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Slate Blackcurrant Watermelon Strawberry Orange Banana Apple Emerald Chocolate Marble
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CeramicTool

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About CeramicTool

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  • Gender:
    Male
  • Location:
    Calgary, AB
  • Interests:
    BBQ, Stereo.

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  1. I am a meat enthusiast, and my journey has brought me here. One time, I wondered how to cook the perfect steak, while around about the same time trashing anyone that likes to get up at 6am to light a BBQ. No one ever gave me a convincing argument for why charcoal was worth the hassle, and they obviously weren't that good a cook, or didn't cook for me. Well, eventually I got serious about the perfect steak and owned 7 Webers and a Napoleon 2 years ago, and that's when I started to see the shortcomings of gas/propane cooking (it only gets to 500, there is little mass to sustain that temp, moisture issues, wind issues, flare ups, cold spots/warm spots, etc etc) So I bought a Broil King Keg off Kijiji for $70Cdn. It was rusted through on the bottom by the door, but I was too stupid to know how to use charcoal anyway, so I just thought the proper way was to put the proper amount of charcoal in the Keg. And it worked pretty good until I tried to do a packer brisket.... lol. Disaster. Yet everyone loved it. That's when I knew everyone is an idiot, and that Charcoal is heads and tails above gas. The rest is history and I ended up with a Big Joe. Recently I heard about Komodo Kamado, and I've been trowlling the forums. I must say, its one of those things that, once heard about, one finds a way to acquire. As an adhd perfectionist, Im happy to be here hanging with the big boys. Other Forums seem to be full of novices and semi-informed people (Just like real life!) I do pretty good with my Kamado, its really not a hard thing to do with a proper understanding and game plan. Which always then amazes me the mediocre stuff some people manage to cook. I'm here to take my cooking to the next level, and am aiming at owning a KK in 12-18 months. Or sooner if anyone between Winnipeg and Vancouver wants to upgrade to a newer, bigger, better grill (contact me!)
  2. Im spending $700/year (CDN) on charcoal, roughly $2/day. Which is only a 17.6-20lbs bag every second week. I understand the math will never work because of the time value of money, but at 1/2 charcoal usage, that's $350 saved every year. 14 years + $1500 from my Big Joe gets me a budget of $6400 CDN. That's pretty close to the cost of a used 23" ultimate. Please don't destroy my delusions, let me get away with saying a KK pays for itself, because it really truly almost does unless it kills me first.
  3. I'm definitely over my head on this one, so feel free to correct where Im wrong, or add more insight where Im close. But here is a better explanation: Is the Billows more efficient? I firmly believe it is super-efficient vs not using it. I got this idea from @DennisLinkletter in a roundabout way. He said something about the KK having a set and forget damper temperature control system because all the air is drawn through the charcoal, and not allowed to circumvent the firebox like in other designs. I interpreted/visualized this, rightly or wrongly, as a stream of air entering my Big Joe, going around the outside of the firebox, sucking up heat along the way and exiting the top damper warmer than when it entered, but while using less of the available oxygen than if it went through the firebox. This is obviously a simplification, and its more complicated, but the point stands. From this perspective, I visualize the the billows as alternatively creating a "closed air system" and "open air system", one at a time, (Tony B, you are right, this is the inappropriate usage of the words) with relatively little vaccuum action until the temperature drops below where it needs to be. Then Billows forces air into the Kamado, which in turn forces air out the minuscule damper hole in the top. The oxygen level will of course never rise above 20.9%, but will drop as it is used to create heat. I see in my minds eye an imaginary oxygen meter in my Kamado. As the oxygen level drops, so does the heat production. The oxygen in a Billows controlled Big Joe set at 225f will stabilize at a set point between 0 and 20.9%, but I have no idea what that number might be, and it would vary based many things. With the Billows, I see the Big Joe as a totally different cooker. The oxygen may still not have to pass through the firebox, but it must circulate endlessly until it drops too low to maintain the desired temperature, which is close to the same thing. This is made possible by the smaller top damper hole and forced air action of the billows. I humbly suggest that when using the Billows, more oxygen is converted to heat than when not using it, which equals less airflow. And this in turn increases its efficiency by allowing less heat out. I also think that somehow not letting as much moisture escape makes it more efficient as well. I understand it takes 5x the energy to evaporate moisture than to bring it from frozen to boiling. I also understand that as relative humidity rises, evaporation happens slower and slower until it stops completely. I'm not sure what what 100% humidity is at 225f, and Im not sure if a kamado gets that high, and I'm not sure what happens to moisture in meat when the relative humidity is 100%. I do however feel like I'm on the right track that more moisture retained = lower future evaporation rate = more moist meat = less energy used to evaporate water Everything about the Billows seems to be pointing in the right direction of energy efficiency equaling less moisture loss equaling better meat. My cooks are bearing this out as well.
  4. Can anyone comment on how well this works with the KK? I own a Signals/Billows currently, and was wondering if it is compatible such an efficient grill. I know it oftentimes overshoots the temp on my Big Joe by upwards of 15 degrees f, but generally holds a set point of 225f between 210-230f. Some of this may be my fault, it usually overshoots at the beginning and when I open the lid. I could also perhaps hand layer my charcoal for better results rather than dumping the bag (sans fines) into the Kamado. Just wondering if the Dennis recommended temp controllers do a better job because they are designed for super efficient cookers, or if this is irrelevant because the programming takes into account the rate at which things happen? On a side note, for the Signals/Billows, I find it mighty efficient. It turns the entire Kamado into a closed system where air cannot enter in the bottom, traverse the charcoal, and exit the top. I figure this machine gets me part way to a KK by drastically increasing oxygen efficiency, charcoal efficiency, and reducing moisture loss. The wildcard is still massive heat loss through the walls, and uneven heating because of this.
  5. I would really like to see this reposted with pictures. or someone burn an entire 17.6lbs bag at 225f. Everyone I talk to is amazed. I had heard Dennis make this claim of a pre-heat soaked KK, but this post makes no mention of a pre-soak? Perhaps Im missing this info because the Pictures are long gone. Also unavailable is whether there was meat on the grill, which would greatly reduce the time by using a lot of energy to evaporate moisture. Anyone want to reproduce this experiment? Its one of the ways I can justify spending the big bucks, If i can half my charcoal usage. But the real details on how much charcoal I can save are obscured because its an apples to oranges comparison, (Big Joe, Moisture rich cold meat on Vs. Pre-heat soaked empty kamado?)
  6. K1-K9 That explains POS K1-K9. Much easier to understand
  7. Im currently working my way backwards to forwards through 144 pages of Dennis's posts. Unfortunetly, Im up into 2007 posts and all the pictures so far are no longer available. I keep reading about new features and seeing words and abbreviations like OTB. Putting it all together is kinda hard. Would there be a reference available somewhere that shows visually the evolution of Komodo Kamado? Also, the model names, abbreviations, and years manufactured and sold would be quite helpful. Thanks! P.S. the other Kamado forums aren't nearly as well informed as this one. Learning Lots.
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