Video demo here–
If you are interested in my Weber Go-anywhere top vent mod you can check it out here, along with a parts list.
Also a super simple mod that I highly recommend is a cut stainless grate mod for the Charcoal Go-Anywhere which you can see here
Using an old beat up Igloo cooler, I disassembled the grill and put the wood handle aside and then tossed all the parts in the cooler with some warm water and dish soap.
Then heated up more water in the electric water kettle and poured that it and shook it all up to coat the lid and vents and legs with the soapy hot water.
Placed the lid on and let it sit for twenty minutes and then went back to it and used a piece of fine steel wool to scrub her down using the soapy hot water.
Even though the grill started out caked up with dirt and gristle the technique loosened up everything to make light work of it.
I highly recommend this method. If you don’t have an old beater cooler laying around to use, there are usually tons of them for sale on Facebook marketplace. You should be able to find one for under $10.
Glorious. Living a mile away from your favorite beach is pretty sweet.
What makes it sweeter is hanging with some of your favorite people and cooking incredible food while your toes are still in the sand on that very same beach.
A little EVOO and Paul Prudhomme Blackened Fish Seasoning. Cook it up on the Lodge Cast Iron skillet , toast the taco shells and add Kate’s awesome homemade slaw, avocado crema or my sriracha mayo or all that!
The Weber Go-Anywhere has been around for a while.
Read this excellent post detailing the history of the Go-Anywhere on the Weber Kettle Club Website-
This history article was researched and put together by Weber Kettle Club forum member Neil_VT00
If you look at the timeline, the rectangular portable Go-Anywhere was introduced in 1979 and not a whole lot has changed since then.
What I think is genius about it and how it advanced portable charcoal cooking was how it differentiated from the popularity of the open cast iron hibachi.
Cast iron hibachis were popular in the 60s. They are heavy, they require maintenance to avoid rusting and they are open topped which limits the type of cooking to direct grilling.
My guess is that the engineers that designed the Weber Charcoal Go-Anywhere took on all of these issues by making it out of their porcelain coated steel to avoid rust issues and be a whole lot lighter to transport.
The Lodge Sportsman Cast Iron Grill has roots dating back to 1941. It’s heavy, it requires maintenance to keep from rusting and again, it does not have a lid.
I’m not saying they are not interesting or fun to cook on. I’m just saying the Weber Go-Anywhere is a whole lot more versatile.
When you light up a bunch of coals on an open hibachi you need to be cognizant of factors such as wind and how much time you have. The coals don’t get snuffed out quickly as there is not lid or vents to regulate air needed to sustain the coals being lit.
Here’s my Lodge Sportsman grill/hibachi on action at the dock-
On the Go-Anywhere the legs flip up and lock the vented lid to the base making it easy to transport. It can also be used to smoke on a small scale and regulate air flow with the vents on the bottom and in the lid. With a traditional hibachi you’re pretty much limited to open grilling.
Here are a couple of the other cast iron hibachis that I’ve collected-
Queen Hibachi Japan
Cast Iron Bull Hibachi
First off I should say that I don’t own a Lodge Sportsman although I’ve been wanting to cook on one. The only thing that’s been holding me back from purchasing one is the lack of space and knowing that the cast iron construction would likely be completely rusted as I cook on my Weber’s all the time and the Sportsman wouldn’t get enough use to stay greasy and seasoned properly.
In this post I will attempt to point out perceived pros and cons vs a grill I know fairly well, the Weber Go-Anywhere.
If you own the Lodge Sportsman grill or Weber Go-Anywhere I’d love to hear your opinions on this review and how you agree or disagree.
One thing I’m interested in hearing about the Sportsman is if the bottom vent really controls the heat. The entire top is open without a lid or top vents so it doesn’t seem to me like opening or closing the bottom vent on the Sportsman is going to have a dramatic effect on temps.
The Go-Anywhere and it’s porcelain are obviously much easier to clean than the cast iron Sportsman and less susceptible to rust.
