A home grill is considered one of the most traditional appliances in America, and is closely aligned with the outdoor culture of the nation. There’s nothing quite like enjoying a summertime grill with family, or even holding a larger cookout gathering. Just as a grill is essential at home, you can also use a grill in the great outdoors, or even when you’re out on the water. Grilling on a boat can allow you to freshly grill the day’s catch, or you can simply bring some steak, sausages, and vegetables along with you. Having the right marine grill requires that you choose based on practicality, construction materials, and cooking capability.
The Magma Marine Propane Grill is an excellent portable grill that can be mounted to the side of your boat, and is the perfect cooking appliance to use on the water.
Key Product Features of the Magma Marine Propane Grill
- High quality polished stainless steel construction.
- Wind baffle for cooking in all conditions.
- Adjustable hinged lid.
- 13” diameter cooking grate.
- Compatible with a marine mounting system.
Design and First Impressions
While this grill could be adapted to be used on a camper or even a trailer, the design has definitely been intended for marine use. If you regularly head out on boating trips in the summer, then this is one accessory that you don’t want to be without.
First impressions are that the design has taken some unique conditions into consideration. To start with, it’s made completely from stainless steel, which will help it to resist corrosion. This is particularly important in conditions where sea water and air could easily destroy inferior materials.
The design of the grill is simple and functional. It could be compared to a Weber kettle grill in terms of the design philosophy, although it is much smaller than the average home grill. It’s clear that this is not intended for large meals and gatherings, and it’s not the type of grill that you’re going to be able to use for cooking large gourmet cuts of meat or whole chickens. The size would be suitable for smaller steaks, burgers, and fresh grilled fish.
Although the design itself might give the initial impression that this is a budget grill, the fact that it uses stainless steel is an indicator that it’s a high quality product. There is minimal assembly required and when handling the different components there’s a real feel of quality and craftsmanship. If you’re purchasing a cooking appliance to use on your boat, then you will want something that has few moving parts and complicated controls. First impressions are that the Magma Marine Propane Grill ticks all of the right boxes so that you can have a compact but capable grill for your boat.
Cooking and Features
With some grills you’ll find a number of advanced features that are intended to make cooking easier, and sometimes they offer additional versatility. The Magma Marine Propane Grill is extremely basic in its design, but this is not to the detriment of the overall value that you’ll get from the product.
There’s one cooking surface and one burner for the grill, and it takes gas from disposable propane canisters. This is the most convenient method of cooking on a boat, because you won’t need to worry about lugging a heavy propane bottle around with you. It makes storage easier, and the grill and a couple of disposable propane tanks won’t take up a lot of space on your boat.
Although it’s a small grill, it can reach high heat quickly, thanks to a direct and convection heat design. Heat radiates around and up from the chamber of the bottom of the grill, and this helps to ensure that there are no cold spots on the grilling surface. You get even heat all around the surface, and that’s particularly important if you want to cook all of your ingredients at the same time.
The grill comes with a lid, but that does not mean that you’re going to be able to cook large cuts of meat. Most of the time, cooking will be performed with the lid up, unless you are grilling fish or other ingredients that require a high amount of convection and radiant heat. You won’t be able to fit a large whole chicken in this grill, and that’s simply not what it has been designed for. Considering that this is a marine or shore side grill, you’ll mostly be cooking fresh fish or maybe burgers, steaks, and vegetables that you bring along with you. For all of your basic barbecuing needs, you’ll find that the size and the depth of the hood is just enough, even if the total grilling area is smaller than what you are used to.
When you cook on a boat you won’t have complete control of the conditions. With no trees or buildings to block the path of wind, you’ll need a highly efficient grill that doesn’t go out in mild conditions. The Magma Marine Propane Grill uses a special windproof venturi design that can effectively eliminate the risk of blow out. When mounted on a swivel stand you’ll even be able to position the grill away from the path of the wind. The lid plays an important role when it comes to wind resistance. Unlike some small kettle grills, the lid doesn’t detach, but instead flips to the backside of the grill to act as a wind shield. The hinge is an excellent design that won’t close on itself without your assistance, and the dual purpose nature of the lid is one of the most important parts of the package. Even though the top of the lid will be above the grilling surface when it is used in the open position, there’s a stay cool handle design that actually works, and this adds to the safety of the product.
