How much charcoal do you start with? - BBQ Central

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Old 06-24-2008, 01:25 PM   #1
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How much charcoal do you start with?

I start with a full chiminy and pour it over a full WSM ring of unlit coals. The temp usually goes right up and tops out at around 150 - then i can adjust the air flow and it usually takes 20 or so minutes to get back to 225. It seems to work very well for me *so far .
However i do use alot of coal.

How Do You Start the Burn? Thanks



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Old 06-24-2008, 01:49 PM   #2
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I start with a full chiminy in the whole hog pit. That will keep 20 pounds of lump going on a whole hog cook for about 12-15 hours. 2 sheets of news paper in the chiminy works fine for me. (your mileage may vary)
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Old 06-24-2008, 02:44 PM   #3
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I usually start my cooks using the minion method as I can catch my target temps on the way up and it has worked great thus far. Once the cook is done I just close all the vents on my WSM then I reuse the left over coals on my next cook.
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Old 06-24-2008, 03:31 PM   #4
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DB, how can you fit a full chimney of lit on top of a full charcoal ring in the WSM? That seems like a lot!
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Old 06-24-2008, 03:31 PM   #5
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I usually start with just under a full unlit charcoal ring in the WSM, place my wood chunks on top and then light about 15 or so briquettes in the chimney and spread them evenly over the unlit. It takes about 30-40 minutes to get it up to temp I would guess.
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Old 06-24-2008, 04:24 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Rempe
DB, how can you fit a full chimney of lit on top of a full charcoal ring in the WSM? That seems like a lot!
The ring is usually overflowing a bit after i add the coals. I use alot of charcoal though. When I saw someone else on another thread using about 20 briquettes I about fell over. I want to use less charcoal even though I havent had trouble with my temps (even in the sun i have shut it down to 225 fairly easy)
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Old 06-24-2008, 04:54 PM   #7
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Classic Minion Method is no more then 20 coals lit...but whatever works for you, DB!!
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Old 06-24-2008, 05:02 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greg Rempe
Classic Minion Method is no more then 20 coals lit...but whatever works for you, DB!!
Shoot, no wonder this doesn't work for me...I've been using 21. Damn!!
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Old 06-24-2008, 05:34 PM   #9
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I have one of the cheap chimneys that doesn't hold as much as a Weber chimney. I start with a full ring of lump charcoal, then I pack it together to create a space at one side (the side where my Stoker's blower is mounted) big enough to hold a full chimney of lit coals. That creates space for me to dump the lit coals, and also packs the lump tightly together for a good, consistent burn. Then, when the chimney is going good I dump it into the space I made for it. I put the meat on immediately. I use a "Piedmont Pan", so no water to heat up. I find that it doesn't take very long for the temperature to come up to the Stoker's setting (250 for butts). While I'm probably using more lit coals than the typical Minion method user, I don't have any problems with temperatures overshooting my setting - probably due to the Stoker. With the other two bottom vents closed, the fire can't really "run away" and it spreads through the unlit charcoal at a reasonable rate.
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Old 06-24-2008, 07:25 PM   #10
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When I'm doing an overnighter (full char ring on WSM), I'll start with 3/4 weber chimney full, but let that burn down to 1/2-1/4 so they are ashed/glowing ... then dump that into a shallow that I've made in the center of the full ring, but then move some of the hot pieces around the bowl with tongs. The wood is usually buried in the ring char (straight up) before adding the hot char.
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Old 06-24-2008, 08:08 PM   #11
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This past weekend when I did the 6 shoulders, I had a full ring, less 1/2 chimney of charcol. Then I lit 1/2 a chimney and off it went. With that much meat on it you need more lit in the beginning to get the temp up. It probaly too close to an hour to get to temp. I also really stacked the coals in the ring also, I needed a long burn.
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Old 06-25-2008, 12:44 PM   #12
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One thing I find on the WSM is that it works well for me to raise the temperature above the ideal 225 - 250, normally as high as 275 - 280 before I put the water pan in.

I then load in the water pan, hot water and the bottom rack, fill it with meat, then the top rack and fill that one too, put the lid on, and it is still in the 250 F at the lid 235 top grate zone, right from the start.

By doing it this way I don't have long to wait before the pit is running along at 250 in the lid, and it takes just a little fiddling with the vents for it to then run all day or all night, without worries.
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Old 06-25-2008, 12:57 PM   #13
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I'm with stogie, depends on what meat I'm smoking.

I also bring my WSM to temp by leaving the side door off for a couple of mins after I put the WSM together. The extra air gets the temp to 250 in about 5 mins. then I put the door on, adjust the vents and forget about it for a while.
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Old 06-25-2008, 04:05 PM   #14
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I fill the firering with unlit and then take a weed burner and get the right amount of coals burning on top to do the job, got tired of having a charcoal chimney to replace and weed burners are just plain fun.

Jim
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Old 06-25-2008, 04:37 PM   #15
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"Charcoal?"
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Old 06-25-2008, 04:58 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Woodman
"Charcoal?"
Yea woody, why use that when ya got gas! Ooops I have never herd a gasser pop off at a comp. Only every hour or so.
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Old 06-25-2008, 06:02 PM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jminion
I fill the firering with unlit and then take a weed burner and get the right amount of coals burning on top to do the job, got tired of having a charcoal chimney to replace and weed burners are just plain fun.

Jim
and so it was quoted "weed burners are just plain fun" hahahahaaaa thanks everyone!
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