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March 31, 2008

Grilling Time

Last Sunday turned out to be the first day that was nice enough (and a day when I had enough time) for me to assemble my grill. Assembly went fairly smoothly:

1) The process took about two hours, but I wasn't working very fast and stopped to chat with neighbors along the way.

2) Despite the screws coming in a blister-pack (which gave me hope that they'd all be there), I was short a few, but they were structurally important.

3) The "Sideburner Drip Pan" has an enamel (or other) coating that was chipped and peeling.

4) The gas wouldn't light at first, but this was due to a mis-aligned electrode tip. It was easy to bend it into place.

5) The order of the hardware (screws, lockwahsers, flatwashers) in the narrative matches the pictures, but not the text describing the pictures (e.g. the "flat washer" text has an arrow pointing at a lock washer picture). I'm not sure what is "right" from an engineering standpoint, nor whether it will make a difference. Wherever the lockwasher is, it will still be providing the same amount of force. However, the CSR said to follow the picture (screw-lockwasher-flatwasher).

6) Coloring (black vs gray) didn't match all parts. (Example: the "front brace" is black, but the picture makes it looks gray/stainless.)

I called to request replacements for #2-3 above. They required proof of purchase (I faxed my LNT order email) and they wanted (but did without) my serial number. They wanted to charge shipping (their warranty claims they charge shipping, but the CSR told me they waive it during the first month following purchase. I argued this was my first time assembling it, bought it during winter, etc., and after my CSR spoke to her supervisor they waived the shipping fee.

Also, the manual is online. There are reviews posted at Amazon and Walmart.

Current prices online:
Walmart: $298
Amazon: $OOS (was $200 + $50 shipping)
USA Hardware: $485.99+shipping
Original LNT: $400
LNT via FW: $Less

First time using it was last night. I made a small meal of hot dogs, hamburgers, skirt steak, ribs, chicken, and zucchini. It was good! My smoker box worked well.

March 14, 2008

Lost Windows OS CD?

If you have a need for an OS installation CD, but you can't find yours, you're in luck...

...if you own a Dell. Here's why:

Dell Customers can now request a set of backup discs containing the factory-installed operating system as well as the device drivers and utilities specific to your system.

Here's how