A CBS News Report https://www.cbsnews.com/news/grill-barbecue-metal-brush-dangers/
Curious how the Grill Stick came to be? There’s a simple story behind it — a tale about the creation of a simple device that does what it’s supposed to do without potentially hurting you and those you care about.
It all started with a backyard barbecue…
On a hot day a couple of summers ago, I’d gone next door for a neighborhood event and was astounded to see my neighbor cleaning his grill with a piece of lumber.
I offered to run back to the house to grab my grill brush, but he declined and proceeded to tell me stories about the dangers of wire grill cleaners.
Those things can leave little metal splinters on your grill, and those sharp pieces of shrapnel can easily transfer over to the burgers and steaks you throw on the barbecue pit.
I was cynical about his stories, to say the least, but I found myself on the computer later that night in awe. It was all true.
Swallowing those little suckers ain’t fun — and it could earn you a trip to the emergency room.
Studies from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that approximately 80,000 people go to emergency rooms every year after accidentally swallowing foreign objects — the majority are children. Wire bristles from grill-cleaning brushes are part of that group, but one of the hardest to detect because the bristles are so thin they don’t always show up on X-rays. No data are officially collected on these cases.
After conducting my research, I officially swore off metal grill brushes and then had to figure out what I could use to keep my grates clean.
I soon discovered that a lot of folks are making all-natural wooden grill-cleaning devices. Some are pretty cool, but a lot are made of soft wood that wouldn’t last. Others were too big or sealed with a protective clear coat — something I definitely don’t want on my grill, or my food.
So, long story short, I never found one that I wanted. As a craftsman myself, I knew I could do better. But I’m not a master woodworker. Luckily, I know one, who also happens to be an engineer.
I took my problem to him, and together, we studied what’s available on the market. Truth be told, I just wanted him to help me craft one for me to use at the house. Maybe we could even carve my name into it!
“They’re all made wrong,” he said of what we found on the market, noting that they all lacked suitable ergonomics.
He sent me away, telling me to return the following weekend, and he went to work designing the perfect grill brush.
When I came back, he had a dozen for me. Surprised, I asked why he’d made so many. It turns out that he, too, went to the Internet and found the myriad problems with metal grill brushes, and he was disgusted.
So why make one? He told me to give my buddies the rest.
I did just that. And then word spread to more friends and the next thing you know, I’m in business making and selling grill brushes. Well, Grill Sticks to be precise.
Our Grill Sticks are made from FSC Certified Appalachian American Red Oak that’s grown here, milled here, and crafted into the final product here — in the U.S. of A.
Directions for use:
Look, it’s a grill scraper. You know what to do here.
1. Get your grill super hot and scrape the junk off. Repeated use on hot grill grates will burn permanent grooves onto the Original Grill Stick making in easier to use over time.
2. Be proud that you aren’t leaving any nasty wire bristles to get onto your family’s food.
3. Remember, not all superheroes wear capes.
Care: Hand wash with a mild detergent, rinse and then dry right away.
Occasionally rub in some food grade mineral oil to keep the wood
from drying out. Or don’t do that last part. If you’re like me, you
probably won’t remember to do so and it really won’t cause any damage if you don’t.
But don’t say I didn’t put it in the directions.
Last but not least, look, don’t be an idiot and leave this thing unattended
on a burning grill. IT’S MADE OF WOOD!
Oh, and my lawyer wanted me to add that you should be wearing
heat-resistant gloves while using this. My lawyer doesn’t grill. He lawyer’s.
I don’t wear gloves when using mine, because America.