Barbecue (alt.food.barbecue) Discuss barbecue and grilling--southern style "low and slow" smoking of ribs, shoulders and briskets, as well as direct heat grilling of everything from burgers to salmon to vegetables.

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Old 21-10-2007, 11:30 PM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Default starting outdoor fire issues, help needed

I am not sure this topic belongs in this forum so if it's not please move
it to the appropriate forum [thanks].

I am in need of help and advice with regards to starting outdoor fire
for cooking using firewood. First question, about 4 months ago I had cut
down a dried maple tree and sawed up it's trunk into big 3'pieces,
yesterday I chopped up 1 piece of trunk into smaller pieces to use for a
cookout but noticed that while the outer edge of the trunk is dry, the
inside is moist and this wood took forever to light, I am thinking of
chopping up all of the rest of trunks so the inside pieces can dry out
faster with the natural air so when I need to use the firewood from now on
the inside will be totally dry but a friend is telling me that since the
wood will be placed outside the house now that we are going into winter
time, that the inside of the wood will be cold so it's better to leave it
as it is and chop it up only when needed, what should I do here please?


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Old 21-10-2007, 11:59 PM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Default starting outdoor fire issues, help needed

"mikehende" wrote:
I am not sure this topic belongs in this forum so if it's not please move
it to the appropriate forum [thanks].
[ . . . ]


Chop, split, stack so air can circulate, cover with a tarp so it keeps dry.
IMHO

--
Nick. Support severely wounded and disabled Veterans and their families!
I've known US vets who served as far back as the Spanish American War. They
are all my heroes! Thank a Veteran and Support Our Troops. You are not
forgotten. Thanks ! ! ~Semper Fi~
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Old 22-10-2007, 12:35 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Default starting outdoor fire issues, help needed

Thanks, my next question concerns techniques when starting a fire, I see
some folks using a whole bottle of lighter fluid sometimes to get a fire
going, I am thinking of using "briquets" by placing some of them into the
fireplace, spraying some fluid on them underneath the main firewood, some
told me to use coals, what's the best method generally to start a fire
using firewood to cook? Please note that I am using a piece of circular
iron with a cutout into which the wood is placed, I don't have a pic of
this type of fireplace but I can take a pic if and send it to anyone if
the type of fireplace makes a difference, let me know please.

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Old 22-10-2007, 12:39 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Default starting outdoor fire issues, help needed

mikehende wrote:
Thanks, my next question concerns techniques when starting a fire, I
see some folks using a whole bottle of lighter fluid sometimes to get
a fire going, I am thinking of using "briquets" by placing some of
them into the fireplace, spraying some fluid on them underneath the
main firewood, some told me to use coals, what's the best method
generally to start a fire using firewood to cook?


Gaaaack!!! Skip the fluid. Use a propane torch. Or start the charcoal using
a chimney, dropping the load into the fire pit, then stacking the kindly and
wood on top.


--
Dave
www.davebbq.com


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Old 22-10-2007, 12:52 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Default starting outdoor fire issues, help needed


mikehende wrote:
Thanks, my next question concerns techniques when starting a fire, I
see some folks using a whole bottle of lighter fluid sometimes to get
a fire going, I am thinking of using "briquets" by placing some of
them into the fireplace, spraying some fluid on them underneath the
main firewood, some told me to use coals, what's the best method
generally to start a fire using firewood to cook?


It's my understanding that wood dries more from its ends than along the
grain. The trick to rapidly drying wood, though, would be to increase
its surface area. That means the advice you got to cut and split the
wood as soon as possible, stacking it loosely and letting air
circulation dry it is quite appropriate.

I'd not recommend using any liquid to start a fire, since it could
flavor the smoke. My first thought was that you were cooking with logs
or longer sticks, but I think you might be talking about cooking with
chips. Fires begin best when you start with small, dry, pieces exposing
as much surface area as possible to the starting flame, then increase
the size of the wood pieces as the fire starts burning. Virtually none
of the good cooks would use a fluid, but would instead us a chimney to
get the fire started and the most volatile smoke products "cooked off"
the wood.

Get a tall quart or gallon can and cut out both ends. Put in some
loosely wadded newspaper and some shreds of waxed paper and stand the
cylinder vertically on a non-combustable surface like gravel. Be sure
to prop it some so that air can enter from the bottom and light the
paper from the bottom, since heat and fire rise. Add small pieces of
wood to the top and keep adding it as the fire inside builds. You can
then shovel the burning embers into your firebox or grill and use that
for cooking or flavoring. If you use a gallon can chimney, frankly, you
could light it in the tub of a typical grill and just remove the can
with pliers when it's full of burning wood pieces. Most folk don't use
the manufactured briquettes, either, but instead use plain old charcoal,
called "lump." A combination of lump and embers from a fire of some
hardwood can really do well.

--
---Nonnymus---
No matter how large your boat,
the person you are talking with will
have a close friend with a larger one.
---Observation by my son


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Old 22-10-2007, 12:52 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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On 21 Oct 2007 22:59:04 GMT, Nick Cramer
wrote:

"mikehende" wrote:
I am not sure this topic belongs in this forum so if it's not please move
it to the appropriate forum [thanks].
[ . . . ]


Chop, split, stack so air can circulate, cover with a tarp so it keeps dry.
IMHO


Also check in with the City Hall Nazis to make sure outside fires are
permitted. in your area.

