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New to natural coals

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  #1  
Old August 20th, 2011, 04:14 PM
metaligoat
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Default New to natural coals

i've never had a problem with QLs (other than the god-awful smell they give off when you light them), and haven't seen what all the hate is all about regarding QLs. as far as i can tell it doesn't affect the taste as long as i wait a couple minutes, and they only take like 30 seconds to light. but at the same time i know all the hardcore smokers on here swear by various brands of naturals. i've tried using naturals a couple times and have had no luck getting a good session because i couldn't get them to stay lit or generate enough heat for the bowl. in reading the forums i think i just needed to use more coals and light them more before starting.

with all that said, i've been reading that the best way to light these is generally on an electric stove with metal coils, or a portable propane stove. i do most of my smoking in the room next to the kitchen so getting a propane stove seems pointless to me. that leaves the stove in the kitchen. my stove is an older gas stove, so it doesn't have coils on the stovetop. it's old and decrepit enough that it wouldn't be the worst idea in the world to replace it, but i don't really cook so it almost never gets used anyway, so i don't know if i feel like spending several hundred dollars for what would essentially be just for the ability to use natural coals on my hookah.

so the question is: do i have any other options if i want to explore using natural coals? for example, would it work if i just used my regular stove and put the coals in a skillet? i'd like to have at least one good session with natural coals at some point so i can compare to QLs and see if i really feel there is a big difference. i don't like the idea of having to take several minutes just to get the coals lit because QLs are so quick and easy, but if the smoke really is that much better i'd be willing to consider it. but first i have to have a good session with a natural before i can really decide. any input is appreciated
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  #2  
Old August 20th, 2011, 04:17 PM
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Default

When light my cocanaras on my gas stove I put 3 of them into a kabob basket. I get them at the discount store for like 2 or 3 bucks a piece. So when it falls apart its whatevers lol. It works for now, I'm gonna get a electric coil burner when it gets cooler outside.
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  #3  
Old August 20th, 2011, 04:32 PM
thejohn
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Default Re: New to natural coals

What i do on my regular gas stove is flip the grate above the burner so that its as close to the flame as possible, then i put however many coals i'm going to use on the part of the grate that is as close together as possible so it keeps them steady, but also in the way of direct flame.
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Old August 20th, 2011, 05:01 PM
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Default Re: New to natural coals


A cake rack only costs a couple of bucks and sits right over the flame on your gas stove.
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  #5  
Old August 20th, 2011, 05:21 PM
IrateWookie
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Default Re: New to natural coals

hold em with tongs maybe, my gf does that sometimes and takes cocos like a minute or two to light.
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Old August 20th, 2011, 06:29 PM
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Default Re: New to natural coals

Quote:
Originally Posted by whookah View Post
hold em with tongs maybe, my gf does that sometimes and takes cocos like a minute or two to light.
they would take much longer than a minute to light if they are nats. takes mine around 7-8 minutes directly on a single coil burner.
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Old August 20th, 2011, 06:45 PM
IrateWookie
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Default Re: New to natural coals

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Originally Posted by thesteve322 View Post
they would take much longer than a minute to light if they are nats. takes mine around 7-8 minutes directly on a single coil burner.
your coil burners must be from the salvation army or something then? lol. im using nat coconaras, and it took no more than 2 MAYBE 3 minutes with my gas stove on high to get them fully lit.
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  #8  
Old August 20th, 2011, 06:47 PM
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Default Re: New to natural coals

Coil burners are about 10 or 15 bucks at walmart. You'll end up switching to naturals anyway so you might as well have one. They don't take that much longer than quicklights because quicklights have to ash over, which takes upwards of 10 minutes, so the QLs actually take longer to get started. The naturals take maybe 4-7 minutes to get going unless you're using coconaras which take a couple minutes longer.
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  #9  
Old August 20th, 2011, 06:48 PM
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Default Re: New to natural coals

Quote:
Originally Posted by whookah View Post
your coil burners must be from the salvation army or something then? lol. im using nat coconaras, and it took no more than 2 MAYBE 3 minutes with my gas stove on high to get them fully lit.
to each his own. just sharing my personal experience that i have never gotten natural coals to be fully lit in 2 minutes. If you can, congrats.
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Old August 20th, 2011, 06:57 PM
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I just got some coconaras, and have some she cools. I don't have a coil burner or a electric stove, I've found that the side burner on my bbq grill works quite well. Don't know what I'll do this winter....
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Old August 21st, 2011, 12:23 AM
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Default Re: New to natural coals

15 dollar walgreens coil burner is your best friend for natural coals.
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  #12  
Old August 21st, 2011, 12:50 AM
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Default Re: New to natural coals

I lay my nat coals right on the rungs that hold the pots above the gas flame... They light fully in about five minutes and stay lit.
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