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Weber 7447 Compact Rapidfire Chimney Starter
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- Lights coals in under 15 minutes
- Place with coals on Weber Lighter Cubes or crumpled newspaper and light
- Compact design makes it ideal for smaller grills or shorter grilling sessions. Two handle design provides more control when pouring lit charcoal
- Fits perfectly on Smokey Joe and Jumbo Joe charcoal grills
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This smaller version of original Rapidfire Chimney Starter lights coals in under 15 minutes without using lighter fluid. Place canister with coals on top of Weber Lighter Cubes or crumpled newspaper and light. It's that easy. Fits perfectly on Smokey Joe and Jumbo Joe charcoal grills.
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I haven't noticed the handle getting hot because I use gloves when handling these starters and I think everyone should to avoid burns.
I added a photo so people can compare the size difference.
One full chimney equates to almost exactly 40 briquettes. In my photos you'll be able to see the comparison between this and the full size chimney. One full compact chimney will fill the full size chimney to about the top hole in the side (prob just under half a chimney). I see myself using this new compact version a LOT more than the full size.
+ Ideal chimney for starting smaller grills and some smokers such as Pit Barrel Cooker, 18" Weber Smokey Mountain, Smokey Joe, etc.
+ Smaller size is nice for transporting, camping, taking in an RV, etc.
+ Great for "minion" charcoal starting
+ Heat guard to protect your hands
+ No worries about tasting lighter fluid in your food
- Not ideal for use with lump charcoal (larger, irregular size)
- Not suitable for all grilling/BBQ purposes - for larger cooks, see Weber 7416 Rapidfire Chimney Starter
This is the little brother to the larger Weber chimney starter, which was voted by America's Test Kitchen as the best chimney starter. This chimney starter is as good, or better, than any you'll find available and it comes with at a reasonable price. It takes roughly 20 minutes for the charcoal to be ready to dump. If you desire large capacity, high heat cooks, then go with the larger chimney (Model 7416 linked above). However, if your needs are the same as those listed above, go ahead and grab one of these now. Leave any questions below and I'd be happy to answer them as quick as I can!
For my grill the easiest way to control the heat (225F for long smokes) is to limit the fuel. I have a full size chimney and found myself only filling it to 1/3 full (33 Kingsford Original briquettes). I decided I wanted half that and found that so few briquettes didn't catch on fire as well. I use the Minion method of using the lit coals to light unlit coals over time. So, the question is does this smaller compact chimney starter work for 15-20 briquettes?
Here are the numbers: The full size chimney starter is 12 inches high, 7.5 inches in diameter. The interior cavity is 9 inches deep. There is an internal grate that provides air space under the charcoal about 1/4 of the way up from the bottom. It's conical in shape but I'm ignoring that; I don't think it makes much difference. Total volume is 126.6 cubic inches (or about 2 liters).
The compact chimney starter is 8 inches high, 5.75 inches in diameter. The cavity is 6.25 inches deep. The total volume is 51.7 cubic inches (or 0.85 liters).
1 full compact chimney starter fills the full chimney starter to 1/3 (33 briquettes as it happens). This is going to be perfect for me. With my usual load of 15 briquettes they didn't even cover the whole bottom of the full sized starter.
I made this measurement because briquettes aren't fluid and don't flow to fill all available space. I was concerned that the briquettes would not pack as well into a smaller volume.
There is some discussion of the compact chimney starter not firing up coals as well. The volume beneath the coal grate that allows air in is smaller than the volume beneath the full size chimney starter. That's obvious. I just lit a 15 briquette load. Fifteen minutes, same as the larger starter. The charcoal in the compact starter is more uniform gray and better started. I think this is because a small load stacks better in the compact starter and you get more of the chimney effect. In the larger starter, they don't even cover the bottom. Since I don't intend to light more than about 33 briquettes I'm better off with the compact starter.
If you need 50 or more briquettes to get your grill going the compact chimney starter is too small for you. If you are invested in the Minion method or in using a charcoal fuse or snake (look it up) then the compact chimney starter might be just what you need.
When I'm doing a long smoke I have to add coals every hour or so. The small chimney is great for adding lit coals to a waning fire. Adding unlit coals produces too much smoke and takes too long to get the temperature back up if it dropped.
I tried the small chimney starter with lump charcoal and I have to agree with Chris. It is too small for something as irregular as lump charcoal.
The paper burned out fairly quickly with no real sign of it working. I put my hand over the top and there was a trace amount of heat coming out. Five to seven minutes later, I saw a decent glow coming from the bottom. A few minutes after that and there was a serious fire down inside. I was thoroughly impressed in spite of the three strikes against it. Everything came out glowing and ready to use.
I rarely write such a glowing review but this has me fired up!!
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Who has a newspaper?!?!