Grinding out the cook box...

CharlesG

New member
I've seen some posts about grinding out the cook box on a grill. I would like to do that, but am wondering what tool makes this easiest/gives the best result? Any input is appreciated!

I'm working on my first project, a Silver B. It's going to be a keeper, so I am going to put some time (and money) into it.

Thanks!
 

Bruce

TVWBB Olympian
You can pick up the el-cheapo angle grinder at Harbor Freight for about $15. It goes on sale occassionally for $10. Then a $4.99 wire cup brush, safety glasses, leather gloves and have at it....Oh, yah, a breathing filter is advisable as well. It will come out all nice and shiny.

That being said, if it a personal grill that you intend on keeping, I think you are making a mistake by grinding out the cook box. At the most, I would simply spray it with some oven/grill cleaner and let it set a while, then go after it with some household steel wool. Clean it up as best you can and move on to more important items. Two or three cooks and you won't be able to tell it was cleaned anyway. It simply isn't worth the work and mess to do the grinder thing.

Also, don't just throw money at it when you have a little discrepancy. People can turn a $100 rehab into a $250 rehab really easily. Not everything has to be replaced with new.

Here is a grill that I did a month ago. It isn't one of my best efforts, but it is more than I would do if I was doing a grill for personal use. Total cost for parts, supplies and the original grill is under $100. I just did the oven/grill cleaner and steel wool on the cook box.

https://lacrosse.craigslist.org/for/d/wisconsin-dells-sold-weber-genesis/6960758378.html
 

Rich Dahl

TVWBB 1-Star Olympian
Agree with Bruce I wire brushed one of my daily drivers and by the third cook it was black again. If it's really full of gunk get what you can off like Bruce said and channel your efforts in other areas. Also after I wire brushed the firebox it took a half a day to get all the dust that was everywhere in my garage cleaned up.
Wife was not happy with the dust I tracked into the house either.
 

Timothy F. Lewis

TVWBB Hall of Fame
Charles, I spent way, way too long wire cup brushing the inside of my Genesis (which was pretty for three cooks) and realize now that it was a lot more time than Bruce’s technique of oven cleaner in a plastic bag(well, that’s for grates) for close to the same end result for a keeper.
For the outside, again Bruce helped me a lot, get it as clean and surface smooth as possible, clean well, paint with the right paint and when that is acceptable to you spend more time and money on making the burners, flavorizer bars, grates as near perfect as you want. The cooking surfaces are far more critical for me than pretty much any of the rest!
 

Bruce

TVWBB Olympian
Tim has the right idea. It took me two year of rehabbing these things to learn that.
 

CharlesG

New member
Thank you all for the great input! Really appreciate it. I'll just be giving it a thorough cleaning and skip the grinding. I had started it with a drill and wire brush, but it it a lot of work. I'll just get it clean and go from there.

Bruce, that grill looks fantastic! I'll spend my time on more important parts of the resto.
 

Bruce

TVWBB Olympian
Great Charles. Post up some photos as you go along....what we call a "build thread".
 

DaveW

TVWBB Wizard
Damn yall are taking some of the fun out of it, especially on a first restore. There's something to be said about looking at a nice, shiny cook box. :)
 

Timothy F. Lewis

TVWBB Hall of Fame
I got mine pretty clean before I realized what Bruce was telling me...
“3 cooks and it will look like you never did anything!” or words to that effect so, I made it clean and concentrated on the outside look more carefully. Since it was my first, now I see places where I should have taken more time and effort.
Bruce, learning from a patient teacher like you made my refurbish project far less stressful than I had anticipated! Thanks “teach”.
 

Jon Tofte

TVWBB Platinum Member
A compromise might be to wire brush the area that shows above the grate level and let the cleaner do what it can for the rest. It is the upper area to me that makes you feel good about a shiny grill and where some leftover dark smudges detract. I would add the insides of the end caps which wire brush pretty easily.
 

Bruce

TVWBB Olympian
I think I may have stumbled on something that might be an alternative to the Sams Club grill cleaner and other oven cleaners. Today I started a Silver B and I realized the previous owner had repainted the cookbox. The problem is, they repainted the inside as well. So, I decided I was going to have to strip it. I tried some paint thinner with a ball of household stainless steel wool. It wasn't going very good with the carbon and everything else. I didn't want to have to clean out all the carbon before I got to the paint, so I decided to try a 10 year old bottle of CITRISTRIP paint stripper that I had in the garage. It did a good job on the paint, but two other things became apparent. First, it seemed to do a very good job of eating the carbon and grease as well. Second, it even tore into the original weber paint which regular paint thinner doesn't touch. Don't get me wrong, it isn't magic and doesn't just completely strip everything, but it seemed to do as good a job (maybe better) than the Sams Club I was using. Problem is, it is $10 a quart.
 

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