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Old 10-23-2011, 04:42 PM   #1
is One Chatty Farker
Join Date: 06-04-11
Location: San Jose, Ca.
Default Ceramics and types of Charcoal?

Here's one I haven't figured out.....

What is the reason for using only lump in a ceramic cooker? I know regular briquettes produce more ash and don't get AS hot as lump, but they can still get pretty dang hot as anyone with a weber kettle will agree.

I'm not looking for, "Because the instructions say......"

I'm trying to understand the reasoning behind the instructions.

Do any of you ceramic guys use only regular briquettes?
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Old 10-23-2011, 06:22 PM   #2
somebody shut me the fark up.
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Join Date: 10-27-06
Location: Bothell WA

Years before I got a Big Green Egg, I had been using an Imperial Kamado (not very well I might add) and my neighbor let me make a copy of his Pachinko Palace Kamado instruction manual and cookbook.

It gives firing instructions for the amount of briqs to use for the various sized Kamados.

If you click on pages 8,9,&10 it covers some of the firing techniques. Years ago I remember Pachinko Palace, Uwajimaya's and Pirates Plunder also sold some very expensive Japanese Oak lump in boxes for the Kamados, Hibachis and Yakitori grills.
I also recall the lump extinguishing pots for sale too.
It could have been this stuff

So, the lump had been around for centuries, but when servicemen returning from overseas brought back Kamados, briqs were probably easier to come by than lump in some areas? Thats my guess.

I don't think its chiseled in stone anywhere that you must use lump, I had some Wicked Good briqs and they worked fantastic in the BGE and I used briqs in the Imperial Kamado, you just have to clear the ash more often.

These were originally rice cookers, so figure the evolution of them to what they are today is trial and error. The slide damper to replace the plug, hinges to relace the lid handles, ceramics, rotisseries and even gas fired models to stainless steel clad are all part of the progression.

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Old 10-23-2011, 06:45 PM   #3
is One Chatty Farker
Join Date: 06-04-11
Location: San Jose, Ca.

Gorgeous collection. Very cool.

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Old 10-23-2011, 07:02 PM   #4
Bob Wiley
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Originally Posted by tortaboy View Post
Here's one I haven't figured out.....

What is the reason for using only lump in a ceramic cooker?
Never heard that before.
Both work fine.
Lump is cleaner.
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Old 10-23-2011, 08:00 PM   #5
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The various ceramic cookers have a small area in the bottom for ash, so using a low ash fuel is essential, especially for long cooks. Too much ash will interfere with the air flow. All hardwood briquettes like Kingsford Competition would probably be fine, but regular Kingsford wouldn't be a good choice.
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Old 10-23-2011, 08:08 PM   #6
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Join Date: 11-27-08
Location: Ormond Beach, Florida

I only use lump in my egg because of ash, when i used charcoal it has to be cleaned out each use, not with lump
Weber Spirit E-310 Gasser
1 - Big Green Egg - Large
2 - 22.5 Weber Kettles
2 - 18.5 Weber Kettle
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Old 10-23-2011, 08:28 PM   #7
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Join Date: 07-08-10
Location: Boyertown, PA

I'm still pretty new to my XL BGE but I'm sure what everyone says about the ash is true. All I know is I'm like 8 cooks in with my last full load of Wicked Good Weekend Warrior and I still have ton of hours left in there. It's unbelievable how efficient this thing has been. That's including at least two 12 hour cooks. I haven't tried briquettes in there yet but I don't think I ever will.
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Old 10-23-2011, 09:20 PM   #8
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Join Date: 02-21-09
Location: Knoxville, TN

Chris Lilly uses Kingsford in his ceramic cooker, a Komodo Kamado, and he is very successful.

I have two Big Green Eggs and while I have tried the Kingsford Comp in one of them, I still prefer lump. It seems like I get more reuse from lump in the Egg where I cook, shut down, and then cook the next night on the used lump. The briquettes don't shut down as fast (probably because they are more dense) so there is less left over after a burn, in my OPINION (haven't measured it).

I use lots of briquettes in my offset smoker, so I don't dislike them.
Knoxville, TN
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Old 10-24-2011, 01:42 PM   #9
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Join Date: 01-11-11
Location: Leavenworth, KS

Question Authority![/QUOTE]

I have an orange one like you show, my dad bought it new and had a friend bring it back from Japan. When i first got it it, the top ring broke and crumbled, at the time i didn't know any better on how to repair it so tossed it. Still use the big inside ring and lay my grill on top of it. Could you posibbly take a picture of the inside of yours so i can see what it looks like. Do you know if BGE has replacement parts that would work in it? It also makes excellent pizzas beside being a great grill and smoker. Love this thing. Put it away for the winter though, don't want to take a chance of it cranking in the cold when heated up.
Brinkman SNP, 40 yr old Kamado, Chilie Roaster, UDS, KCBS MCBJ, PBC

Last edited by davet54; 10-24-2011 at 03:40 PM..
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Old 10-24-2011, 03:10 PM   #10
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What type of charcoal should I use?
This one's easy! Lump charcoal is really the only choice. Lump charcoal is pure charcoal with no additives, no lighter fluid, just charcoal. It produces much much less ash than briquettes and this is important. If you look at how ceramic cookers are constructed, you'll see that the charcoal sits in a bowl called the fire box. The ash from the fire will fall down into the bottom of this bowl, and there isn't a lot of room for the mountains of ash that you get from burning briquettes. More information about lump charcoal can be found at our Lump Charcoal Database.

Large Big Green Egg
22" Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker
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