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 Magma Marine Kettle grill
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Voyager
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4178 Posts

Initially Posted - 01/01/2019 :  12:15:24  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Happy new year to all.

Just got a gas Magma grill for Passage and Iím looking forward to grilling up some steaks and seafood next season. I hear that they are incredibly well-built and will provide a decade or more of service if properly cared for.

Now thereís the standard 15Ē size and also a 17Ē Party size.

Our boats are not huge and everything takes space, so Iím wondering whether anybody has either size grill and what their experiences have been.

I can swap out the current size for the other.

According to the user data, both provide 10,700 BTUs and the 17Ē offers ~204 sq in of cooking space while the 15Ē gives ~160 sq in.

Iím wondering whether the Party size may look too large for our boats or could be just right. I also purchased the mounting bracket for the stern pulpit.

For those who have one, do you normally remove it while underway and only attach it when youíre at the dock or at anchor? I also purchased the weather cover.
I appreciate your thoughts and suggestions...

Bruce Ross
Passage ~ SR-FK ~ C25 #5032

Port Captain Stratford & Milford, CT

islander
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Response Posted - 01/01/2019 :  15:32:08  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I had one years ago. Standard size and was a little disappointed in it. It had a tendency to blow out in the slightest breeze. Maybe they improved them since then. I stopped using it when I went to mount it on the rail and it spun upside down in my hand dumping the guts in the drink. Ended up giving what was left to a friend. Not what you want to hear but for how much they cost I expected better performance. Not to be outdone I did keep the rail mount and mounted a cheap picnic grill to it. Go figure but It works like a champ and doesn't blow out. For @ $20 If I drop this one overboard its cheap enough to replace. Anyway it gets stored in a canvas bag below the aft dinette seat.
Photo of it on my old boat.

Scott-"IMPULSE"87'C25/SR/WK/Din.#5688
Sailing out of Glen Cove,L.I Sound



Edited by - islander on 01/01/2019 18:36:56
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Voyager
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Response Posted - 01/01/2019 :  19:26:52  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Scott, thatís a great story. Iím sort of worried about the same thing as stuff like that just seems to happen when thereís expensive hardware and the briny deep involved.

According to the product literature the manufacturer recognized the flameout problem some years ago and provides a Venturi valve to prevent it. We shall see. All the user reviews sound promising.

Iím planning to mount it so that itíll be inside the railing rather than outside, so Iíll need a catch basin for grill grease and drips underneath. I also plan to come up with a quick release so I can remove it while sailing and mount it for barbecuing.

Bruce Ross
Passage ~ SR-FK ~ C25 #5032

Port Captain Stratford & Milford, CT
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Stinkpotter
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Djibouti
8040 Posts

Response Posted - 01/01/2019 :  19:41:08  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Voyager

...Iím planning to mount it so that itíll be inside the railing rather than outside...
Hmmm... I haven't seen that approach. Will it be in a position where the gasoline line won't be under it? Will there be kids (or anyone else) in the cockpit? I think I'd rather risk something (possibly flaming) falling into the water than into the cockpit. But you know me...

Dave Bristle
Association "Port Captain" for Mystic, CT
PO of 1985 C-25 SR/FK #5032 Passage, ex-OUPV
Now on Eastern 27 Sarge (but still sailing when I can).

Passage, Mystic, and Sarge--click to enlarge.
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Tradewind
Admiral

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518 Posts

Response Posted - 01/01/2019 :  21:36:13  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I bought my Magma charcoal grill in 1981 and it got a lot of use for about 20 years, not as much for the past 17. I have a stern rail mount and it did roll over on me once, fortunately I hadn't lit the coals yet, just rolled it back up and tightened the bolt. I wouldn't recommend mounting it inside the rail for safety reasons. I kept it mounted on the stern rail of my Cal 36 but not on my C250. I'll say after 37 years it's a quality grill.

1998 250WK #331
CILCIA
Steve
Pensacola, FL
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keats
1st Mate

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75 Posts

Response Posted - 01/01/2019 :  23:10:33  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Bruce,

I've had the 15" model for a few years now. The boat had an older charcoal version but I was tired of the mess of dumping the ashes so I gave it to a guy who didn't have a grille and bought the one you have.

