As I posted in my other thread in this forum titled "Hello", we installed our new 36" charbroiler on Monday (we are closed Mondays). I fired it up on Monday to season the grates and to be sure it was in good working order....and because I was dying to fire it up..Wink

It worked well for the first 10 minutes or so, then the far right fire pot extinguished itself. For reference, the 36" has 3 pots and two controllers. The left controller controls the 2 pots on the left, and the right controller operates the right pot only. One of our maintenance men tested the circuits and the auger motor is apparently defective. I called Cookshack and they sent one right out..no problem, other than a couple of jobs which it would have been nice to use the whole grill..

We are also closed on Tuesday at noon, so I invited our maintenance team in for a steak lunch. My food salesman brought me a case of steaks and helped me serve them. The first 16 steaks came off well. The maintenance guys were impressed. They are who I call when I have a problem, they are always there with a good attitude and willing to do what is needed so the show can go on..

Wednesday we put the grill to it's first test (of many). I had 3 catering jobs in addition to our regular business...they were all hamburgers. So first we cooked off 150 5-1 burgers, then 135 4-1 burgers, then 38 3-1 burgers, then started our lunch service and served another 15 or so burgers. A total over 300 burgers in 2 hours.

We have, for the past couple of years, served grilled burgers and hot dogs/chicken/etc. buffet style on one Thursday per month at noon. Today was that day. So we made some burgers and some marinated chicken breasts and started lunch service. At 10 after 11am my head cook came out and told me the grill was ON FIRE! When I got back there it was billowing out black smoke and flames were above the grill surface! We unplugged the grill and retrieved the optional hood (which I will cover a little later) and put it over the grill. Apparently the grease from the 300+ hamburgers looked like water in the water pan and the water had evaporated resulting in a grease fire. Once the fire was out, the pans were emptied and refilled with water, and the grill was restarted, we finished the lunch service by serving around 100 burgers and 80 5oz chicken breasts cut in half.

Summary so far: I knew there would be a learning curve for both myself and my staff on this new equipment. The overall flavor and quality of the food is very good...definitely better than a traditional gas charbroiler.

If you intend to use the unit indoors under an exhaust hood, don't waste your money on the grill hood. There was a couple of applications I thought I would like to use the grill hood for. One was cooking salmon and other fish with indirect heat, also cooking chicken on the bone on low heat. The problem is that the hood requires the unit to sit 6-8" from the fire wall under your exhaust hood. Now the grill hood doesn't open completely up which creates a catch for hot air. The exhaust from the grill rises until it hits the wall of hot air under the grill hood, then it diverts out toward the front of the machine at a 45 degree angle. This combined with the distance needed from the firewall results in the smoke coming out of the exhaust hood...it just doesn't work in a kitchen, I am sure it is great if you are using your unit out doors.

Next, the water/grease pans. The failure to clean out the pans was our own fault. The fact that the pans are very difficult to drain could be one area of improvement. It isn't easy for a single person to drain these pans (in fact probably impossible for a smaller person), certainly not without a mess. Some sort of a draining system would be nice for sure.

Overall a great unit. I think once we get use of the other 1/3 of our grill, it will be able to keep up with our demands. We will continue to learn and soon will be second nature I am sure.

I'll post some pics in this thread later.
Original Post
Sorry to hear about the auger motor failing, but as you know from reading this forum you know that Cookshack has great customer support and will always rectify your problems, i feel so lucky every product i bought from Cookshack has worked flawlessly and hasn’t failed yet, as my profession is IT i know there is no promise that electronics will always work.. also the learning curve is always in any product you use, it sounds to me that you have learned fast,,, I have never caught my Charbroiler on fire but i havent cooked that many burgers at a time on mine,, i wish you well on your new purchase... good luck PI
Yep, I have no problem with the motor. I do wonder if it might actually be the auger bushing bound up. It was turning a little hard when I changed the motor..we'll see soon. I'm sure they will help there if this is the problem too..I am too close to Ponca..I can be at their door in less than 2 hours. Wink
quote:
Originally posted by PI Chef:
Yep, I have no problem with the motor. I do wonder if it might actually be the auger bushing bound up. It was turning a little hard when I changed the motor..we'll see soon. I'm sure they will help there if this is the problem too..I am too close to Ponca..I can be at their door in less than 2 hours. Wink


How nice is that to be 2 hrs away well good luck with your new purchase, i just know they will get all your problems fixed.. good luck!
Most items that have electronics tend to have issues, if they're going to have any, during that initial burn in.

Great report, and I appreciate all the info. With the new forums, it's great to have new owners/users posting reports and photos to help.

A LOT of people are viewing the pages, even if they don't post.
I agree, it was a simple issue and an easy fix. While I do believe they manufacture a great product, I don't believe that they actually manufacture these motors.

I/we are becoming more accustomed to using the unit. It takes a few weeks for a grill worker to really get a feel for the high and low temp spots, internal temps, visual/texture doneness and timing.

I have learned that one shouldn't touch the back wall of the pellet bin while leveling the pellets..
thanks for that info. i do a lot of hambuger and hot dog jobs and that was one of my thoughts. how well it would do with all that grease. i have a job coming up for 2000 burgers, boy that would be one good fire. a way to drain the grease would be great
C/P PI CHEF/ -Next, the water/grease pans. The failure to clean out the pans was our own fault. The fact that the pans are very difficult to drain could be one area of improvement. It isn't easy for a single person to drain these pans (in fact probably impossible for a smaller person), certainly not without a mess. Some sort of a draining system would be nice for sure.

