Charcoal briquettes

Hello, fellows.
Can charcoal briquettes be "coked" on a forge? Just curious.
Mike Mandaville
Austin, Texas
Reply to
MikeMandaville
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Nope, they're already as coked as they're ever going to be.
Charcoal is carbonized wood. Some folks say briquets have a some coal dust in them as well.
I know folks who do use briquets and it seems to work well for them, but I liked using hardwood charcoal lumps like restaurants use better. It's a very clean fire, but uses a lot of charcoal.
I've read about and tried using green wood treated somewhat like coal and heated/dried/carbonized on a forge, but haven't tried it more than a few times. So my experiences really wouldn't be accurate. If I'm not doing it right, I'd never know. :)
Reply to
John Husvar
I guess I'll have to drive to Alabama after all. According to Yahoo, it will be a twenty-six hour drive.
Reply to
MikeMandaville
Surely Texas smiths have oil fired forges and cook huge steaks over them at the same time ? 8-)
Reply to
Andy Dingley
Yuk! I am a native Texan temporarily (last 4 years) in Michigan. Old time central - west Texas folks will ruin a steak worse than just about anybody. The only done is well done, and probably in a skillet. I always suspected the cooking methods were holdovers from pioneers concerned with food safety. My in-laws were that way, as were other older Texans I knew.
On the other hand, brisket is cooked 12-14 hours at low heat over live oak or pecan, and it's fit to eat.
Reply to
Pete Keillor
And if it's cooked by somebody like my brother-in-law, Johnny Sanchez in Abilene, it's the food of the gods. :)
Reply to
John Husvar
Yahoo,
I will be using the coke in a small cupola. According to Marshall Stewart, lump charcoal will only work in a larger cupola. I suppose that I could make the charcoal myself, briquette it, and then use it in a larger cupola, but I want to keep my emissions down. I'm going to start keeping track of my mileage with my trip meter.
About the barbeque, I am amazed that with some people so passionate about their barbeques, so many people will put up with the sulphur taste in their meat which is left over from the coal content in a typical briquette.
Mike Mandaville Austin, Texas
Reply to
MikeMandaville
I've eaten some real good BBQ in Austin, Mike.
You have seen the online pages on how to make charcoal, right? Example:
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GWE
snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote:
Reply to
Grant Erwin
Not me. And leave me out of that stinkin starter fluid too. :)
Dry velvet-mesquite wood here. (I use a sledge hammer to "cut" it to size:) Old hickory spike maul handles are good too.
Rib steaks at medium to medium rare is my favorite.
Oak is good if you're too high for mesquite... Do you understand that one? ;)
Alvin in AZ
Reply to
alvinj
Example:
Hello, Grant.
I have seen a number of articles on the internet about making charcoal, but the site which you pointed me to is possibly the best one of them all, since it is very well laid out.
I will probably try my hand at making charcoal by the indirect method, and then pressing it into briquettes. However, my first cupola will be so small that I don't think I would have enough critical mass for a charcoal melt.
The biggest problem I seem to have now is that I will need a lot of fuel to power my truck for the trip to Birmingham to pick up the coke. Therefore, I am considering the possibility of distilling some alcohol for this purpose.
Mike Mandaville Austin, Texas
Reply to
MikeMandaville
Mike, why do you have to drive to Birmingham for coke? I see mention of coke in the local blackmith orgs., such as
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That's in Central Texas. Maybe you could buy from them.
Gary Brady
Reply to
Gary Brady
Alvin,
Do you really have velvet mesquite? I've been looking for some pieces approx. 3" x 3" x 20". Got anything like that?
Eide
Reply to
Eide
Hello, Gary.
It's interesting that you should see my post, and respond, because I actually thought about you when I first thought about making a trip to Birmingham. In other words, I thought that you might want to chip in, to get some coke in the bargain. Then I remembered what happened when I drove to San Antonio to get coal. After I got there, I discovered that they were closed for the holiday! So I decided that I should wait until I had made at least one successful trip before asking you. I mean, after all, the worst that could happen is that you would say "No, thanks", right?
Well, anyway, I had forgotten about the Balcones Forge, and it does look like I need to check them out as a possible coke sourse. The $125 per half-ton sounds reasonable to me. That is as much as I can carry in my truck. If I bought it in Birmingham, it would cost me about thirty dollars, but if I added in my gas cost, I'm sure that it would total more than $125. And then, of course, there would be the wear and tear on my nerves from driving twenty-six hours straight.
Mike Mandaville just west of Bee Cave
Reply to
MikeMandaville
Use more garlic. Garlic hides the taste of sulphur from cooking over coal (the taste of garlic _is_ the taste of sulphur compounds)
Mind you - are Texans allowed garlic ? Or do you have to call them "freedom onions" when GWB is watching?
Reply to
Andy Dingley
You bet. CenTex can cook. We smoke brisket about twice a month and Pork loin the other two weeks :-) Using Live Oak is a big No No. Pecan, Apple, Hickory, Mesquite for a few.
West Tex, North Tex, East Tex, Cen Tex, Deep East Tex. Been around myself. Just returned from an excessive stay in CA.
Martin
Reply to
lionslair at consolidated dot net
Wonder what is left over up in the coal fields of Cen Tex ? It is soft coal. And a power station... IIRC. Martin
Reply to
lionslair at consolidated dot net
snipped-for-privacy@aol.com wrote in news:1116363945.046857.292220 @z14g2000cwz.googlegroups.com:
charcoal,
I have a similar charcoal retort as the described at Twinoaksforge.com. It works very well. Althoug I have not tried it one could also make coke using the same charcoal retort which allow you to use ordinary anthracite coal. Although the sulfer content is higher you could at least get started with out having to drive such a distance.
brad
Reply to
Brad
Twinoaksforge.com.
Hello, Brad.
Your suggestion here makes a lot of sense to me. I also have been studying this article...
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...which demonstrates how the wood tar gas can be condensed, and this one...
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...which demonstrates how the lump charcoal can be pressed into briquettes.
I have decided that today I am going to purchase a one-gallon paint can at the Home Depot, and make my first lump charcoal, the way that the fireworks boys do so in small quantities.
Mike Mandaville in the hill country, just west of Austin
Reply to
MikeMandaville
Put up with? Hell I won't use anything else - unless I can get my hands on some good wood. I sneer at gas BBQ grills ;-)
GA (I BBQ in the rain)
Reply to
Greyangel
Don't know for sure, but I happen to have been reading over a bunch of stuff about wood-gasification lately (12mpg pickup and the price of gas..), and while the vehicular application presently strikes me as not too likely to happen (for me) in the near future (there is much tedious filtering & cleaning of filters to keep the engine alive), there's a lot of information on applying wood-gas to cooking, including clean (ie not so smoky as the ones mentioned here) wood-gas gasifiers that can produce charcoal as a side-product. If tuned for it, they could produce considerably more charcoal (by intent) than they do as merely an incidental byproduct of making gas.
I thought of my "when I get time" gas and/or charcoal forge/furnace projects when I saw that. You could cook up a bunch of wood to make gas to cast with, and forge with the charcoal, or you could use wood-gas for the forge, perhaps. There are probably downsides (somewhat low-energy gas, I guess) but it seems possibly a good route, getting something useful while making charcoal...
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I hope to get the damn shop finished this summer, so I can actually work on projects, instead of on the shop building, once in a while...
Reply to
Ecnerwal

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