Harry
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Old 22-10-2007, 12:56 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Harry Demidavicius wrote:
On 21 Oct 2007 22:59:04 GMT, Nick Cramer
wrote:

"mikehende" wrote:
I am not sure this topic belongs in this forum so if it's not
please move it to the appropriate forum [thanks].
[ . . . ]


Chop, split, stack so air can circulate, cover with a tarp so it
keeps dry. IMHO


Also check in with the City Hall Nazis to make sure outside fires are
permitted. in your area.


Excellent point, Harry.

--
Dave
www.davebbq.com


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Old 22-10-2007, 01:16 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Default starting outdoor fire issues, help needed

I have a chimney starter and will use is at the advice given here but I
would like to know just to have the knowledge on how best to start a fire
if I'm in a situation where I don't have one around. Alright so I
understand the concept I think, start with small chips and increase the
size of the wood using the logs last. Are there any tricks when using
moist or cold logs which could take forever to light assuming you don't
have a chimney starter?

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Old 22-10-2007, 02:21 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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On 21-Oct-2007, "mikehende" wrote:

I have a chimney starter and will use is at the advice given here but I
would like to know just to have the knowledge on how best to start a fire
if I'm in a situation where I don't have one around. Alright so I
understand the concept I think, start with small chips and increase the
size of the wood using the logs last. Are there any tricks when using
moist or cold logs which could take forever to light assuming you don't
have a chimney starter?


In that case, one must simply build a larger fire using smaller wood at
first. Dry branches an inch or more in diameter will ignite quickly and
burn quite hot as you keep adding more in a criss/cross fashion as
the fire size increases. You will inherently know when you have enough
heat going to ignite your logs however cold or damp they might be.

--
Brick(Youth is wasted on young people)
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Old 22-10-2007, 02:26 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Default starting outdoor fire issues, help needed


"mikehende" wrote in message
lkaboutcooking.com...
I have a chimney starter and will use is at the advice given here but I
would like to know just to have the knowledge on how best to start a fire
if I'm in a situation where I don't have one around. Alright so I
understand the concept I think, start with small chips and increase the
size of the wood using the logs last. Are there any tricks when using
moist or cold logs which could take forever to light assuming you don't
have a chimney starter?


Follow the start small, increase size. Never try to burn one log; you need
two or more. With two logs the flame of one ignites the fuel of the other.
Watch as they flame back and forth and you will see what I mean.

Dry wood burns best of course, but if you have cold wet wood, use more
kindling and try to get the logs pre-heated near the fire if you can. The
moisture in the wood must be turned into vapor and dispersed before the wood
will catch fire. Don't stack wood tight; let air circulate freely. Nothing
magical about it, but the laws of physics.


In winter, keep a few logs in a dry spot such as the basement or garage.




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Old 22-10-2007, 02:30 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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"Harry Demidavicius" wrote in message

Also check in with the City Hall Nazis to make sure outside fires are
permitted. in your area.

Harry


Local laws vary, of course. A guy at work likes to have large fires in his
back yard. I'm talking a pickup truck or three of scrap wood and pallets.
Where he lives, he cannot have an outdoor fire except for cooking. So, when
the fire starts, he has a long stick and a couple of hot dogs sitting near
by.

"Thanks for stopping chief, but I'm cooking dinner. Care for a hot dog?"


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Old 22-10-2007, 03:24 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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"mikehende" wrote in message
lkaboutcooking.com...
I have a chimney starter and will use is at the advice given here but I
would like to know just to have the knowledge on how best to start a fire
if I'm in a situation where I don't have one around. Alright so I
understand the concept I think, start with small chips and increase the
size of the wood using the logs last. Are there any tricks when using
moist or cold logs which could take forever to light assuming you don't
have a chimney starter?


Tinder is the smallest stuff, lots of good choices for that. Kindling is the
next size up, maybe 1/4 the size of the fuel (your split logs) or a bit
smaller. For wet logs you need a good-sized pile of kindling, enough to boil
off the moisture which allows the fuel to burn by itself.

Cold logs means little in terms of lighting the fire, in my experience.
Moisture is the key.

What you need is an experienced Boy Scout. ;-)

-John O


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Old 22-10-2007, 03:34 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Default starting outdoor fire issues, help needed


"JohnO" wrote in message
What you need is an experienced Boy Scout. ;-)

-John O


Boy Scouts have fires? Isn't that dangerous? They could be hurt. They may
become pyromaniacs. Oh my, the government should step in and stop this
violent behavior and training.


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Old 22-10-2007, 07:31 AM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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"mikehende" wrote:
[] Are there any tricks when using
moist or cold logs which could take forever to light assuming you don't
have a chimney starter?


Cold doesn't matter. I've easily started a wood fire in minus 20 F.
Boy Scout method.

Don't use moist, green or rotten wood.

--
Nick. Support severely wounded and disabled Veterans and their families!
I've known US vets who served as far back as the Spanish American War. They
are all my heroes! Thank a Veteran and Support Our Troops. You are not
forgotten. Thanks ! ! ~Semper Fi~
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Old 22-10-2007, 01:26 PM posted to alt.food.barbecue
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Default starting outdoor fire issues, help needed

Edwin Pawlowski wrote:
"JohnO" wrote in message
What you need is an experienced Boy Scout. ;-)

-John O


Boy Scouts have fires? Isn't that dangerous? They could be hurt. They may
become pyromaniacs. Oh my, the government should step in and stop this
violent behavior and training.


Take it to the *** scoutmaster.


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