If you’re aware of the limitations of grilling on a boat, but you still want an effective solution for basic, delicious grilled meals, then the Magma Marine Propane Grill will not disappoint.
Does the Magma Marine Propane Grill Need Accessories?
As good as this grill is, there is an important caveat for potential owners. To mount the grill, you will need a separate mounting accessory. Which will add to the overall cost of the package.
Although this might initially seem inconvenient, it actually makes sense from a consumer’s point of view. Anybody interested in this grill will have different requirements in terms of how they choose to use it. While you might simply want to mount this off the side of your boat, there will be other users who want to use a pedestal mount, or a simple rail mount. By allowing the buyer to choose the right mount, it ensures that the grill will meet their unique needs.
The most popular mount is the Magma Marine Propane Grill Round Rail Mount. There are three options to fit rails ranging from 1”, up to 1-1/2”. If you have fishing rod mounts on your boat then you can use the Magma Marine Power Grip, a proprietary mount that will make use of an unused fishing rod recess. There are also socket type mounts, and side or bulkhead mounts. Some of these mounts can be permanently installed on your boat, so you’ll be able to find the right one that is suitable for your needs.
You can take a look at a few of the examples here:
- Power Grip Fishing Rod Holder Mount
- Pedestal Mount for Magma Marine Propane Grill
- All Angle Adjustable Rod Holder Mount
It’s also possible to purchase a stand accessory that makes this grill usable on land. By adding the stand, you can turn this into a compact camping grill, or a shore side or tabletop grill. Having this optional stand accessory can even allow you to use the grill at home when you don’t need to fire up your main grill. This Magma On-Shore Stand Mount is a great accessory for the outdoor enthusiast.
Construction Quality and Materials
Salt water and humid ocean air is more corrosive than other environments where a grill can be found. This is why it’s so important to use quality materials on a marine grill, and in this case it is reassuring to see that stainless steel has been used. Although stainless steel is not completely impervious to corrosion, it will last much longer than other materials, and when the grill is cleaned and stored after use, it has the potential to last for years without developing any type of corrosion or rust.
In addition to the use of stainless steel, the overall design and workmanship of the grill is top quality. Even though it’s a small grill with very few features, it still maintains the feel of a premium product. Whether it is used mostly on a boat or for camping, the Magma Marine Propane Grill will be able to last for many seasons, and should not be compared to small inexpensive grills that are designed to be replaced within a year of ownership.
Pros and Cons
- Compact design that still provides a reasonable cooking surface for boating or camping.
- High quality materials that will resist the elements.
- Simple to use thanks to disposable propane tanks, and lightweight for portability.
- Windproof design is highly effective, especially the burner and the wind shield/lid.
- Compatible with a number of accessories that will suit any type of installation.
- No mounting hardware is included with the product, adding another step into the buying process.
- The grill is not highly versatile and is only suitable for basic grilled meals.
As one of the most popular marine grills on the market, there is plenty of customer feedback that can help you when making your purchasing decision.
Feedback has been positive, and over 70% of all reviews rate the product as 4/5 or 5/5. Owners have pointed out that it performs well even in strong winds, and the design of the lid/wind shield is much better than on older Magma Marine Propane Gas Grill models. Although some might see the lack of mounting hardware as a negative, many have been positive about having the choice to buy the right hardware, rather than getting something in the box that might be incompatible with their unique boating setup. The high heat that the grill can achieve has also been mentioned positively by consumers, although some have noted that it can take time to adjust to this grill, as its diminutive size is not indicative of its actual cooking capability.
Final Thoughts and Recommendation
The grill market for use on boats is not overly crowded, but there is still some strong competition. With our review of the Magma Marine Propane Grill we have found a compact product that is easy to use, that comes in at a reasonable price, and is versatile in terms of its mounting options. There are some things about the product that could be seen as negatives, including the need to buy accessories, and the fact that the grill is on the small side, but, the reality is that for most people, this is going to be more than enough for use on a boat.
It resists the wind well, it gets hot enough for efficient cooking, and the lack of features make it extremely easy to use. Anyone with a boat that is looking for a grill will get a lot of use out of this product, and it’s made with materials that are designed to last. If this fits the niche that you’re looking for, then it is highly recommended.