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Big Green Egg Grill


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12 minutes ago, NewlyRetired said:

They have excellent customer service.  If you call them they really try and get you the right item based on your needs.  You could ask them about the primo if you call.

I'll wait to make that call till after I hear back from Primo ;)

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15 hours ago, proninja said:

And when traeger is all "oh neat insta here's a timberline" it's hard to keep up ;)

True, Traeger did send a Timberline. And a 34. And PK sent a couple. Char-Broil has sent me close to a dozen over the years. Stok, Camp Chef and Grill Dome have as well. So yeah, the race is rigged just a bit. 

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  • 3 weeks later...

Question:

I use a rough 3-2-1 method for ribs (closer to 5 hours than 6 in my timing).

I love taste, tenderness and texture but there is one item I would like to improve.  I find that the bark can easily separate from the ribs when cutting or eating.  Are there any special techniques I could use to help the bark adhere better?

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I just bought a XL BGE for my vacation house in Northern AZ. It was delivered Tuesday. I plan to break it in this weekend when I head up there with my buddy.

Any suggestions for the maiden voyage? 

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33 minutes ago, kutta said:

I just bought a XL BGE for my vacation house in Northern AZ. It was delivered Tuesday. I plan to break it in this weekend when I head up there with my buddy.

Any suggestions for the maiden voyage? 

traditionally people recommend to "break in" the egg with a medium temp cook.

I typically recommend trying a spatchcock chicken for the first cook since it is easy and it cooks at 350.

In case you are unfamiliar with this cook, read below for all the directions

http://www.nakedwhiz.com/spatch.htm

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  • 1 month later...

Any suggestions on a new way to start the fire? I use the firestarter cubes but when they go out, the smoke is horrible. I live in Queens, so the yards are pretty close and I try to be careful not to smoke people out too much. Don't want something electric, preferably a torch.

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9 minutes ago, jamny said:

Any suggestions on a new way to start the fire? I use the firestarter cubes but when they go out, the smoke is horrible. I live in Queens, so the yards are pretty close and I try to be careful not to smoke people out too much. Don't want something electric, preferably a torch.

Map torch. That is what I use. Although I did buy these little wicker looking things at home depot that worked nicely when I was out of gas. 

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On 6/7/2017 at 0:03 PM, NewlyRetired said:

Question:

I use a rough 3-2-1 method for ribs (closer to 5 hours than 6 in my timing).

I love taste, tenderness and texture but there is one item I would like to improve.  I find that the bark can easily separate from the ribs when cutting or eating.  Are there any special techniques I could use to help the bark adhere better?

I bought one of those cleaved looking things that is rounded and has two handles. Best way I've ever cut ribs. Clean, one cut. 

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  • 4 weeks later...
On ‎7‎/‎21‎/‎2017 at 7:56 PM, jamny said:

Any suggestions on a new way to start the fire? I use the firestarter cubes but when they go out, the smoke is horrible. I live in Queens, so the yards are pretty close and I try to be careful not to smoke people out too much. Don't want something electric, preferably a torch.

So I picked up these from Home Depot and they work great with virtually no smoke.

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  • 7 months later...

Ok BGE guys...

I'm between grills right now.  I've never smoked meat before but would like to try it in the future.  I don't have room for both a gas grill and Egg, so I need help with the following questions.  BTW - I read the FAQ posted on page 1 already.

1. These things are known to get flaming hot, if it's only 5-6 feet away from the the side of my house (the only practical place I could use it), is that a safety concern?  It's also going to be on my porch, what if the coal falls out onto the deck - is this common at all?
2. One of the things I enjoy about a gas grill is the convenience.  Very often, we're grilling weeknights for dinner, not the weekends for friends.  In other words, if I wanted to make burgers on a Wednesday night for just me and my wife, is this a huge production on BGE?   Gas is easy, you turn on the grill and go.  This seems like you have to do a lot of temperature gauging and it may also take longer to bring up to temp.  

Question 2 is my biggest deciding factor.  I would do an occasional big smoke on a weekend, but mainly be using it for day to day grilling.  Should I just stick to being a pleb and get another Weber propane grill?

