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Operating a Stove

You are about to use flammable gasoline within a few inches of an open flame. Please take the time to read the safety pages before you start.

If your stove has not been used in awhile please clean it off, to include empty any old fuel from the tank. If you can't get it all out use some "fish tank" clear tubing to siphon it. Put the old fuel in an approved container and dispose of it properly. You can find a hazardous waste recycling facility in your telephone book under public health.

Although I assume your stove is fully operable, I will show you the steps to ensure operation. If it fails one of the steps you will need to refer to the troubleshooting or rebuilding pages.


I recommend you use camping fuel whenever possible. This fuel is not bogged down with the additives automotive gasoline has and it burns much cleaner. Yes you can run unleaded gasoline (aka "white gas") in your stove but using camping fuel will extend the life of the generator and it won't alter the smell/taste of the food as much.

You also want to use a funnel, preferably one with a filter. A small piece of dirt can plug a number of internal parts so you want your gas as clean as possible.

Preparation for use

If you have a two or three burner stove, remove the tank from the stove case. Remove the fuel filler cap and with a filtering funnel, fill the tank approximately 1/2 full of fuel. Re-install the cap and tighten it down to ensure a good seal.

Make sure the main valve is fully clockwise, or in the "off" position. Turn the pump plunger counter-clockwise one turn to open the check valve inside. Place your thumb over the small hole in the center of the pump plunger and grab the under-side of the knob with your index and middle fingers.

Keeping your thumb over the hole, pull the pump plunger out and then push back down to complete one "pump." Give your stove 15 pumps. Then turn the pump plunger clockwise one turn to close the check valve.

Look for damp areas and listen for leaks.

Locate your tip cleaner stem, if your stove has one. It should be a small lever near the main valve with a red plastic tip on it. Give it a few turns and then leave it pointing up. Note that your tank may say right on top for this lever to be "up to light down to burn."

Now we will open the on/off valve just enough to allow a little air to escape from the generator. If you have an external tank on a two or three burner stove, please have a rag available for this step.

For single burner stoves turn the valve about 1/2 turn counter-clockwise. For two or three burner stoves you can open it up one full turn. You want to be able to hear the air coming out of the generator, or with two/three burner stoves you want to see it. After about 5 seconds you should hear it "spitting," or see a stream of fuel coming out the end of the generator. This is an indication that fuel has been introduced to the system. Once you hear or see this, cover the end of the generator with a rag to catch the fuel that will continue for a few seconds and/or turn the valve off.

If you have a two or three burner stove, take the case now and open it. Open the wind flaps and lock them open with the tabs and raise or remove the grills. Just to clear out any dust inside the burner, locate your auxiliary burner valve or valves and open them fully counter-clockwise. The auxiliary burner valve will stick out the left side of a two burner or out both ends of a three burner stove.

Now you want to blow, as hard as you can, down into each burner. Do this a few times for each burner, then do the same to the manifold hole where the generator tip will be inserted. Once you have blown them out well, turn the auxiliary burner valve or valves fully clockwise to the off position.

Take your tank and insert it into the case and allow it to sit on the tabs/slots provided.

Lighting the stove

Previously we pumped the stove up 15 pumps. I recommend you add another 10 now.

Figure 1

Light a match or lighter and place it inside the main burner. Crack open the valve just to the point where you can hear that "spitting" noise. Within a second or two the burner should ignite into a small flame all the way around. Note that the flames in Figure 1 are too high and are provided as a "bad example," or a flame-up. Also Figure 1 shows both burners starting and you should only be lighting one.

Immediately adjust your valve to keep this flame as small as possible without burning out. Too much flame, or no flame with the valve left on will flood the stove and create a dangerous build-up of fuel in the system.

Allow the small flame to burn for about 1 minute as it is heating the generator.

As the generator gets hot you will notice the flame height being reduced and replaced with multiple smaller flames. Once this occurs and becomes steady, the generator is working properly. Now you can turn the tip cleaner to the "down" position which may produce a noticeable increase in flame intensity.

Figure 2

Now open your main valve a turn or two until you have a strong flame coming from the burner. Return to your tank and give the stove another 20-25 pumps which will really increase the flame intensity as shown in Figure 2. The flames should be very short and blue-ish orange in color.

Now you can control the flame by adjusting the main valve. You can also now light your auxiliary burner(s) by opening the valve(s) on the side and applying a match or lighter to the burner(s). If you want a low simmer on one auxiliary just barely open the valve.

Turning the lantern off

You must NEVER remove the tank from the case or the fuel cap from the tank when the stove is operating or still hot.

To shut down the stove just turn the main valve off. However, because of how they operate, the burner(s) will stay lit for about 30 seconds or more as it uses the fuel left in that large generator. Soon the flame will flicker a few times and then go out.

Safety Note: Although the flame is gone, there is probably still fuel coming out of the generator. This fuel will be collecting in the manifold. If you re-light the stove soon after extinguishing it you may experience easy flooding or a flame-up.

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Information may not be copied, printed or otherwise reproduced without the written consent of the owner.
Coleman is a registered trademark of The Coleman Company, Inc.

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