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Napoleon Grate Debate

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    Napoleon Grate Debate

    Some may remember, my favorite way to blacken fish is in a cast iron pan on my Napoleon inferred side-burner, it does a great job and keeps the heavy smoke out of the kitchen. Over time my side-burner ss grate has turned into a severely rusted grate so I bought another ss grate that only gets food, no cast iron. My theory is the cast iron somehow migrates into the ss and ruins it. Just a SWAG by an electrical engineer.....any material science guys in the pit care to comment?
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    I don't think this is cast iron atoms migrating into the stainless steel, so much as heat damage to the stainless. The IR grill gets the grate really hot by trapping heat below a metal plate just under the grate. When you put cast iron on top of that, it traps the heat between the cast iron skillet and the IR plate, subjecting the stainless grate to much higher temperatures than it was intended to experience.

    Another question - are you sure those grates are 100% stainless, versus a plating of some sort?

    Anyway, I think your best bet is to get an outdoor burner for your outdoor cast iron cooking. A burner intended for use with pots and pans will have a lot more BTU's and with direct flames, will conduct it to the cast iron much better. I have several outdoor burners, ranging from 60,000 to 105,000 BTU's. Even the Camp Chef portable 2 and 3 burner stoves are 30,000 BTU's per burner.
    Last edited by jfmorris; March 23, 2021, 09:34 AM.


    • smokenoob
      smokenoob commented
      Editing a comment
      interesting! I think I’ll just keep the rusty one for blackening with the cast iron pan. Must resist MCS.....

    • jfmorris
      jfmorris commented
      Editing a comment
      smokenoob a good cheap way to get an outdoor burner is when the turkey fryer kits go on sale this fall. I see them at all the stores around here, and for about $50, or less, you will get a large stockpot, frying basket, and a propane burner that is about 60,000 BTU's. I have one of those, and have never ever fried a turkey but I've sure done some seafood "low country" boils, and also brewed beer, deep fried in my dutch oven, and fried fish in a skillet. If its too low, set it on a table.


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