last of these is also an innovation found in the Primus Omnilite.

All of these innovations are impressive, simplify maintenance and usage, and allow for a very compact multi-fuel stove. My only question is, if they’ve put in all this innovation effort, why not make the fuel line and pump connectors lindal connector compatible.

The fuel line is thicker than the Primus fuel line, but thinner than the MSR multi-fuel fuel lines.
The stand/pot support is reasonably wide, and able to support my 2 liter pot. It can even support pots from my large pasta making 7 quart pot, though it’s not that stable.

IMG_1077 IMG_1083

The splash guard is very wide compared to some other multi-fuel stoves, and uses an interesting connection mechanism that consists of 1 hook that loops through a hole in the copper heating piece and then has tension clamps on the other two arms. The Omnilite just uses just 3 tension clamps.

The pump is very thin, and seems to required a lot more pumps to build pressure than the Omnilite. Both use very similar leather for the pump gasket, and is easy to unscrew and remove for maintenance. Of course, it goes without saying that this requires grease, and that maintenance should be done clear of dirt or sand as these small particles stick to grease easily and can cause suction problems later.

IMG_1038 copy IMG_1036 copy IMG_1039 copy

The pump also is a little harder to get into the fuel bottle than the Omnilite as it has an l-shaped pump line. I actually prefer the Omnilite pump more because it is straight, the the entire pump screws in at an angle vs. straight in with the Nova+. The Nova+ is similar to the MSR plastic fuel pump.

The fuel line for the Nova+ is a plastic tube with a metal end. The Omnilite is metal for both the pump and the fuel line. I highly doubt this affects performance, but worth a note.

Neither unit has a generator that goes above the stove, and instead, integrates the generator into the metal fixed fuel feeder. That is a really nice innovation as its designed to pull heat from the stove itself and send to the metal feeder. I saw that the feeder on the Soto Muka is very soft. Don’t know about others, but the fewer parts to fail, the better.

Clearly the designers of the Optimus Nova+ recognize that the two critical problems with multi-fuel stoves: Size and maintenance. By including several interesting innovations, like requiring no needle tool or jet bolt changes, a stand/support that wraps cleanly around the heat shield, and even an innovative pouch that unzips and folds out to reveal all pockets, the Optimus Nova+ gets as close to a gas canister setup as possible, while still being able to utilize fuels readily available around the world.

IMG_1049 IMG_1050

The bag, BTW, is awesome.  One of the best bag designs I’ve ever seen.  At first glance, it’s a large pouch with a standard tightening cord.  Looking inside, the inner walls also have additional pockets.  But then, there’s a zipper along one edge and bottom, which opens the pouch up like a book.  Fully exposing the inner pockets.  Just a brilliant design.

All in all, the Optimus Nova+ is a rock solid unit and I plan to get years of good use out of it.

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One thought on “Optimus of Sweden Nova+ Stove Review

  1. Pingback: Optimus Polaris Optifuel w/0.4L Fuel Bottle Review | Camping Stoves and Other Gear Reviews

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