Some observations:

It's proved to be durable and resistant to corrosion.

I mounted it to the starboard stern pulpit, outboard.

I find the swing up lid far superior to the old removable lid with a wire lanyard that would allow the hot lid to hang down and possibly burn things.

I leave it in place always and would consider it a hassle to remove it. Properly fastened, it won't move or flip over.

I've never had the flame blow out but I wouldn't enjoy cooking in high winds anyway.

All in all, I probably would rather have the larger model but I'm ok with it.

Be aware there is a drip pan at the bottom and I find it hard to completely clean it out. This means grease in that pan can liquify each time you use it and can drip out. You should consider this before mounting it onboard. That and the risk of burns to you as your crew.

I have a cast iron pan that fits into mine and I cook mostly in that, which keeps the grille cleaner.

I attached a stainless steel fishing leader to the regulator to prevent it from dropping in the water when I'm attaching a gas canister. You'll see there's a hang tab on the regulator with a small hole.

The cover is a good idea. The only bad experience I had was when a bat had gotten in there. I unknowingly removed the bag and tossed it through the companionway. The groggy bat crawled out and freaked out my wife, who was in the galley. I make sure to cinch the cover tight now.


Tim Keating
1985 C-25 TR/FK #4940
Midsummer
Lake Don Pedro, CA
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islander
Master Marine Consultant

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3396 Posts

Response Posted - 01/02/2019 :  06:16:05  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
So I just read up on the new version. Seems they have addressed the blow out issue and the new hinged top is a big improvement. I guess you will find out. If you want to mount it permanently, I would say outboard. Safety first right? Inboard would compromise seating and could drip hot grease on your cushions. Not much room on the back rail where it won't interfere with the motor or swim ladder so where Tim has his on the side might be the best.I have only one question, Why do you need this when you can cook on your rocket stove??

Scott-"IMPULSE"87'C25/SR/WK/Din.#5688
Sailing out of Glen Cove,L.I Sound



Edited by - islander on 01/02/2019 06:24:56
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Voyager
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4178 Posts

Response Posted - 01/02/2019 :  10:49:32  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I appreciate the ideas on mounting the grill outboard. The inboard mounting probably would not be a bad idea since I donít have young children and itís usually just my wife and I. Dripping fat from the fire might be a big problem, especially right over the gas tank.
My wife and I talked about the charcoal grill but quickly dismissed it due to the soot and ash problem.
I will take a look at which parts can fall overboard and I will try the stainless steel leader concept to keep all the parts together.
I plan to assemble it while itís still in the yard safely away from the drink. Letís see what we can shake out there.

Bruce Ross
Passage ~ SR-FK ~ C25 #5032

Port Captain Stratford & Milford, CT
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Stinkpotter
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Djibouti
8040 Posts

Response Posted - 01/02/2019 :  12:48:56  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Regarding inside vs. outside the rail, it sounds like most folks here keep theirs mounted and would consider it cumbersome to mount, remove and store for each use. That tells me I wouldn't want it inside, even if I was confident I could contain the grease (for example, when a wake passes through while cooking).

Dave Bristle
Association "Port Captain" for Mystic, CT
PO of 1985 C-25 SR/FK #5032 Passage, ex-OUPV
Now on Eastern 27 Sarge (but still sailing when I can).

Passage, Mystic, and Sarge--click to enlarge.
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keats
1st Mate

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75 Posts

Response Posted - 01/02/2019 :  12:49:56  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Because you will be hanging the regulator ($40) and LP canister our over the water to install it, you will do well to install some kind of safety lanyard. I just went into a tackle shop and bought the strongest coated leader I could find. Either SS or Titanium and about 18 inches long, I think. I ran it from the regulator to the lever on the mounting arm, which also has a hole in it.

I think removing and installing the grille too many times will wear the threads on the mounting arm assembly and cause problems down the road. Of course, if theft is a possibility you may have no choice. Magma does sell a heavy duty lever with a welded nut instead of just a threaded hole in the thin lever that would be better for frequent disassembly.

Tim Keating
1985 C-25 TR/FK #4940
Midsummer
Lake Don Pedro, CA
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sethp001
Mainsheet C-25 Tech Editor

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749 Posts

Response Posted - 01/02/2019 :  15:04:48  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have the Party Size mounted on the stern rail, outside. Our boats are relatively small but I do not think it looks ungainly. I also have a canvas cover for it, which I think helps the aesthetic. While I haven't had a bat, spiders seem to like it quite a bit.

