Lump vs Briquettes

Discussion in 'Charcoal Smokers' started by yodelhawk, Mar 6, 2009.

  1. Ok guys, I'm still pretty new around here and want to get you guy's opinion on this matter. Over the past 5 years I have always smoked with Briquettes and have always had good results. On my last smoke (5 days ago) I got a bag of Lump and I must say, I was less than impressed. I had a hard time keeping the temp up, although it was very windy and I was fighting to keep the smoker sheltered. I switched back to briquettes halfway through the smoke. Please let me know what you guys use and if you have any tips on the Lump. Thanks
  2. My last smoke i used Royal Oak hardwood lump. Got real windy and the temp drop 20 degrees half way thru the smoke. I had the same problems but still used almost half the amount of lump then i did charcoal on a mild day.
  3. seenred

    seenred Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    I have used both lump and briquettes with good results. Many of the purists here swear by lump only, and I'm sure they will disagree with me. However, I think if you buy good quality hardwood charcoal, whether lump or briquette, you can get good results.
  4. richoso1

    richoso1 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I find RO (USA) lump to burn hotter and longer with about 1/10 the amount of ash. I would never go back to briquettes unless I ran out of lump. The most wind I've had to deal with is about 15 mph. I'm using lump with a GOSM big block gasser.
  5. bbq engineer

    bbq engineer Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    If you are more comfortable with briquettes, then by all means use briquettes. There is a huge discussion that goes along with charcoal, and here are some links that will give you some additional information.

    Briquettes contain a lot of stuff...Lump charcoal contains hardwood that has been charred in the absence of oxygen. If you are a purist, then you can see that lump would be worthy of further investigation.

    Personally, my budget will dictate what I use, but I prefer lump. I watch for it on sale, and stock up when I find it. If I do use briquettes, I follow this simple principle: Since some briquettes have a funky smell when igniting, I never add them in an unlit state to the smoker (I don't want funkiness surrounding my meat!). Lump can be added at any time.

    I won't hesitate to use briquettes, but I do adhere to the rule that no cold briquettes enter the firebox.

    Just my $.02

    BBQ Eng.
  6. rickw

    rickw Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I've tried both in my uds and my preference is the lump. The amount of ash that bricks produce if far to much for my liking. I've tried a few different brands too and it seems like ya have to learn the smoker all over again with each brand. I'll be sticking with RO lump.
  7. alx

    alx Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Quality can be issue wuth lump.I use R.O. when i use it.Lump for me in myWSM burns hotter and you must relly pack it in charcoal funnels or you may end up with half a funnel instead of full one.I use more on chicken for high heat.It will also spike temps when lifting lid more then briquetts.I have used kingsford comp recently and liked more than kings blue bag.I have had good results layering briquetts on top of lump on my long low smokes.
  8. carpetride

    carpetride Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I've mainly used lump, but have tried the Kingsford comp. It burned nice but I have more or less went back to using lump...guess I'm just more comfortable with it.
  9. smoke freak

    smoke freak StickBurners

    I tried the R.O. I got mostly broken pieces bout the size of a quarter. And a lot of crumbs that have no value at all. Maybe I just got the "bad bag" but it didnt sell me on the stuff. With good quality briquettes I get good temp control and have never had a "funky flavor" from adding unlit coals to the fire. Ill match my Q to any around. Also my budget usually makes my decion for me. Lump costs more.

    But thats just me. To each their own.
  10. cajunsmoke13

    cajunsmoke13 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    A always used briquettes. Tried lump once and never have looked back. To each their own.
  11. carpetride

    carpetride Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Just go ahead and send me generous samples of your Que and I will be happy to be an impartial judge. I prefer BB's [​IMG]
  12. Thanks for you input guys. I guess I'll try to mess around with both a few more times.
  13. smoke freak

    smoke freak StickBurners

    Well im trying to use up the worthless R.O. today and found a rock. No big deal. The next thing outta the bag was a chonk of fur. Like rabbit fur. My wife said it was cat fur (calico to be exact). She was appalled. Thats probably the end of my R.O. purchasing. Ill stick with Briquettes.
  14. the iceman

    the iceman Smoking Fanatic

  15. vtanker

    vtanker Meat Mopper

    OK my turn. I use only lump! My reason is because of the added chemicals in briquettes. I use a lump base and add a little oak in the middle of it. Then I use hickory/pecan/mesquite etc.. for my smoke! little to no chemicals!!!!
    I use a side mount fire box.
  16. coyote-1

    coyote-1 Smoking Fanatic

    I warm the smoker with 1/3 chimney of briquettes. Then I put on a basket of unlit lump, and when that has begun to catch from the briquettes on goes the food. Always lump when the food's on.
  17. bbq ron

    bbq ron Smoke Blower

    i was using charcoal and then tried lump and the results were as you said. lomp is not as good as regular charcoal

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