I am having fire problems.

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lilrebel68
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I am having fire problems.

Postby lilrebel68 » Sat Feb 20, 2010 11:37 pm

I have a little el cheapo hunk a junko bbq pit. I have already burned through the flimsy charcoal pan it came with, so I am using a 9x13 cake pan to put my briquettes in. I have tried using all lump charcoal, and i have tried a mixture of charcoal briquettes and lump charcoal. And I keep having the same two problems.. 1) not all of the lump charcoal burns, and it isnt getting hot enough for indirect grilling (with the oven thermometer off to the side of the charcoal). now, I am dousing the charcoal with lighter fluid, but I still am not getting complete burning of the lump charcoal.. and the thermometer only reads 225 or less on the indirect side.. i am waiting 30 min before I start grilling. they say lump charcoal is supposed to light faster and burn hotter, but I am not seeing it. for cripes sake, I am using kingsford charwood lump charcoal!!!! lol.. any advice or help would be appreciated.

And another thing, i see one site that says brisket should be done fat side up, and one that says fat side down.. who's right?
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby OSD » Sun Feb 21, 2010 6:21 am

To get some really good info, it would help if you told us what type of cooker you are using ( a pic would be better ).

It sounds like you are having air flow problems using that cake pan, might be you just need to use some expanded metal for the fire grate instead of the pan.
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Bluz
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby Bluz » Sun Feb 21, 2010 9:23 am

I agree with Jim, no airflow from under the fire will greatly reduce what you can achieve in the way of heat from the fire. Any tye grating that is open on the bottom will for sure help.
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lilrebel68
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby lilrebel68 » Sun Feb 21, 2010 9:49 am

Jim, I just went to your website, and I am very interested in one of those 16" Kettle lid cookers.. I have a physical limitation (on top of not having tools or a shop) that keeps me from making one of those myself.. how much would it cost me to have one made (preferrably by you, but if you say no, I understand.)?

when I got my pit last year it had a pan in the bottom that was about as high as a cookie sheet (like I said, I burned through that already) and it had the same problem.
Last edited by lilrebel68 on Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:32 am, edited 1 time in total.
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DATsBBQ
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby DATsBBQ » Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:24 am

lilrebel68 wrote:I have a little el cheapo hunk a junko bbq pit. I have already burned through the flimsy charcoal pan it came with, so I am using a 9x13 cake pan to put my briquettes in.

Is it an ECB?

lilrebel68 wrote:And another thing, i see one site that says brisket should be done fat side up, and one that says fat side down.. who's right?


Both are right :roll: Depends on the type of pit, amount of trimming, style of Brisket (packer vs flat or point), and personal preference.
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby lilrebel68 » Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:35 am

well now you can see the pit, and as far as the amount of trimming, the target for today is a 2lb point ( i think ) with a little fat cap on it.

think if I used a cookie sheet it would make a big difference?
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby DATsBBQ » Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:43 am

The quick fix would be to get a couple of firebricks and find a rectangular charcoal grate about half the size of the inside. Put the grate on top of the fire bricks. Build the fire on top of the grate and put the brisket point off to the side (indirect heat). You might get off for $15.

The better fix is to scour Craigs List and look for a used 22" inch Weber kettle. You can get them here off CL for $10.
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby ChileFarmer » Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:44 am

OK, my 2 cents. Fire needs air. I don't think it will make a any difference what the charcoal is on as long as it can get air. I would use something with holes on the bottom. Bluz,Jim and Dave have put you spot on. CF :D
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby lilrebel68 » Sun Feb 21, 2010 10:47 am

ok. i think i have a solution.. i think i am gonna use the cake pan as an ash catcher, and find a small similar sized grate to put the charcoal on and report back later.
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby DATsBBQ » Sun Feb 21, 2010 11:03 am

Air needs to be drawn in from under the charcoal grate. A cake pan will block the draft, you'll have the same problem. A brick at each end of the grate will allow air in from the sides with minimal blockage.
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby lilrebel68 » Sun Feb 21, 2010 11:07 am

ok if i switch from the cake pan to a cookie sheet, put the bricks on, then the grille on.. would that work..

the pan that came with the pit was about cookie sheet high.

I just want to make sure i have a way to get the ashes out as easily as possible.
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby DATsBBQ » Sun Feb 21, 2010 11:13 am

lilrebel68 wrote:ok if i switch from the cake pan to a cookie sheet, put the bricks on, then the grille on.. would that work..

I just want to make sure i have a way to get the ashes out as easily as possible.


Since I live out in the sticks so to speak, I have an area where I dump ashes from the woodstove. If it were me, I'd forgo the pans and when it is time to empty the ashes I'd simply invert said grill over the ash pile. Problem solved.
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby lilrebel68 » Sun Feb 21, 2010 12:39 pm

unfortunately for me that wont work.. i also figured out another fix.. i can borrow a 1" hole saw from my boss and put 3 holes on each end of the cake pan and 4 or 5 on the long side of the pan to allow airflow.. then set the grill grate over the pan and forgo the bricks..

heres the pic of solution 1.
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby DATsBBQ » Sun Feb 21, 2010 1:05 pm

Looks like you have it under control. Good luck with the cook. :D
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Re: I am having fire problems.

Postby Papa Tom » Sun Feb 21, 2010 3:06 pm

OK first Welcome Reb we're glad you're amongst us. Second where 'bouts are you located? Maybe we can help get you into a better cooker. To better answer the fat up or down question, the fat should be between the meat and the heat. If you have a big offset (or you're cooking it in the oven) put the fat up. With my pit the heat source is low so fat goes down until I foil it then fat goes up but really when foiling it really doesn't matter a whole lot. Next lose the charcoal lighter fluid and invest in a chimney starter it'll be one of your better investments.
tarde venientibus ossa....

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