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On long cook, coals burn straight down, leave unburned coal around the edges egg. Any idea why?

I use an electric starter and when I look at the charcoal after a long 12-18 hour cook, it seems where I lit the charcoal, in the middle of the firebox, the coals burned straight down and leave a ring of unburned lump around the edges of the egg. This usually happens when cooking a butt or brisket. Any idea what I'm doing wrong? Thanks for your help in advance.


  • BotchBotch Posts: 6,100
    You might check the holes in the perimeter of the firebowl, sounds like they're clogged so no air is reaching the edges.  
    Live fast, die young, and leave a well-marbled corpse.  
    Ogden, Utard.  
  • You're doing nothing wrong IMO. I use bacon grease soaked paper towel to light mine and it does the same thing. Fire is going toward its air source is all.

  • Try starting your fire in 2 spots slightly towards the front of the Egg, should take of the "center-burn" that can happen with a single fire lit dead in the center at low temps.  JMO



    from SANTA CLARA, CA

  • I use the starter cubes and place them at 9 & 3 this seems to work well for me


    2008 -Large BGE. 2013- Small BGE and 2015 - Mini. Henderson, Ky.
  • boatbumboatbum Posts: 1,273
    edited September 2013
    Some charcoals do that much more often than others. Seems like the fire doesn't move as well at lower temperatures. I have heard it referring to as coring out. Don't think it has anything to do with the lighting process. THis is exactly where the brand of charcoal makes a difference on low and slow cooks.
    Cookin in Texas
  • Boatbum, what brand do you like to use? I was using the green egg coals.
  • I used BGE lump for several months before finding a site that would ship Ozark Oak to me. BGE lights and burns well, but it tends to be very expensive (relative to other lump). For now I'm absolutely loving Ozark Oak.

    Finally back in the Badger State!

    Middleton, WI
  • Nakedwhiz has a setup on his website that is a little extreme but I do it for all my extended and important to me low and slows. Might be pointless, but I've had no issues when I follow it
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