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Eggstinguisher?

WileECoyoteWileECoyote Posts: 516
edited November -1 in EggHead Forum
I just finished a batch of ABTs and then ran the egg up to 700+ to burn off the greasy drippings that missed the drip pan. It always takes a long while to cool down after a nuclear burn which is fine, but it seems like such a waste of lump to just let the egg smolder and gradually cool down. Even when you shut the bottom vent and put the cap on, the fire still takes a while to go out and the egg takes a long while to cool down. Plus there are times when I might need to shut the egg down rapidly, such as a grease or table fire or when I need to move it to a new location. So the Acme scientist in me started thinking of a fast, safe, clean, cheap, and food-safe method to rapidly extinguish and cool the egg.

I haven't completed all of my research yet but an early winner appears to be carbon dioxide. It is relatively cheap, non-toxic to animals and humans when you do not breathe in high doses, safe around food, and requires no cleanup. Liquid C02 is used in many fire extinguishers for these very reasons. It is heavier than air so it displaces the air around the fire source and immediately extinguishes the fire, plus it absorbs heat from the fire to rapidly cool the fuel down. After it disperses then it just mixes into the surrounding air and is harmless, leaving no residue or mess to clean up.

So I am thinking about getting a 5 lb. tank of C02 with a simple valve and hose attached and keeping it near the egg. When it is time to shut the egg down, I just close the bottom vent completely, insert the hose through an opening in the daisy wheel at the top of the dome, and turn the valve to release enough C02 to do the job. The egg holds the C02 inside which rapidly extinguishes the fire and cools down the egg in record time. After the fire has been out for a little while then you can just open the egg to cool it faster and disperse the C02.

According to my crude calculations, a fullly charged 5 lb. tank of C02 will hold about 350 gallons of C02 gas, and if you assume that it takes about 5 gallons to fill the bottom of the egg (allowing for small leakage at the bottom vent) then a single tank will last you for about 70 cooks which is pretty good mileage. For people that travel with small or mini eggs or that only need to use the eggstinguisher in an emergency, they could use one of the small 20 oz. C02 tanks which are designed for paintball guns. Either style tank is readily available, cheap to acquire and refill, and easy to use.

So before I head out and buy a tank to test my theory, has anyone out there actually done this? Any firemen, home brewers, soda jerks, or fellow Acme scientists in the audience that care to comment?

Comments

  • At what temp will the CO2 be released into the egg? You may have a potential thermal shock even with the highly temp resistant ceramic material used in the egg. Just a word of caution, let us know what you come up with
  • Good note Pedro.

    C02 rapidly boils and turns to gas as soon as it is depressurized, however the sudden change in state absorbs a lot of heat from the surrounding atmosphere which can cause nearby materials to become quite cold. This typically causes the moisture in the air to freeze which in turn makes the foggy white cloud that you see when a C02 fire extinguisher is rapidly released.

    To prevent the egg from being chilled too quickly, I would use a long enough hose to allow the C02 to warm up prior to entering the egg. I would also adjust the tank regulator to control the release rate so the egg would slowly fill up rather than shooting a full blast in all at once. The tank and the hose would get cold but the egg should be fine unless my Acme blueprints are fouled...
  • WOW, I am interested! Lump is costing way too much. I'm always interested in a way to save money to buy better meat.
    Just don't let a rock fall on your head!
  • yes- it will extinguish the fire quickly, but the heat enery stored in the ceramic will take time to radiate away to cool it to room temperature
  • tjvtjv Posts: 3,275
    100_0267.jpg

    You might consider taking your firebox to a local metal fab or metal spinning shop and see if they can fabricate a lump bucket from roundbar or expanded metal. That way no chemicals induced in the egg, just lift out the bucket and hit it with water. You'll probably need to add a folding handle on yours for moving when lump is hot.

    The bucket makes removing ash a snap, remove bucket, shake over trash can, scoop out ash in bottom of egg and replace bucket! I use a plastic, single gang, electrical junction box to scoop the ash - less than a buck at homer depot. The total process is so quick, no need to have a break in the action for a beer swig, dang it. T

    T
    www.ceramicgrillstore.com
    ACGP, Inc.
  • I dunno..sounds like a lot of work...effort...and more equipment that I want to have. I've been buying charcoal from Costco called "The original Charcoal Company". I was hesitant to buy it cuz it is SOOOO cheap...but Nakedwhiz had good things to say. I have been VERY pleased with its performance in my egg. It costs $3.67 for 20lbs. at Costco....dirt cheap and more my style.
  • I like the idea of a lump cage for cleaning out the egg, however I would be concerned about it expanding from the heat and cracking the firebox. If kept in a convex shape as shown then it would probably just ride up in the firebox a bit when it expands and drop back down a bit when it contracts, however it could easily get wedged in or expand too fast and crack the ceramic. With the price of new egg components I would be reluctant to take the chance.

    It would also be difficult to handle the cage when it is hot because the handle would burn through the gloves in short order, especially when doing a nuclear burn. I wouldn't want to rinse hot lump with water as it will throw a lot of steam, ash, and generally make a mess on the patio or in the yard. And then the lump would be damp for the next use which would make it harder to light and could introduce rust and mold into the egg.
  • The only response I have is that your handle is the most fitting handle of any member of any forum I have ever read.
  • tjv wrote:
    100_0267.jpg

    You might consider taking your firebox to a local metal fab or metal spinning shop and see if they can fabricate a lump bucket from roundbar or expanded metal. That way no chemicals induced in the egg, just lift out the bucket and hit it with water. You'll probably need to add a folding handle on yours for moving when lump is hot.

    The bucket makes removing ash a snap, remove bucket, shake over trash can, scoop out ash in bottom of egg and replace bucket! I use a plastic, single gang, electrical junction box to scoop the ash - less than a buck at homer depot. The total process is so quick, no need to have a break in the action for a beer swig, dang it. T

    T


    Kamado developed something similar to this. It's called a lump saver. Quite a few complaints of it cracking the firebox from expansion.
  • I'll be interested to see the results (including how much lump you are saving), keep us posted
  • tjvtjv Posts: 3,275
    Not sure how kamado did it, but I had similar concerns as you about expanding metal at the grate location. So, the grate sits atop a round ring and the ring rests against/on the firebox. So design wise, I replaced the angled grate edge with a round ring edge. The ring edge is the only thing touching the firebox with any sort of pressure. The balance of the bucket is a loose fit. Tom
    www.ceramicgrillstore.com
    ACGP, Inc.
  • tjvtjv Posts: 3,275
    Yep, probably not a good idea for what you want to accomplish. T
    www.ceramicgrillstore.com
    ACGP, Inc.
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