if offset smokers are meant to be wood burners, why do we still use charcoal??

Discussion in 'Side Fire Box' started by zardrel, Aug 11, 2014.

  1. zardrel

    zardrel Fire Starter

    i know charcoal is awesome for ribs(mmmmmmmm tasty!!) but its alot of ash, even with lump charcoal its ashes. if offsets have a side fire box door, then the advantage is that you, can load the logs into the cooker from the side. but why charcoal?? whats the point of it in stick burners?? im a teen and i have no clue why you use charcoal to start a fire, instead of kindling, tender and fuel. please help me under stand
  2. dandl93

    dandl93 Smoking Fanatic

    First off my smoker is 100% stick burner.I wish there was a stick burner group on this forum.

    My idea to your question is most use charcoal because of where they live no abundance of good wood.Charcoal is cheaper and easier to use..

  3. zardrel

    zardrel Fire Starter

    i have a oak tree n my yard, want to start a group, for stick burners??
  4. rob sicc

    rob sicc Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    Dan is right,

    Where I am, there are not a lot of wood suppliers.  I hate the idea of having wood shipped to my house.  I should hook up with a local tree guy,
  5. dandl93

    dandl93 Smoking Fanatic

    It would be good to stick them all together  it could turn into a decent thread hahahaha I started on this one so will stay here 

  6. brooksy

    brooksy Master of the Pit

    The great thing about cooking in any aspect is there is no right or wrong way. I have started my beast with a chimney of lump then throw my splits on but lately I've put a few pieces of lump under the splits and hit it with a torch seems to light quicker. I always say do what feels natural for the way you want to cook. Its your smoker start it how you want and no one will think any less of you. Just have fun and relax!
  7. kapdon

    kapdon Smoke Blower

    I usually start my pit with kindling and a little newspaper. Often when my kindling gets low I throw in up to 8 pieces of charcoal to ensure I have a few coals in there until the bigger logs can catch. When I do this I use regular natural charcoal. No instant light, lighter fluid, or any other chemicals or gases are allowed in my pit.
  8. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    It's a personal choice , and some of these guys just like the Charcoal . Personally , I use all wood , however I start with a Weedburner. Why [​IMG]

    If I stopped to  P/U kindling when I see it , Trish would get real mad for wasting time ( she's a one-way girl on her days off , and she takes the  Van to work with her , leaving me afoot ) .

    The little stuff around Town is always claimed for Fireplaces  and scarfed-up .

    Sooooo , that's why I do it  . . .

    Good for you , I'm proud that you do yours the 'Oldschool' way [​IMG].

    Keep it up and you'll be the Envy of your 'Hood'.

    Have fun and . . .
  9. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Well , I guess we need a 'Stick burner's Group' , any chance [​IMG]
  10. Starting out with an offset, I think it's easier managing a charcoal fire. Less spikes, longer burns. I'm not saying it's the preferred method, just easier to folks new to smoking.
  11. grillmonkey

    grillmonkey Smoking Fanatic

    I use about 1/2 a chimney of charcoal to get things started, then it's all wood. Ash isn't much of a problem for my SFB because it's big and the wood rack is about 2" high. Also, if your wood is properly cured, there is little ash anyway.

    Fire box can be loaded from the side or top.

    Some white oak to split.

    Some red oak waiting to be split and added to the pile.
  12. zardrel

    zardrel Fire Starter

    yeah i have to split my wood as i go when i cook, its labor intensive but its worthit, lol i would be the envy of my hood lol. i just learned oldschool and its my only way i learned it.
  13. bob1961

    bob1961 Smoking Fanatic

    my main use of lump is for heat, I use 3" squares of fruit woods for smoke flavor as needed for the BTS....
    Last edited: Aug 30, 2014
  14. omonstero

    omonstero Newbie

    I'm new to smoking, so if I post anything incorrect please set me straight.

    With a small offset I find charcoal burns at a lower temp than wood. Using the minion method as a newbie I'm able to control temp easier and for longer than if I was using straight wood for heat.
  15. jakesz28

    jakesz28 Fire Starter

    I have had a hard time getting much above 225*. I'm using a char griller and I always have access to fire wood. So I am thinking about using some splits to try and get the temperature up. The last time I smoked I bought some chunks of hickory from home depot. But I'm not buying wood at those prices.
    Wish luck tomorrow. Got a pork shoulder and a brisket, throwing some beans on too.

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