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CeramicTool

Evolution of KomodoKamado

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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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Not a complete answer to your question, but this page shows many of the models including what I believe are some of the earliest OTB’s.

https://komodokamado.com/pages/grill-gallery

I don’t recall what OTB stands for, but it is essentially the 23. Dennis is continually evolving and improving his grills, but some of the major changes have been:

  • Grout: from more traditional cement to a thermal rubber/polymer jacket (there’s a fancier name for it).
  • Handle: used to be a continuous curve, now it’s square. 
  • Gasket: from 1 to 2 (I think)
  • Other old timers will chime in with more
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OTB = Outside-the-Box for the thinking that went into the grill. I’ve spent way too many hours on this forum for having only had my KK a couple of months


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A source of stories you'd have to get us drunk to tell is the Kamado Fraud Forum. It concerns Richard Johnson's ceramic cooker company. He first put tiles on ceramic cookers; his tiles didn't stay on. Various of us here first owned ceramic cookers from this company; you'll see the acronym POSK for these cookers (no one remembers what this stands for). My tiles all fell off, and the KFF featured a photo of my repair. After seeing the lax supervision and workmanship at Richard's factory in Sacramento, I wondered how anyone's tiles ever stayed on. I gave my POSK to a neighbor when I bought my 2009 23" KK Ultimate. My neighbor now has an impressive collection of barbecues; the POSK is no longer part of the collection.

My 2009 23" KK Ultimate has all its tiles. It still looks good as new.

Richard abandoned a Kamado factory in Indonesia. Dennis has a thriving wood flooring business. His workers mentioned they had friends who'd lost jobs to an abandoned business making ceramic cookers. Dennis, being a good guy, decided to resurrect the business to help these workers. Dennis, being a tad obsessive, got very interested in improving the product. While there remains a superficial resemblance (tiles on a ceramic cooker), the Richard original is junk, while the Dennis modern incarnation is the best ceramic cooker on the market. Think styrofoam cooler versus a Yeti Tundra cooler, Portland cement versus modern ceramics.

I was actually aware of the earliest Dennis KK models when I bought my POSK, but I fell victim to preferring "originals". Both Bob Dylan and Manfred Mann sing versions of "Mighty Quinn (Quinn The Eskimo)". I prefer the original, even though it's close to unlistenable. My bad. I should have realized that Dennis was the real deal; I missed being one of his first KK customers. I made up for this in 2009.

Edited by Syzygies
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I remember hearing about/seeing RJ's Kamado's back when I first got my BGE.. seeing it happen in real time was WILD and I remembering people trying to point out the difference between the RJs and Dennis'. Some people just never learned and got burned after. 

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On 4/13/2021 at 10:24 PM, Basher said:

POSK = piece of shit Kamado.
Or something like this. I think Tony has raised this before.


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Indeed! But, the silver lining on the POSK dark cloud was that it introduced me to ceramic cookers, which ultimately lead me to Dennis and his KKs. My POSK K7 kept its tiles on pretty well, but the top hat area crumbled around the spider assembly.  RIP!

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Posted (edited)

 

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?)

Edited by CeramicTool
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@ckreef - did a charcoal comparison series of tests. Look for that thread. 

I really doubt that current KK owners based their decisions to buy one to save money on charcoal. It would take a LOT of bags of charcoal to justify the cost difference between a KK and the others. It's all about the quality of the grill's construction, the superlative customer service from Dennis, and the great food that you're able to cook on one compared to other styles of grills, ceramic or otherwise. You rarely hear any "buyer's remorse" on this Forum. 

 

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[mention=1832]ckreef[/mention] - did a charcoal comparison series of tests. Look for that thread. 
I really doubt that current KK owners based their decisions to buy one to save money on charcoal. It would take a LOT of bags of charcoal to justify the cost difference between a KK and the others. It's all about the quality of the grill's construction, the superlative customer service from Dennis, and the great food that you're able to cook on one compared to other styles of grills, ceramic or otherwise. You rarely hear any "buyer's remorse" on this Forum. 
 

