Camco Olympian 6500 Stainless Steel Portable & RV Gas Grill Review
RV enthusiasts are always looking for ways to cook on the go. When the weather is hot, cooking inside can really tax the air conditioning system. Being able to bring a grill with you is nice, but space is limited, so finding one with a small footprint and other convenient features is a definite bonus.
Camco products is a company based out of the United States, and they are well-versed in the needs of RV enthusiasts, boaters, and people who love to camp. Their Olympian line of grills was designed to answer the need for a convenient portable grill with a small footprint for places where every square inch matters.
The Olympian 6500 propane grill was designed to store away easily. It hooks onto most standard RV rails, and some boat rails. At the same time, the 6500 also has folding legs, which let you use it just like any other portable grill. Weighing in at just 17 pounds it’s easy to take it with you when you’re on the go.
It was also designed to be able to handle the type of low-pressure propane systems you find with many recreational vehicles. This includes quick connected hoses and valves. The burner element produces a respectable 14,000 BTUs of heat.
Construction & Ease of Assembly
Camco used something stainless steel in the construction of the Olympian 6500. This was likely a weight saving move as much as a cost-cutting measure. It also means that the grill can sometimes struggle to retain heat in cold or windy conditions. It’s not the type of grill for slow and low grilling. The 14000 BTUs are meant more for high heat searing.
There is also a “Smoker Plate” which is more of a heat diffuser. Unfortunately, it’s not made from the same commercial grade stainless steel as the exterior and other components. So, you shouldn’t be surprised if it looks a little corroded as time goes on.
There are some potentially sharp corners and edges to keep an eye out for. A quick little buffing with a fine-tooth mill file might be in order.
There isn’t much in the way of assembly. You should be able to unbox it and have it put together in a little over half an hour.
Have no doubt about it, this is meant to be a direct heat, searing grill. It does its best with meats and vegetables that like to be seared and roasted. This includes things like hamburger patties, bratwursts, and boneless pork chops. Kebobs will also work very well. It can also handle fish fillets and asparagus in a clamping wire basket.
If you want to grill something with a bone in it, you will need to take extra measures to keep from burning the outside while the inside cooks through. Wrapping it in heavy-duty aluminum foil might help.
The burner produces 14,000 BTUs per hour. So, there’s more than enough flame to sear off a Steak. Just keep in mind that the relative thing stainless steel can make it sensitive to wind and cold weather. If possible, try to place it where it’s sheltered from straight-line wind gusts.
The primary grill grate provides 180 square inches of cooking space. This is more than enough room to grill up hamburger patties or bratwursts.
The regulator and the quick connect hoses and valve are a nice touch that you don’t always find with other portable grills. It can also handle a low-pressure propane system. This helps move the Olympian 6500 toward the top of the list for RV owners who are in the market for a small convenient grill.
Ease to Clean
There isn’t a lot to the Olympian 6500 to clean up. The grates will need to be scraped clean. It helps to leave the flame to burn on low for five or six minutes after you are done cooking. This will essentially “Bake” any stuck-on debris and grease for easier scouring.
If you cooked something with a lot of grease, juices or excess marinade, you should also give the “Smoker Plate” heat diffuser a good wipe down. Just make sure everything has cooled down first.
Since the grill is likely going to be stored away after each use, you might want to also give the exterior a good wipe down with some shop rags or a few clean paper towels. The occasional exterior cleaning with a stainless steel appliance cleaning spray would also be a nice touch. The last thing you want is for any external spatter to end up transferring to other items in your RV or boat storage bins.
The Camco Olympian 6500 comes with a 12-month warranty from the original date of purchase. You also need to register the unit to be able to claim the grill. This is a little lower than some of the other grills in this niche and price range which come with a two-year warranty.
The Camco Olympian 6500 has some features that are very appealing for RV owners and individuals who have an appliance rail on their boat. It can handle low-pressure propane systems or be set up with a standard tank. The quick-connect valves and hoses also make it very convenient. If you want you can take it off the RV rail and still use it as a portable grill for times when you are away from an RV park or “Home Base.”
If you are just looking for a portable grill, and you don’t happen to own an RV, there might be other options that will be more versatile, and affordable. It all depends on where and how you want to use it.
- Quick connect propane hoses and valves
- Designed to handle a low-pressure propane system
- Fits firmly on an RV mounting rail
- 14,000 BTUs per hour of heat
- Only weighs 17 pounds
- Smoker plate is prone to corrosion
- Stainless steel is somewhat thin
- Sensitive to strong winds and cold weather
- The grill grate is only 180 square inches
- Only has a 12-month warranty