The Go-Anywhere’s vents can be completely closed down to snuff out coals while the Sportsman you would need to find a way to safely remove and contain the coals before moving it around.
The Go-Anywhere’s legs that lock over the lid to keep the entire grill together for transporting make it easier than the Sportsman that tilts to one side when lifting by it’s handle. The Go-Anywhere weighs much less making it more portable.
I’m guessing the Sportsman’s cast iron grates leave better sear marks than the Go-Anywhere. The Go-anywhere can be used to smoke small amounts of food by adjusting the vents with it’s lid on while the Sportsman pretty much limits you to grilling or using it to cook with a cast iron pan on top. The sport’s man does not have a lip along it’s top edge making it more even to put a cast iron pan on for cooking while the Go anywhere’s grate sits down in a groove which makes cast iron pan cooking on it doable but less even.
I know people that love their grills really love their grills. I’m really interested to hear from Sportsman fans about what I might be missing or wrong about in this comparison.
Tell me some things that the Sportsman can do that I haven’t considered better than the Go-Anywhere.
Here’s cooking a revers sear steak and sausages on the Weber Go-Anywhere-
Mix sour cream, parmesan cheese, basil paste, feta and sun dried tomatos for the stuffing.
Roll 1/4 inch thick EVOO coated chicken breast (pound flat between two pieces of wax paper) around the stuffing, secure with toothpicks then coat with Italian bread crumbs.
I used a deflector plate. Under which I put a half a Weber chimney of lit coals on the opposite side of the grill where the chicken would go. Vents all wide open.
Cook for 25 minutes until chicken is golden brown.
This is how I set up my charcoal Weber Go-Anywhere for high heat indirect cooking. Here we cook a full package of chicken wings offset the coals using tin foil and a foil tray to catch the drippings.
Link for the foil trays that fit perfectly inside the Go Anywhere at this link
Perfect grill for reverse searing a couple strip steaks.
What I’ve learned in grilling steaks is that it’s not necessary to sear the fuck out of them right from the get go. In fact the steaks don’t have to be on the grates from start to finish. Best results having the coals to one side, vents half way open and let thick cut steaks come up to about 20 degrees from desired temp offset the coals then take the steak completely off the grill for at least five minutes. Open all the vents get the coals glowing and then place them back on the grill over the coals. Criss cross hash marks and probing with instant read thermometer til 5 degrees from desired temp. Rest again. Done perfectly.
Here are my unscientific findings on a reverse sear ribeye test. The reason for the test is because I modified on of my Charcoal Weber Go-Anywhere grills with top lid vent knobs. The knobs are rated up to 400 degrees.
Not having any idea how hot the lid would get I tested on a WGA that did no have the knobs installed, in case the lid got so hot it would ruin perfectly good knobs.
I left both bottom vents wide open, the top vent over the coals closed and the top vent on the opposite side wide open.
This is the grill I modified with the addition of the top vent knobs-
About a quarter of a chimney of coals and 12 coals on the charcoal grate will be the amount of coals we are using.
Lid temp before dumping the lit coals 82 degrees F
After dumping the coals, the temp of the lit coals registered 975 degrees F
Here’s the WGA set up for the reverse sear.
Four minutes with lid closed 387 degrees F
Fifteen minutes with lid closed 469 degrees F lid temp. $451 degrees grill grate temp.
Finit. (No whale butter dishes were harmed during testing)
I think that if I use a washer between the knob which has a metal threaded insert and the vent tab that it will work out fine. I plan to test tomorrow with the modded unit.
Here’s a link to purchase the knobs on Amazon-
Strength, durability, and heat resistance are some of the benefits of this broad range of phenolic handle. Extremely versatile range of mountings. Female insert machined to suit. Mounting type: female insert. Thread length/depth: 3/8″. Mounting diameter and threads per inch: 1/4-20. Plastic material: thermoset; insert material: brass. Measures 7/8″ diameter by 2-41/64″ height.
And a link showing the mod directions-