If you like grilling with charcoal, then you love the good ol’ Lodge Sportsman’s Grill.
Nearly indestructible, this little beast is made out of sturdy cast iron and has gained an almost legendary reputation.
So maybe you want to buy one and are wondering why is it out of stock everywhere.
Why is it so hard to find this grill? And why do the second-hand ones sold on eBay often cost over 300 bucks?
Well, there is a good reason for that.
Unfortunately, the production of Lodge Sportsman’s Grill has been discontinued a few years ago.
But I have some good news for all of you fellow grill masters — the new Lodge Sportsman’s Pro cast iron grill has now been released!
The Original Lodge Sportsman’s Grill Has Been Discontinued
The design of this grill dates back to the 1930s when charcoal heaters were a common thing in many homes.
Birmingham Stove and Range was a company that came up with the idea of putting a grill grate on top of a cast iron charcoal heater — and that’s how the first version of the Sportsman’s Grill was born.
They later sold the design to Lodge Manufacturing Company based in South Pittsburg, Tennessee.
When Lodge created a pre-seasoned version of the Sportsman’s Grill somewhere around 2007 its popularity really exploded. You could find these grills everywhere from Walmart to your local sporting goods stores.
Now, for some reason, Lodge decided to stop manufacturing the Lodge Sportsman’s Grill a few years back.
The grill was a very sought-after product mainly because of its durability, compact size, and excellent cooking performance. The Sportsman’s Grill provided a perfect solution for cooking food in your backyard, at tailgate parties, and at camping sites.
And one of the best things about this grill was that it was a high-quality product made in the USA!
Just Released – The New Lodge Sportsman’s Pro Cast Iron Grill!
While I don’t know why Lodge discontinued the original Sportsman’s Grill in the first place, I sure was happy when I heard the news that an improved version is being released.
So here it is, the new Lodge Sportsman’s Pro cast iron grill!
- Fuel Type: Charcoal
- Grilling Area (sq.in): 150
- Weight: 33 lbs
- Build Materials: Cast iron
- Dimensions: 19.38″ x 9.69″ x 7.56″ (W x D x H)
What Has Changed
Here are the main differences between the old Sportsman’s Grill and the new Pro version:
Overall Design: The old model had more parts including the removable charcoal grate, sliding draft control, and coal access door. In the new model, the design is smarter and has fewer parts — the sliding ash catcher allows you to control the airflow and makes cleaning easy.
Grill Grate: The grilling surface on both the new and old models is almost exactly the same size. However, the new Sportsman’s Pro grill grate is more rectangular and the large Lodge logo in the center has been removed.
Handles: The old Sportsman’s Grill had a handle that was a bit flimsy but allowed you to carry the grill with one hand. The new model has removable wire handles that provide more balanced carrying but require two hands.
Design and Features
The design of this grill is simple and functional and it only has three parts — the main body, the grill grate, and the sliding ash catcher (plus the two carry handles).
The grilling surface is smooth and pre-seasoned so your food doesn’t stick. Because the whole thing is made out of thick cast iron, it has excellent heat retention and gives great sear and grill marks to your steaks and burgers.
The downside is that cast iron is heavy so the grill weighs in at over 33 pounds.
If you are looking for something lighter, I recommend that you check out the Weber Go-Anywhere Grill.
Controlling the airflow and heat is easy — just slide the ash catcher to adjust how much draft gets in under the charcoal.
And just like in the old model, the grill grate is reversible. You can choose to have it a bit higher elevated on four short legs, or flip it around so it’s closer to the charcoal.
When it’s time to clean up, just slide the ash catcher out and empty it.
The only thing I liked more about the old one was the coal access door that allowed you to add more coal and move them around without lifting off the grill grate.
I have noticed some people complain that the Sportsman’s Pro Grill grill is wobbly. But this is due to tightening the screws and bolts too much — loosen them up just a bit and the grill will sit smoothly and evenly.
Overall, the new Sportsman’s Grill is as good, or even better, than the original one!
What We Love
- Great overall cooking performance
- Sturdy and durable
- Excellent heat retention
- Straightforward control of heat and airflow
- Food doesn’t stick to the grate
- Easy to clean
- Made in the USA
What We Don’t
- Quite heavy
Times are changing and so does the legendary Lodge Sportsman’s Grill. The old one was discontinued and had to give way to an improved model.
But the great thing is that Lodge really kept all the things that make this grill awesome.
The Sportsman’s Pro cast iron grill is still fun to use, cooks great, and is made in the USA!
This makes it a top dog in the world of charcoal grills.