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Author Topic: Your feel good story of the day - kettle karma at its best (Red Ranger)  (Read 1285 times)


  • WKC Brave
  • Posts: 322
Oh wow.  Not sure how to even start this one out, sorry if I ramble.  So I have had a LOT of luck finding rare kettles in the trash or just seeing them in the wild; found my D code MBH yellow in my neighborhood spray painted black on trash night, spotted a red ranger a few weeks later in my neighborhood that I unsuccessfully cold called, when I picked up my steal-of-a-deal N code dark green econokettle last week, I spotted a MBH of the same color two mobile homes down (still waiting to hear back on that).  My best friend Tom @tomtappel, and I often talk about kettles and he is always wondering how myself and my brother @Bob BQ, have all the luck in finding great deals or getting rare kettles as he is always the second or third one in line when something in St. Louis goes up on CL, OfferUp etc. 

When I spotted the red A code 26 bowl and lid in the trash on my way to work 2 weeks ago, I turned the car around and grabbed it with Tom in mind.  I didn't know it was 26 on the drive by but when I discovered that it was 26 and saw the condition (no straps, multiple holes where they should be) I thought maybe I could fix it up myself but wasn't sure.  After posting pics here, I was contacted by a number of members with very generous trade and cash offers for the bowl and lid.  I knew that Bob had the rare parts to restore the red 26 to its glory that I didn't have and he really wanted it (he let me know numerous times after I texted him the initial pictures) and that he may be able to help me get a grill for Tom, so a deal was struck.  I would be getting a blue 22" as a surprise for Tom, and a lime smokey joe for myself.  After returning home from the Chicago meetup, Bob had the blue and he even threw in a Weber Fireplace which will be a fun fall project to restore (the NIB lime SJ will be delivered tomorrow!).  I was so excited, couldn't wait to clean up the blue (didn't take too much work) and see the look on Tom's face when I gave it to him.  I was able to give the blue to Tom today, it was a great surprise and hopefully he will post pics of it and his first cook on it soon.  *Story continues after pictures*

Photo from the night @Bob BQ came over to make initial trade: L-R - My dark green econokettle, M code Blue for @tomtappel, my D code yellow and the A code red 26er in front

M code Blue all cleaned up and ready to give to Tom.  She is wearing wood handles for my green that I borrowed from Bob until I can order a set from Brian.  I LOVE the reflection of the clouds in the lid.


Any Packers fans out there?

All three cleaned up and one last shot before heading to Tom's

Back to the story.  So I have been feeling VERY confident lately (especially after finding the red 26 and green econokettle within a week of each other) and I have felt like luck was on my side. Remember the red ranger mentioned earlier?  Well after turning me down, the man who owned her did let me take some pictures of her and not long after, the kettle disappeared.  My guess is that he put it away in a basement or garage after realizing he let a total stranger take pictures of his grill.  It hasn't been seen for more than 3 years.  Yesterday, riding the wave of confidence,  and knowing I was going to be giving Tom his kettle today and hoping that kettle karma is real, I typed the man a short letter, reminding him that I stopped by a few years back while taking my daughter on a walk and was hoping he had a change of heart, etc etc) and left it in his door.  I figured this was a better way to communicate than me ringing his bell and stumbling over words again.  Today, during dinner, my phone goes off and it is a number that I don't recognize.  I let it go to voicemail because it was a memorial dinner for a coworker who recently passed but as soon as I got into the car I listened to the message.  It was the guy (his name is Don King, which rules).  He said he was going to be home all day and call him back.  After psyching myself up and going over different scenarios (were there any cheap kettles on CL if he wanted to trade, how to explain to my wife an atm withdrawal should he want money, how to respond if he said "no") I called.  He picked up and I identified myself.  He said, "Well I put the pit in the backyard, you can come by whenever and get it."  Me: "Wait, what?  How much would you like for it?" -Don King: Nothing.  If it means that much to you that you try again after all this time.  You can just have it.  I don't BBQ anymore and it is just sitting there." Me: "Are you sure?  Are you serious?  Wow!  I can't thank you enough!"  Don King: "Don't worry about it, just come and get it when you get a chance."  I was able to find out that he purchased it from a long closed local hardware store called Central Hardware in the city (south St. Louis) at their going out of business sale.  He thought it was "around 50 years ago."  Needless to say when I got home, I immediately went for a walk, got my new kettle and wheeled it home. As I was wheeling it down my street my next door neighbors were driving by, slowed rolled the window and jokingly asked "How many of those do you need?!"  I just laughed and kept on going.  I can't wait to clean this bad boy up and restore it.  It is going to be a fun fall project and will definitely be on display at the St. Louis Meet Up!  It was such a great night!  This rescue only took 3 3/4s years, but MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!!!!

