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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, equipment and outdoor cookin' . ** Other cooking techniques are welcomed for when your cookin' in the kitchen. Post your hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures, but stay on topic and watch for that hijacking.


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Old 01-20-2013, 10:59 AM   #1
Foxfire
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Join Date: 08-28-12
Location: San Jose, CA
Default Using Lump in the Weber

Never had a lot of experience with lump charcoal but the more I've been trying it the more I like it. So far minion / low-n-slow cooks aren't an issue insofar as controlling temps. I see why they say lump burns hotter so you just have to be ready to choke down the vents more than with briquettes. Similarly, high heat searing is fantastic once the coals settle into that white-hot stage.

But it's the midrange cooks I could use a little guidance with, direct and indirect setups. It might seem logical to light less lump than you'd use if cooking with briquettes, but then lump does seem to burn faster and I've had a couple of cooks where I saw my grill temp rapidly dive once the fuel was used up faster than I was used to.

So then it'd make sense that you just cut back a bit on the amount of fuel but choke down the vents for less airflow to lengthen the burn. Just having issues finding the balance point. I feel like I've almost got it but not enough so that I'm confident. Any tips would be appreciated.
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:06 AM   #2
Bluesman
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I've used lump on my performer. The setup is the same that I use with K blue. Put the lump on one side, indirect, and light some lump in a chimney. Get the fire going and, pull it back at about 350*. This works great for steak. I can cook them on the cool side and then open it up to 500* and sear. The amount used really depends on what your cooking. Don't know if this helps. But over the years I have developed my own methods which really depend on the meal involved and the day.
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:11 AM   #3
Soybomb
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To me lump is all about airflow. If you have a drafty smoker, like to peek a lot, aren't quite there with dialing in your vents, etc lump is going to be a pain. Add air and you can turn it inferno hot in a hurry, choke it down and can you have a very cool fire quickly. Briq's seem to have a bit more "inertia" to them in that they need to see more or less air longer to react as strongly. Personally I don't like that but I have pretty tight cookers and I'm not opening the lid every 10 minutes. Ymmv. :)
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Old 01-20-2013, 11:22 AM   #4
Foxfire
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I just picked up an Akorn Kamado and she's pretty good about not being leaky and haven't had any issues with lump in the few times I've lit it up so far. But it's making me think about going primarily lump in the Webers, too, which are far from airtight cookers. I think it'll take some practice finding the balance point between amount of fuel and airflow.
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Old 01-20-2013, 12:02 PM   #5
Big dawg
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxfire View Post
I just picked up an Akorn Kamado and she's pretty good about not being leaky and haven't had any issues with lump in the few times I've lit it up so far. But it's making me think about going primarily lump in the Webers, too, which are far from airtight cookers. I think it'll take some practice finding the balance point between amount of fuel and airflow.
Hey Foxfire glad to here you finally got your akorn I think you will enjoy it she is a real beast. And as for lump charcoal I like sticking to royal oak it burns cleaner and let's you enjoy any wood chunks that you use. I usually pick up at least 5 bags at wall mart for $6 and change a piece. The only time I buy kingsford is when I catch it on sale at Home Depot or lowes. Can't wait to see some pics.
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Old 01-20-2013, 12:32 PM   #6
Foxfire
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Thanks, Dawg! I got her built and seasoned yesterday. Big day of cooking here for me as soon as everyone else in the house clears out. I'll be sure to have the camera going, thanks for the support last couple of weeks!

As for lump, I've experimented with RO, Best of the West mesquite, a couple others. So far I like RO the best and it's easy to find so picked up 3 bags when I decided to get the Akorn. I'd like to give Wicked Good a spin, might have to head to brethren shop Eggs by the Bay to get a tester bag.
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Old 01-20-2013, 01:19 PM   #7
Soybomb
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Foxfire View Post
I just picked up an Akorn Kamado and she's pretty good about not being leaky and haven't had any issues with lump in the few times I've lit it up so far. But it's making me think about going primarily lump in the Webers, too, which are far from airtight cookers. I think it'll take some practice finding the balance point between amount of fuel and airflow.
I'm pretty much exclusively lump now in my weber kettles, wsm, and akorn. If you leave the lid off the wsm for a long time you can start to develop a hot fire but I way prefer it on the kettles over kingsford. If I keep the intake closed I can keep a relatively med temp fire easily, and then since I'm a fan of the reverse sear at the end of the cook I can open the bottom vent fully, set the lid of just half cracked and in just a few minutes have a ripping fire ready to end the cook on. I find getting kingsford from medium to inferno hot for a great reverse sear to take forever.
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Old 01-20-2013, 02:26 PM   #8
Foxfire
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Originally Posted by Soybomb View Post
I'm pretty much exclusively lump now in my weber kettles, wsm, and akorn. If you leave the lid off the wsm for a long time you can start to develop a hot fire but I way prefer it on the kettles over kingsford. If I keep the intake closed I can keep a relatively med temp fire easily, and then since I'm a fan of the reverse sear at the end of the cook I can open the bottom vent fully, set the lid of just half cracked and in just a few minutes have a ripping fire ready to end the cook on. I find getting kingsford from medium to inferno hot for a great reverse sear to take forever.
Yes, I've been disappointed with how hot I can ramp up KBB quickly for reverse sear as well. I've even taken to lighting an extra half chimney of briquettes about 15 minutes before I think I'll be ready to sear, then add to what I've already got going. It's a lot of fuel and you have to be on your game with timing or no-go. Thanks for the tips!
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[COLOR="Blue"]Blue [/COLOR]Weber Performer + Craycort CI • [COLOR="red"]Brick Red[/COLOR] Weber One-Touch Platinum • Weber 26.75 Kettle • Akorn Kamado • ET 732 • Record-crushing [COLOR="Orange"][B]ORANGE[/B][/COLOR] Thermapen • UDS In Progress
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