Outdoors

The backpack-friendly foldable GoBQ fabric grill

Tailgating with the folding GoBQ
Tailgating with the folding GoBQ
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The GoBQ's body and cooking grate fold up to fit in the carry case
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The GoBQ's body and cooking grate fold up to fit in the carry case
Packed up and ready to travel
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Packed up and ready to travel
With the available shoulder strap, you can carry the GoBQ like a messenger bag
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With the available shoulder strap, you can carry the GoBQ like a messenger bag
GoBQ grilling on the slopes
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GoBQ grilling on the slopes
The GoBQ grill is built from a heat-resistant fiberglass fabric
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The GoBQ grill is built from a heat-resistant fiberglass fabric
The GoBQ is built to take grilling beyond the normal boundaries
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The GoBQ is built to take grilling beyond the normal boundaries
Packing up the GoBQ grill
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Packing up the GoBQ grill
The GoBQ grill sets up in about 20 seconds
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The GoBQ grill sets up in about 20 seconds
The GoBQ is a charcoal grill
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The GoBQ is a charcoal grill
GoBQ's founders are trying to raise funding on Indiegogo
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GoBQ's founders are trying to raise funding on Indiegogo
The grill is designed to be carried by foot, bike, kayak, public transportation ...
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The grill is designed to be carried by foot, bike, kayak, public transportation ...
The GoBQ offers 196 sq in (1,267 sq cm) of cooking space
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The GoBQ offers 196 sq in (1,267 sq cm) of cooking space
Tailgating with the folding GoBQ
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Tailgating with the folding GoBQ
At home, the GoBQ can store neatly in a closet or drawer
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At home, the GoBQ can store neatly in a closet or drawer
The GoBQ packs up into a backpack for backcountry grilling
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The GoBQ packs up into a backpack for backcountry grilling

There are many portable tailgating grills on the market, but not many of them are compact enough to fold into a backpack or shoulder bag and carry by foot. The all-new GoBQ uses a foldable fabric construction to offer just that type of light, ultra-portable transport. You can use the grill to cook up lunch or dinner anywhere your feet can take you.

"Most people are more mobile these days," says GoBQ cofounder and CEO Todd Zaroban in introducing the grill. "They're not always driving cars. They're walking; they're taking public transportation."

Even many compact grills can prove quite heavy and cumbersome if you have to carry them by foot or public transit. Zaroban and GoBQ partner Eric Goeken attempt to offer a more versatile portable grill package by following a formula that has long worked for outdoor gear like tents and chairs: folding construction.

Instead of the solid metal chassis that is all but universal in portable grill construction, the GoBQ is built from a fireproof silicone-coated fiberglass fabric that can handle temperatures up to 1,200° F (648° C). According to GoBQ designers, the FDA-approved material is commonly used in other cookware applications like baking mats and oven conveyor belts. The fabric is secured into a set of folding legs and easily compacts into the included clamshell-style carry bag. The GoBQ has a hanging, chainmail-like charcoal holder and a rollable cooking grate to complete its packable design.

The GoBQ's body and cooking grate fold up to fit in the carry case
The GoBQ's body and cooking grate fold up to fit in the carry case

The GoBQ designers claim that their grill is the "first and only ultra-portable packable grill," but a quick review of the portable grills Gizmag has covered in the past reveals that to be a false claim. From backpacking stove grill add-ons to folding metal grills from ultralight cooking experts, and from titanium-staked grill nets to disposable foil grills, there are already many ultra-portable packable grills, and some weigh a fraction of the GoBQ's 8 lb (3.6 kg).

While the GoBQ isn't the first light, packable grill, it does offer a cooking form factor that is quite similar to the familiar charcoal kettle grills that many use for tailgating, camping and other outdoor activities. The grill has a 14 x 14-in (35.6 x 35.6-cm) cooking grate that offers more cooking area than the Weber Smokey Joe 14.

The GoBQ's heat-resistant fabric also comes with several other claimed advantages. It purportedly cools twice as fast as metal, speeding up the process of cooling the grill down enough to transport home. The fabric also insulates heat, making the outside cooler to the touch than a metal grill (though we're still sure you want to avoid grabbing it when it's firing on all cylinders).

Goeken and Zaroban have cycled through several prototypes to perfect their design and are now looking to bring it to market with help from the Indiegogo community. The US$99 pledge level has already sold out, but pledges of $120 are enough to secure a GoBQ grill, while $135 gets you a grill and carry strap. Assuming everything moves along as planned, GoBQ grills will begin shipping in August.

You can check out the team's pitch video below.

Source: Indiegogo, GoBQ Grills

GoBQ Indiegogo Campaign Video

3 comments
Tom Lee Mullins
I think it is not only useful for those who back pack but also who camp with trailers where space is at a premium; especially with small or tiny camper trailers.
Bob Flint
Guys, it's ironic that you show a campfire right beside this grill. So for $135 bucks you get to carry your grill, and bring it out, complete with coals, then lit it up, cook, and then presumably clean it somewhere, and get to haul it back home! Meanwhile the real outdoor camper can cook on the open fire, and in many cases grills are already in place. When they aren't then I bring a small metal version or roast on a stick, then every thing self consumes, & cleans.
Wolf0579
I remember a back-packing grill that had 1 square foot of cooking surface, and folded up to 1 ft. x 1 ft. x 1/2 ". It was stainless steel, and weighed about 2 lbs. I think it was called a pyromid grill. Sick efficient. It looked like an up-side down pyramid. You could cook a fat steak with about 5 or six briquettes. Don't know if they're still being made, but it was one of the best designs I had ever seen. Oh, I paid, I think about $60. for it.
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