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Lighting Charcoal - Bringing Up To Temp ......

Davexx1Davexx1 Posts: 6
edited June 2012 in EggHead Forum

When lighting charcoal with starter, electric starter, etc., do you wait until some, most, or all of the charcoal is burning before closing lid, adjusting for temp, and beginning the cook?

Thanks, Dave

 

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Comments

  • GA_DawgsGA_Dawgs Posts: 273
    I use the paper towel and oil method to light.  I usually let it go until the paper towel is completely burned and the coals around it (read 2" around where the paper towel ball was) have lit before I shut the dome (probably 10-15 mins).  Then based on the temp I am going for I will adjust the Egg from there.
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  • MO_EgginMO_Eggin Posts: 130
    I generally use an electric starter, will keep it in the lump about 6-8 minutes - enough to get some coals glowing and maybe a small amount of flame.  I then add plate setter (if indirect) and grates, close dome, wait until about 50 degrees below target temp, then dial in the vent & daisy wheel.  For a hi temp cook, I bury the starter deeper in the lump to get more fuel going sooner.  Happy cooking.
    LBGE, St. Louis, MO
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  • newegg13newegg13 Posts: 231
    I'm still getting the hang of temp control myself, but I wouldn't wait until most of the lump is lit.  By that time (unless you're planning to cook really hot), the Egg is way over your target temp.

    The goal should be - as Mo noted - to start closing down the vents and fine tuning when the temp is just BELOW what you are shooting for.  Raising the temp is much easier than lowering it.
    Amateur Egger; professional rodeo clown. Birmingham, AL
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  • Davexx1Davexx1 Posts: 6

    Reason for asking is when using an electric starter, after the usual 6-8 minutes with electric starter glowing, only a small portion of the charcoal in the center of the grill is actually lit.  All the charcoal aorund the outside is not yet lit and is somewhat raw.  Was wondering "if" you close the lid before all lump lites and begins to burn, would you get any kind of starter fluid type taste in your meats?

    Remember in the instructions, DVD, etc., it always said to burn the charcoal until it quits smoking, before beginning your cook to avoid that funny taste.

    Dave

     

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  • Hi54puttyHi54putty Posts: 1,574
    You should only use 100% natural lump. Nothing added, only wood.
    XL,L,S 
    Winston-Salem, NC 
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  • DuganboyDuganboy Posts: 1,118

    Reason for asking is when using an electric starter, after the usual 6-8 minutes with electric starter glowing, only a small portion of the charcoal in the center of the grill is actually lit.  All the charcoal aorund the outside is not yet lit and is somewhat raw.  Was wondering "if" you close the lid before all lump lites and begins to burn, would you get any kind of starter fluid type taste in your meats?

    Remember in the instructions, DVD, etc., it always said to burn the charcoal until it quits smoking, before beginning your cook to avoid that funny taste.

    Dave

     

    Hopefully, you didn't use any starter fluid. When those coals in the middle are lit, stir the lump and get the lit coals mixed in with the lump that hasn't touched your starter. Depending on your type of cook, you can adjust from here. 
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  • Davexx1Davexx1 Posts: 6

    Yes, I am using only BGE lump charcoal and no starter fluid of any kind, only electric starter.

    Dave

     

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  • tazcrashtazcrash Posts: 1,851
    edited June 2012
    I'll repeat a good lesson I read here. If the smoke smells good, it will taste good.

    After you get the middle lit, give the coals a stir to spread the love. Put in what you need to cook on (player setter/grid/etc), close the lid, and start shutting down vents when you are within 50 degrees of what you want to cook at.

    Oh, and don't dump the dust out of the bottom of the bag! That has given me the most headache.
    Bx - > NJ ->TX!!! 
    All to get cheaper brisket! 
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  • njlnjl Posts: 814

    When lighting charcoal with starter, electric starter, etc., do you wait until some, most, or all of the charcoal is burning before closing lid, adjusting for temp, and beginning the cook?

    This really depends on the type of cook.  If you're doing a low and slow smoke, you don't want to let all the lump light before closing things up, or you'll end up with a dome temp of 700+ and won't be able to start the cook for 30-60 minutes.
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  • BaysidebobBaysidebob Posts: 489
    I put the electric starter on for 8 or 9 minutes then stir up the coals.  I leave the top open and let the coals go for a total of 20 to 25 minutes.  Shut the lid and bring it up to target temp.  Open lid, toss in wood and cook.
    My actuary says I'm dead.
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  • ChokeOnSmokeChokeOnSmoke Posts: 1,758
    edited June 2012
    Electric starter, 8 minutes, stir coals and immediately close lid so natural air flow begins (in through the bottom vent, out through the top).  I can be up to 500 degrees in 10 minutes so after just a few minutes from closing the lid I begin to adjust vents for the type of cook I'm doing.
    Packerland, Wisconsin

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  • Doc_EggertonDoc_Eggerton Posts: 4,377
    I'll repeat a good lesson I read here. If the smoke smells good, it will taste good.

    After you get the middle lit, give the coals a stir to spread the love. Put in what you need to cook on (player setter/grid/etc), close the lid, and start shutting down vents when you are within 50 degrees of what you want to cook at.

    Oh, and don't dump the dust out of the bottom of the bag! That has given me the most headache.
    Good advice.  I don't stir the coals, and I suspect you left out leave the chimney open until close to the target, then put the DW on and start controlling.
    Pasquali Luciano
    Buon appetito to all the BGE family
    XLBGE, LBGE, MBGE and lots of toys

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  • SkinnyVSkinnyV Posts: 2,661
    I did my first wok cook on the mini and I think I am not getting good enough fires with all coals being lit.
    I get to temp and don't see smoke so I assume I am good, I wok'd when temp was sitting at 400 but it took too long in the begining, only later when the coals were glowing and giving off the good heat did my wok get going fast. I am still new so need to get better on my fires, but noticed for woking I need to wait for the glow, is that correct?
    Seattle, WA
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