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Start with more lit charcoal? - Ranch Kettle

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    Start with more lit charcoal? - Ranch Kettle

    Yesterday I lost a battle with MCS and a Weber Ranch Kettle was adopted and given a new home on the deck. Over the years of using the 22” kettle, I’ve developed a routine of getting the grill started to maintain the appropriate temperature ranges for the day’s menu items.

    In regards to the bigger ranch kettle, should I assume I will need to start with more lit charcoal to heat the larger cooking area or should I start with the same amount of fuel (10-12 briquettes or 5 large lump in the 22) and adjust the vents to allow more air if it needs to come up in temp?

    I don't know but I want to see that big baby!


      I would start with more charcoal lit, you are gonna need more fuel to keep her heated up.

      I wanna see this sucka in action!


        My buddy has a 22.5" WSM and I have an 18.5". We notice the difference between the two, I'm sure you will here too. I'm guessing something like the difference between a Prius and a Hellcat.


        • barelfly
          barelfly commented
          Editing a comment
          Ha! Prius..... this may be the only time I ever see Prius mentioned with Hellcat!

        I used a Ranch for a few years, mainly for larger quantities of low and slow cooking. If you already know how to setup a standard 22.5" kettle, this one is pretty straightforward. You will need to start with about 3x the amount of lit charcoal. And with those big vent holes being right in the center of the lid, don't leave them too open, or you just let all the hot air out. About 1/2 open seemed to approximate the fully open vents of a 22.5" with mine.

        Another thing I learned is to not use the lid holder when trying to maintain a relatively steady temp. Setting it flat on whatever hard surface you have keeps some hot air inside and the temp will bounce back much more quickly than if you tilt it.

        There is other stuff to know, and there is a thread somewhere on here where I went into a fair amount of detail.
        Last edited by Steve R.; September 28, 2020, 08:02 AM.


        • Steve R.
          Steve R. commented
          Editing a comment
          Also, I never had the super size SnS for the Ranch,. But I kind of fashioned a poor man's SnS with fire bricks, patterned in size of one of the flip up sections of the cooking grate.

        • Attjack
          Attjack commented
          Editing a comment
          ☝️ bricks are all you need

        • HawkerXP
          HawkerXP commented
          Editing a comment
          I thought it was love. "All we need is love" Attjack

        Steve R.HawkerXP Thank you to everyone who responded. I’ll have to try to find your previous post, Steve R. I ended up starting with what was close to 3/4 chimney of lump and got it to steady out in the 240s in not a lot of time. Not sure if it’s because it was a new to me cooker but it sure was fun to cook with. Now for some photos for HawkerXp and Spinaker.
        Click image for larger version  Name:	E5C8AA2A-0738-4FD2-8C73-02552EA088DE.jpeg Views:	0 Size:	406.5 KB ID:	917277
        Click image for larger version  Name:	C7F1E9A8-453A-4B32-85F0-F0D7AF06E73D.jpeg Views:	0 Size:	470.9 KB ID:	917278
        Click image for larger version  Name:	B9001724-9F80-4CD5-960A-A1AF51A7B570.jpeg Views:	0 Size:	479.5 KB ID:	917279

        One of the things I appreciated about the size was despite only cooking one rack of Spare Ribs, the additional space allowed for the ability to put on vegetables for salsa and other sides for dinner without having to fire up another one of my kettles.
        Last edited by Pow7der; September 28, 2020, 04:03 AM.


        • Smoking77
          Smoking77 commented
          Editing a comment
          Um, hate to tell you this, but those aren’t spareribs. Those are human children.

        • Spinaker
          Spinaker commented
          Editing a comment
          This is awesome! Great shots.

          It is great having extra space on the grill to get creative. Looks like you are gonna have years of awesome cooks on this baby.

        • jfmorris
          jfmorris commented
          Editing a comment
          That size difference is why I really like the 6 burner griddle I got. Could I do the same thing in a griddle plate on my gas grill? Sure. But having 900 square inches of griddle space makes it spacious enough to get creative and cook a lot. You are going to LOVE having the huge space of this grill.

        Ha! Excellent photos! The photo with your kids, classic! That’s a keeper forever! perhaps a reenactment in 20 years!

        and that cooker is serious! Dang that it is cool! Congrats and enjoy that thing!


          Two SNS XLs work great in the Ranch. I usually put one on each side and the food in the middle. If I need more real estate I just run it with one and it works just fine. And if you put both XLs in the middle you can fit over 100 wings around the outside.

          When lighting for low and slow I definitely need more briquettes. I usually use 1/2 to 3/4ths of a chimney when I want 225-275. One bottom vent open and the top vent about 1/2 way open usually gives me 225-250. Open up another vent and and it is usually ~275.

          I don't use my Ranch anywhere near as often as I use my 22 or 26 but I do love the opportunity to fire it up. Could be nothing but I think the increased airflow and air volume make a better final product than on the 22. I think with the increased air flow everything cooks a bit "cleaner".



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