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Beauty! Comes Home To ChezChef!

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Today, the saga ends, Beauty! was delivered yesterday at 2:30 p.m. weighing in at a svelte 548 pounds including all the extras!  I about froze outside while Tom got her off the truck and safely into my garage.  Here are a couple pics to whet your whistle for what's to come.


This first picture of Beauty and her delivery driver, Tom.  Tom delivered TheBeast to my home last August and remember him quite well.  He said that Beauty! is a small little thing compared to her bigger brother!  Beauty! herself weighs in at 338 lbs compared to TheBeast at 954 lbs!  Quite a difference.  Tom is a really great guy and told me he'd put Beauty anyplace I wanted.




Here is Beauty! riding the lift gate down to the street.




Here is another pic of Beauty! giving you an idea of all the accessories that came with her.  As is the case with everything KK, it is so well wrapped as to preclude any damage in transit!




That's all I have for right now.  As I post this it is now 24F and with the wind chill it feels like 14F.  I'm going to have to bring all the boxes into the house and open them in here.  IT's just too dadgummed cold to do anything in the garage and NO! I don't have a garage heater.  My hands are frozen and my fingers just now beginning to thaw out!


More to come!

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Now we'll cover the basket splitter and the baking stone.  As many of you may remember from the pics of TheBeast, Dennis Linkletter makes absolutely certain that nothing is left to chance.  Everything that is shipped is so well wrapped that it's a chore just to break into the packages.  Once you get into the packages, you're meet with plastic wrap and styrofoam.  Get ready, here it comes!  Just remember, you asked for it!  LOL!!


Here is the box for the basket splitter.  Everything is so clearly marked even I can't screw it up!




Here is the basket splitter still wrapped in plastic.  Notice all the styrofoam underneath and along each side.  Well, there was also a cap of styrofoam you don't see.




Cutting through all that plastic wrap is quite a chore, but it can be done.  I was almost tempted trying to keep all that plastic wrap for future cooks, but saner heads prevailed!


Now on to the baking stone.  KKers, Dennis worked with some engineers to design the baking stones for his KKs such that there was the correct amount of thermal mass so that pizza after piazza could be cooked without having to wait for the stone to "recycle" and be hot enough to give a good bottom crust.  




This shot shows the top and side layers of styrofoam.




Here you see the underside of the baking stone.  Most people think it is the top side to be used for baking, but wait until you see the other side.  




Here is a side view.  Most stones are only about 1/2" and the really good ones are about 3/4" - 1" in thickness.  This stone is 1 1/2" thick!  Tons of thermal mass for great pizza crusts.  As an aside, the baking stone on TheBeast is fully 2' thick and weighs a ton!  This stone has no small amount of heft to it.  




And finally, here is the baking surface.  It has been finished to a mirror finish.  I can tell you from experience with TheBeast's baking stone that sliding pizzas, breads, etc. on and off the stone is simply effortless.  Just easy peasy.  You couldn't ask for more!




I've got to run right now, but next well cover a rotisserie basket for TheBeast you simply won't believe!

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That's all I have for right now.  As I post this it is now 24F and with the wind chill it feels like 14F.  I'm going to have to bring all the boxes into the house and open them in here.  IT's just too dadgummed cold to do anything in the garage and NO! I don't have a garage heater.  My hands are frozen and my fingers just now beginning to thaw out!


More to come!


Wuss! Go inside, do a shot of whiskey like a man, and go back out and finish the job!


Woke up this morning and it was 16F BELOW ZERO, with MINUS 30F windchill. It's been sunny all day, so it's warmed up - it's 7F right now, with a minus 3F windchill. 


But, I am glad to see that Beauty made it home OK. Waiting with bated breath to see her uncrated!

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Okay, as promised, here comes the rotisserie basket for TheBeast that came along with Beauty! for the ride.  


