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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Old 04-15-2014, 06:59 PM   #1
jetfxr27
is one Smokin' Farker
 
Join Date: 09-30-09
Location: Memphis
Default Any Tips for a new XL BGE owner

This is my first ceramic cooker. Most of my experience is on a drum, kettle and gasser.

I've done a handful of cooks. Ham, ribs, burgers, deer kabobs all ready. Ran it wide open with 16 bags of royal oak lump man did it get hot.

Coming from a drum, intake is everything. Exhaust stays wide open. It seems on an egg I need to learn both.

So what are some tips for the new user?

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Last edited by jetfxr27; 04-15-2014 at 07:47 PM..
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Old 04-15-2014, 07:03 PM   #2
jimbonelson
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I have had 1 for less then a year, ask lots of questions, learn how to control temps, watch youtube videos and experiment, I love mine
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Old 04-15-2014, 07:16 PM   #3
fingerlickin'
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For me, if I'm looking to keep temps under 250* I have to have the daisy wheel almost all the way closed. Meaning the sliding part closed and the openings on the wheel set to about half way. If that makes sense.

I don't worry too much about the bad smoke that I do with my WSM or drum. It's a different animal.

I posted this a while ago on how I load my egg, not sure if that helps ya.

http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/sh...hlight=set+egg
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Old 04-15-2014, 08:18 PM   #4
Beakers
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Join Date: 04-11-14
Location: Denver CO
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Do a "no food" burn first and eggsperiment w/the temp control. BGE's (all ceramic cookers) can rocket past a target temp quickly. Creep up to the target, it is easier to go up then come back down. Especially if your ceramic has become heat soaked. Air flow plus fuel = heat. I have owned a large for @ 4 years now and love it. Can do L&S, H&F, bake, fry, just about anything. Very versatile cooker only limited w/the space you have to cook and your imagination. Low and slow I will have the bottom vent open @ 1/8 - 1/4 inch and the top open @ the same. It will take @ 45-60 minutes to get the ceramic to your target temp and the smoke where you want it...

Good luck!
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Old 04-15-2014, 09:23 PM   #5
Drake
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Join Date: 09-09-13
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Always make sure to "burp" it when doing high temp cooks.
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Old 04-15-2014, 11:36 PM   #6
ajstrider
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Join Date: 09-02-12
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I have had mine for a few months now, also my first ceramic. I come from drums, WSM, and pellet smokers. I also like to cook around 250ish. So I feel like I was in the same boat you are. Here are some things I have learned and done to help me on mine.

I quickly learned once up to temperature, they need very little air flow. Way less than I even anticipated. I barely have my slider open, and my top vent is probably a little less than half way. This puts my stock temperature dial at about 300ish, which seems to be about 250 at the grate level. Once I ease it up to temperature, it always seems to climb another 50 degrees after sitting there for about 30 to 45 minutes, so I shoot for 250 on the dial and it will normally climb up to the 300. Enough about temperature control I guess.

I don't need much smoking wood, the lump seems to put off a real nice thin smoke that keeps me happy.

I am not overly thrilled with stock vent cap, since it rains a lot when I am smoking it seems. So I bought this


It also shuts down the smoker fine without needing to put that ceramic cap on. Smokeware makes some neat accessories, I also have one of their grill grate/plate setter holders that hooks onto the legs of the nest.

Speaking of shutting down the smoker, make sure all vents are closed up good, just a little air keeps this thing going for a long time. It can be forever until it cools down enough to put a cover on. I purchased one of these covers for mine, and I love it



I read that you are suppose to make sure all the circle vent openings in the charcoal grate are open too, they tend to plug with ash. Though this seems to be less of a problem with the XL because its charcoal grate is much larger with many more holes. To make it easier to get at these holes, I crafted an expanded metal charcoal basket that I can just pick up and shake out the ash, clean the holes, clean the ash out of the bottom , and start cooking a lot easier. This may not be necessary, but it helps me out.

The cooker will freeze shut on you in cold weather!!! This sucks, there is a youtube video I found that shows how to get it open if you need to cook without tearing apart your gaskets.

I think this pretty much sums up my experiences so far.
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Old 04-16-2014, 10:58 AM   #7
rwalters
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Join Date: 06-08-12
Location: Sacramento CA
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In addition to this forum, I'd encourage you to also join us kamado nuts over at www.kamadoguru.com

The forum is run by fellow brethren John Setzler, and just like bbq brethren, is an INCREDIBLE resource/forum.
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Old 04-16-2014, 11:08 AM   #8
pvcollie
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Join Date: 08-12-05
Location: FL
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drake View Post
Always make sure to "burp" it when doing high temp cooks.
Yepper, that's a good one. Or if you have closed the vents then decide to open it back up. Don't ask how I know!!
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Old 04-16-2014, 11:45 AM   #9
jetfxr27
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Join Date: 09-30-09
Location: Memphis
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drake View Post
Always make sure to "burp" it when doing high temp cooks.
Learned this a few times the hard way. My egg also doesnt open all the way (not high enough in table) it'll definitely get ya.
Quote:
Originally Posted by ajstrider View Post
The cooker will freeze shut on you in cold weather!!! This sucks, there is a youtube video I found that shows how to get it open if you need to cook without tearing apart your gaskets.
Had this happen as well. Just bought new gaskets and here I am ripping them apart.
My solution was opening bottom and top. Pouring in the 90% isopropyl alcohol I use to start my fire, then dropping in a match. Once it came up to temp the ice melted.

Thanks everyone for the tips, it looks like the biggest part is bringing her up slow and expecting a little overshoot. Very fine tuning on the inlet. I have been bringing her up fast, say 700*,then fighting her back down.
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