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Hating Cowboy Lump

murphy11murphy11 Posts: 23
edited 7:56AM in EggHead Forum
I started a 24hr pulled pork project 5 hours ago and the lump has totally burnt out. What a pain. Loading BGE large up again and am not real happy I may have to so this 3 more times. Should lump last more than 5 hrs? Average temp was 275 and I'm thinking there's gotta be a better lump that burns longer or else I'm doing something wrong.

I'm in Philly so if anyone has a better choice feel free to share.
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Comments

  • MaineggMainegg Posts: 7,787
    hmm that is weird.. I use cowboy if I am out of wicked good and like it as it burns with hardly any smoke so is great for baking and such. but I never found it to burn that fast....
  • murphy11,

    I had some Cowboy once and it burned pretty quick but 5 hours is way to short. Are you filling above the fire ring?

    Steve

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

  • TnVolKenTnVolKen Posts: 198
    When all of you talk about the fire ring, I want to make sure that I am thinking correctly. You have the fire bowl and then the fire ring sits on top of the bowl. Is this correct?
  • It's too close to Christmas to hate. With a less dense lump, like Cowboy brand, it will burn a little faster than others.

    I would make sure to completely fill that firebox with lump. This includes the area or the firering also. Fill it up to the bottom of the platesetter or what ever you are using to make this an indirect cook. If that means adding it a handful at a time and making sure you get every square inch of that thing covered from top to bottom. Hopefully you have enough to do the job. I know I can put a whole 8.8Lb bag of CB in my XL so you should be able to get at least 3/4s of a bag in the LGE. Arrange that sucker in a jigsaw puzzle and keep adding lump. If you do this and it runs out again I would say you went long enough in the smoke to get a good flavoe and I would finish it in an oven. Double wrap in HDAF (Heavy Duty Aluminum Foil) and put iti in the oven at 350. Take temps as necessary and pull at 195. Put it in a cooler for 2 hours minimum then pull it apart serve and eat. Make sure your thermometer is properly calibrated, if you are cooking at 350 rather than 275, this will caused the lump to burn faster.

    In the future you might want to check for other brands in your area. Here is a link to help with the decision on how the different lump burns. Choose a longer burning lump and you'll be good to go.

    http://www.nakedwhiz.com/lump.htm
  • Ken, correct. ;)
  •  
    No!!!

    Correct idea but wrong name.

    Your description of the fire bowl is the Fire Box

    The piece that fits on top of the fire box is the Fire Ring.

    Check this link out.

    BGE Components (what everything in & on the egg called)

    GG
  • ric3677ric3677 Posts: 278
    Yes, the ring sets on top of the firebox and for a long slow cook you should have the lump almost to the top and almost touching the placesetter. That being said not all lump is created equal but I have never had to add lump even with 3 or 4 butts in the large.

    Rick in Mt.
  • Hey all thanks for the help. I only loaded to the bottom of the fire ring so I'll add more this time. I noticed that more than 50% of the bag are very small pieces of lump. Maybe the size of a quarter which could make it burn quicker. I get the lump at Home Depot so maybe they toss it around and it breaks down - I don't know. Hopefully this load will make it later into the night and I can finish in oven if necessary.

    Hoping for the best.
  • TnVolKen,

    Yes, The fire bowl is the fire box. To clarify what I said the lump should be higher than the bottom of the fire ring.

    Steve

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

  •  
    Using Cowboy for only a 5 hour burn I would think you had the lump loaded to the top of the holes in the fire box. However, even that little lump should provide 7 to 10 yours at 250° and over 4 hours at 350°.

    Cowboy lump has some long thin pieces and possibly you have a lot of 'gaps' in the egg, that is a lot of empty space, void, in the fire box.

    If you have really long pieces then break them up if needed.

    On a large fill the lump to the top of the fire ring and you should have more than 24 hours using Cowboy.

    Make sure your dome thermometer is calibrated.

    GG
  •  
    Small pieces is relative, for me small pieces are about the size of the thumb. Cowboy large pieces for me are 8 to 14 inches long and maybe 3 to 6 inches wide. Mostly pretty thin.

    You shouldn't see much of a different burn speed with any size or combination of piece size.

    Very small pieces may clog the air holes in the fire grate and fire box which would limit quick lighting and or high temperatures. However, that is a very seldom problem with Cowboy.

    GG
  • The long thin pieces are one of the issues I have with Cowboy. I bought a couple bags of the stuff before reading the Naked Wiz review. I guess the taste is fine, but the sawn pieces tend to be difficult to arrange in a way that balances air flow with charcoal volume.

    I have started mixing in a few pieces of the Cowboy with my Royal Oak. This way I use up the Cowboy and get really good results from the Royal Oak.
  • I used this much Cowboy

    EmptyEGG002.jpg

    That went into this

    EmptyEGG001.jpg

    Which looked like this.

