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Cast iron Napoleon charcoal and smoker tray

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    Cast iron Napoleon charcoal and smoker tray

    Does anyone have this?
    https://www.napoleon.com/en/uk/barbe...ker-tray-67732

    Does anyone like it?

    I currently have a Weber kettle, which I am (was?) going to give/sell to a relative and replace with a Napoleon Prestige Pro 500. I came across this seemingly ingenious accessory. It seems at first sight a great thing - you can use charcoal in a gas grill so you get the benefits of both and you can set up two-zone cooking.

    But reading Meathead's excellent book, it quickly becomes clear that gas grills have lots of vents to make them safe. So, you can't temperature control like on a kettle BBQ. Does that mean that such an accessory is severely limited / a marketing exercise? Is there a way to control temps using this accessory in the Napoleon? Wooden spoon in the cover? Duct tape over the vents? Ice in the charcoal? Using more / less charcoal? Grilling in a walk-in refrigerator? (Three of those five are perhaps not the best ideas.)

    Many thanks in advance.

    Phillip
    Last edited by SussexGriller; July 2, 2021, 03:47 AM. Reason: Spelling

    #2
    Smoke on a gaser? Wood chips in a foil pouch with a hole or two will work.
    "gas grills have lots of vents to make them safe" Question, will altering the design make it unsafe?

    Comment


      #3
      My Napoleon came with one, used it once cause it is so much easier to clean my Weber and, well, Weber chicken is hard to beat! So i guess if that is your only grill it may get used but if you have other options…..it may become a boat anchor

      Comment


        #4
        Originally posted by bbqLuv View Post
        Smoke on a gaser? Wood chips in a foil pouch with a hole or two will work.
        "gas grills have lots of vents to make them safe" Question, will altering the design make it unsafe?
        I think altering the design of the Gas BBQ to reduce / modify the ventilation is probably not a good idea. I think it's mainly a safety thing, not getting it to blow up, etc., but they will also have designed it for temp. Some gas BBQs have double hoods which aid convection and reduce the effect of wind on the process.

        Comment


          #5
          Here's my very frank thoughts- if you want charcoal flavor, then please, stick to a charcoal cooker. Don't try to make a car into a truck or vice versa. I don't knwo what your back deck/patio looks like, but I bet it would look mighty finer with that Weber kettle AND that shiny new Napoleon!

          Comment


            #6
            My experience with combo cookers is that they don't do anything very well. That said, the Napoleon is probably a great gas grill, but as you've discovered, gas grills have a lot of ventilation for safety reasons - to prevent gas build up and explosions if it fails to ignite for example. Due to this, the charcoal tray is more of a novelty. You can probably direct grill on it, but will have no air flow control to do anything but direct high heat grilling.

            You are best served having a separate gas grill and charcoal grill.
            Last edited by jfmorris; July 2, 2021, 07:38 AM.

            Comment


              #7
              Most gassers are designed for air flow to go from the front to the rear to avoid heat buildup and damage to the gas controls (valves, ignitors, etc.). There is almost always a disclaimer to locate the grill away from windy areas, particularly wind that will come from the back to the front. Some have wind deflectors or shields to minimize the impact of windy exposure, but still have the disclaimer. None recommend or have options for blocking vents. All that is before even thinking about adding a charcoal tray.

              Many high end gassers offer a charcoal tray accessory. Twin Eagles, DCS, Fire Magic and such. I have never added one to any of mine including my current Napoleon Prestige Pro 500. For $60 I have a Weber Jumbo Joe (the one without the legs) when I get the urge to use charcoal.

              Comment


                #8
                Originally posted by GolfGeezer View Post
                Most gassers are designed for air flow to go from the front to the rear to avoid heat buildup and damage to the gas controls (valves, ignitors, etc.). There is almost always a disclaimer to locate the grill away from windy areas, particularly wind that will come from the back to the front. Some have wind deflectors or shields to minimize the impact of windy exposure, but still have the disclaimer. None recommend or have options for blocking vents. All that is before even thinking about adding a charcoal tray.