I mounted mine exactly where Tim (keats) has his mounted. I like it there because it does not interfere with the motor or present a danger to children using the swim ladder. The kids often swim and get on and off the boat in regular succession while I'm cooking. If I'm motoring in light wind, I can grill at the same time, because that's important.

I also have a line attached to the regulator to prevent it from falling in the drink.

I have the older model that has a lid without a hinge. I angle the lid so that it buffets the wind. If it's too windy, I have to cook on high to prevent the flame from being blown out.



Seth
"Outlier" 1987 Catalina 25 SR/SK/Traditional Interior #5541
"Zoo" 1977 Morgan Out Island 30
"Nomad" 1980 Prindle 16
"Lost" 1988 Catalina Capri 14.2
"Marine Tex 1" Unknown Origin POS 8' Fiberglass Dinghy
http://whichsailboat.com/2015/08/22/catalina-22-review/

Edited by - sethp001 on 01/02/2019 22:12:11
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sethp001
Mainsheet C-25 Tech Editor

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749 Posts

Response Posted - 01/02/2019 :  21:57:41  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Afterthought...

Last spring I bought an inexpensive propane grill to use at home in conjunction with my charcoal grill. It looks very much like the one Scott (islander) has. I don't know if it's the same model, but it looks to have the same three vents in the lid, the same handle on the lid, and the same side handles. And the holes at the bottom look like the holes in which the original legs/feet fit.

If it's the same, I would not recommend this grill, despite the low price. Mine did not last one summer of heavy use. The tube into which the regulator fit bent after one use so the regulator would not stay in the tube unless I propped it there. The paint peeled off. The exposed metal rusted.

I guess I could have painted it with Rustoleum High Heat before it rusted, but I didn't.



Seth
"Outlier" 1987 Catalina 25 SR/SK/Traditional Interior #5541
"Zoo" 1977 Morgan Out Island 30
"Nomad" 1980 Prindle 16
"Lost" 1988 Catalina Capri 14.2
"Marine Tex 1" Unknown Origin POS 8' Fiberglass Dinghy
http://whichsailboat.com/2015/08/22/catalina-22-review/

Edited by - sethp001 on 01/02/2019 22:05:51
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islander
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3396 Posts

Response Posted - 01/03/2019 :  05:37:45  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Seth, There are many of those grills ranging from stupid cheep on up but I've had this now for 10yrs and I couldn't even tell you the maker. Surprisingly I thought It would be a throwaway after one season.
Edit: Its a Char-Broil so at least its a name brand. When this finally gives out I might try the Magma grill again now that they improved it but back 15yrs ago to me they were a pricey piece of junk.

Photo of it today. Not to bad for 10yrs but I know its not Marine grade so I don't leave it on the rail permanently.

Scott-"IMPULSE"87'C25/SR/WK/Din.#5688
Sailing out of Glen Cove,L.I Sound



Edited by - islander on 01/03/2019 06:40:12
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Davy J
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Response Posted - 01/03/2019 :  09:00:40  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Over the years I've had three different Magma's. The original size, the party size and the one we currently use, the Newport Infrared.

For anything more than a couple chicken breasts or steaks, the party size is the way to go. Especially if want to also cook other things on the grill too.

I tried to find a photo of my C25 with the kettle version, couldn't locate one. Did find this photo with the Newport mounted over the stern rail:



Never really found it to be too large. The kettle versions were mounted outside the rail, mainly, because otherwise, it took up considerable room in the cockpit.

One thing about these grills, they are made of stainless steel but parts rust out with great frequency.........

Oil things up before cooking the first time and clean them and re-oil the parts at regular intervals.




Davy J


2005 Gemini 105Mc
PO 1987 C25 #5509 SR/SK
Tampa Bay
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sethp001
Mainsheet C-25 Tech Editor

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749 Posts

Response Posted - 01/03/2019 :  22:12:59  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by islander

Seth, There are many of those grills ranging from stupid cheep on up but I've had this now for 10yrs and I couldn't even tell you the maker. Surprisingly I thought It would be a throwaway after one season.
Edit: Its a Char-Broil so at least its a name brand. When this finally gives out I might try the Magma grill again now that they improved it but back 15yrs ago to me they were a pricey piece of junk.

