The Spork Titanium from Light My Fire is a very strong eating utensil. It is a spoon and fork in one, hence the name “Spork”. The Spork Titanium is the perfect marriage between carefree practicality and high-quality design. Unlike its more fragile plastic brothers, this titanium variant is really resistant to everything. And with its mere twenty grams of weight you would almost forget that it’s even in your backpack.
About the producer
Although the company of Light My Fire is mainly known for their elegant Sporks, everything started with something much simpler: fire. In 1995 Michael Adqvist, the founder of Light My Fire, dropped his eye on the so-called “Mayasticks”. Mayasticks are water-resistant sticks, which make lighting a fire seem like child’s play. Although the idea of Adqvist was beautiful, and with the profits from the sticks he even made it possible for 400 descendants of the Mayan Indians to go to school, the launch of the product in Europe was a big flop.
The Mayasticks were therefore put aside. But when somewhat later the introduction of the magnesium sticks caught the world’s attention, the Mayasticks re-appeared as well. Because together, the tindersticks and the magnesium sticks formed an unbeatable combination.
With this their name was made and it gave the founder of Light My Fire the necessary boost to search for new inventions to change the until then-known outdoor landscape permanently. It struck the man that most outdoor products were manufactured in dull colors. Browns, blacks and greens were the order of the day. He joined forces with the legendary brand specialist Claes Andréasson and the successful text writer Steve Strid and started developing new products of high quality, offered in an extensive palette of colors.
In 2004, the Mealkit was marketed by Light My Fire. This mealkit consisted of five parts, which had to bring outdoor dining to a higher level. But in the end it turned out that it was one part of the kit that achieved remarkable success: the Spork.
Hikers and backpackers from all over the world suddenly began sending love letters and photos of the adventures of their Sporks to the company. In the meantime a lot of children have been born from that loving relationship. Currently the Spork family consists of the Spork XM, Spork Little, Spork Large and Spork Titanium. In total, more than 21 million Sporks have already been sold in no less than 50 countries.
The Spork Titanium is made of commercially pure titanium TiA2. Titanium is a chemical element with symbol Ti and atomic number 22. It is a gray metallic transition metal, which belongs to the titanium group with zirconium (Zr), hafnium (Hf) and rutherfordium (Rf). And no … I didn’t know that by heart. It is written on Wikipedia. But let’s not be too scientifically focused and instead have a look at the unique qualities of titanium.
Titanium is virtually indestructible. It is almost as immune to scratches as platinum. In addition, the metal has a very favorable strength-to-weight ratio, which means that you get a remarkably durable and solid product for a minimum of weight. And let that be exactly the combination that we hikers are always looking for.
June 1, 2013. It had to be the most beautiful day of my life. And it turned out to be so too. Wim and I got married that day. And between the many presents that we received, there was one very special gift: two Sporks Titanium. A colleague of Wim probably bought us the best gift ever. Because when writing this review, five years later, our Sporks still look like brand new. In all that time they underwent quite a few tests. And they passed them all with flying colors.
Not one trip our metal Sporks stayed at home. They have now become an indispensable part of our packing list. Before we got to know the titanium version, we ate our meals with plastic Sporks. And although we also found it very practical, the titanium variant still stands head and shoulders above it. Admittedly, for the price of one Spork Titanium, you can put eight plastic Sporks in your shopping bag. But if your Spork breaks in two in the middle of a trek, you will soon find out that sustainability on a survival journey is still invaluable. One of our plastic Sporks broke in two while we were stirring a meal in the cooking pot. And a second plastic Spork died in the backpack itself for inexplicable reasons. We have heard other hikers talking about breaking teeth off the fork. And we also heard experiences where the plastic Spork literally melted like snow in the sun in a hot cooking pot.
Another advantage over the plastic variant is the mouthfeel. Where the plastic Spork feels somewhat grainy due to the rougher texture, the titanium version is wonderfully smooth. I would not consider the gritty texture of the plastic Spork as a major disadvantage though, since before my titanium experience, I had never really noticed it at all.
Despite its enormous durability, which can only be described in superlatives, the Spork Titanium is also very light: only twenty grams. But the plastic Spork gets an honorable mention here. Because the latter manages to be even eleven grams lighter! The plastic Spork also scores slightly better than the harder metal version when it comes to preventing scratches in the non-stick coating of your cooking pots.
The great success of the Spork is due to its unique design. A design that is not only elegant and beautiful, but is also particularly functional. With a spoon on one side and a fork with integrated knife on the other side, you no longer have to carry three pieces of cutlery with you, but you are all set with just one. I usually use the spoon side, and I rarely use the fork and the knife. This is mainly due to the fact that our outdoor haute cuisine consists mainly of freeze-dried meals or canned food. And they are usually easy to eat with a spoon. But the fact that you also have a fork and knife might come in handy sometimes. Of course you can’t expect from the small knife that you can fillet a whole fish with it without any problems. But you can cut the most essential things with it. Taking a separate pocket knife with you on your treks is therefore recommended.
That pocket knife can also be used to cut the bag of your freeze-dried meal. Because the Spork Titanium is with its 1.7 centimeter of length unfortunately a little too short to scrape the food on the bottom of the bag with clean fingers. Also when you use the Spork to cook in smaller and deeper cooking pots, you have to be careful not to burn your fingers. Light My Fire has therefore included in its plastic Spork range an “extra-medium” Spork of 2 centimeters and a “large” Spork of 2.5 centimeters. In the titanium version, these longer Sporks are not (yet?) available.
Pros and cons
The Spork Titanium is without a doubt an item that should be in the backpack of every hiker. That you’re in an initial shock when you hear the price for “just” a fork, is understandable. But in return you buy a multifunctional three-part tool that will never disappoint you. I wouldn’t be surprised if the Spork Titanium turns out to be so durable that it lasts a whole lifetime. So to me, the Spork Titanium is definitely worth every penny.
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