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Old 11-11-2008, 11:21 AM   #1
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off-set fire maintenance

I have been doing some timkering with fire maintenance and wonder if the methods I usemake the moste sense. I wonder how you all deal with fire maintenance on your off-sets?

Here's what I have tried:
http://slowfoodrebellion.blogspot.com

What could I do differently?
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Old 11-11-2008, 12:40 PM   #2
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When I had a big offset smoker I would burn red oak down to coals and then add one or two hickory splits every hour or so.

Smaller offsets work good with a charcoal basket and wood chunks as long as there are no unwanted holes in the fire box.
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Old 11-11-2008, 02:06 PM   #3
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Old 11-11-2008, 02:22 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cliff H.
When I had a big offset smoker I would burn red oak down to coals and then add one or two hickory splits every hour or so.

Smaller offsets work good with a charcoal basket and wood chunks as long as there are no unwanted holes in the fire box.
Ditto. A good bed of coals is key as well as preheated DRY wood! The wood should pretty much instantaneously ignite, not smolder....
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Old 11-11-2008, 08:07 PM   #5
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[quote=Larry Wolfe]
Quote:
Originally Posted by "Cliff H.":71o7soyh
When I had a big offset smoker I would burn red oak down to coals and then add one or two hickory splits every hour or so.

Smaller offsets work good with a charcoal basket and wood chunks as long as there are no unwanted holes in the fire box.
Ditto. A good bed of coals is key as well as preheated DRY wood! The wood should pretty much instantaneously ignite, not smolder....[/quote:71o7soyh]That is pretty much the way ole Dave Klose told to me to do it. Pre heating the wood ignites pretty quick and seems easier to control fire. If I'm trying to keep a temp of 225-275 I will add 1-2 pieces of wood every 30-40 minutes or if I'm trying to maintain 300-350 it will take 3-4 pieces. Also found that the type of wood I'm burning makes a difference too.
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Old 11-12-2008, 12:48 PM   #6
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I have a small offset... I like to use lump and bank the fire...I use the lump for heat and the wood for flavor....I can get at least a 2.5hr burn with out playing with anything and the temp stays solid
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Old 11-12-2008, 01:25 PM   #7
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Never thought of preheating the wood. My Horizon has a heating plate on the firebox - great idea!

As far as using charcoal - here are some thoughts I have. I am trying to stick with wood because for me it's cheaper. I can but 900lbs for $50. Of course, I have to haul it and cut it - but that's kind of fun.

That said - perhaps that simply isn't a good idea. Maybe spending the money on charcoal - at least for a bet of coals will produce a better product- which is the point.

I'm taking lots of notes and learning a lot from y'all. Thanks! Keep your thoughts coming if you have 'em. Any of you use strictly wood for fuel?
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Old 11-12-2008, 01:46 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monty3777
Never thought of preheating the wood. My Horizon has a heating plate on the firebox - great idea!

As far as using charcoal - here are some thoughts I have. I am trying to stick with wood because for me it's cheaper. I can but 900lbs for $50. Of course, I have to haul it and cut it - but that's kind of fun.
That said - perhaps that simply isn't a good idea. Maybe spending the money on charcoal - at least for a bet of coals will produce a better product- which is the point.

I'm taking lots of notes and learning a lot from y'all. Thanks! Keep your thoughts coming if you have 'em. Any of you use strictly wood for fuel?
Come on over to my house and you can have lots of fun.
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Old 11-12-2008, 02:34 PM   #9
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At the time I got my offset...I could get charcoal cheap..good stuff..cheap in 40lb bags..anyway

With the way I do it...I don't get the temp spikes from adding wood..then it catches...temp spike..then it calms down...then its time to add more wood...ect....

Keep in mind its a small offset and it works for me...The big thing is doing what works for you and having fun experimenting
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My Bark is as good as my Bite!

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Old 11-12-2008, 02:54 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wittdog
At the time I got my offset...I could get charcoal cheap..good stuff..cheap in 40lb bags..anyway

With the way I do it...I don't get the temp spikes from adding wood..then it catches...temp spike..then it calms down...then its time to add more wood...ect....

Keep in mind its a small offset and it works for me...The big thing is doing what works for you and having fun experimenting
Researching this topic has been a blast. I love to tend fires and it's amazing how many of my assumptions about what makes a good fire have been wrong. I have also been suprised at how little there is out there on this topic!!
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