I have an older Lang 1160 (similar to an 84). I lay down a bid of unlit charcoal framed by 3 splits of hickory. I then add 1 lit chimney of charcoal. It takes about 45 minutes to come up to 280+-. I then bring the temps down to 250-260 and add meat at that time.
Hance - Lake Dogs Cooking Team - MiM/MBN/GBA CBJ and comp cook
Lake Sinclair, GA (strategically about an hour from darn near anywhere)
Started competing in chili cookoffs back in the 1990's and have competed in more than I care to count. I became a CBJ in MiM in 2005, then MBN and in GBA in 2010. I've probably judged 130+- BBQ comps (sanctioned and unsanctioned) over this time. That said, I really enjoy competing more than I enjoy judging, and hope to get back to doing 4 or 5 a year in the near future.