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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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Unread 09-05-2007, 05:47 PM   #1
Brauma
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Default 300+ degrees from a Bandera?

I tried my best to run the Bandera over 300* this past wknd and it just wouldnt get that hot. I had the firebox stoked with Rancher to start with. I did a Minion Method first. That brought my temp up to 250 - like it always does. Once those coals got even I started dropping in dried cherry splits. This took me up to 285-290. I never could break 300. So I started a load of lump in the chimney and dropped it in. No good. I had the vents wide open. Beats me. I have a home-made basket by the way.

I was doing a meatloaf and I was trying to cook it at 350. This is the first time I wanted it above 300 so this is a first for me.

All you Bandera owners - can you drive your pit above 300*?
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Unread 09-05-2007, 05:52 PM   #2
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I don't have a bandera, but my skd is pretty close. High temps are pretty tough for me on that thing, but a grease fire in my Chargriller pegged the thermometer pretty quick.
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Unread 09-05-2007, 06:27 PM   #3
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Cherry not a hot wood.

I've hit 340 after putting way too much oak in there, and a full chimney of lump

But it wasnt intentional, and I kept the door open 10 minutes to cool it down
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Unread 09-05-2007, 06:30 PM   #4
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yup.. u need oak.. or mesquite.

move fire next tpo firebox, and put a shield in the top of the lid to block off the gable and get the heat into the chamber.

I can get 400-450 in mine.. but i think the 80lb 3/8 inch steel lid may help.
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Unread 09-05-2007, 06:33 PM   #5
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Mine jumps from 250 to 350 really quick when I get a piece of mesquite wood to ignite. I had a terrible time keepin my smoker under 275 last cook I did with it. Also put majority of wood/coals close to opening as well.
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Unread 09-05-2007, 07:16 PM   #6
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Hard wood. With oak my SKD has peaked over 300. just takes a real good airflow.


When it gets up there it makes a humming noise with all the convection.

What is your altitude? Might make a diff.
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Unread 09-05-2007, 07:43 PM   #7
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I hit 300 on accident this past weekend. Something I found contradictory to logic (well not really) is that a charcoal basket will not hit higher temps. This is because all the fuel isn't lit. You're much better off to just cook on an expanded metal grate made for the lowest rack level.

A chimney of fuel and some good hard wood (hickory, oak, mesquite) or really really dry fruit wood (I have some 3 year old apple that explodes when put in the firebox).

And like poobah said, if you really want to get the heat up you gotta shrink up the size of the box that you're heating.

But it's definitely possible.
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Unread 09-05-2007, 08:22 PM   #8
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I doubt if I make the firebox lid mod. Unless I make it temporary. My Dera seems to want to chug along at 225-250 naturally. Ofcourse I have to feed it about once an hour but thats the nature of the beast.

This raises another Bandera question: Will the lid mod improve my fuel efficiency? Im sure a lot of heat comes right up out of the top of the firebox.

My plan is to get a BGE for high temp stuff like pizzas and breads.
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Unread 09-05-2007, 08:23 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PimpSmoke View Post
What is your altitude? Might make a diff.
Im not sure but its low altitude. Im an East Coaster. Just a 2 hour drive from the ocean.
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Unread 09-05-2007, 08:25 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brauma View Post
I doubt if I make the firebox lid mod. Unless I make it temporary. My Dera seems to want to chug along at 225-250 naturally. Ofcourse I have to feed it about once an hour but thats the nature of the beast.

This raises another Bandera question: Will the lid mod improve my fuel efficiency? Im sure a lot of heat comes right up out of the top of the firebox.

My plan is to get a BGE for high temp stuff like pizzas and breads.

Not baggin on ya, but why is it we always complain about cookers holding temp....then when one does we want to push it??????
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So here we are in my paisley crib, what you want to eat?
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Unread 09-05-2007, 09:18 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PimpSmoke View Post
Not baggin on ya, but why is it we always complain about cookers holding temp....then when one does we want to push it??????
Good point. I was just trying to cook a meatloaf and I needed the temp at 350*. I gave it 2 hours in the smoke then finished it off in the oven.

Im happy with my Bandera and how it seems to naturally run at 225-250 but I'll never stop trying a mod here & there to make it better. If it doesnt work I'll take it off.
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Unread 09-05-2007, 09:35 PM   #12
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I do chickens all the time at 300 to 325 but I burn all wood. Don't know if that makes a difference. I did the grease fire mod too and it put my temp gauge past 500 real fast!
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Unread 09-06-2007, 08:16 AM   #13
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I can take it past 300 with oak & apple and a good load of charcoal in it. I don't have a lid shield or a basket. Just a expanded steel grate set just at the level of the smoke chamber opening. All vents wide open.
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Unread 09-06-2007, 08:31 AM   #14
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I love my Bandera. I even love diddling with the fire every hour. Its the pyro in me. In a way I'm glad it doesn't like to run hot. Gives me the excuse to get a BGE.

I think the combination of a Bandera, Weber 22.5" grill, and a BGE will give me the perfect backyard cooking arsenal.

You may have seen my plans for an Outdoor Kitchen. (in Stamped Concrete thread I think) I had drawn in a pizza oven. But after doing some research Ive learned that I can do in a BGE all I wanted to do in a pizza oven. So, I've scratched that part of the project and will put the $ into another area of the kitchen. Maybe soapstone countertops!
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Unread 09-06-2007, 08:43 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBQchef33 View Post
I can get 400-450 in mine.. but i think the 80lb 3/8 inch steel lid may help.
Does your friend want to make-up some more of the custom lids. I am in the market for one.
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