2nd Chance for a True Weber Classic: A 1998 1st Generation Summit 450


Jon Tofte

TVWBB Olympian
Thanks, Larry. I actually left my piece with him to do his measurements rather than relying on my crude cardboard pattern. I mentioned that idea as a “dream” solution. He said his shop could not do the curved part that rests on the frame and that the soft bend where the front panel transitions to being a grease runoff would be very difficult. I didn’t see this as a cost effective solution.

One really nice thing about the panel/shield idea is that they should be interchangeable between 4 and 4 burner Summits. This makes it useful to more people - and opens up the possibility of a lower per piece cost.

Tim Brisson

TVWBB Member

Have you thought about cleaning off the rust and brazing the pits and holes? It would take a delicate hand,,, but the braze would withstand the heat quite easily. Just a thought.

Jon Tofte

TVWBB Olympian

Have you thought about cleaning off the rust and brazing the pits and holes? It would take a delicate hand,,, but the braze would withstand the heat quite easily. Just a thought.
I am afraid this accountant doesn't really know what that means:unsure:. Others have said that there is not any good way to recoat the metal after removing the porcelain because wherever the transition is more rust will just start there.

I am interested in all ideas. Maybe you can tell some more?

Bill Pudim

TVWBB Super Fan
Yeah, that idea has merit. It is obviously the inside where the problem is. I guess I had thought in terms of trying to totally confine the rust damaged area so that even if it deteriorates inside, it is totally "encapsulated."

I would be interested in other opinions. I am just an accountant trying to apply common sense and otherwise limited skills/experience to this problem. I just know I want this grill to live again for years to come so that I can grill on a REAL Summit. A @LMichaels ribeye steak dinner sounds really good, too! :coolkettle:


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TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
Yah, I am afraid that brazing would not solve the problem as the original panel would continue to rust away and not too long after, it would require further repair.


What about sanding that rusted area down, POR, then coat it with high heat JB weld? I'm just thinking. I haven't ever used the high heat JB, but the POR stuff is pretty good so far on my z bars :)


TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
You still have the same porcelain coated steel panel which eventually will be consumed by the rust. Por15 and JBWeld high temp are both good products, but they are just band aids on cancer.

Jon Tofte

TVWBB Olympian

Update on possibility of making stainless reinforcement plates for the 1st generation Summits

I got a call from the second shop I went to. (Still haven't heard from the first one.) He said they could make the stainless plates in 14 gauge out of 304 stainless for $20 a piece if I would buy 16 pieces. If you rely on interior reinforcement only, that would be a total of $40 for a 4-burner and $60 for a 6-burner. The part SHOULD interchange for either model. Obviously, if you want to go all out and "sandwich" the affected front piece, you will have to double that. Each piece will cover two burners and the igniter wire port between them. They could by used on just the inside or on both inside and outside.

I told the shop that I wanted to see what kind of interest I would get here for others buying some before placing my order. I am definitely going to buy for a set for my Summit. I think this is about as good a fix as we could hope for. It doesn't break the bank, and it will give your classic old Summit a whole new life.

I am not having holes drilled for bolts. I plan to attach with this "food grade" high heat RTV adhesive:

This will reduce cost and eliminate the issues with drilling new holes in your porcelain plated steel, thereby introducing new points to rust.

The piece will look basically like the cardboard template I did earlier:

Proposed Fix Plate applied to inside.jpeg

Let me know by PM if you would like to get in on the order. Please keep in mind that I would then have to ship to you (at cost). I would want to use a small box to be sure the parts don't get bent in any way. Or, if you are close enough, you can drop by and pick them up!

I think this a big break-through. It would seem that it could be readily done for 2nd and 3rd generation Summits as well. I am not immediately ready for that, but if you have an interest maybe you can make your own template, send it to me, and I can see what they say.

I hope a number of you jump in. Even if your grill is OK right now, having these ready to apply - or pre-emptively applying - could save your grill!

@LMichaels I like my ribeyes medium-well if you are willing to do that :coolkettle: !


TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
You got it my friend! It's nice that it may be going somewhere. I actually had been toying with modifying the frame and putting my Genesis "head" in it and making a Frankengrill and simply scrapping out the Summit head


TVWBB Emerald Member
@Jon Tofte excellent work! Am I to assume these are not compatible with the current generation Summit? I would order some for my 6 burner if it were compatible.

Jon Tofte

TVWBB Olympian
@Jon Tofte excellent work! Am I to assume these are not compatible with the current generation Summit? I would order some for my 6 burner if it were compatible.
I doubt they would match. However, if you get the ambition to get to your front panel, you could use some thin cardboard (I used a piece from a file folder) and trace/cut to make a template like I did. Make sure one that covers two burners would work on each set without overlapping. If you did that and sent it to me, I would think the shop I am using would make a similar deal.

John Blount

New member
I have a Summit Platinum D4 built-in. Rusted through in the back panel, front panel, floor- front, and lost all the nuts on the connecting bolts. I'd be in for panels to go over these with adhesive. Looked up your suggestion- 650 degrees- should hold up I'd think. With putting them in with adhesive I wouldn't even have to pull this out of the built-in location. Do you think this size matches what you're BBQ will require? I'm in to try this to cover four panels. I understand I will still have the point where it's starting to degrade (the 90 degree roll over) where the grate sits.


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Jon Tofte

TVWBB Olympian
Hey John,
The design of your 2nd generation Summit is definitely different from my 1st gen. What I would need you to do is make a template that will fit in your grill. One thing I see is that yours has the "extra" smoker box burner. That means you will need a template like I did for the right two burners and then a template for the left with the extra burner. Unfortunately, that's going to increase the cost. On mine, you can interchange the pieces left to right because there are only the 4 burners. (I also believe my part would work on a 6-burner 1st generation Summit).

PM me if you are interested in going that far and mailing me your templates. I can then get a quote from the same company. There are a lot more 2nd generation Summits out there needing this, so I would think we could get some additional interest to help reduce the per unit price.

To fix your front, it looks to me like you just need a piece of flat stainless cut to the right dimensions. That should be easy, although you will need more material than my front patch pieces.

Jon Tofte

TVWBB Olympian

I picked up my order of stainless shields for my 1st generation Summit today. I had enough made to do several grills, and the shop saved the file so they can make even more.


These are very nice and certainly thick and heavy enough stainless. They are thick enough gauge that I am rethinking and May just go with inside pieces only.


The shop did a great job of making them match up with the actual front piece:


Our own Moderator, Chris, who also owns a 4-burner 1st generation Summit is in for this order. If others are interested at $20 a piece plus actual shipping, please PM me.

If you own a 2nd or 3rd generation Summit and would like to pursue this for your grills, let me know. The shop technician said that it was much better that I lent him the original front rather than relying on a cardboard cutout. That could make things interesting. Still, shields like this could give a whole new life to a Summit Platinum which has so much going for it other than this porcelain plated firebox front.