                Many high end gassers offer a charcoal tray accessory. Twin Eagles, DCS, Fire Magic and such. I have never added one to any of mine including my current Napoleon Prestige Pro 500. For $60 I have a Weber Jumbo Joe (the one without the legs) when I get the urge to use charcoal.
                Thanks to you and all the others (Huskee, jfmorris) for all your thoughts. Yes, I think it's sadly clear that it's mainly a novelty! I am a sucker for gizmos and gadgets though. I wonder how it would go - as an experiment of course - to do dual zone cooking on it. How good would it be for ribs? How good would it be on the low/slow side? Perhaps I should get it and investigate. Perhaps one could control the temps by how much fuel one added. It would doubtless be good for direct grilling as jfmorris says.

                The big question is how many BBQs (and pizza ovens...) is too many BBQs (and pizza ovens...)?

                Comment


                • klflowers
                  klflowers commented
                  Editing a comment
                  You can never have too many. Never. Right Mr. Bones?

                • Mr. Bones
                  Mr. Bones commented
                  Editing a comment
                  klflowers True Dat, Brother!!!!!

                #9
                Here's a crazy question. Smoke box. Gas grill. Add some charcoal for that charcoal-y flavour. Ridiculous?

                Comment


                  #10
                  On a charcoal grill, you add some wood chunks for flavor, so on a gas grill, it would seem to me that wood chips in one of those metal boxes or foil packs would be a better solution. Or , an Amazn Tube or something like that with pellets. I've used both, and they do impart some flavor, though not nearly as much as I can get on my kettle.

                  Comment


                    #11
                    Originally posted by Murdy View Post
                    On a charcoal grill, you add some wood chunks for flavor, so on a gas grill, it would seem to me that wood chips in one of those metal boxes or foil packs would be a better solution. Or , an Amazn Tube or something like that with pellets. I've used both, and they do impart some flavor, though not nearly as much as I can get on my kettle.
                    I should have said that I might to try and add wood chips / chunks and some charcoal to a smoke box.

                    Comment


                      #12
                      I thought this was a good idea and was waiting until the pandemic was over to get one. Gas grills as noted by others do not make good smokers due to all the vent holes but I liked the idea for grilling hot and fast. The other nice thing is you can use the gas burner to start the charcoal. For the money I think it is worth it. I could probably pick one up today at my local store.

                      Comment


                        #13
                        A charcoal tray on a gasser will give foods a subtle flavor difference, but without air control, there is no temperature control so they're only suitable for high temp searing. Considering these trays are often available on high end gassers that already have sear power, is it worth the effort? I would not recommend modifying the air flow of a gas grill. Manufacturers go through great pains to pass safety tests and get certifications for a reason. The only gas grills I've seen that are designed to effectively use wood and charcoal over the burners are Kalamazoo'$ Hybrid Fire Grills.

                        Comment


                          #14
                          Originally posted by Max Good View Post
                          A charcoal tray on a gasser will give foods a subtle flavor difference, but without air control, there is no temperature control so they're only suitable for high temp searing. Considering these trays are often available on high end gassers that already have sear power, is it worth the effort? I would not recommend modifying the air flow of a gas grill. Manufacturers go through great pains to pass safety tests and get certifications for a reason. The only gas grills I've seen that are designed to effectively use wood and charcoal over the burners are Kalamazoo'$ Hybrid Fire Grills.
                          I was being tongue-in-cheek about modifying the airflow - I completely agree. The design, materials and certification all work together for a reason. I guess the reason I think it would be nice is that it would impart the charcoal flavour that the gas misses out on. But perhaps if you can only really use it for high heat searing, the meat isn't exposed long enough to benefit from it. I do think an interesting hack might be to include a few bits of charcoal along with the wood in a smoke box (but perhaps it wouldn't be enough to impart more than the most ephemeral hint of charcoal flavour.) The answer is clearly to keep the Weber charcoal grill!

                          Comment


                            #15
                            I have just looked at Kalamazoo.
                            https://kalamazoogourmet.com/product...id-fire-grill/

                            Love it. Crazy. $20k! And my wife thought I was going a bit overboard on a Napoleon Prestige Pro 500.

                            Comment


                            • klflowers
                              klflowers commented
                              Editing a comment
                              I have never owned a gas grill, never had the urge to get one. But after looking at that, when I win the lottery, I am getting one.

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