Now I've seen a fair number of rotisserie baskets and spits in my time, but What you're about to see just blew me away.  TheBeast is is NOT done any kind of justice by the photos you've seen.  He has to be see, touched, and experienced to be understood.  Just as you don't get any kind of real experience seeing a photograph of a professional American Football offensive left tackle by looking at his player card, how overwhelmingly massive he is, so too with TheBeast!  I'm amazed every time I cook on him.  He is massively athletic.  Everything about him is massive.  So too with his rotisserie basket.


Here is the box that the rotisserie basket comes in.  No big deal, right?




And as we've seen before, the basket comes very well packed.  Styrofoam all around ... top, bottom, and all sides.




And here is the basket in the box all wrapped up in plastic wrap.  What else, right?




What you don't get a sense of it how large the gauge of the rods are, how hefty this basket is, and how sturdy the construction is.  The rods running the length of the basket are made from the same gauge stainless steel as are the rods on all the cooking grates in TheBeast.


Here is a picture of the rotisserie basket with the tines that hold the cook(s) in place.  Whereas most tines that hold cook(s) in place are set with thumb screws, these come complete with their own Allen wrench to make certain that the basket doesn't come undone in the midst of a cook!




There are 5 of these tines and they slide left and right on the rods and can move about 300 degrees about their axis where they are attached to the rods.  There is a fail-safe that only allows the tines to come off the roads at each end.  


Here are a few closeups of the tines that hold the cook(s) in the basket.










These pictures really don't do justice to how ruggedly this basket is built.  It will easily hold 4 good sized chickens.  I can cook a turkey in this bad boy and never blink.  And entire prime rib roast is easily accommodated by this basket.  And in talking with Dennis, I am assured there is absolutely no slippage at any point.  Many rotisseries can easily get overloaded.  I don't see that happening here.  After seeing this basket as the centerpiece of the rotisserie system, I feel embarrassed asking the questions I asked Dennis.  Ever the gracious man that he is, he answered all my questions with the equanimity that is his hallmark.  


Next, onward and upward.  Back to Beauty! and her stand.

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Back again KKers! 


Let's take a look at the stand that is to be Beauty's! resting place for the next few months or so.


Let me warn you that unlike everything else KK, this stand does not come ready for use out of the box.  As is said and is the absolute bane of every parent's Christmas Eve experience, "Some Assembly Required.  Batteries Not Included".  So here we go!


Again, the box ... yawn!




Again, the obligatory 1/2" styrofoam top and bottom and all around!  




I take off the top layer of styrofoam, and VOILA!  But, WHOA!  What is this?!!!  I've never seen this in any of the pictures of the stands for the 19"!




It is a teak shelf that fits in down at the bottom of the stainless steel stand.  TEAK!  Nobody ever told me about this!  It is simply stunning, both in its deep rich beauty of the teak and in its construction.  Stunning!    Take a look at the construction of this shelf in the next picture!  What you see is the underside of the teak shelf.




Every horizontal piece is is held in place by lathes that are counter sunk.  All the screw holes are covered with teak.  This is for a shelf that not one single solitary soul will see and the underside of this teak shelf is a work of pure craftsmanship.  Talk about taking pride in one's work!  (oh, BTW, did anyone know that Dennis Linkletter, owner of KK, was known 'round the world for his teak furniture and flooring LONG before he created that world's best kamado?)  The cross pieces are, what else, stainless steel.  All hardware needed to completely assemble the stand is included and is of course stainless also.  


Okay, that's all I have for now.  I've gotta run and pick up SWMBOI at the airport.  It's colder than the proverbial wicked stepmother's love outside, snowing, and supposed to get worse all weekend.  


More later.  Thanks for looking!  Y'all stay warm and have a great weekend!

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Tony - I really question how intelligent you are living up there in Iowa during the winters!  Those kinds of temps are only fit for cryo labs!


You've already deemed me "certifiable" and off your list of folks that need professional help, so what's surprising about living in Dante's innermost circle of HELL? 


