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Starting the fire

Hi again group! you guys have answered all my dumb questions so far,
and here's another one. What do you recomend for the best and easies
method to start the fire? Do you get good results with a wadded up
piece of newspaper, or do you use an electric charcoal starter? Have
patience with me, I'm a newbee just trying to get it right. Thanks
to all.


  • GfwGfw Posts: 1,598
    Doctor J, I use both an electric starter and fire starters - never used newspaper. I like the electric starter only because I have a very close source of power and a place to put the VERY HOT starter when it comes out of the BGE.[p]Starter cubes (used this method today) are probably the preference here - they ignite fast, don't cost much and there is nothing to put away.

  • JJJJ Posts: 951
    Doctor J,
    Get some cheap fire starter cubes such as Weber cubes or Ace hardware version. Stick under the fire grate for high temp cooking or on top of the charcoal with a few peices covering for low and slo.

  • Nature BoyNature Boy Posts: 8,523
    Doctor J,
    I agree with the others. Firestarters are great. They always work, and you only need a small chunk. Camping stores have firestarter sticks for starting campfires. A dozen sticks 99 cents. You only need 1/4 of one to start your egg. Also K Mart has Rutland Fire Starter cubes. Also a buck or two, and small chunks can be broken off. Some people even use firestarter logs that they cut up into cubes (by far the cheapest besides newspaper).[p]I used newspaper my first five cooks. 3 times I had to start fire twice. Since I have used firestarters, I have cooked over 100 times, and never had a fire fail to start.[p]Good luck!
    Twitter: @dizzypigbbq
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  • SpinSpin Posts: 1,375
    Doctor J,[p]I still use the newspaper for anything other than low and slow. I recommend the starter cubes.[p]Spin

  • MarkMark Posts: 295
    Doctor J,
    I use rubbing alcohol, it's cheap and burn's clean(no residue). Pour about a third of a pint over your coal's, lite, close lid and in 10 to 15 minutes your cooking.

  • Doctor J,[p]When I first got my egg I tried the newspaper method. After all, it's cheap, easy, and available, right? WRONG! I was always relighting fires, or never getting them to start. Next I tried firestarters. Never a problem - - they always lit. Problem was, I had to go and buy them, which was somewhat of a hassle from time to time.[p]So . . . I finally bought a charcoal firestarter, and I love it. Now, everyone has their own method they prefer. Keep on trying until you find yours.[p]BTW, you came to the right place. The guys and gals on this forum are the greatest help in the world, not to mention just plain ol' nice folks.[p]Rev. Jim
  • Doctor J, My choice is a small propane torch with an automatic spark lighter. It puts a high amount of heat in several places. I have just bought a box of the firelogs and have used it several times. I use a small piece (size of ice cube), placed down in the middle of the coals. About 10 minutes later I have a nice fire going. I wouldn't use any flammable liquids because of the danger involved and the potential for latent tasts occuring. The excess liquid that don't stick to the coal is running down onto the ceramic. Besides, I'm a firefighter and I can't run the risk of blowing my nose and ears off during an outdoor cookout. I could never live that down. The propane torch works great and I keep an extra bottle on hand. So far, after two
    years of use on a partial bottle of propane, I still haven't had to change to my new one. Guru uses an electric starter with good results.

  • RandyRandy Posts: 28
    Doctor J,
    I started using a propane torch and now use the starter cubes. Just go to your local Wal-Mart or K-mart and get the box of starter sticks, break them up in 1 inch cubes and youve got enough fire starters to last a long while. A box only cost about 5 bucks. You cant beat it...

  • Char-WoodyChar-Woody Posts: 2,642
    I am wondering if those are the same sticks I have here. Mine are called "FatWood" product of Honduras! I too thought they would be a good idea..
    I cut one of em up in small chunks. But I used one piece, and that was the end of that idea. It smoked real bad with a pungent odor and black sooty petroleum smell to em. yukky!! I don't know if they are the same brand or not. I would rather use the bulky firestarter logs and break em up or cut em to small chunks as they burn cleaner.
    Just my thoughts with my experience with the sticks.

  • Doctor J,
    The only dumb question is the one that don't get asked! I was down to have "din din" with some friends in Wichita today and while I was there, went over to see my dealer. Funny thang, he had the same question! I was kinda caught off gaurd with it too! He did not have the foggiest idea on how things were done! I stood there for over an hour going over things with him, and he was shocked! Nobody ever went thru things like that with him, and they've been selling Eggs for 3 years. I suggested he get on the internet with the forum and see what other people are doing! Believe me, these guys/gals know the Egg inside & out! They will help anyone that asks!
    I break up a fire starter in half or thirds and nestle one piece down in the center of my lump and light it and walk away. 10 minutes later, its got the lump going good and I close the dome, without the daisy wheel or dual function top and let it rip. 10 minutes later, I start closing the bottom vent and put the daisy wheel on top and it starts coming down to where I want it. Look at Elder Wards posting on "pulled pork", he goes into detail on how to build a good sustainable fire out of lump! It works, believe me! If you want a long term "burn", its a must to build & start the fire right. Once you get on to it, it will become second nature![p]Good luck, and good eatin'! BTW, welcome to the "clan"![p]Dr. chicken

  • RandyRandy Posts: 28
    Char-Woody,Were not talking about the same thing. Sounds like what you have is what I grew up using to start fires in the fireplace growing up in Ga. We called it fat lighter. It is pieces of an old pine tree stump. The petroleum smell is the pine tar that is saturated into the stump. Thats why the work so well . The sticks I use are just like the firelogs your speaking of but are in stick form.[p]Randy

  • Char-WoodyChar-Woody Posts: 2,642
    Randy, way to go!! These things from Honduras are going out the door to the first willing recipient..!! I got a grip on what you have now..and a good starter...Thanks..C~W[p]
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