Well i dont agee about the grease pans bieng so duifficult, i double foil my grease pan so when it cools between cooks i just ball up the foil as i do in my FEC100 pan and thow it away i think its premature to say its diffucult to drain as in time you will learn to use this drain pan to be more effeciently so its dosnt catch fire, i myself have never had a fire yet knock on woork but most i ever cooked on the cb24 was about 100 burgers and 50 breast and thighs with skin on them.
Please no confusion on my point..The grease fire, in this case, was our own fault simply because we didn't drain them prior to reigniting the unit. We now empty the pans daily. In addition to grease accumulation in the pans, you also have water which is supposed to be in the pan to help with flareups. If it was simply drippings, draining the pan wouldn't be difficult. It is, IMO, very important for long term use in a commercial environment, to keep water in these pans. Now after a day of cooking there is 1-2" of water and grease in a pan which is approx 18" x 24". It certainly isn't impossible or even particularly difficult to drain...just not convenient either. Our unit is, and every other commercial use should be, cleaned daily. If I were cooking 2000 burgers I would set times during the cooking to drain the grease before the pans got too full. And I stand by that the pans should have some method for draining without risking a burn or even just a mess. I have a thought on how this could be accomplished if anyone wants to know.

Our unit's over all performance has been very good. The quality of the product can't be reproduced with any gas charbroiler. We have had many people complement the difference this has made to our burgers, chops, chicken, fish, sausage..etc.
quote:
Originally posted by PI Chef:
Please no confusion on my point..The grease fire, in this case, was our own fault simply because we didn't drain them prior to reigniting the unit. We now empty the pans daily. In addition to grease accumulation in the pans, you also have water which is supposed to be in the pan to help with flareups. If it was simply drippings, draining the pan wouldn't be difficult. It is, IMO, very important for long term use in a commercial environment, to keep water in these pans. Now after a day of cooking there is 1-2" of water and grease in a pan which is approx 18" x 24". It certainly isn't impossible or even particularly difficult to drain...just not convenient either. Our unit is, and every other commercial use should be, cleaned daily. If I were cooking 2000 burgers I would set times during the cooking to drain the grease before the pans got too full. And I stand by that the pans should have some method for draining without risking a burn or even just a mess. I have a thought on how this could be accomplished if anyone wants to know.

Our unit's over all performance has been very good. The quality of the product can't be reproduced with any gas charbroiler. We have had many people complement the difference this has made to our burgers, chops, chicken, fish, sausage..etc.


Good to hear about the performance of your grill , i have to agree with you there that this grill is unmatchable to any other gas grill, my friends and family love it every day especially the friends part good luck with your new investment.
quote:
Originally posted by PI Chef:
..The quality of the product can't be reproduced with any gas charbroiler. We have had many people complement the difference this has made to our burgers, chops, chicken, fish, sausage..etc.


That's great to hear, just what potential owners need to hear.

I would stay in contact with CS if you aren't. Given these are new units, improvement suggestions from owners are something they like to receive.

I'd email Stuart direct Big Grin
Hello all! I've been reading your forums for awhile now and close to purchasing a 36" charbroiler and Fec100 for my wedding venue.

I wondered if some kind of a seal had ever been figured out for the pellet hopper on the char broiler as we'd like to use it outdoors on most occasions and may need to store it outdoors as well.

Also, I read that the grease pan is difficult to empty. I will have only one person available to empty it and keep the unit running properly. Have there been any modifications to make that easier. Perhaps someone has found an easy fix?

Is there anything else I need to consider prior to purchasing? By the way, this forum is the best! Thank you all so much for sharing your information
Good luck, you'll put some great stuff out on both of those. What kinds of things will you be grilling/smoking? (maybe a new thread to discuss your venture in the pros forum?)

I agree with the grease pan, but it's not emptying it that's the issue as you actually need to more often put water in there (to prevent flair ups).

I've mentioned this to Stuart. The heat expands the metal and it's tight. I would mention that to them as an issues for your purchase and I'm sure they'll work on it.

It is primarily for restuarants inside, so the initial design was without any seal. I do keep mine covered when not in use, with a good cover and only once had an issue after 6" of rain.

I would mention that too. I don't think it's a hard fix, but I don't know if that's been corrected on the current models.
quote:
Originally posted by SmokinOkie:
Good luck, you'll put some great stuff out on both of those. What kinds of things will you be grilling/smoking? (maybe a new thread to discuss your venture in the pros forum?)

I agree with the grease pan, but it's not emptying it that's the issue as you actually need to more often put water in there (to prevent flair ups).

I've mentioned this to Stuart. The heat expands the metal and it's tight. I would mention that to them as an issues for your purchase and I'm sure they'll work on it.

It is primarily for restuarants inside, so the initial design was without any seal. I do keep mine covered when not in use, with a good cover and only once had an issue after 6" of rain.

I would mention that too. I don't think it's a hard fix, but I don't know if that's been corrected on the current models.


Wow! Thank you for your response - nothing like going to the top in here! Do I just look for a contact email address for Stuart on the Cookshack website?

I'd seen you mention previously that you'd purchased a cover for the charbroiler. I've looked and haven't found anything that will fit. Could you share a link with me for the cover?

Any idea how difficult it is to roll the units in and out over the low thresholds (the ones required in commercial bldgs) We'll store the Fec inside but will use it outside. I read they can be a little top heavy and unruly going over bumps. Will it be necessary to change the casters to get over the threshold?

Love this site!!!
Best thing is to just Call him (# is on the CS website). Someone can help you, might not be him or just ask them for his email.

Check this one out. Looking at my order history this is the version I bought. It's the 68inch version but it works for the square shape of the 36".

Of course, you don't HAVE to buy the OU version, but others won't work as well Wink

http://www.amazon.com/gp/produ..._details_o01_s00_i00

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