I took it apart, cleaned it up, sanded it and painted it. During the cleaning I found a sticker that stated it was made in Warrensburg, MO by the Swisher Lawn Mower Company. Odd, I thought a lawn mower company that makes grills.
Kansas City is well known for BBQ but it seems our neighbors to the East in Warrensburg are pretty darn good at making the grills!
After painting it and putting it back together I set a fire in it to cure out the new paint and burn off any smell that the paint might have left. I loaded it with some pecan wood and let it roar. After the fire settled down I tossed on a few pieces of meat just to see how well it worked. Everyone was AMAZED!
I own several different grills, and types of grills, smokers and even open fire pits that I cook on regularly, but nothing has ever cooked like this thing!
The grill consists of a cabinet on wheels with a rotisserie that supports 4 rotating grills. Each grill is roughly 18" x 6.5" and I've found it is best to try to balance your load and distribute it as evenly as possible.
So, after the break-in trial period we decided to give it a real test. I've loaded this thing down with every kind of meat known to man, Venison, Bison, Beef, Burgers, Dogs, Brats, Chicken and more. Nothing I have ever cooked on performs this well.
Now their are some drawbacks, because the grill space is limited to those 4 rather small grills you cannot put huge slabs of meat in there unless you separate them to fill each small grill. The secret to this things amazing ability seems to be that the food is constantly in motion, down low in the heat and coals, up high in the smoke again.
One weekend the motor (12 Volt) quit working. I was mortified and actually thought of tossing it. My wife told me that this thing was worth saving. So I called the good folks ot Swisher and tried to order a new motor. The young gal I talked to told me she had never heard of this item and that the company didn't make grills, they made lawnmowers! I gave her the model number and she was quite suprised to find it in the computer system, she informed me "We haven't made that thing in like 15 years"!
Well, I did some research and found that it was actually patented in 1996 by Gerald and Max Swisher of Warrensburg, Mo and Wayne Swisher of Lee's Summit, MO. Undeterred I pulled out the old motor and found the model information, I located one on Amazon and ordered it for a painful $70.00!
Now back up and running our family friends and even our neighbors come over to use this amazing grill! I seem to be missing a few items from the original grill, seems the patent shows it with a typical rotisserie for chickens and other birds and it seems like maybe it was set up to have a single larger grill space in the center of the cabinet. The patent also shows it with a 12 Volt battery and even a solar panel to charge the battery for cooking when electricity is not available... GENIUS!
Online research has yielded little, save a few BBQ aficionados talking about finding one here and there at garage sales and also being amazed with their cooking ability.
I'm going to have to invest some time in reworking some of the old rusted metal in the firebox to keep it going, but considering how well this thing cooks I think I'd be willing to fabricate an entire new one if I had to!
I was also able to find the original patent from Google!
Good luck finding one, they are no longer made and seem to be made of unobtainium! But if your adept at metal work you might be able to fabricate one from the drawings and patent below! I think I better chain mine up after writing this!