Hey, at least I'm not buried in 6 - 8 ft of the white stuff like our brethren in New England! That's some bat-sh!t crazy weather! At least I can leave the house if I want to, rarely in this weather, but feasible! However, I did venture out tonight to go to a crazy good beer tasting. 'Cause this engine runs on ethanol!

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Thanks for the running commentary and showing us each step. It's great to relive my own memories of un-crating Lola through your post. Please keep it coming.
By the way it was another beautiful day here in Hawaii, and I'm a bachelor tonight since the wife and daughter are camping on the beach this weekend.
Any time a KK'er is going to be on the Big Island, let me know and I can fire up Lola for you.

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jclarkhpa - Geez, Hawaii?  Camping on the beach?  Oh man!  I am so jealous!  I've got everything in life except a house in Hawaii.  But then too much of a good thing will just spoil me!  I can't imagine living in paradise every single day.  It must get boring 80F days, Sunshine, ocean breezes, temperate nights.  

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I can't imagine that it would, at least not for me! Only downside, I'd have to spend a fortune on sunscreen. Us Anglo-Saxons and tropical sunshine don't mix real well! 

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Fun watching CC. Reminds me of my own Christmas-like experience opening my 23". Look forward to the rest. Has your better half decided on the first cook?

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Fun watching CC. Reminds me of my own Christmas-like experience opening my 23". Look forward to the rest. Has your better half decided on the first cook?



She's thinking about rack of lamb.  Works for me as well.  

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Well, KKers, I'm back!


I just finished talking SWMBOI out of killing me. Seems as if I left some meat in the refrigerator and some blood dripped out.  On the shelves. Some weeks ago.  It seeped between the glass and the frame.  I have been duly chastised and told this is to never happen again.  I keep getting "The Look", you know, the look that freezes boiling water in a second!  I'm sure glad this woman likes me in spite of my best efforts to the contrary!  I think I'll keep her around.


Alright, back to the other Beauty!


Here is the assembly of the stand.  Several of you have asked about it and I've gotta say assembling this was a piece of cake.  There were exactly the right number of pieces/parts.  The stainless steel was impeccably machine.  All screws were countersunk and fit flush as you will see in a few pictures.  


So here are all the pics/parts laid out for assembly.  No instructions came with the stand, but if you have so much as a room temperature IQ no instructions are needed.  Assembly took me all of 20 minutes while dodging "The Look" from SWMBOI.




Looking down on the teak shelf, you can now see all the uprights and wheels have been married.  I have to say here that you can tell immediately KK is not based in the USA.  Every socket used was in metric!  




Now we seat and secure the actual band that Beauty! will rest upon.  This was a bit tricky as it is quite heavy but SWMBOI Held it in place while I quickly spun two nuts and screws on opposite side to secure the band upon which Beauty! will sit.  Then it is just a matter of putting in all the screws, nuts, etc and leaving them loose until all are started.




Here is a look at the detail of the outside of the band now that it is installed.  Nothing to get snagged on here.




And here is a detail of the countersunk screws on the inside of the band. Those screws fit absolutely flush.  Also notice the weld ... no slag, smooth, very well done.  I'm an engineer who built a lot of natural gas treating facilities and my eye just naturally notices those type of things.




Here is a flap to help bear the load.  There are 8 load bearing points on this band.  Four points probably would have been sufficient, but just to be certain and just to make sure there are no accidents, KK has a total of 8.  It's been said that the KK is the most over engineered kamado available.




Now we have the entire stand completely assembled and all bolts, nut, screws, etc torqued down tight.  This thing is NOT collapsing in the middle of a cook!




Many people have asked about how you move something like a KK.  Given the weight of a KK, that's a legitimate question.  Here is a view of the front caster.  It's lockable.  And the post upon which is screwed the nut to hold everything in place is 1/2" deeply threaded.




That is it for the stand.  It's as solid as solid can be.  This is the only piece of a KK shipment that has not been plug and play.  Some assembly was required, but it was not a big deal.  I did this on the floor as I don't have a workbench in the garage.  I seldom need this assembled so when I do, the floor seems to be as good a place as any.