Agree with Tony B on this one. I find myself buying more expensive charcoal now just because I have a KK and want to cook the best I possibly can with it. It’s a lot easier to justify a couple dollars here or there to aim for excellence when you have already purchased the luxury cooker.


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CeramicTool I previously had an inferior Kamado and although I have no desire to cook for 80 hours straight, I can guarantee the KK uses much less charcoal.
Mostly due to the thermal mass( the scientist may correct me on this)
I’d say the KK uses 30%- 50% less charcoal than my old Kamado. They were similar sized cookers.


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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.

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Well justified CeramicTool.
Alternatively, you will cook twice as often for the sheer enjoyment of cooking on a pretty KK.
This will save you heaps on dining out.


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On 4/22/2021 at 12:53 PM, BOC said:

Agree with Tony B on this one. I find myself buying more expensive charcoal now just because I have a KK and want to cook the best I possibly can with it. It’s a lot easier to justify a couple dollars here or there to aim for excellence when you have already purchased the luxury cooker.

Exactly. And charcoal is like wine, you can taste the difference, into price stratospheres you'd rather not know about.

(I'm the one who devised the smoke pot and let my wife taste the difference. At least that mod isn't costing me money!)

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I think the KK is like the Porsche 911. If you're not a car guy, this probably doesn't mean that much but the essence of what it is remains present in all evolutions of the vehicle. If you get what it's about, it doesn't matter which one you have, you'll still enjoy the experience.  

 I don't see what comparing the history of the models offers you if I assume that you're looking to make a purchase decision? My 32KK which I bought a couple years ago has been updated to include a steel trace around the lid (apparently people were leaving tools on the side and shutting the lid on them and breaking tiles off for example). Doesn't make a difference because it's not a mistake I've ever made and well, just be careful. Dennis has obviously had enough issues to deal with that he felt it worth addressing but I don't think the fundamentals have changed that much. 

 

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@Braai-Q is correct. Dennis is always looking for improvements in the design, many of which come as suggestions from current owners. the good news is that he often makes some of these upgrades available to us owners of older models. I have replaced the gas door in mine with the threaded rod version to properly seal it up so it doesn't become an unexpected source of air in-leakage. I also upgraded to the dual dial front door. I've added the 2nd gasket. Not to mention adding accessories over the years as they've become available, such as the half grate, double bottom drip pan, cold smoker, and various rotisserie parts. There is no "planned obsolescence" in KK world.

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59 minutes ago, tony b said:

@Braai-Q is correct. Dennis is always looking for improvements in the design, many of which come as suggestions from current owners. the good news is that he often makes some of these upgrades available to us owners of older models. I have replaced the gas door in mine with the threaded rod version to properly seal it up so it doesn't become an unexpected source of air in-leakage. I also upgraded to the dual dial front door. I've added the 2nd gasket. Not to mention adding accessories over the years as they've become available, such as the half grate, double bottom drip pan, cold smoker, and various rotisserie parts. There is no "planned obsolescence" in KK world.

This is one of the things I am most excited about for when I get mine.. the fact that years down the road there will be new fun things I can add that'll work with my KK :D

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18 hours ago, tony b said:

@Braai-Q is correct. Dennis is always looking for improvements in the design, many of which come as suggestions from current owners. the good news is that he often makes some of these upgrades available to us owners of older models. I have replaced the gas door in mine with the threaded rod version to properly seal it up so it doesn't become an unexpected source of air in-leakage. I also upgraded to the dual dial front door. I've added the 2nd gasket. Not to mention adding accessories over the years as they've become available, such as the half grate, double bottom drip pan, cold smoker, and various rotisserie parts. There is no "planned obsolescence" in KK world.

Now you've got me thinking about upgrades to my 19 which could do with a tune up. 

Edited by Braai-Q
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