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Old 12-27-2014, 01:49 AM   #1
Myron Gaines
Found some matches.
Join Date: 06-13-14
Location: Nashville
Default Rescued an 18.5" kettle.

So, I've been cooking on my 22.5" WSM and a gasser long enough to get the hang of things, honestly having a pretty fun and easy time with the WSM!

Naturally, I started checking Craigslist. Not a lot of Weber stuff, especially kettles, pops up here for some reason, so when I saw an OTG show up for $25 just blocks away in the same neighborhood I jumped on it without even reading the whole ad...turns out it was an 18.5". I took her anyway and it's in good shape! Used it to reverse sear a tri-tip out of my smoker and grilled some asparagus on it but otherwise havent done anything until making a flank steak on it real quick tonight.

What can I do to make the most out of the 18.5"? I want to give the lil underdog a chance. My wife bought me a Smokenator 180 for it, and I guess I should go grab a couple of the briquet baskets. I'm honestly thinking it might piss me off at first trying to smoke on it with the Smokenator since I'm so used to my WSM, but if I could get by using just a little charcoal and doing salmon and small stuff on it during the week that would be great.

So...has anyone made the most of an 18.5" and had fun with it vs. a WSM? It just seems like nooooobody uses an 18.5" so any personal accounts would help!

Bonus: How the heck can I make the legs taller but still have it look nice? Conduit? I'm very tall so I'd like to raise it nearly a foot.
22.5 WSM, 18.5 OTG, Smokenator, JennAir gasser, Auber, Maverick, Thermapen
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Old 12-27-2014, 02:26 AM   #2
Myron Gaines
Found some matches.
Join Date: 06-13-14
Location: Nashville

Tucked in under the patio with the bullet:
22.5 WSM, 18.5 OTG, Smokenator, JennAir gasser, Auber, Maverick, Thermapen
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Old 12-27-2014, 09:59 AM   #3
Rusty Kettle
is One Chatty Farker

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Join Date: 07-15-13
Location: N/A

Try cold smoking when it is cold or by adding a pan of ice to it. It's a good grill. I prefer the 18.5" as I can cook a lot with it and save on fuel. I fit a whole packer brisket on it before. Took 15 hours. Smoke jerky on it as I am sure it will work great for that. I just did a batch for christmas. I can always forward the recipe if you like. The 18.5" kettle is one of the best charcoal grills out there. I once cooked 6 different flavors of chicken legs on one for the Fourth of July it rocked. Just give it a chance and you will be amazed what you can do with it.
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Old 12-27-2014, 12:23 PM   #4
On the road to being a farker
Join Date: 08-04-14
Location: Louisiana

My father-in-law gave me a OTS 18.5" kettle a few years ago. It was my first grill and until two days ago my only grill. At first I just grilled burgers and steaks on it and thought of it as just another charcoal grill. Once I started cooking offset and smoking on it I really started to appreciate the kettle.

Compared to a WSM, you will find that the kettle gets excellent fuel economy. I can get a 5-6 hour smoke out of her with one load (2-3lb) of charcoal. I usually set her up as shown below to smoke. 8-10 lit coals to start out for a 250-270F cook, dumped on one side, and then it burns across over the length of the cook. This method has worked great for me. I usually only have to make 2-3 vent adjustments over the length of the cook.

Works with briquettes:

Works with lump:

I use the same technique for chicken but start with more lit coals for a hotter temp (~375F).

The only set back of the small kettle is cooking area. I would reserve it for smaller cuts, as cooking anything bigger than a fryer chicken offset can be tough to keep away from direct heat.

I'm in for kettle pron!
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