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Fire Advice for the new girl on the forum

Kris in FlKris in Fl Posts: 38
edited November -1 in EggHead Forum
Hi! We've had our Egg for about a year now and I LOVE it! I grew up using charcoal grills but my husband always used electric (boring). I talked him into buying the BGE when our electric one rusted out (we live between the intercostal and ocean). Anyway, long story short, he couldn’t get the hang of it and handed the grilling over to me - yippee! I have been having a lot of fun trying all your suggestions and recipes. [p]My problem tho' is getting the fire going... I know this must sound crazy to some of you. I am using 100% natural lump charcoal and fire starters. The fire starts up well, but if I don’t fan the bottom opening a lot, the fire dies out. What am I doing wrong?[p]Thanks in advance for your help :)
Kris in FL

Comments

  • Kris in FL,[p]Are you looking for flames? Once the fire starter (and flames) burn out, you should see a glowing fist-sized area of red hot lump. Your fire is started. Now with the lid closed, and the bottom and top vents wide open, you should to wait for egg to reach your desired temperature (i.e. 225 for ribs, 400 for burgers 700 for steaks, etc) and then adjust the top and lower vents to maintain the temperature.[p]Tony
  • Kris in FL,
    first, the two obvious questions. .[p]1. is the hole in your fire box lined up with the vent opening in the bottom of the egg so that you get good air flow?[p]2. do you make sure that the holes in your grate aren't clogged?, again, for good air flow[p]i use mapp torch to light mine (a couple of one minute hits in 1 to 3 spots (depending on whether i'm going low and slow or high temp cooking) with bottom vent wide open and the daisy wheel off the dome, and it starts like a charm. . .[p]there is also a lot of debate on whether or not to keep the dome or closed during lighting. ..i find that i get a good draft going with the dome down, and i can be at 750 degrees in about 15 minutes. . .[p]good luck and welcome to the forum. ..

  • Kris in FlKris in Fl Posts: 38
    Hi Tony,
    Thanks for writing back. Maybe I am being impatient? [p]I do see a glow and at this point the egg is stuck at about 300... I keep the bottom vent wide open and the Daisy wheel top completely off until I get the egg up to where I need it. So far I have made steaks, burgers and tri tip - all have been fabulous! [p]Just wish I could get the temp up to 700 without the fanning process...

  • Trout BumTrout Bum Posts: 343
    Kris in FL, I found that on my first couple high temp cooks that I was not putting enough charcoal in the egg. You need a lot of lump (at least up to the top of the fire box a couple inches above the vent holes) and you need to light it in a few different spots to get all the coals burning to create the high temp you are looking for.

  • Kris in FlKris in Fl Posts: 38
    Big Daddy,[p]Thanks! I have been emailing with C~W and I think he has me up and running!! [p]Enjoy your day :)
    Kris in FL

  • Bob VBob V Posts: 195
    Kris in FL,[p]To really get a hot fire quickly, I use a 2-stage process.[p]Do everything Max says (line up door with opening in firebox, etc). Put firestarter on grate and light it, then pile on about two handfulls of lump - kinda the same way you'd have done it with briquets in the old metal thing.[p]Close the dome, keep the daisy or ceramic top *off* entirely and the bottom wide open. Let the air begin to flow - give it about 5 minutes, by then the double-handfull should be glowing red.[p]Open the dome, stir the coals around, then add enough lump to come to the top of the firebox (or bottom of the fire-ring, same thing). Note that this is over the holes in the firebox. Close the dome. Everything still wide open.[p]Let the new lump catch - it should smoke initially, then stop. At that point your thermometer will start to climb like crazy. Raise the dome and stir up the coals once again.[p]Now you can put on the grill. Close it down and you'll be at 700-900 in the next 10 minutes or less.[p]It is all in the natural "chimney effect" of the BGE and in having enough lump.[p]Also check your gauge to see that you aren't getting to temp and your gauge not going that high. The humidity in FL can kill a gauge quickly.[p]Bob V[p]
  • ColeslawColeslaw Posts: 46
    Kris in FL,
    I use an electric starter I found at the local Wally Mart or Lowes. I am not a big fan of cubes and stuff, the torch method pops the charcoal to much for my taste, and the Green Heat starter works ok, but I am to cheap to always go out and buy a new bottle.[p]For what it is worth,
    cheers and beers.

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