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View Full Version : Carlisle vs Cambro


monty3777
02-09-2010, 10:14 AM
Mike (thenewguy) mentioned in another thread that he uses Carlisle food carriers instead of Cambros. I was doing some research and these things are about half the cost of a Cambro. For example this one looks similar to a Cambro UPC400:
http://www.webstaurantstore.com/suffixitem/271PC300/RD.html

Can those of you who uses these offere any thoughts about quality? Of course I trust Mike - just throwing this out there so that I have something to think about other than snow :cool::roll:

pat
02-09-2010, 10:16 AM
Been looking at those too. Everything I have heard is positive.

dreed
02-09-2010, 10:24 AM
They are probably equivalent as far as keeping food warm. I use a cambro, which appears to be the same size as the carlisle in your link. It only cost me 166.00 at RD.

I would go with whatever one is cheaper.

monty3777
02-09-2010, 10:26 AM
They are probably equivalent as far as keeping food warm. I use a cambro, which appears to be the same size as the carlisle in your link. It only cost me 166.00 at RD.

I would go with whatever one is cheaper.

You got a UPC400 for $166???? :eek: That's a great price!

G$
02-09-2010, 10:46 AM
Mike (thenewguy) mentioned in another thread that he uses Carlisle food carriers instead of Cambros. I was doing some research and these things are about half the cost of a Cambro. For example this one looks similar to a Cambro UPC400:
http://www.webstaurantstore.com/suffixitem/271PC300/RD.html

Can those of you who uses these offere any thoughts about quality? Of course I trust Mike - just throwing this out there so that I have something to think about other than snow :cool::roll:

Monty, isn't a carlisle PC300 smaller than a Cambro UPC400?

monty3777
02-09-2010, 11:00 AM
Here are the interior dimensions of a Cambro upc400 According to this:http://www.acitydiscount.com/Cambro-Hot-Cold-Food-Ultra-Full-Size-Pan-Carrier-UPC400.0.57418.1.1.htm)

Interior Dimensions: 21" D x 13-1/8" W x 19-1/8" H

The other link I provided to a Carlisle gives the interior dimensions as:
21"H x 13 1/4W" x 17"D.

Slight difference, but because I've never used either I can't judge whether the size difference is an issue.

Alexa RnQ
02-09-2010, 11:37 AM
Our Carlisle has served perfectly well for us.

Balls Casten
02-09-2010, 11:43 AM
Carlisle here, no problems.

monty3777
02-09-2010, 11:54 AM
Will this one hold 2 briskets and 2-4 whole butts? And what kind/size pans should I get?

Thanks everyone!

Brew-B-Q
02-09-2010, 12:04 PM
I have that Carlisle and am happy with it, but keep in mind I've only used it a few times.

I use 2 1/2" deep full pans for brisket and 4" deep 1/2 pans for butts. You can definitely fit 2 briskets and 2 butts, but I don't know about another rack of butts. If you put both briskets in 1 pan, you may be able to maneuver it. I'm sure others with more experience will provide better insight.

Stoke&Smoke
02-09-2010, 12:10 PM
No complaints about our carlisles! I believe they fit 4 4" deep full restaurant pans. I could easily fit 2 8-9 lb butts and two packers in one.

Big Butt BBQ
02-09-2010, 12:18 PM
I have been using 3 Carlisle's for the last 5 years and have had to replace one gasket and 1 latch due to operator error.

Here is where I purchased mine.

http://www.equippers.com/shop/product-detail.aspx?ret=1&pcid=14&scid=10111&pid=10338

monty3777
02-09-2010, 12:25 PM
This thread saved me $150+
Thanks!!!!

Bbq Bubba
02-09-2010, 12:28 PM
Carlisles have served us well for 2 years now.

chopshop
02-09-2010, 12:34 PM
its the same exact thing

southernsmoker
02-09-2010, 12:37 PM
We use Cambro,I don't know why such a price difference. but if you buy a cambro I'd recommend the heater option, kicked myself for not doing that many times..:rolleyes:

Ford
02-09-2010, 12:45 PM
You can get all 2 1/2 pans and then use a foil pan to put the actual meat in. It cost a little but saves a lot at cleanup. For vending I can load 3 carlisle's with 12 4" pans and then have 12 more heating in the FE's. If I sell 24 pans in a day I figure I did pretty good. That's a 4-6k day anyway.

And I can store more than that in one fridge. New trailer 2 fridges and 1 freezer.

Ford
02-09-2010, 12:47 PM
Monty - at comps if you put wrapped meat in it and seal the door you will seriously continue to cook butts and brisket. You won't like the results at turn-in.

