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snake lighting technique

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  • Dick Anderson
    Club Member
    • Oct 2017
    • 97
    • Northern Sonoma County, California

    snake lighting technique

    I just put a brisket on the weber, 6:30 am. I lit the snake at 5:15, and it took that long to come up to 200f. I usually light the starter cube and let it go till the flame goes out, then another 10-15 minutes to get glowing coals before I put the lid on. It seems to take forever! Think I should leave the lid off longer? I don't want to waste my snake, i only get 8 hours out of it!
    Thanks
    Dick
  • RonB
    Club Member
    • Apr 2016
    • 13110
    • Near Richmond VA
    • Weber Performer Deluxe
      SNS
      Pizza insert
      Rotisserie
      Smokenator 1000
      Cookshack Smokette Elite
      2 Thermapens
      Chefalarm
      Dot
      lots of probes.
      CyberQ

    #2
    I've never used the snake method. I had a Smokenator, then bought a Slow N Sear and never looked back. The SnS works great, and I highly recommend it.

    Are you getting enough smoke flavor now? You don't have to wait for your kettle to come up to temp to put the meat on, but if you put it on before it comes up to temp, you might get a little more smoke flavor.

    Comment

    • Dick Anderson
      Club Member
      • Oct 2017
      • 97
      • Northern Sonoma County, California

      #3
      That's why I was getting antsy. I was coming up on the first hickory chunk, and i didn't want to waste it.
      I need the SnS, for sure!

      Comment

      • jfmorris
        Club Member
        • Nov 2017
        • 3225
        • Huntsville, Alabama
        • Jim Morris

          Cookers
          • Camp Chef FTG900 Flat Top Grill (2020)
          • Weber Genesis II E-410 w/ GrillGrates (2019)
          • Weber Performer Deluxe 22.5" w/ GrillGrates & Slow 'N Sear & Drip ‘N Griddle & Party Q (2007)
          • Custom Built Offset Smoker (304SS, 22"x34" grate, circa 1985)
          • King Kooker 94/90TKD 105K/60K dual burner patio stove
          • Lodge L8D03 5 quart dutch oven
          • Lodge L10SK3 12" skillet
          • Anova
          Thermometers
          • Thermoworks Smoke w/ Wifi Gateway
          • Thermoworks Dot
          • Thermoworks Thermapen Classic
          • Thermoworks RT600C
          Beverages
          • Whatever I brewed and have on tap!

        #4
        Sounds to me like you did not start the snake with enough coals. I used to use that method before I had a SNS, and still do if I use a kettle without one. I would always start with a small mound of 5-6 briquets, maybe 7-8 even, out in the middle of the charcoal grate, mounted over the starter cube, and get THOSE lit fully, then move them to the end of the snake using tongs. I think putting a lighter cube on the end of the snake and lighting will make it take forever to get up to temp.

        Next time, do that - start with more lit briquettes at the end of your snake. It takes a good half dozen or more briquettes burning to get up to temp. It's really no different than the lighting instructions for the Slow 'N Sear, where you light 10-12 to get it going, and only add more once those are going well, and then let it burn across the basket.

        I always build the snake 2 across and 2 high, around the edge of the grate, sometimes about 3/4 of the way around, and put the 6-8 lit coals at the starting end, with the water pan in the middle of all of it.

        Comment


        • surfdog
          surfdog commented
          Editing a comment
          Much the same, but instead of “moving” them...I used a Weber compact starter. (Or similar if that’s what is available.)

        • jfmorris
          jfmorris commented
          Editing a comment
          surfdog if you are talking about the compact chimney, you still gotta dump them out and put them at the end of the charcoal fuse (snake). I use a full size Weber chimney now to start the 10-12 briquettes I need for my SNS using the propane starter, then dump them into the SNS, rake them into the end, then fill the rest of the SNS up.

        • surfdog
          surfdog commented
          Editing a comment
          jfmorris Ah, I thought you were lighting them on the grate someplace... So yeah, we do the same.
      • Dick Anderson
        Club Member
        • Oct 2017
        • 97
        • Northern Sonoma County, California

        #5
        Yep, I like that! 2X2 gives me good temps, but I'm using up too much of the snake to get there. I'll start a mound in the middle next time.

        Comment

        • Henrik
          Founding Member - Moderator Emeritus
          • Jul 2014
          • 4415
          • Stockholm, Sweden

          #6
          I always use the chimney starter for this. It has two ends: a deep end and a shallow end. Use the shallow end, set fire to 10-12 briquettes and wait for them to ash over. Now pour them into the kettle at one end of the snake. Arrange them with a pair of tongs and put the lid on.

          Comment

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