 

I've been eating Keto for almost a year now and this grill would allow me a lot more freedom with my meal preparation.  

Thanks guys!

Edited by John Bender
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You have some of the same questions many of us have when deciding. Yes, it's not as easy to fire up as a gas grill but it's only like 10 or 15 minutes more prep as you get the coals going. I use it regularly for quick cooks like burgers, steaks or grilled chicken. There's no worry about losing hot coals.

My only concern would be the smoke coming from it at a close proximity to your house. Others may have a different opinion but I like to leave it as far from windows as possible.

Good luck making your choice. I love my BGE. One if the best investments I ever made.

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12 hours ago, John Bender said:

Ok BGE guys...

I'm between grills right now.  I've never smoked meat before but would like to try it in the future.  I don't have room for both a gas grill and Egg, so I need help with the following questions.  BTW - I read the FAQ posted on page 1 already.

1. These things are known to get flaming hot, if it's only 5-6 feet away from the the side of my house (the only practical place I could use it), is that a safety concern?  It's also going to be on my porch, what if the coal falls out onto the deck - is this common at all?
2. One of the things I enjoy about a gas grill is the convenience.  Very often, we're grilling weeknights for dinner, not the weekends for friends.  In other words, if I wanted to make burgers on a Wednesday night for just me and my wife, is this a huge production on BGE?   Gas is easy, you turn on the grill and go.  This seems like you have to do a lot of temperature gauging and it may also take longer to bring up to temp.  

Question 2 is my biggest deciding factor.  I would do an occasional big smoke on a weekend, but mainly be using it for day to day grilling.  Should I just stick to being a pleb and get another Weber propane grill?

 

I've been eating Keto for almost a year now and this grill would allow me a lot more freedom with my meal preparation.  

Thanks guys!

1 - No worries at all for the house. I have mine 1 foot away from wood railings on my deck (and about 6" on the back side) - no issues ever. Many, many people have these a few feet from the house. As far as coals falling out, there's a sliding screen as well as a sliding door on the bottom opening, so the only coals that would ever fall out would be when you opened that screen to clean it (and hopefully, you aren't cleaning while hot). 

2 - I use mine for "normal" burger/hot dogs grilling all the time. Simply start the coals about 20 minutes before you want to cook, and you're up to cooking temp quick. 

Edited by jwb
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14 hours ago, John Bender said:

Ok BGE guys...

I'm between grills right now.  I've never smoked meat before but would like to try it in the future.  I don't have room for both a gas grill and Egg, so I need help with the following questions.  BTW - I read the FAQ posted on page 1 already.

1. These things are known to get flaming hot, if it's only 5-6 feet away from the the side of my house (the only practical place I could use it), is that a safety concern?  It's also going to be on my porch, what if the coal falls out onto the deck - is this common at all?
2. One of the things I enjoy about a gas grill is the convenience.  Very often, we're grilling weeknights for dinner, not the weekends for friends.  In other words, if I wanted to make burgers on a Wednesday night for just me and my wife, is this a huge production on BGE?   Gas is easy, you turn on the grill and go.  This seems like you have to do a lot of temperature gauging and it may also take longer to bring up to temp.  

Question 2 is my biggest deciding factor.  I would do an occasional big smoke on a weekend, but mainly be using it for day to day grilling.  Should I just stick to being a pleb and get another Weber propane grill?

 

I've been eating Keto for almost a year now and this grill would allow me a lot more freedom with my meal preparation.  

Thanks guys!

Regarding #2, its definitely a factor, but not really BGE-specific.  Any charcoal grill will take a bit longer to fire up and involve a bit of clean-up or maintenance with every cook. I have a Weber Genesis gas grill that sits right next to my BGE, but I almost never use it.  Even for mid-week burgers, I just prefer the charcoal.  The only time I use the gas grill is when we are hosting a party, and I need to do a batch of hot dogs or something for the kids while the charcoal grill is occupied with the main course. I don't think I started it at all last year - not once.

 

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Ok... Picked up my non green egg grill today. 