Photo of it today. Not to bad for 10yrs but I know its not Marine grade so I don't leave it on the rail permanently.




Mine is the same brand. I guess they don't make them now like they used to make them.



Seth
"Outlier" 1987 Catalina 25 SR/SK/Traditional Interior #5541
"Zoo" 1977 Morgan Out Island 30
"Nomad" 1980 Prindle 16
"Lost" 1988 Catalina Capri 14.2
"Marine Tex 1" Unknown Origin POS 8' Fiberglass Dinghy
http://whichsailboat.com/2015/08/22/catalina-22-review/
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bigelowp
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1360 Posts

Response Posted - 01/04/2019 :  20:27:03  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I have had a Magma in the past -- smaller, round sized (party?) and mounted on the outside corner so to not interfere with tiller/rudder/lines. What I found was: perfect night, slight breeze, tough to keep lit. very frustrating, Sooooo no longer have one.

Peter Bigelow
C-25 TR/FK #2092 Limerick
Rowayton, Ct
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Voyager
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Response Posted - 01/05/2019 :  07:33:45  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Peter, thanks for that observation. You and Scott ďIslanderĒ had the same experience back in the day.

According to the manufacturerís own admission, Magma grills had the problem of blow outs pretty reliably. So for a wind powered machine, why would you want an appliance where youíre pretty likely to get blown out by wind?!?!

The manufacturer claims now to have corrected it using a Venturi connector in the feed design that supplies gas to the burners in a way that overcomes this problem.

Some of the product reviews mentioned this issue being solved too.

I might just give the grill a try in my backyard on a breezy day (tomorrow weíre in for 20kts with gusts)
We shall see ...

Bruce Ross
Passage ~ SR-FK ~ C25 #5032

Port Captain Stratford & Milford, CT

Edited by - Voyager on 01/05/2019 07:36:30
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danandlu
Navigator

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Response Posted - 01/05/2019 :  10:18:43  Show Profile  Visit danandlu's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I must have the newer version. It does not blow out - we were cooking at anchor when a sudden windstorm blew in. I forgot about the food cooking as I had to get to the lee side immediately, grill stayed lit.

Dan Henderson
1982 FK/TR #3328
"Chesapeake"
Missoula, Flathead Lake, Montana

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bigelowp
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Response Posted - 01/05/2019 :  15:14:22  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Bruce

I will be interested in how your experience with the new version pans out -- if all is satisfactory, may give it a try.

Peter Bigelow
C-25 TR/FK #2092 Limerick
Rowayton, Ct
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glivs
Admiral

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Response Posted - 01/05/2019 :  17:20:03  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Beautiful pic Dan.

Gerry & Leslie; Malletts Bay, VT
"Great Escape" C-25 SR/WK #5972
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RichardG
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Response Posted - 01/08/2019 :  13:59:29  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
After using an old Force 10 cylindrical style BBQ for many years, it finally would not light any longer. So I went the same route as Scott a few years ago.



I just bolted it to the drip pan/rail mount from the old BBQ. It gets a lot of use, and I am amazed how well it works. And the price cannot be beat.



RichardG 81 FK/SR #2657
Terminal Island, CA
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islander
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Response Posted - 01/08/2019 :  16:05:12  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Came across this SS grill on my llocal CL. Could probably bolt it to my rail mount. You know, kick it up a notch. Has a hinged top and a clasp to lock it
closed. https://longisland.craigslist.org/bpo/d/smithtown-stainless-barbecue-portable/6780639102.html

Scott-"IMPULSE"87'C25/SR/WK/Din.#5688
Sailing out of Glen Cove,L.I Sound



Edited by - islander on 01/08/2019 16:22:53
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Voyager
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Response Posted - 01/10/2019 :  07:15:55  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Wow Scott, what a great find. That one looks pretty nice and it has a push button starter like on my CharBroil patio BBQ.
Right nearby too. Good luck on that!

Bruce Ross
Passage ~ SR-FK ~ C25 #5032

Port Captain Stratford & Milford, CT
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