Next we'll take a look at the side tables I ordered with Beauty!

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Now lets get on to the teak tables I ordered with Beauty!  


Let me just say that I ordered the teak tables not so much because I make great use of them, but rather they are impressive pieces of craftsmanship and people at parties really love the way they compliment the KK cooker.  As many of you know, teak tends to take on a sliver patina if left in the sunlight for any time.  I've got enough sliver in what little hair I have left, so it's not one of my favorite colors.  Dennis has worked with teak for decades and knows the wood quite intimately.  I told him of my concerns with slivering and he was gracious enough to send along a silicon treatment that keeps teak from slivering, even in direct sunlight.


Here is the standard box containing the side table.




Again, styrofoam all around to prevent damage in shipping.




Here is a view of the shipping box with the top piece of styrofoam removed.  Notice there is all kinds of styrofoam cushioning the side table.




Here is the side table pulled out of the box.  Baby Jesus wasn't swaddled any better than this side table.  Again. the tons of plastic wrap and inside that is sheet styrofoam.  




And here is the actual side table unwrapped.  Beautiful teak.




Turning over the side table, you can see that it will attach to Beauty with a system made from machined stainless steel.  Just like everything else that isn't tile, teak, or refractory.  Again, notice the attention to detail, the countersunk wood lathes, the covered screw heads.  To this practiced eye, this is why you buy a KK kamado.  At this level, you expect the best and you get it.  Standard.




Here is a closeup of the bracket that will attache to Beauty! and which will allow the teak side tables to slide on and off as required for cooks.




And just to give you and idea as to the difference in the side of side tables between Beauty! and TheBeast, here is picture of Beauty!'s side table next to and on top of TheBeast's Side table.  What I can't show you is the marked different in weight.





I haven't opened the shipping crate yet as it's been just too dad blamed cold in my garage.  Tomorrow we are supposed to hit a balmy 36F with a 50% chance of freezing rain.  Right now it is 24F and I'm getting ready to make a pot of chili for SWMBOI.  It's the least I can do after the refrigerator fiasco.  Maybe it'll forestall any more of "The Look" being shot my way.  I never knew it could get so cold so fast indoors!  


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Welcome back, KKers!


I just finished thawing out my fingers, hands, arms and the rest of my body after spending all afternoon in the frozen recesses of my garage tending to Beauty!  I took a few pics and its time to get this show on the road.


So, here is the crate Beauty has been resting in for I don't know how long.  But Beauty is about to be freed!  This crate is quite substantial and a friend has asked me to save it for him just for the lumber.




The easiest way to unleash Beauty! in OKC is to remove the lag bolts at the bottom of all 4 corners.  These are three inch lag bolts and I had loaned my electric drill drivers to a friend, so there was a lot of ratchet wrench exercise going on at ChezChef today!




Once all 8 lag bolts are out, all you have to do is lift the cover of the crate straight up and VOILA!, Beauty! makes her first real appearance in OKC!




Here is a picture of Beauty! next to her crate.




Next we see that the packing list is taped to the front of the grill.  




And just completeness and to show everyone that nothing escapes the KK mind of Dennis Linkletter, here is a picture of the ubiquitous crowbar that ships with every KK just in case someone has anger issues and wants to rip the crate open.  It wasn't needed for this uncrating!  But Dennis, I appreciate your attempts to save us time and money doing the psychoanalytical thing.  Crowbars are SOOOO much more effective at solving anger issues!




Looking closer at Beauty! and her accessories we see this box taped to the side.




By this time I'm getting very thirsty.  I'm having to work hard and fast just to stay warm.  Hydration is important and this is all I had.  But a little bit of something is better than 100% of nothing!




So what's in the box you ask?







To be continued!

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So lets get on with the unveiling, shall we?


Here is Beauty! wearing her Princess of Araby headgear.  Actually it is the protection packaging for the top vent.




