BBQ...and Quality Stainless

Hello,
I am a pipeline welder of 26 years. I really haven't had much to do with stainless steel in my career. I want to buy a BBQ and have noticed in the past 3-5 yrs that there are some pretty nice stainless BBQ's out there for sale by Home Depot, Price Club etc... I also was told to watch what you buy as some of those pretty "stainless" BBQ's eventually start to rust! This brings about the question of good and bad quality stainless and knowing what to look for when buying a stainless BBQ.
Is there a non destructive test to do to check for good quality stainless? I don't imagine that Home depot would be happy to see me going at the side of a new bbq with an angle grinder to look at the sparks. I suppose a magnet would be one way. Any other checks a person could make to guarantee quality stainless before buying?
Has anyone bought a stainless BBQ that has started to show signs of rust that would care to comment??
Thanks...Jimi
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The manufacturers' sites might have some info about ratios of various metals used in their products. I've seen them, and don't really understand them, but someone else might.
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I have welded for 33 years now, and worked offshore in the Gulf of Mexico, and made a couple of hitches in Nigeria. Hey!
The thing about stainless steel to me is the cleaning. I have a Vermont Castings bbq. It has stainless steel side tables, and a small amount of stainless steel on the rest of it.
It is a pure D pain to keep looking good. I would never want to own a stainless steel bbq, as I think it would be a constant effort to keep it looking good.
I really fell in love with a big stainless steel bbq one time. It was around $1,000. But, then, I needed a bbq for my vacation rental, and didn't want to spend that much. So, I went $400 for a Vermont Castings. I really like this grill, and the experience I have had keeping it looking presentable showed me that I would have to really work 10x more to keep 10x more SS looking sharp.
Megallurgically, rust depends on a lot of factors. It can come from the wrong ingredients in the alloy. It can come from having steel in contact with SS, and having the steel create a galvanic reaction that rusts the SS. It can come from low grades of SS, corrosion, food components, all sorts of things. Nothing lasts forever.
But you may be able to buy one that is guaranteed not to rust. Only problem is then you have to keep it looking sharp.
Steve
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And high heat levels can accelerate corrosion in stainless steel, especially in the presence of high humidity, acidity, salt etc. If the BBQ is not kept very clean (from food spills - especially marinates and sauces with acid and salt in them) then the heat might accelerate the problem.
However, the same problem exists with any steel BBQ. Once the coatings on a plain steel BBQ are damaged, rust ensues. I can't help but notice all the rusty BBQs out for trash pickup every week.
Mike
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products. I have some stainless firearms and they will garner the occassional blem. A gunsmith told me to use chrome polish on them as a preventative but I'm betting that that is of little use on a grill.
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manufacturer.
This link shows the corrosion resistance of various types: http://www.azom.com/details.asp?ArticleIDG0
And this link shows the standard type numbers. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stainless_steel#Standard_types
Maybe this helps.
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When I worked in a CNC stainless steel fabrication shop, there was a testing unit that would identify any grade of stainless steel. I would say they are expensive, and that it takes a while to learn to use one correctly.
That being said, I would believe that if you bought from a reputable brand name supplier that they would provide the alloy number of the stainless, and that they would state a guarantee for that product.
If you bought el cheapo no name, it goes anywhere from there.
Steve
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Jimi wrote:

Hello, I bought a stainless grill last year from Home Depot and really like it alot. There are parts of the grill, the side panels, which do show some signs of slightly rusty spots. These parts also attract a magnet as the stainless parts which still show no signs of "stain" do not attract the magnet. So I'm guessing that the lesser quality "stainless" has some aignificant amount of iron which would attract the magnet. So I would suggest doing the magnet test at the store to determine which parts are likely to "stain". As far as the "stains", I used some good quality oil and a green kitchen scrubby thing and rubbed them all out and then applied wax to the parts, and the stains have not returned, it's been at least 6 months.
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Does your grill have a brand name?
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JoeSpareBedroom wrote:

NON MAGNETIC IS BEST but suggest you ask here. High BTUs for main burners allows the searing that makes for good tasting food:)
http://groups.google.com/group/alt.food.barbecue?lnk=li&hl=en
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JoeSpareBedroom wrote:

Charmglow is the name, (strange name huh?) it has 3 stainless steel burners, stainless steel flame tamers (sheets that liquid drips on and supposedly eminates flavor), and stainless welded rod grill grates (very heavy). I don't see my model shown on the Home Depot web site right now.
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I bought mine from Sam's Club and my only warning would be make sure you get a cover for it. I never had a problem with birds with my black one. The second day, that stainless one was covered with bird droppings. And they ain't fun to get off, expecially if you don't happen to notice them for a few days. Other than that it is identical to the Charmglow described below but with some Sam's club name. I would rate it as the best one I've had, and it's my 5th one. I really didn't need to replace my old one othr than the paint always chipping on it. That stainless steel just looks great. - still so far in year two - so not sure what you can look for other than to not cheap out I guess. I'd guess Price Club is about the same as Sam's always good value since they don't want to deal with people trying to return things - it doesn't fit their business model...Good luck.
wrote:

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This may have been mentioned earlier in this thread, but good quality stainless is non-magnetic. Take a strong magnet along with you and check it out.
On Thu, 01 Jun 2006 18:51:12 -0400, nospamgoingjag

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I bought a SS BBQ in 2002 and so far no rust. The brand name is: BULL. The burners are brass. The sales person that I bought it from told me that SS burners don't last very long. The brass burners have a lifetime guarantee.

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