My new toy:

My stoplight of grills:
« Last Edit: August 11, 2017, 05:20:38 PM by Lowbrass »
Statesman, Burnt Orange Ranger, 1979 Weathered Warrior, 1982 D Code Yellow, 1991 N Code Hunter Green Economy Kettle, U-Line Lime Green SJ, 14" and 18" WSM

Grail list (help a brother out!): 18" Blue (no logo), Wave Blue SJ, 18" or 22" Lime, Glen Blue

pbe gummi bear

  • Statesman
  • Posts: 8097
Congrats, man. I enjoyed your story. Rangers are awesome.
"Have you hugged your Weber today?"
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  • Smokey Joe
  • Posts: 85
thats awesome, red rangers!!


  • WKC Ranger
  • Posts: 1835
Holy shit.  That is awesome, congrats.  Kettle Karma is real, y'all. 

Sent from my iPhone using Weber Kettle Club mobile app


  • WKC Ranger
  • Posts: 1077
That is awesome.

Bob BQ

  • WKC Performer
  • Posts: 3015
Here's the text msg I got from @Lowbrass (no words, just the pic)... 

I promptly shit myself. In a good way.

Unbelievable. Congrats, Tommy!

Sent from my iPhone using a FREE RED RANGER!?!
« Last Edit: July 16, 2017, 06:45:50 PM by Bob BQ »
BBQ:it's what's for dinner. Grails ISO: Red SJ & a Yachtsman (18" yellow).

“The real secret to the unique flavor of grilled food is not the fuel, but the drippings. As these complex chemicals combust, they coat the food with a panoply of aromatic and delicious compounds.”

Scott Zee

  • WKC Ranger
  • Posts: 1187
OMG, the ranger...  :o       AWESOME!!!!    congrats     8)
drink a little drink, smoke a little smoke    8)
It's not just a grill, it's a WEBER grill
looking for a vintage wok.


  • WKC Ranger
  • Posts: 721
Nice story on that ranger!  That's a lot of kettle karma.

Sent from my iPhone using Weber Kettle Club mobile app


  • Smokey Joe
  • Posts: 54
Thanks again Tom. I just put the blue away to keep her away from the storm lol

Sent from my iPhone using Weber Kettle Club mobile app

Mike in Roseville

  • WKC Brave
  • Posts: 453
Wow! Simply wow!

Congrats my friend.
On the hunt for: "E" Code 18/22 WSM


  • WKC Ambassador
  • Posts: 5481
Your feel good story of the day - kettle karma at its best (Red Ranger)
« Reply #10 on: July 16, 2017, 07:50:09 PM »
Very nicely done. Congrats!!

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
« Last Edit: July 17, 2017, 05:30:56 AM by Travis »


  • WKC Brave
  • Posts: 322
Thanks everyone.  It was very surreal wheeling that thing home tonight!  Pretty cool to know that I won't have to slow down anymore when passing his house to see if it is there.  Also, I bought a Powerball ticket tonight.
« Last Edit: July 16, 2017, 09:44:10 PM by Lowbrass »
Statesman, Burnt Orange Ranger, 1979 Weathered Warrior, 1982 D Code Yellow, 1991 N Code Hunter Green Economy Kettle, U-Line Lime Green SJ, 14" and 18" WSM

Grail list (help a brother out!): 18" Blue (no logo), Wave Blue SJ, 18" or 22" Lime, Glen Blue


  • WKC Brave
  • Posts: 316

Sent from my SM-G955U using Weber Kettle Club mobile app


  • Statesman
  • Posts: 8390

What a great fricken story!!!
You are my hero man.


  • WKC Ranger
  • Posts: 987
What a great story!  Congrats, it looks to be in very good shape!