Once that protective packaging is removed, what you see is the top vent sans its Top Hat vent control mechanism.  This view is looking straight down into Beauty!




Now, after removing all the plastic wrap that Beauty was wrapped in as well as the protective styrofoam sheeting we can now open Beauty for the first time.  We are greeted by this view.  As you may remember from TheBeast arriving in OKC, Dennis Linkletter packs each and every KK chockablock with the internals and everything else he can put in there.  After all, it is bullet proof!




So let's pull the first package and take a look.




And unwrapped we find a heat deflector!




Next we look down and see a replacement gasket for the Top Hat vent resting on the main cooking grate.




And here is the main cooking grate unwrapped.  




Here is a shot of the main cooking grate showing the nice t-handle hinge which allows the addition of additional smoking wood or charcoal to the basket during the cook.  I've never used it on TheBEast and can't see an instance where I would need to use it here.  Always start with a full fire basket and plenty of smoking wood and you're set for the duration of the cook!




As we look down into Beauty! again, we see the combo searing grate/grate extender.  In one orientation we can use this as a searing grate and in another we can get another level of cooking into the done for multiple butts, ribs, briskets, or we can get our baking stone high in the dome when cooking pizzas.




Here is the extended grate position for multiple cooks or for cooking pizza.  





To be continued!

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Okay, KKers and friends ...


The next little present that comes out of Beauty is the drip pans to be used on all low-n-slow cooks. On all briskets, butts, ribs, chuckles, etc I always use a drip pan.  A clean KK is a happy and safe KK!  KK drip pans are really nice works of art.  Notice the attention to detail here.  




Next up is the charcoal basket and the spare parts kit.  




Here is the content of the spare parts kit.




And here are the spare parts laid out ... spare gasket material, spare pebbles in case one may fall off, spare teak nobs, etc.




Here is Beauty!'s charcoal basket.  More on this in a bit.




Now something to give you an idea of the size differential between Beauty! and TheBeast.  TheBeast is 32" and he is every bit of that Beauty is 19.5".  That is just 1" wider than the basic BGE, KJ, etc.  Here is the charcoal basket from Beauty! sitting in the charcoal basket of TheBeast.  




Next we need to affix the Top hat vent to Beauty!  No lady would be caught dead without her favorite hat when she entertains.  What you see here is the box that protects the threads during shipping.




And here is the top of the Top Hat vent.




Finally, here is a photo of the thread and bottom end of the Top Hat vent.  That threaded rod is every bit of 5/8" and those threads are square threads rather than the usual tapered threads.  




We are almost done and my hands are grateful for it!


To be continued!

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My crate went to a neighbor, also, who used it to make a dog house. Lucky pooch!


And CC, just this once, I'm gonna give you a pass on the Miller Lite! Next time, no mercy!

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We're pushing on to the finish here.


Beauty! has quite a bit of insulation of which she is quite proud.  You can see it here looking straight down ...  You can also see the split firebox and the 6 stress relief just in the refractory.




Everyone always talks about how weak or strong the hinge in on their kamado.  I'll put the KK hinge mechanism up against any in the industry without fear of looking foolish.  Here is a back view of the hinge including the spring that makes opening a KK so easy you can do it with one finger.




Here is a side view of the same hinge.  While taking this picture, I noticed that the pin you see was not properly seated!  I solved that problem right after this picture was taken!  Not to worry, Beauty won't flip her lid.




Finally, just to give you some perspective of really massive differential between TheBeast and Beauty!, here is a comparison of the main cooking grates.  




Last but not least, here is Beauty!  She is completely unpacked, assembled, and ready to cook.  She'll be placed in her cradle early next week and we'll do a cook on her about midweek.




Thanks for bearing with me in this rather lengthy post.  I hope it didn't prove too boring or pedantic.  I apologize for the rather sophomoric photos, but my iPhone camera was all I had.  Any fuzzy pictures are due to me shivering while I was out in the garage.




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