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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 03-24-2011, 03:44 PM   #1
KuradiEit
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Default GRILL Question

For your GRILL -- burgers, dogs, steaks, chops, etc.
Edit: GAS grill
Stainless steel grates? Or iron grates?
Pros and cons of each?
Which do you prefer and why?
~Kai

Last edited by KuradiEit; 03-24-2011 at 04:06 PM..
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Unread 03-24-2011, 03:54 PM   #2
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All of my smokers and grills have SS grates.
They all came with SS grates and I'm too cheap to upgrade, plus....they work just great, so why switch?
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Unread 03-24-2011, 03:56 PM   #3
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I agree with Wampus... I wouldn't mid trying out some CI ones but not worth the $ for the upgrade
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Unread 03-24-2011, 03:56 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KuradiEit View Post
For your GRILL -- burgers, dogs, steaks, chops, etc.
Stainless steel grates? Or iron grates?
Pros and cons of each?
Which do you prefer and why?
~Kai
Porcelain coated cast iron. Why? Best of both worlds. The far superior heat retention and searing capability of cast iron, with the far less likely to stick benefit of ceramic or stainless. Plus it won't rust and you don't have to season it.
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Unread 03-24-2011, 03:59 PM   #5
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I've used both. Cast iron will last longer if properly cared for and probably conducts heat more evenly. Stainless is easier to clean and a lot lighter...other than that it just boils down to personal preference.

For me, I'm more interested in what kind of fuel source I'm using and how it will affect the length of cook and flavor profile...
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Unread 03-24-2011, 04:03 PM   #6
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I don't use a grill much so I prefer stainless. On my pits I use all the time I think I like steel. They become seasoned and the meat doesn't stick.
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Unread 03-24-2011, 05:21 PM   #7
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You guys know more than me , but I'm going to post anywayI've had plated grates , castiron grates , and enamel-coated cast iron grates. All rotted out and flaked.!I'm using stailess now.They don't rust , clean up easily , and grill efficiently. Sorry--but I don't consider anything an upgrade for stainless. I won't buy it without stainless!Just had bad experiences with the others I guess.
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Unread 03-24-2011, 05:29 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KuradiEit View Post
For your GRILL -- burgers, dogs, steaks, chops, etc.
Edit: GAS grill
Stainless steel grates? Or iron grates?
Pros and cons of each?
Which do you prefer and why?
~Kai
My grill for burgers, dogs, steaks, chops etc. isn't a gas grill :) but my grates are either stainless or porcelain coated.


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Unread 03-24-2011, 08:17 PM   #9
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I like cast iron, but if that weren't an option, I'd go to a heavy grade SS. Cast iron (generally) will offer better searing capability than other types. It also adds thermal mass to the interior of a cooker that helps keep temps more even when the lid is opened.
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Unread 03-24-2011, 08:22 PM   #10
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I agree with this. I have upgraded all of mine to stainless. When the time comes to clean them, I spray them down with a chemical cleaner and put them on sawhorses in the back yard. I sometimes leave them out there for several weeks. After it rains on them a couple of times they look brand new again.

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Originally Posted by maxwell7 View Post
You guys know more than me , but I'm going to post anywayI've had plated grates , castiron grates , and enamel-coated cast iron grates. All rotted out and flaked.!I'm using stailess now.They don't rust , clean up easily , and grill efficiently. Sorry--but I don't consider anything an upgrade for stainless. I won't buy it without stainless!Just had bad experiences with the others I guess.
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Unread 03-24-2011, 08:46 PM   #11
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My gasser came with SS and it works well for my purpose. There are very few times grill on the gasser. I mainly use it for it's radiant rotisserie, plank fish and veggies. On occasion, I cook up some chicken parts on it. On the chicken, it leaves nice grill marks and cleans up fast with my grill brush.
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Unread 03-25-2011, 12:00 AM   #12
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CI if it's an option, seasoned CI grates become more non-stick than stainless grates in my experience, though the high grill heat often burns off some of the seasoning layer if you're grilling hot, so they're not as non-stick as a well-seasoned cast iron pan that has been treated nicely. I've never been a fan of porcelain coated grates, they don't take a seasoning like raw CI so they don't get quite as non-stick, and they can chip, but if they don't chip too much they will be easier to maintain than CI as they won't rust if you're not grilling frequently or if you forget to grease them up after a cook.

Nice thick stainless grates are a decent, somewhat stickier substitute but cost almost as much as CI, if not more.

Cheaper options are any heavy carbon/mild steel bar or grating. Heavier the better, preferably square. They'll season up just like CI.
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Unread 03-25-2011, 12:16 AM   #13
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I am fine with a gas grill for burgers, chicken and hot dogs, but for steaks, they just don't deliver the BTUs, unless you are Bill Gates, and can spend four-figures on a grill.

I did like my gas grill for some things, but you need serious heat to do a steak properly, IMO. I had a gas grill with 55,000 BTUs, and I still preferred to cook a steak over charcoal.

As for the grate, I have had both CI and Steel, and haven't seen a noticeable difference in my cooking. The CI was harder to maintain. Rust is always an enemy. Ceramic coated grates can only take so much heat. They are okay on a gasser, but not over blazing hot charcoal, from my own experience.

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Unread 03-25-2011, 10:23 AM   #14
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My grill is homemade from an older lp tank. My grates are made from expanded metal. I dont clean them. I just fire the grill up and brush them off after the grill is hot. I also brush it off after im finished grilling. They season up like a cast iron skillet
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Unread 03-25-2011, 01:48 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OakPit View Post
I like cast iron, but if that weren't an option, I'd go to a heavy grade SS. Cast iron (generally) will offer better searing capability than other types. It also adds thermal mass to the interior of a cooker that helps keep temps more even when the lid is opened.
I've been wondering about that actually - just why does CI give a better sear? Is it due to the built up non-stick seasoning on the CI, therefore the seared / carbonised grill marks stay on the meat with CI and pull off or stick to stainless bars?

From my knowledge on the subject s/s has an equal or greater density than cast, and also has a greater specific heat capacity, so for the same size grill s/s should add more thermal mass to the cooker as well.

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