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Royal Oak Green Bag Quality Dropping?

I've used over 100 bags of RO over the last year. Most of my cooks are low and slow with a Stoker. I never had to fill my large BGE to go 20-22 hours but I have been running out of lump lately. I figure it must be more leaks on my gasket so I replaced it. I figured I didn't have 100% fresh lump so I always clean out my BGE before using. Last night I cleaned everything out, filled my egg (a little over 1 - 8.8 lb bag of lump) to the top of the upper fire ring. It was so full that my oval ceramic plate was resting on the lump. I started at 8:30 PM, added a 21 lb clod at 9:00 and now at 10:00 AM my temps are dropping. I pulled everything out of my egg and the firebox is about empty. I dumped in another full bag of lump to get me thru the day.

I have a Stoker keeping my egg at 250° ±2°. Anyone finding the RO isn't lasting as long as it used to? The sad thing is I live in Minnesota and there are not a lot of choices of lump to buy.

Big Lake, Minnesota

Large BGE, Stokers, Adjustable Rig

Comments

  • ShiffShiff Posts: 1,042
    Do you have an Ace hardware store nearby?  If so, you can order Wicked Good Charcoal online and have it delivered to the store for free. Sign up for their  email club and they'll send you coupons from time to time.

    I personally use Humphey's Charcoal which I like better than Wicked Good, but it might be hard to find in your area.  Wicked Good was my favorite until I tried Humphey's.
    Barry Lancaster, PA
  • henapplehenapple Posts: 10,170
    Same thing happened to me. 12 hrs on a full load.
    Green egg, dead animal and alcohol. The "Boro".. TN 
  • BayaradBayarad Posts: 219
    R.O. must have been near the bottom of their load when my bags were filled as my last few bags have been mostly smaller pieces, dust and quite a few rocks!
  • henapplehenapple Posts: 10,170
    Just picked up 3 bags of BGE at a close out price. Good mix of size. I like it but usually expensive.
    Green egg, dead animal and alcohol. The "Boro".. TN 
  • I don't know if the quality is going downhill. But I did buy my first two bags after reading the reviews on nakedwhiz. I bought the US version of the red bag. So remember everybody, if you are comparing RO, make sure you know the country of origin.

    I am impressed. Truth be told, there were not a lot of large pieces. However, it really was good on the other end - there was essentially no fines or really small stuff. All very uniform. No foreign material. It lit off great, used 3 oil soaked paper towels (wanted a high fire for burgers - 550 final target). Ramped right up to where I wanted it within just a few minutes of the flames going out. (I was shooting for 350, so I could go back inside and finish the prep)

    $6.67 at Walmart. This works out to about 63% of my local BGE lump cost.

    Bottom line - I would buy it again.
    LBGE
  • I've also noticed a subtle change in the Green Bag RO from Menards not lasting as long. Thought it was just the change of season and needing more fuel. May have to pick up 20# of The Good One from Quetopia to do a comparison.
  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 15,654
    theres a really good chance your probe was getting a false reading from that giant mass of cold meat and your stoker compensated by making a bigger fire to compensate for it. i dont use one of those devices but have found doing it with the vents, you stabilze the egg, put the meat on, and even if the probes temps are off for 6 hours you dont want to touch the vents. i did 2 briskets and two butts in one load once and kept bumping the vents open to get to 235, after 2 hours the vents were fully open and there was a 1000 degree inferno in there with gage readings still below 200. your stoker wanted to get to temp even if the fire needed to be hotter than needed
  • MickeyMickey Posts: 13,487
    I pulled a 12" long steel strap out of mine over the weekend.
    Salado TX Egg Family: 2 Large and a very well used Mini.... 5th Salado EggFest is March 14, 2015

  • Dyal_SCDyal_SC Posts: 1,576
    I've been using the Made in USA Red Bag Royal Oak for years now. I'm still getting long burn times and low ash; however, I have noticed with my last several bags that it's taking a lot longer than usual for the "dirty smoke" to go away once I light up a new load. The VOC's used to cook off within 15 or 20 minutes. Lately it has been a consistent 45 minutes for some reason. I've noticed several uncarbonized pieces and some foreign material as well. I probably need to sift through the coals better before dumping them in the egg, but I am too lazy. ;)
  • And here is some photographic evidence to back up to what I said on Nov 18th. Very little fines - see picture of total fines from a 4 kilogram bag. And see the picture in the large Egg showing the bottom of the bag dump - not a lot of big pieces, but there were pretty uniform in size. I put in the grid lifter for scale.

    Bottom line for me, I will definitely try some more RO.
    PB220548.JPG
    1024 x 768 - 428K
    PB220552.JPG
    2816 x 2112 - 1M
    LBGE
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