Divemaster
02-09-2010, 12:56 PM
I've got a pair of Cambros (400's) that have served me very well both as coolers for raw product and warmed for storage of finished product.

Sauced!
02-09-2010, 01:45 PM
Monty - at comps if you put wrapped meat in it and seal the door you will seriously continue to cook butts and brisket. You won't like the results at turn-in.


Ford,

Is 'wrapped' the key word there? Would unwrapped meats fare better?

CivilWarBBQ
02-09-2010, 01:45 PM
Monty - at comps if you put wrapped meat in it and seal the door you will seriously continue to cook butts and brisket. You won't like the results at turn-in.

True Dat!

Been there, with steamed, overcooked meat that scored lousy.

Leave your meats out for a while until you break the temp curve, then leave the door cracked to let the steam out and you'll be fine.

Ford
02-09-2010, 02:33 PM
Ford,

Is 'wrapped' the key word there? Would unwrapped meats fare better?

True Dat!

Been there, with steamed, overcooked meat that scored lousy.

Leave your meats out for a while until you break the temp curve, then leave the door cracked to let the steam out and you'll be fine.
That's it. I just put them in with the door not shut.

monty3777
02-09-2010, 03:04 PM
That's it. I just put them in with the door not shut.

For how long. We typically hold for between 2-3 hours?

Also, is the door wide open - or close to closed but not latched?

Buster Dog BBQ
02-09-2010, 03:15 PM
For how long. We typically hold for between 2-3 hours?

Also, is the door wide open - or close to closed but not latched?
You can hold the meat in there for quite a while. I was very pleasantly surprised how little of a temp difference I had after 3-4 hours.

Luckily it kept my pork over 140 so I didnt have to reheat it.:twisted::icon_devil

monty3777
02-09-2010, 03:21 PM
I guess how long do you hold it with the door open - or is that what you meant, Rod?

Buster Dog BBQ
02-09-2010, 03:23 PM
I guess how long do you hold it with the door open - or is that what you meant, Rod?
I don't leave the door open. Once the meat stops cooking you can close the door.

On the opposite side, like someone else said. I fill the pans with ice for raw product and use them as a cooler. Works as good as a cooler and one less thing to haul.

dreed
02-09-2010, 08:24 PM
You got a UPC400 for $166???? :eek: That's a great price!

that was the cd300 for 166.00, It is sufficient for comps at least for us.

SmokinOkie
02-10-2010, 07:46 AM
The only issue I've heard, and it's rare, is the latches on the carlisle are plastic. Are they still that way? I see one response that had that problem.

How about you others, any latch problems?

chopshop
02-10-2010, 07:52 AM
The only issue I've heard, and it's rare, is the latches on the carlisle are plastic. Are they still that way? I see one response that had that problem.

How about you others, any latch problems?

the new cambros do too! just got a upc400 and its latch is plastic

Jacked UP BBQ
02-10-2010, 08:36 AM
NEVER use a cambro for comps if possible!

G$
02-10-2010, 11:02 AM
I am surprised that so many folks are advising against using "Cambros" (Insulated Food Carriers) for competitions, or at a minimum are advising against shutting them for full insulation.

It looks like my perception and what is reality for some top teams were miles apart. Par for the course I suppose.

Interesting thread.

Bbq Bubba
02-10-2010, 11:54 AM
No reason to. Return all your sauced, parted meat to the cooker to keep warm. NEVER use a cambro for comps if possible!

monty3777
02-10-2010, 02:15 PM
NEVER use a cambro for comps if possible!

Can you say more? In the past I have wrapped the finished butts and briskets in a sleeping bag - that worked o.k., but the temps would often drop to around 150*

falldownbbq
02-13-2010, 06:31 PM
No need to say more, bbq buuba summed it all up.

Brauma
02-13-2010, 07:44 PM
The only issue I've heard, and it's rare, is the latches on the carlisle are plastic. Are they still that way? I see one response that had that problem.

How about you others, any latch problems?

I bought two used Carlisles and they have metal latches. Not sure what model they are or how old.

They hold meat hot for 4 hours easy. I cant imagine the Cambros being much better.

monty3777
02-13-2010, 09:31 PM
No need to say more, bbq buuba summed it all up.

I am still cooking on my cooker while I am holding briskets and butts. At 300* I wouldn't be warming, I'd be cooking.

Jacked UP BBQ
02-14-2010, 07:10 PM
I am still cooking on my cooker while I am holding briskets and butts. At 300* I wouldn't be warming, I'd be cooking.

Just messing around, I try not to use cambros for comp, because I believe it dries the meat out. I use the sauce to re heat if needed, but I try to time it perfect.