I went with something smaller and cheaper for now since I'm a novice. It's the vision grills s-series Kamado grill. Looks similar but a few questions

 

There is no deflector heat plate like there is for the egg. And they apparently don't make them. What to do about smoking? 

How long does charcoal generally last? I've never used charcoal so I'm completely lost on that. Can you use the same charcoal for multiple cooks? And when done cooking do I just close the vents to let the fire go out? 

Looking forward to smoking something next week. 

 

Thanks all. 

Edited by John Bender
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Just now, proninja said:

Without a deflector plate it's just a grill, you won't be able to use it as a smoker. But it seems utterly insane to make a kamado that you can't use as a smoker. 

If you're worried about saving money, I'd just get a weber kettle if all you can do out of the vision is direct heat. 

Yeah - I've found the stones now.  They call them "lava stones" . issue is they aren't in store and come in 4 different sizes.  My grill doesn't have a size.

I wrote them a message for clarification.  Kind of annoying but I'll figure it out.

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1 hour ago, John Bender said:

Yeah - I've found the stones now.  They call them "lava stones" . issue is they aren't in store and come in 4 different sizes.  My grill doesn't have a size.

I wrote them a message for clarification.  Kind of annoying but I'll figure it out.

definitely get the Lava stone (deflector).  

I started with a cheap smoker myself but went the extreme cheap route with the Brinkmann and then one summer later got the BGE.

The electric starter is fine.  There are many ways to start your fire.  My preferred method is to just use a small blow torch.

 

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On 4/1/2018 at 11:58 AM, John Bender said:

Ok... Picked up my non green egg grill today. 

I went with something smaller and cheaper for now since I'm a novice. It's the vision grills s-series Kamado grill. Looks similar but a few questions

 

You will never need to move to a BGE from the Vision. There is more innovation in that cheap Vision grill than has come out of the BGE R&D over the last 25 years. The running joke about the BGE is that the only thing they have innovated in the last 20 years (other than the hinge on the XL finally about 3 years ago) is the price. It's about time for another $100 price increase. 

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I christened the Vision last might grilling some boneless loin pork chops with some sugar free BBQ sauce (yuck, but im diabetic).

 

Anyway, these things take a minute to learn but a lifetime to master.  First time through, it didn't get hot enough as I only put a small amount of charcoal.

I also really need to get better at creating heat zones since I currently do not have a deflector plate.  I had to overcook them unfortunately to the point of toughness.  For now, I'll just crowd one side of the egg.

Also, forget the electric starter, the little starter bundles they sell worked just fine and instantaneously.  

 

I was shocked that I put no wood in the grill at all but still managed a smokey flavor on the chops.

 

Very good stuff.

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Just now, John Bender said:

I was shocked that I put no wood in the grill at all but still managed a smokey flavor on the chops.

The lump charcoal does impart a nice mild smoke flavor all by itself.  My wife does not like a heavy smoke so sometimes I BBQ with a very small amount of wood or even no wood some times.

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2 hours ago, John Bender said:

I christened the Vision last might grilling some boneless loin pork chops with some sugar free BBQ sauce (yuck, but im diabetic).

 

Anyway, these things take a minute to learn but a lifetime to master.  First time through, it didn't get hot enough as I only put a small amount of charcoal.

I also really need to get better at creating heat zones since I currently do not have a deflector plate.  I had to overcook them unfortunately to the point of toughness.  For now, I'll just crowd one side of the egg.

Also, forget the electric starter, the little starter bundles they sell worked just fine and instantaneously.  

 

I was shocked that I put no wood in the grill at all but still managed a smokey flavor on the chops.

 

Very good stuff.

Put the coals on one side, bake the chops on the side with no coals till they are 10-15 degrees short of your desired doneness. Then sear over the hot coals on both sides. It's called the reverse sear. Once you start, you will never go back. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Doing my first brisket smoke and have lots of questions, hope you guys don't mind. 

1. I don't eat sugar so I'm gonna dry rub w salt and pepper only... Maybe some garlic powder as well. Is this gonna be ok? 

2. I'm also not gonna sauce it. I have some sugar free BBQ sauce I'll add later. 

3. Do I need to plan to wake up overnight to add wood chips? I'm gonna put 4 large ones in at the start. Will that be enough. 

