Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Gear Review: Wavian NATO-spec Jerry Cans

A safe way to carry spare fuel in your vehicle for bushcraft adventures and backcountry emergencies

For months, I have been looking for a safe way to carry spare fuel in my vehicle for emergencies. I frequently drive deep into the mountains far away from cell phones signals and civilization, so I like to be prepared for anything.

When I looked for a solution both locally and online, my search kept coming up empty. All of the gas cans I found were not safe to use inside a vehicle except for emergency use.

Finally, my answer came one day while surfing an Off-Road 4x4 Forum. Enthusiasts there were raving about one can in particular -- The Wavian NATO-spec Jerry Can

After trying out these Wavian cans over the last couple of months, I was quite impressed and wanted to share them with RMB readers.

Wavian Jerry Cans


  • Made from 0.9mm pickled steel 
  • To prevent internal rust, all of cans are lined with petrol resistant alkyd-ammonia based paint – 100% safe from flaking.
  • External powder coating gives anti-corrosion protection and smooth finish.
  • Unique wide channel breather enables ‘glug’ and splash free pouring – 20 Litre Cans will empty in only 25 seconds
  • Strip welding ensures handle strength
  • Robust Triple Handle
  • Special holes drilled in the handle enables pouring spouts to be attached.
  • Bayonet closure is completely leak proof with the can in any position
  • UN number approval certifies compliance with Dangerous Goods Transportation Regualtions.
  • Date stamp on cap – shows year/month of production.
  • Internationally Patented Locking Pin gives additional security against accidental opening of the can

Wavian Jerry Cans are standard issue for NATO Forces throughout Europe. They are built in the Eastern European country of Latvia, and have to pass very high standards to be certified for use.

These standards include a high pressure test, dropping the can from various heights, and being able to withstand being engulfed in flames for a 2 minutes without failure. Here is a video from Wavian showing these torture tests:

The Cans

Wavian Jerry Cans come in three sizes-- 20L (5.28 Gallons), 10L (2.64 Gallons) and 5L (1.32 Gallons).

They are constructed of 0.9mm pickled steel. The can consists of two sides which are welded together in the middle to create a leakproof seam:

To prevent internal rust formation, each can is lined with a petrol resistant, alkyd-ammonia based paint. Wavian claims that this paint is 100% resistant to flaking.

All cans come standard with a large spout for use in gas powered equipment and older vehicles, as well as a small spout for filling modern vehicles. 

Each can has a bracket to hold the spout when not in use:

For additional safety, all Wavian Jerry Cans come with a steel locking pin over the cap:

The 20L (5.28 Gallon) Can is a great general purpose can or for use on a 4x4 to carry spare fuel (Wavian makes vehicle brackets for this purpose which you can buy separately):

The 10L (2.64 Gallon) Can is a great size for carrying emergency fuel in a vehicle:

The 5L (1.32 Gallon) Can is great for carrying emergency fuel in smaller vehicles, or for safely storing extra White Gas for refueling Coleman Camp Stoves or liquid fuel bottles for backpacking stoves.

Easy Pouring

Aside from the Wavian can's ability to safely store fuel inside a vehicle, another great feature is that they pour much easier than any of the other post-2009 EPA fuel cans I've owned.

Anyone who's purchased these monstrosities populary known as "Obama Gas Cans" knows what I'm talking about. They are horrible!

The 2009 EPA mandated cans were supposed to be safer for the environment, but the government did such a botched job on their design that they actually spill more gas than the pre-2009 cans because they are so ridiculously hard to pour.

Not so with the Wavian Cans. For an EPA-compliant can, they pour MUCH EASIER. Not quite as a fast as a pre-2009 can (about an extra 30 seconds to empty a full can), but easy enough to make them a pleasure to use. Here is a video showing the pour rate of a Wavian EPA-spec Jerry Can versus a pre-2009 Jerry Can (starts at 2:50):


Wavian Jerry Cans are fantastic fuel cans, BUT, they have one catch -- at $79.95 for a full size can and $69.95 for the small can, they are not cheap.

The reason they are not cheap is because of the amount of military engineering and quality control that goes into them to make them safe, as well as the fact that they are made in Europe.

As pricy as Wavian Jerry Cans are, the ability to safely carry spare fuel ANYWHERE is more than worth the price in my humble opinion.

5 out of 5 Stars (Highly Recommended)

For more information or to purchase Wavian Jerry Cans, visit: 

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