By Jason Broderick
The Ducane Products company started out as Ducane Brothers Metal Fabricating in 1946. The company moved three years later to Little Ferry, New Jersey, where they started making and selling warm air furnaces. They changed the name to the Ducane Company in 1968 and moved the base of operations to Barnwell, South Carolina. By 1975, after deciding that grills were starting to go downhill in design and quality, they started making their own line of Ducane Gas Grills.
For the last thirty years, this company grew to be one of the highest quality and most popular grill brands in the United States. Their facility is state of the art, and their grills are made from the finest materials, making them superior in weather resistant materials. They only use the highest quality stainless steel, die cast aluminum and have a baked enamel finish. Each and every one of their gas grills are designed to stand up to the harshest weather conditions, and deal with the hardest recipes you can come up with.
While most companies use stainless steel parts for their gas grills, only Ducane uses the high quality steel made in the U.S. Other countries, such as China, where many manufacturers get their products from, don’t produce the type of quality typically found in this country. Even though these grills may be cheaper, their low quality makes their grills less durable, and won’t last the tests of time and use. Ducane only uses only 304 stainless steel in all their steel grill components. They also use a cast aluminum hood and firebox. While this material isn’t as nice looking, it can and often does last longer than even steel.
When they were making the older style charcoal grills, Duncane always used a double layer stainless steel tray for the briquettes. These were designed to offset the columns that supported the briquettes, and moved heat better through the box for a more even heat distribution. Between the radiant heat and better distribution, a Ducane charcoal grill stood out as a better heating and faster cooking grill than products that were on the market at this time.
Ducane did make an older line of charcoal grills, and while these did hold up for the most part, they made many improvements, and converted to gas fuel as well, because it was more economical for the consumer, had less waste and better for the environment. They were also the innovators for many of the parts that you see in other grills today, like the warming racks, which control the position of the food, keeping it away from the actual cooking surface, yet still maintaining your items at hot temperatures.
Another innovation that sets Ducane apart from other BBQ gas grills is their cooking grate. You will now find that all of Ducane cooking grates are larger, and have a convex surface, older flat styles have a tendency to bow up slightly. This new design allows more of the heat to be in the grate, searing the food, not collecting in the hood of the unit and overcooking the food you are trying to keep warm.
One of the biggest problems that many grills have is that the only way to check the temperature would be to open the hood; any heat that had accumulated would instantly be sucked out, and if you were cooking a whole chicken or slow cooking some potatoes, this would often mean longer cooking times. In order to solve this problem, Ducane gas grills come with a lid thermometer, so you can keep a constant watch over how hot the inside is. While these may need to be replaced, they are very useful and convenient.
Another ground breaking innovation for the Ducane Gas Grill was they were the first to produce the gas rotisserie back burner. These burners created a blue flame, just below the series of stainless louvers, forcing the heat directly towards the rotisserie rod. While many products today incorporate an infrared heating source for the back burner, Ducane was the first to come out with this design.
As time wore on, many manufacturers starting making poorer quality products, using materials from countries that were not as good, but cheaper. Unfortunately for the company they decided they wanted to stay with a better made product, and because of this, the company went bankrupt several years ago and was bought out by Weber in 2000. While you can still buy the Ducane brand name, they are not as high of quality as the previous models. The Ducane grill you already have from when they were in business can still have their parts replaced however, and what ever warranty is still active will continue to be honored.
About the Author:
Ducane BBQ grill replacement parts
are available through Grill-Repair.com as well as users manuals and grill repair information. Older Ducane grill repair parts are available and the newer Weber owned
Ducane burners and bbq grill parts
are also available.