Comparing Travel Buddy & Road Chef Camp Ovens
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Comparing Travel Buddy & Road Chef Camp Ovens

– A 12 volt camp oven is
the ultimate accessory, but Travel Buddy or Road
Chef, that’s the question. (upbeat music) Hey guys, it’s Lauren from Snowys here. I’ve got in front of me
the Road Chef by Camp Easy and my very own beloved Travel Buddy, both 12 volt ovens awesome for
fresh baked goods on the go, and a really common question
is how do they compare. So, let’s take a look. At a glance, both units
are really similar. We have the same dimensions
of around 32 centimetres wide, 30 centimetres deep and
about 20 centimetres tall, and internally, we are
also looking at 27 across, about 25 centimetres deep, and approximately 10 centimetres high. In terms of materials, both
units are 100% insulated stainless steel and both weighing in at around about 5 kilos each. Now when we are comparing them, the main differences are the features, so we’ll take a closer look at those. The first thing let’s have a look at is our mounting brackets. Now, on the Road Chef here,
we have a provision for both floor mounting and also roof mounting. Whereas on the Travel Buddy,
we only have a provision for the floor mounting, and these come with the
brackets here that simply just slip in like this with a screw point. We also don’t have any Travel
Buddy mounting brackets here to show you they do come with them. Now, on the front here, let’s
take a look at the doors. On the Road Chef, we have our
stainless steel door latch. On the Travel Buddy, we
have a little door knob. Now as you can see here, a hot
surface on the Travel Buddy. This is because the door
itself gets hot when in use due to there not being any
insulation on the inside here. Whereas the Road Chef,
does have a fully insulated front panel. Now both ovens come with two oven racks and each of the oven racks
have a little pin function there that sits underneath your rails, which means that neither
trays will bounce around whilst you’re driving. Now, in terms of the quality of the units, both are really solid. They’re both made from
really great quality steel. There is a bit of a
difference in the finishing. I think that comes down to the Road Chef being factory made, whereas the Travel Buddy being hand made. Now at this point, I do
also want to point out, because the Travel Buddy
is my loved unit from home, it’s taken a bit of beating,
so it’s not as pretty as the ones that you get
straight out of the box. A hot tip that we just got in
from another Snowys customer is you can get these
awesome stainless steel, custom trays for your oven. You can either get two half
trays or a single full tray from some of your metal works in Victoria, and that really adds versatility to how you’re using your oven. Now moving down here, we
can see the difference between the two knobs are pretty obvious. Now having had a play with both of them, I personally quite like the
Travel Buddy knobs better. They’re just a bit easier
to grab onto and turn. The difference in temperature
settings we’ve got here. The Travel Buddy can go up
to a maximum of 200 degrees whereas your Road Chef
has a maximum of 180. Another main point of
difference is your Travel Buddy has a timer that goes up to two hours, however it also does have
a straight run function, and your unit is running for
an unlimited period of time, whereas your Road Chef has
a timer for 120 minutes or two hours, and that’s your limit. Now your Travel Buddy is
drawing 10 amps from 120 watts, whereas your Road Chef is
drawing 8.3 amps from 100 watts. So, with both units being
fairly power hungry, they’re designed to be
used whilst your driving. Now in terms of power, on our
cabling here with Road Chef, we have a Anderson plug at the end of a 110 centimetre cable, and it also comes with an
Anderson to 12 volt or merit plug. Cable extension, which is
approximately 30 centimetres long. The Travel Buddy itself comes
with a 160 centimetre cable and I’ve done a DIY
modification on mine to put an Anderson plug on, but it
will actually come with your 12 volt and merit plug attachment. Now, I’ve moved to the Anderson plug for more consistent power, as well as the fact that sometimes when you’re driving off road
or the road’s fairly bumpy, your 12 volt can come loose. A really good point to note at this stage is that if you do decide
to do what I’ve done and chop off your 12 volt and
chuck an Anderson plug on, you’re not going to be
voiding your warranty. Now we’ve preloaded the Road
Chef and the Travel Buddy full of party pies and pasties. We’re gonna set our
temperature, set our timer. Ideally, you should be
preheating your units before you’re gonna cook
them, but we haven’t here. We’re gonna do a side
by side cook comparison and come back and see the results. Right guys, we’re back. So, both of our ovens have
been cooking at 180 degrees for about 60 minutes, or one hour. In terms of a heat test,
both of the units are not hot on the outside at all. You definitely are able to
touch them without an issue. Interestingly enough, now
despite the fact that the Road Chef itself has the
insulated door panel, both doors got quite hot
in the process of cooking. And we did bit of an
experiment with the Snowys crew and between all of us, we
couldn’t really determine which one was hotter or
not, which is interesting. Now, I’m pretty excited. Let’s have a look at the pies. All right, let’s open this up here. See what we’re working with. Okay. Whoa, look at that. Beautiful. Right, so first up, let’s
have a bit of a test test, crunch test, of our Road Chef pie. Now a little bit soft on the bottom. Mmm, it’s hot, but not burning my mouth
and actually quite crispy. As I said before, a little
bit soft on the bottom, but it’s got a nice crunch to it. Right, Travel Buddy. Also a bit soft on the bottom. A little bit– (coughs) Sorry, a little bit hotter in the centre. Although, probably a tiny bit less crispy than the Road Chef. All right, let’s shut these up and go. Now both 12 volt camper ovens come from Australian-owned businesses. The Travel Buddy is handmade in Victoria and that contributes to low supply issues for the high demand of the oven. And that’s one of the reasons why Snowys got the Road Chef in. Now whilst it is made in China, there are a lot of fantastic quality stuff that comes out of China, and this oven looks like
one of those things. As someone who owns a Travel Buddy, and I really really love it, having reviewed the Road Chef, I’m actually really pleasantly surprised and I think it’s a fantastic alternative. However, if you want Australian made and you don’t mind the wait, the Travel Buddy is the one for you. You can get both of these awesome ovens at If you have any questions or comments, chuck them below, give us a
like, or head here to subscribe. Catch you later, Snowys fam. I’m gonna eat my pies! (upbeat music)

About Earl Carter

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13 thoughts on “Comparing Travel Buddy & Road Chef Camp Ovens

  1. At 4.10 when you mention adding the Anderson plug to the travel buddy did you also add inline fuse to replace fuse in cig plug ? Thanks

  2. Got travel buddy did same mod with Anderson plug as supplied plug melted but still more then happy with travel buddy for the win

  3. The thing not mentioned and I am very interested in is – how much power did each oven use over the 60 minute period? Putting a watt (power) meter inline with each would be a good thing for the comparison. The Road Chef has a lower current draw so the heating element was probably on for a longer time than the Travel Buddy – probably.

  4. Hi snowys, thanks for the review Lauren
    Can I ask if you (or anyone else) has ever had an issue with the travel buddy door opening while driving over rough terrain?

  5. Thanks for the video and the info about the were to get the trays. I brought my travel buddy from you about a year age and have waited to find someone who custom makes the trays. My tray arrived today and it is a perfect fit and great quality.

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