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Mastering the Mini

Kelly KeefeKelly Keefe Posts: 471
edited 4:58AM in EggHead Forum
Had my "birthday present" for a couple of days now. Had a very sucessful trial run with a huge pork chop. Last night I was going to do burgers, but had the darndest thing happen: I could NOT, for love or money, get the Mini to fire up! Prior to attempting to light it up, I stired the lump real well, added just a few pieces of new lump, and lit 1/2 of a fire cube (which is what worked the first time). 30 minutes later, no fire. OK, stired the lump again, broke a fire cube in half, put BOTH halves in, 20 minutes later still no fire. At that point I told the wife to just fry the darn burgers (we both had a light lunch and were pretty hungry). When it warms up a bit I'm going to slowly unload the lump from the Mini and see what the problem is. Obviously I wasn't getting enough/any air flow but for the life of me can't figure out where the blockage is. Any suggestions?[p]Kelly Keefe
Jefferson City, MO

Comments

  • djm5x9djm5x9 Posts: 1,342
    Kelly:[p]The Mini requires frequent cleaning of the ash bin because of its small size. Could this have been the problem?

  • BordelloBordello Posts: 5,926
    Kelly Keefe,
    I have had my grate tip while stirring the lump and it was sitting with one edge on the bottom and the other pointing towards the dome,the lump had slid underneath it blocking airflow. I may look for some expanded metal to make another grate.
    Good Luck, you will enjoy it once you get the problem fixed.
    New Bob

  • DavidRDavidR Posts: 178
    Kelly Keefe,[p]If you couldn't the fire going even with the lid up, then it wouldn't matter if you had a blockage or not. Sounds to me like you're dealing with wet lump.

  • J AppledogJ Appledog Posts: 1,046
    Kelly Keefe, I have had the same problem. Just aim a hair dryer at the bottom vent - it will be blazing in moments. Make sure that there is no food on it or it will get covered with ash. JCA

  • PujPuj Posts: 615
    Kelly Keefe,[p]I clean out the lump and ash prior to every cook on the mini. I'll sift the ash out of the remaining lump and mix in some fresh lump and fire it up.[p]Puj
  • First of all, thanks to everyone for their thoughts. I really appreciate the fast, friendly help you find here on the Forum. This afternoon I sat down with a bucket and started emptying out the Mini to find out what my problem was. It went something like this: "Hmm, lump feels dry. Pieces fairly large, only afew small ones." As I got deeper down: "Not much ash at all, grate partially blocked in two places but otherwise ok." Finally lifted grate to see how much ash had collected - not much since this was only my second attempt at using the Mini. Then I had my Homer Simpson moment and to tell you the truth I'm embarresed to admit this. The culprit? My stupidity! The opening in the fire box was 90° away from the vent door![p]I guess when I was setting it up I wasn't paying attention. (That's the obvious part) The first cook went ok because ALL the pieces were large and it still got sufficiant air flow. And since it's sitting on the ground, and dark to boot, I just didn't notice that I wasn't seeing coals...[p]If ya'll excuse me, I think I'll be slapping my forehead and going "Doah!" for awhile. 8-)[p]Kelly Keefe
    Now in the Federal Stupid Persons Protection Plan and no longer in Jefferson City, MO

  • J AppledogJ Appledog Posts: 1,046
    Kelly Keefe, The mini is totally unforgiving! Keep a hair dryer handy, and save up some brain cells for your next cook....
    Bone appétit! JCA

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