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aerohead80

Reusing Lump

25 posts in this topic

9 hours ago, baconator said:

Ive found every time i have had a overly smokey or an acrid smoke flavor its because of leaving used lump in the akorn that has accumulated too much moisture from the air.   Ive had the chargriller for almost 5 years now and the bottom rim where the ash pan connects is all rusted.  i believe its from not removing the lump when im done grilling.    most of the time i had the cover on the grill too.   the instructions do say do not leave used lump in the grill because it will accumulate moisture now I see why.  

As a relatively new Akorn owner, you've given me much to think about. Thanks for the info, I'd sure like to squeeze out as many years of use as possible.

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On 4/28/2016 at 7:57 PM, hldevo said:

 

The Kick-Ash basket looks like it's built to last forever but I've been using a much less expensive option ($19.99) called the Mr. Bar-B-Q Stainless Steel Grill Basket from Lowe's for the last 4 years and it's worked wonderfully for me.  Academy Sports sells it too but it's $24.99 there.  It sits on top of the charcoal grate and holds a surprising amount of lump - enough for multiple long cooks.  I once ran it for about 16 hours straight for a couple of cooks and there was still some lump left.  In addition to low-n-slows, it works equally well for high heat cooks like steak or pizza too.

 

Another positive aspect I've found about using the Mr. BBQ Basket is because of its mesh material, I'm able to also use smaller, finer pieces of lump equally well.  Before getting the Mr. BBQ Basket, I used to throw away the smaller pieces of lump (typically, the stuff in the bottom of the bag) because it would just fall through the charcoal grate. The small lump now stays contained within the basket and I also don't have to worry about the small pieces restricting air flow because there's plenty of room for air flow all around the basket.  

 

Typically, before I begin a cook, I'll give the leftover lump a really good shake so that the loose ash will drop into the ash pan.  I'll then temporarily dump the used lump into another container.  Then, I refill the basket with new lump & wood chunks and then I'll dump the old lump on top of the new lump.  I use a BernzOmatic plumber's propane torch to light the lump in several places and I've found that lighting the old lump creates no sparking whereas lighting new lump ALWAYS creates quite the fireworks show! 

 

This is what it looks like:  

10267899.jpg

 

possible to see a photo of the one you've been using 4,years to see how it's held up to the heat?

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I don't see a need for the basket unless you want to filter out the tiniest pieces that might still be usable. I just put on a glove and rummage through the coals and or shake the firebowl a little bit and the ashes fall below. Supplement leftovers with some fresh coals and you're good to go. It's the beauty of lump Charcoal.

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I'm not to certain this theory of skanky charcoal due to humidity holds any water.  Charcoal in a bag holds the same amount of water as the charcoal in a kamado, especially if you storfe your charcoal in a garage or shed.  Unless you store your charcoal in a dehumidified environment, this skanky charcoal theory is all wet.  I lived on the Gulf Coast for years, burned literally tons of lump, and never had a problem even though my charcoal was in a very humid environment.  Taking charcoal out of my kamado after a cook?  You can't be serious, can you?:shock:;-)

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I've been doing this kamado cooking thing for a little over a year. I live in Houston about 5 miles through the woods to the Gulf of Mexico. (I still haven't got used to the humidity.) I always leave my leftovers in the grill. I'm cheap, and I throw nothing away. I also don't cover my grill. It is tucked under my back porch so it is out of the elements. On 2 occasions, I've had popping and sparks from what I expect to be moist lump from being left in the grill. On both occasions, it had been a couple of weeks since I last grilled. (I had been on vacation, out of town, etc.). I make it a point to grill at least 1 time per week (if in town).

 

Grill more often!

 

Billy

CeramicChef likes this

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13 hours ago, CeramicChef said:

I'm not to certain this theory of skanky charcoal due to humidity holds any water.  Charcoal in a bag holds the same amount of water as the charcoal in a kamado, especially if you storfe your charcoal in a garage or shed.  Unless you store your charcoal in a dehumidified environment, this skanky charcoal theory is all wet.  I lived on the Gulf Coast for years, burned literally tons of lump, and never had a problem even though my charcoal was in a very humid environment.  Taking charcoal out of my kamado after a cook?  You can't be serious, can you?:shock:;-)

 

While I never pull charcoal out of my Kamado to "preserve" it so to speak I have had issues with storing charcoal outside. My only issue was getting a proper fire started though, it had nothing to do with the smoke profile or temperature control once everything was up and running. I've tried leaving it in it's own paper/cardboard packaging placed underneath a covered Akorn as well as dedicating a cooler to store it in. Both scenarios caused me issues in lighting coal after a humid or wet day. Using the cooler was actually a terrible idea as it built up so much condensation that there was water in the bottom of the cooler. That said, now I store my lump inside and add to what is leftover in the Akorn to top off the firebox. Point being, I believe storing your fuel in a climate controlled environment is best if you are able to do so, although there certainly is no need to dump the firebox after every cook.

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@JDEaston - I buy lump by the pallet and store it in my garage.  That garage, like the vast majority, isn't climate controlled except to keep the lump dry.  I've never had a problem with popping, sparking, etc.  There is no skank, no excessive smoke, etc. I am not dragging bags of lump through my house under any circumstances.

 

Maybe the issue is cheap lump.  I simply don't get buying prime cuts of protein, spending big bucks to get really good spices, etc. for ingredients and spices, and then going cheap on the lump.  Lump is an ingredient in every cook.  You always get what you pay for, IMHO.

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On 4/20/2017 at 6:50 AM, CeramicChef said:

I'm not to certain this theory of skanky charcoal due to humidity holds any water.  Charcoal in a bag holds the same amount of water as the charcoal in a kamado, especially if you storfe your charcoal in a garage or shed.  Unless you store your charcoal in a dehumidified environment, this skanky charcoal theory is all wet.  I lived on the Gulf Coast for years, burned literally tons of lump, and never had a problem even though my charcoal was in a very humid environment.  Taking charcoal out of my kamado after a cook?  You can't be serious, can you?:shock:;-)

 

sorry took so long to get back on this.   This seems to be an issue with only the Akorn since it is steel construction.  mine is almost 5 years old but would have been unuseable 2 years ago if a friend didnt donate me a new ash pan.  the as pan completely rusted out.    

 

https://www.manualslib.com/manual/614699/Char-Griller-6719.html?page=11#manual

" Charcoal is porous and holds moisture, DO NOT leave char-coal in your grill while you are not using it as charcoal or ashes left, especially outside, may reduce the life of your grill"

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I reuse the lump from previous cooks in my Akorn 95% of the time. I just add new lump to the old and cook with it. Anytime I'm doing a "special" smoke I will pull the used stuff out and fill it with new. I have no reason for doing it other than personal preference. 

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I wanted to share this: over the weekend I did a cook where I took all the old lump out and replaced with new. I filled the firebox with all fresh lump and cherry. The smoke took almost 14 hours. Here is what I was left with. That is a ton of lump and it shows how efficient the Akorn is. I was shocked I had this much left. Needless to say I'm going to keep it in there and use it to grill until it's time to smoke a pricey piece of meat. 

IMG_0510.JPG

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