    EmptyEGG003.jpg

    and it cooked at this

    3-8-08007.jpg

    while cooking this

    3-8-08003.jpg

    for 22 hours.

    Cowboy is a good lump. Just have to realize it will leave a lot of air space in between the pieces which will make it appear to burn faster.
  •  
    I agree, the Cowboy 'flooring' just seems odd. Cooks and burns well but just different. However, Cowboy does burn clean for me.

    If RO and Cowboy are available I grab the RO.

    GG
  • I am just a little freaked out by perfectly square pieces of lump charcoal. Instead of lump charcoal they should call it charcubes. Hahaha
  •  
    :laugh: :laugh: Nice explanation Mike.

    I have had and have burned a lot of Cowboy, never have I received a bag that looked that nice. If the Cowboy lump looked like that I would use it more often. Guess it it time to buy another bag.

    Usually I could lay a floor with the stuff in the bags. I often have to break the pieces up some.

    Kent
  •  
    :laugh: :laugh: I agree, or maybe charslats.

    GG
  • I'm using a bag of CB and have noticed it burns very quickly. I've used it before but placed it in a pattern to take up the majority of all spaces.
    At that time it went for 18 hrs+. Putting it in Egg at random does not seem to work for me. I will stick to Royal Oak

    Tom
    Dunedin, FL
  • It's all a roll of the dice Kent. Sometimes the bags I open are basically dust and very small cr&p. Others are full of nothing but 1X4s. :woohoo: Wife had a few of the big storage bins, like you get from Wally or the Depot. I used it once to mix four bags of lump. Pour in the bigger stuff then follow with the little stuff on top and kinda mixed a good bag. Had lump for a few months after I did that.

    Funny thing though, after I was finished with bin the wife didn't want it back. :woohoo:
  • have done plenty of overnights with it. how full was the egg?

    was it a straight-down burn?

    half a load of cowboy would be fine, it shouldn't be burning up in a simple overnight
  • small bits are actually good. plenty of bridging points for the fire to move around.

    nothing but large pieces of lump can be a problem.
  • TnVolKenTnVolKen Posts: 198
    Mike in Abita wrote:
    I used this much Cowboy

    EmptyEGG002.jpg

    That went into this

    EmptyEGG001.jpg

    Which looked like this.

    EmptyEGG003.jpg

    and it cooked at this

    3-8-08007.jpg

    while cooking this

    3-8-08003.jpg

    for 22 hours.

    Cowboy is a good lump. Just have to realize it will leave a lot of air space in between the pieces which will make it appear to burn faster.

    So you are just filling to the top of the fire bowl and not the fire ring. I am confused, I have performed to long cooks using BGE lump and Royal Oak Lump. Both times I only got about 7 hours and this was filling to the top of the fire box and having the temp about 250. Do I need to fill to the top of the fire ring or box? I have used the (sorry) WSM and have achieved smokes in the 20 hour range on one load. I want to do the same on the Egg. Are you using an XL egg?
  • Yep that was the XL. I would have added more but that's all I had at the time. I will light that in three places to make sure I don't experience a centerburn.
  • When I used to get Cowboy at Trader Joe's it always had really good sized pieces, but whenever I've gotten it at Home Depot or Lowes' it's usually just 'shake'. Unfortunately TJ's stopped carrying it and now only has briquettes :angry:
  • Dude, something's not right. filling to the top of firebox/bottom of fire ring should get you an all-nighter. A 20 hour cook in the egg is easy, tho I can't remember what the longest cook was that I've done with Cowboy.
  • If you ask anyone on the Smokering website, they will tell you Cowboy is crap!
  • One thing I just thought about is Philly got a lot of snow last weekend and temps are still chilly with snow on the ground. I know the eggs are well insulated but maybe that has something to do with it. I filled it to top of fire ring at 6:30 and will monitor temp and burn time and report back in morning. I would love to be confident that fire won't go out during the night but I'll probably set the alarm clock with 2:30 AM to see how I'm doing.

    Mark
  • murphy11,

    That dog don't hunt. Sorry but I have been waiting my whole life to use that expression ;) . The fuel consumption doesn't change much with cold temps..I can promise that.

    Steve

    Steve 

    Caledon, ON

     

  • If you ask anyone on the Smokering website, they will tell you Cowboy is crap!

    A couple years ago the same would be true here. Not so any more.

    I use it and haven't had a bad batch that I can recall. Even so I still usually use R.O. Just my preference.
  • I love the cowboy for pizzas. It burns nice and hot. Though, since I am only cooking 2 pies, I am not too concerned with a long burn time. For my longer cooks, I use RO. Oddly, out here in Vegas, Cowboy is about a buck more than RO.
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