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Grilling Warped the Heat Deflector

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    Grilling Warped the Heat Deflector

    I'm really enjoying the Bronco and I grilled on it for the first time. To set it up for grilling I flipped the heat deflector over and put the coal bin directly on top of it per the official OJB video. I put one layer of Royal Oak lump unlit in the charcoal bin and dumped in 2/3 basket of lit coals from the OJ Chimney.

    My turkey burgers came out great. The next day I noticed that the grilling warped the heat deflector. I called Char-Broil, sent them a pic and they are sending me a new one. Customer service was excellent and hassle free.

    I asked the rep how to prevent that from happening and he said it shouldn't have happened and it could be an issue limited to the deflector that came with my smoker. He said if it happened again they would ask their engineers to test the deflectors they have in the warehouse in case there is a bad batch.

    I don't know what I could have done differently. Of all the parts to go on the smoker, the deflector was not high on my list. It might just be a bad deflector, but I was wondering if other OJB owners had any thoughts on the deflector warping from grilling?
    Last edited by MtView; November 4, 2021, 06:30 PM. Reason: spelling

    #2
    Mine didn't when I tested it.

    Comment


      #3
      No problems here after three grilling sessions. However, in all three sessions I only had one side of the basket filled with charcoal. Just curious, does the deflector still fit?

      Comment


        #4
        I’ve grilled on mine once like you did, no issues at all. I’ve used it also for about 3 smoking sessions, again no problem. How bad did it warp? Can you post a few pics? Kudos to OKJ for their customer service.
        Last edited by Panhead John; November 4, 2021, 07:14 PM.

        Comment


          #5
          Originally posted by DTro View Post
          No problems here after three grilling sessions. However, in all three sessions I only had one side of the basket filled with charcoal. Just curious, does the deflector still fit?
          It’s curved a bit now, but it still fits.

          Comment


            #6
            Originally posted by Panhead John View Post
            I’ve grilled on mine once like you did, no issues at all. I’ve used it also for about 3 smoking sessions, again no problem. How bad did it warp? Can you post a few pics? Kudos to OKJ for their customer service.
            It’s not the best photo, but I thought the easiest way to show the warping was to put it on a flat surface.
            Attached Files

            Comment


            • Panhead John
              Panhead John commented
              Editing a comment
              Yeah, it’s kinda warped alright. The only issue I could see with that is making your charcoal basket sit a little uneven when grilling. Not a BIG deal, but still, that shouldn’t happen. I’m glad OKJ is making things right with you. Mine still fits flat on the ground with no warping, so I’m sure yours is just a bad production model.
              Last edited by Panhead John; November 4, 2021, 08:00 PM.

            #7
            bang Bang Maxwell's silver hamer will straighten it right out.

            Comment


              #8
              That service rep must be new, this is not a novel experience. Your new one will likely do the same thing and I'd be surprised if their "engineers" actually do anything about it. As a practical matter it makes pretty much no difference at all. It will deflect the air pretty much the same as when new. As Panhead John says it might make a tiny wobble for the fuel bin in grilling position, but even that won't make a functional difference.

              I will occasionally take mine out and set it on a hard surface (e.g. concrete patio) and step on it to mostly flatten it back to roughly the original shape, no hammer needed. It's a comparatively thin piece of steel that will react to higher temps............it do what it do.
              Last edited by Uncle Bob; November 5, 2021, 06:20 AM.

              Comment


              • Panhead John
                Panhead John commented
                Editing a comment
                I didn’t know this was a common occurrence, this is the first post I’ve seen about that happening. I’ve only done one grilling session with mine, but I’ll sure look for that in the future and see if mine does warp as well.

              • Uncle Bob
                Uncle Bob commented
                Editing a comment
                It's a very common "worry" for folks on the FB group.

              #9
              Originally posted by Uncle Bob View Post
              That service rep must be new, this is not a novel experience. Your new one will likely do the same thing and I'd be surprised if their "engineers" actually do anything about it. As a practical matter it makes pretty much no difference at all. It will deflect the air pretty much the same as when new. As Panhead John says it might make a tiny wobble for the fuel bin in grilling position, but even that won't make a functional difference.

              I will occasionally take mine out and set it on a hard surface (e.g. concrete patio) and step on it to mostly flatten it back to roughly the original shape, no hammer needed. It's a comparatively thin piece of steel that will react to higher temps............it do what it do.
              I did wonder how that deflector would handle the heat of having a bin of white hot coals on top of it. It just doesn't seem like the best design idea.

              What's interesting is that our deflectors got warped by grilling, but others did not. I would prefer to have one that doesn't warp because I want the charcoal bin to be level the next time I grill. If I keep using the OJB as a grill, when does it stop warping? I can see stepping on it or hammering it as a good short term solution.

              Comment


              • Uncle Bob
                Uncle Bob commented
                Editing a comment
                Likely the warp you've got is pretty much where it will stay if you don't attempt to straighten it, or will return to this shape if you do. For those claiming theirs hasn't warped it's likely because they didn't subject it to the same temps/op conditions you did, or, as often happens, they haven't noticed it for whatever reason. The design, fabrication and materials are the same, op conditions are the variable.

              • MtView
                MtView commented
                Editing a comment
                Maybe it stood out more because it was the first time I used the OJB as a grill. I'm not a big fan of turkey burgers, even the ones I make, but I've got to say the lump charcoal made those turkey burgers pretty tasty compared to cooking them on a gas grill.

              #10
              To add more commentary since comments block is character limited: When in grilling mode I tend to mount a vortex, often "upside down" on the second grate rather than on top of the inverted deflector, as my fuel bin. It gives me more flexibility for two zone configuration, and brings the coals closer to the upper grate position for more intense searing if I fully load the vortex. Just more control for the ways I choose to work.

              Comment


                #11
                Update on my previous comment: I took a close look at mine this morning and it does have a bend. It is hard to notice unless it is put on a flat surface. I have approximately 74-80 hours of burn time on my Bronco. 4-6 hours burn set up as a grill. It could've bent in all different direction during that time, but if it gets out of hand, I'm Gonna use Uncle Bob's technique to fix.

                Comment


                  #12
                  Originally posted by Uncle Bob View Post
                  To add more commentary since comments block is character limited: When in grilling mode I tend to mount a vortex, often "upside down" on the second grate rather than on top of the inverted deflector, as my fuel bin. It gives me more flexibility for two zone configuration, and brings the coals closer to the upper grate position for more intense searing if I fully load the vortex. Just more control for the ways I choose to work.
                  Great tip!

                  Comment


                    #13
                    I warped mine a bit with a grilling session.

                    It functions fine with a bit of warp.

                    If it gets more warped, I will put my mass to work by standing on it.

                    Comment

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