The Rib-O-Lator Review

The Rib-O-Lator review is one of the very first product reviews we ever posted.  The Rib-O-Lator is one of the most unique rotisserie accessories that you will find; it is four rotating trays that attach to your spit-rod. With its flat surfaces this tool allows you to cook just about anything with your grills rotisserie.

Rib-O-Lator Review
Rib-O-Later mounted in a Char Griller Duo

Out of the box the Rib-O-Later consists of 6 parts: two X shaped pieces that attach to the spit rod and the four stainless steel rotating trays. The supports have a small pin coming off of each end that the trays attach to; they hang off of them loosely.

The shorter (charcoal version) of the Rib-O-Lator will fit into a standard 22 inch kettle grill, the charcoal side of the Char-Griller Duo as well as the larger version Weber Smokey Mountain as well as kettle grill along with most gas grills. The only difference between the two versions is the length of the trays.

After washing the trays we prepare the grill: this consists of removing the grates and setting up the rotisserie. Slide one of the supports onto the spit rod set screw towards the handle end and place the spit rod into place. Then slide the support into the preferred position and tighten the screw with the allen wrench that is provided with the kit. Remove the spit rod and place onto a flat surface.

Hang the two bottom trays of the Rib-O-Later onto the support then slide the other support onto the rod. If you have a smaller diameter rod you will want the mounting screws opposite each other to keep it in balance. Slide the support into the holes of the tray, you want the trays to hang loose or they will bind and turn sideways when it rotates. I will push one side against the support and back the other side off until the tray is just barley hanging on to the ball end. This will put both trays into the center of the pins on both sides. Tighten the final support and snap the other two trays into place.

If you are working on a gas grill you can place the entire mechanism into your grill now. If you are using a charcoal grill odds are you will have get your fire started before you can put the Rib-O-Lator into place. Think of the trays as the grills grates and wait until everything is pre-heated before placing your food onto them.

rib-o-later loaded with moink balls

Mounting it on my Char-Griller Duo was fairly easy. I was initially concerned with the clearance of the coals at the bottom. I could have had one thin layer of coals across the coal grates but I decided to leave the center of the grates empty and pile the coals along the front and back.

The Rib-O-Lator Review – Cooking with it

My first cook with it was Moink Balls (bacon wrapped meatballs) and I got considerable flare ups from the bacon. In hind site I probably should have only used one smaller pile of coals in the back of the grill. That would have minimized the bottom of the trays exposure to the direct heat.

Learning to cook with this gadget could take some time. Due to the size of it you really cannot feasibly use a drip pan with this unless you have a very large grill. Considering you would mainly use it for items that require indirect heat getting the temperature just right to minimize flare ups will take some figuring out.

rib-o-later stock image

I can see using this for things like steaks, burgers or chicken parts. I would remove one of the trays for access with another tray stopped at it lowest point. Sear each item on the bottom tray then move it up to another tray, after each item is seared replace the tray that I removed and start the rotisserie motor for them to finish cooking.

The Rib-O-Lator Review: Is it a must have grill gadget?

I am really on the fence about this one; it is very impressive piece when it is running and it will draw quite a crowd. It will allow you to get a lot more use out of your rotisserie then you currently do. I really like the fact that the trays are dishwasher safe as well. In the end I think that this is one of those gadgets if you are willing to invest the time to learn how to use it you will love it but get very frustrated in the process.

Since this article was originally written 4thegrill has dropped this product, it does not change the rib-o-later review at all. The supply of this product was extremely erratic and they discontinued the longer model, you know the version that would actually hold a rack of ribs and fit larger gas grills.

We are now years since the Rib-o-lator review was written and it is still around and looks like it has found it’s following. It’s reviews on Amazon are currently at 4.5 stars.


When we originally wrote the Rib-o-lator review the product was pulled from our stock and no compensation from the manufacture was received. See our product submission guidelines for more info on our product reviews

About the author: Mike is the owner of 4thegrill.com, a Certified Food Safety Professional and KCBS member.

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