Well here she is, my late Christmas present, now early birthday present, from Zoe. After having been on order through Amazon for about 6 weeks, I finally learned Wednesday that she was shipping. Funny enough, Amazon emailed me on Monday asking if I still wanted it! It was past its original ship window, so they wanted to see if I was “hanging in there” with my purchase. In retrospect, I think they were trying to thin the herd, so to speak. After saying that I still wanted it, it shipped. Thank you perseverance!
Last night we arrived home and found that UPS had nicely hidden the box behind the fence. Thank you brown! Although UPS was on my side, Mother Nature was not. What is it with unboxing grills on freezing cold days? The same exact thing happened with the 650 almost two years ago.
Anyway, enough blabbering, lets get to it. Part 1 will deal with the actual unboxing and assembly. Part 2 will go into some visual comparisons with a 22 1/2 inch kettle. Part 3, which will hopefully be tomorrow, will be the maiden cook.
I say this grill is “new” because Weber had previously manufactured a 26 inch kettle. Unfortunately, I don’t have a picture of one for comparison.
Why this grill, and not the Ranch Kettle? One word: cost. I just couldn’t
convince Zoë justify the $1000 price tag.
The shipping weight of the grill is 59 pounds. The box arrived beat to hell, so I was a little worried on the condition of the kettle.
And it begins…
Besides being cold, it was windy. The Smokey Joe came in handy to hold down the instructions book. As you can see, the instructions were easy to follow as they were written in the easy to understand language of pictures.
Next out of the box was the charcoal grate:
Underneath the charcoal grate was the ash catcher and hardware:
I noticed that the recipe book is now printed on cheap paper. Gone is the nice heavy stock booklet with pictures. I imagine the change can be attributed as a cost savings measure. Fine by me, I bought the grill for the grill, not the recipe pamphlet.
Here is the ash catcher and the hardware bag:
With that removed, you can see the bottom of the kettle:
I found a small ding on the bottom side of the kettle. It corresponded to a side of the box that had some puncture damage. Nothing serious, so I’m not going to worry about it. Weber may want to beef up the side protection with some extra cardboard. The box was really in rough shape.
At the bottom of the box was the grate, legs and wheels:
First up was the assembly of the ash catcher holder:
Next, I assembled the wheels and the bottom rack. I guess the “lawnmower” wheels are a classic look, but I just don’t like them. I wish they would have used the ones on the Performer instead.
Bottom rack assembled:
Sleeping on the job Inserting the bottom struts.
The “third leg” awaiting its cap:
Metal to metal. Make sure the legs touch the bottom of the kettle when they are inserted:
Half way there, she can stand!
Placing the ash catcher:
A little wrench on bolt action to secure the lid holder:
The lid holder:
The charcoal grate in place:
The main grate:
Kettle with the charcoal baskets:
Lid holder…that actually moves the lid out of the way. Unlike my old performer. Nice!
The thermometer is really a nice touch:
Underside. It is replaceable:
Stay tuned for Part 2 where I will compare the 26 to the 22…