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Will this work as a diffuser for smoking/pizza cooks?


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The search for a diffuser may have come to an end. At least for now. I went digging in our kitchen and found an old 16 inch pizza pan that has holes in the bottom. It gives about 1/2 to 3/4 inch clearance on the sides if placed in the center. I was going to cover it up in foil and see if it did the trick.

Does anyone think I'll be keeping too much heat trapped with that little clearance to the point where it'll harm the grill?

The 16 is too large. You'll end up burning those little ash tray handles. I tried that once...once.
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The search for a diffuser may have come to an end. At least for now. I went digging in our kitchen and found an old 16 inch pizza pan that has holes in the bottom. It gives about 1/2 to 3/4 inch clearance on the sides if placed in the center. I was going to cover it up in foil and see if it did the trick.

Does anyone think I'll be keeping too much heat trapped with that little clearance to the point where it'll harm the grill?

The 16 is too large. You'll end up burning those little ash tray handles. I tried that once...once.

What ashtray handles? Nothing to crack on an Akorn either so 3/4 inches is plenty for airflow IMHO

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The search for a diffuser may have come to an end. At least for now. I went digging in our kitchen and found an old 16 inch pizza pan that has holes in the bottom. It gives about 1/2 to 3/4 inch clearance on the sides if placed in the center. I was going to cover it up in foil and see if it did the trick.

Does anyone think I'll be keeping too much heat trapped with that little clearance to the point where it'll harm the grill?

The 16 is too large. You'll end up burning those little ash tray handles. I tried that once...once.

What ashtray handles? Nothing to crack on an Akorn either so 3/4 inches is plenty for airflow IMHO

 

Lardog is refering to the plastic handles on the ashpan. And yes, I can 100% verify that they will melt if you block too much heat from escaping the aspan. I would not use the 16 incher without the holes or "perforations" on anything over 400 or so...My opinion of course but I do have some semi melted handles to back that opinion.....;)

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  • 5 years later...
On 2/19/2015 at 8:24 PM, Colin954 said:

If money is tight and you are looking for a diffuser with some thermal mass, I would recommend a terracotta plant saucer. I have used one for low and slow cooking and it has worked great. I have even used one as a diffuser for high temp pizza cooks. After several high temp pizza cooks, mine did crack, but not too badly and I am still using it. They cost about 4 or 5 bucks at home depot. I think these would work better than the metal pizza pan.... one word of advise, I was using one as a diffuser / water pan and refilled the water after it had all evaporated and caused a crack. Not a good idea to add cold water to a hot saucer. That will Def cause a crack!

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Hi Colin954, did you wrap this in foil when your using as a diffuser? I plan to get the Woo spider and then put this on top for slow smoking. Also, do you know if there's any resin that would come out of this plate when heating for long cooks ? Thanks

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1 hour ago, rayzer70 said:

Hi Colin954, did you wrap this in foil when your using as a diffuser? I plan to get the Woo spider and then put this on top for slow smoking. Also, do you know if there's any resin that would come out of this plate when heating for long cooks ? Thanks

I've used a terracotta saucer like that in my Weber Smokey Mountain for years.  Wrap it in a couple layers of foil for easy cleanup.

Even with care, it will crack in a few years of regular use but always did a great job.

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1 hour ago, rayzer70 said:

Hi Colin954, did you wrap this in foil when your using as a diffuser? I plan to get the Woo spider and then put this on top for slow smoking. Also, do you know if there's any resin that would come out of this plate when heating for long cooks ? Thanks

 

 

1/2 moon kiln shelving works great in the spider too.

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10 hours ago, MartyBauer said:

I've used a terracotta saucer like that in my Weber Smokey Mountain for years.  Wrap it in a couple layers of foil for easy cleanup.

Even with care, it will crack in a few years of regular use but always did a great job.

some say not good to wrap in foil (fumes/chemicals) some say it's ok....what's the consensus on this ? 

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I wouldn’t be concerned about the foil at low temps compared to the actual components of the terra-cotta. 
 

I prefer to buy things that I am certain will do the job safely. Other things may work, but if it is not designed for it how would you tell if it is safe on a Kamado? In my opinion it is not worth it to save a few dollars. More time is spent trying to save money and you actually don’t save any since time=money. 

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8 hours ago, rayzer70 said:

some say not good to wrap in foil (fumes/chemicals) some say it's ok....what's the consensus on this ? 

 

If there's risk in it, then the aluminum foil industry had been lying to us for over a century.

Just make sure you use a food grade product and you should be fine.

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8 hours ago, rayzer70 said:

some say not good to wrap in foil (fumes/chemicals) some say it's ok....what's the consensus on this ? 

 

 

If the "aluminum foil industry has been lying to us for a century," would it really be a surprise?

 

It's worth noting that an aluminum foil packet left in contact with lit coals, will near-as-nevermind burn away. If you examine one after cooking, it looks as if the foil has simply vapourized from the heat. What conclusion can we draw from that? What has happened to the foil that has burned away? Did it dissipate harmlessly into nothing? Or did the aluminum turn into fumes that went into your meat?

 

And while aluminum is all around us and in ordinary circumstances is probably not dangerous, fumes are a different story.

 

If the zinc coating on galvanized steel can burn away and introduce dangerous fumes into food is it really so hard to imagine aluminum doing the same thing?

 

The real question, however, is do you really want to take a chance with the lives of your children and family? How much effort does it take to simply look for other alternatives?

 

JMO...

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