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DIY 2/3 tier swing grate for under $20- Instructions & parts

Ok guys, I've been thinking about getting a swing grate for the past week but I'm a DIY kinda guy, so I decided to build my own adjustable height, 2/3 tier swing grate using easy to find parts from Home Depot & Grainger. You can even pickup a Needle Bearing at your local autoparts store if you don't have a Grainger outlet near you.

I have about $20 into this rig and so far it's been working great. It can even be used with a plate setter for long smokes. This weekend I'll add a 3rd grate 2.5" under the top grate, so I'll be able to do 2 racks of wings and spatchcock chicken on the bottom. I like this rig because it's super adjustable! Just before throwing the meat on, I can adjust the height of each grate independently or even add a 3rd swing grate to hold a drip pan under the top rack, that way I don't have to worry about the juices from my pork falling on the Brisket below. The 1/2" rod is very sturdy, so it's not going to bend if you put a whole chicken on top. You do however need to trim 2-3" off the rod because at 12", it's extended to far into the firebox area.

Here are the parts list & photos..

Home Depot:

1- Weber Kettle grate- 13.5" (007924074059) $8.99
1- Threaded rod- 12" long, 1/2" diameter (030699170401) $1.57
5- 1/2" Cut washers $.20 ea
4- 1/2" Hex nuts with same thread count as rod (#13 thread) $0.20ea
1- Needle Bearing, 1/2" bore (part# 4XFN2) $3.49

The top grate is barely sagging with this 4lb carton of juiceimage
The height of each grate can be adjusted to whatever you're cooking. Notice the lone nut? Well that's where I'll be adding the 3rd grate to do wings or to hold a drip pan for meats that's placed on top.image

Remember, I'm not a professional! I'm just a mad scientist that love BBQ & Drag Racing, so if you decided to make this rig, you'll be doing it at your own risk. Happy Egging!
Westchester, NY
LBGE + Guru controller

BBQ & Horsepower = My Life!


  • bigphilbigphil Posts: 1,390
    nice work but i wonder how easy it will be to break down after a high heat cook and the metal expands and contracts .let us know 
    Large Big Green Egg , XL Big Green Egg . BBQ Guru, Weber Kettle, Weber Q grill for road trips.
  • bud812bud812 Posts: 1,848
    Wow !!! That's the cleanest dome that I have ever seen. =))

    Not to get technical, but according to chemistry alcohol is a solution...

    Large & Small BGE

    Stockton Ca.

  • YankeeQYankeeQ Posts: 12
    ^ I know!

    The nomex gasket should be here tomorrow, then I'm ready for the weekend!
    Westchester, NY
    LBGE + Guru controller

    BBQ & Horsepower = My Life!
  • SkiddymarkerSkiddymarker Posts: 8,347
    Cool - looks really good. The swing rack just purchased through the group buy uses a "clamp" arrangement rather than a single post. I think the BGE grid might stand up to the single post, but the Weber will twist and bend under use, IMO. Great ingenuity, let us know how it works. 
    Delta B.C. - Move over coffee, this is job for alcohol!
  • YankeeQYankeeQ Posts: 12
    Ok, so I have a little update for you guys.. I did 2 long cooks & one pizza cook with the DIY swing grate and so far it's been good. I've noticed 2 problems that are fixable, so I'll be tackling them next week.
    Problem 1- The top grate nut runs lose because I need to add a second bearing on the top. Since I have to add one more needle bearing, I might as well buy 2 thicker bearings to avoid locking up issues when I torque down the nuts. I might even add a little locktite to the top nut.
    Problem 2- I'm experiencing a locking up issue with the nuts. I think the temperature must have warped either the shaft or nut. The fix is simple. Buy a 1/2" stainless steel rod & SS nuts. That should solve the problem. If not, then I'll have to ditch the threaded rod idea.

    The Home Depot grate worked great. It didn't sag under heat. The sames goes for the single post. I did not sag or bend with heat
    Westchester, NY
    LBGE + Guru controller

    BBQ & Horsepower = My Life!
  • HibbyHibby Posts: 605
    Nice write-up
    I cook. I eat. I repeat. Thornville, Ohio
  • SpaightlabsSpaightlabs Posts: 1,886
    What I like best about my swing grate is that I can separate and remove the top great in under 2 seconds...pre cook or mid cook, no issues.
  • Austin  EggheadAustin Egghead Posts: 3,907
    Very nice, but at fests I need to remove the top rack without disturbing the bottom grate when the pies are done.   Like your idea though. 
    Large, small and mini now Egging in Rowlett Tx
  • hoffmandhoffmand Posts: 105
    YankeeQ said:

    . The fix is simple. Buy a 1/2" stainless steel rod & SS nuts. That should solve the problem.

    You should only switch one piece to SS or you'll have to deal with the threads galling and seizing up.
    Cedar Park, TX
  • SocalcajudoSocalcajudo Posts: 132
    Good info and thanks for sharing your experiment
  • calikingcaliking Posts: 11,105
    Great idea. Always nice to see egging minds at work!

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • BullibeBullibe Posts: 132
    I like your idea, looks good. Acme threaded rods and nuts may work better for you, they are very coarse and have a flat verses sharp profile. Acme is used in machines where adjustments are frequently made.
    Redneck Riviera, Gulf Shores, Alabama
  • Any updates on this? Did you get it dialed it? Very curious about your results and experience.
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