4. How long at 225 for a 10 pounder roughly?

5. Should i wrap it after its barked up well? 

 

Anything else I should know? 

Thanks guys! 

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2 minutes ago, John Bender said:

Doing my first brisket smoke and have lots of questions, hope you guys don't mind. 

1. I don't eat sugar so I'm gonna dry rub w salt and pepper only... Maybe some garlic powder as well. Is this gonna be ok? 

2. I'm also not gonna sauce it. I have some sugar free BBQ sauce I'll add later. 

3. Do I need to plan to wake up overnight to add wood chips? I'm gonna put 4 large ones in at the start. Will that be enough. 

4. How long at 225 for a 10 pounder roughly?

5. Should i wrap it after its barked up well? 

 

Anything else I should know? 

Thanks guys! 

1.  Yo know me. I never use sugar. I use the "Franklin" method. So easy. 

2.  I spray with acv only. Again I dont do sugar. 

3. No

4. Ballpark. 10 hrs but I use a temp probe 

5.  Your call. If it's your first one. I would say yes. 

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My wife doesn't like the time/effort of the lump charcoal, so we recently got her a weber gas grill for the things she likes to make. 

I was making burgers last night, and she said "hey, try my grill". So I did. Won't be doing that again - wow, what a difference. Yea, the grill is ready to go in 5 minutes, but that awesome crust that the egg puts on the burgers was missing. Just a completely different flavor, and not in a good way.

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2 minutes ago, jwb said:

My wife doesn't like the time/effort of the lump charcoal, so we recently got her a weber gas grill for the things she likes to make. 

I was making burgers last night, and she said "hey, try my grill". So I did. Won't be doing that again - wow, what a difference. Yea, the grill is ready to go in 5 minutes, but that awesome crust that the egg puts on the burgers was missing. Just a completely different flavor, and not in a good way.

100 percent agree. We have the same set up. Burgers and sausages on the egg are just the bomb

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3 minutes ago, John Bender said:

@culdeus sorry bro one last question.

When getting my grill up to temp. I want to cook at 225-250.

Shoukd I get it really hot first and then close the air flow holes to bring it back down? Or start with partially closed air holes to just get it to the 225 I want? 

I get it hot, then close the lid for 20 minutes with the vents open, then put the plate on it and close the vents to the level I want. Usually gets me a perfect 250. 

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41 minutes ago, culdeus said:

1.  Yo know me. I never use sugar. I use the "Franklin" method. So easy. 

2.  I spray with acv only. Again I dont do sugar. 

3. No

4. Ballpark. 10 hrs but I use a temp probe 

5.  Your call. If it's your first one. I would say yes. 

I would add that how long it takes will also depend on the quality of the brisket.  A Prime brisket will finish sooner.  Temp is important but you want it to probe butter smooth in the flat and the point.

Wrap in unwaxed butcher paper if you have any.

You can use just about any liquid to spritz.  I usually use beer.  ACV works too. You're just trying to knock any extra smoke off and keep it amber vs. black.

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55 minutes ago, John Bender said:

@culdeus

Thanks all. Probably should have done a test run on a cheaper cut of meat. Went with a 66 dollar brisket. Butcher trimmed it up nice for me. I'm gonna trim it a touch more to get it to about a quarter inch of fat. 

I don't do just a ton of trimming. Sometimes there is visible silver skin that I trim back.  Fat wise over the flat I usually leave it and maybe hit just a bit over the point if it is super thick. 

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Trimming going to be a learning process.  I aimed to keep about 1/4" on there but I def took too much off in some space.  Some of the top is bare.  Not by much.

All in all, for my first time I think I did ok.

Edited by John Bender
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1 hour ago, John Bender said:

Doing my first brisket smoke and have lots of questions, hope you guys don't mind. 

1. I don't eat sugar so I'm gonna dry rub w salt and pepper only... Maybe some garlic powder as well. Is this gonna be ok? 

2. I'm also not gonna sauce it. I have some sugar free BBQ sauce I'll add later. 

3. Do I need to plan to wake up overnight to add wood chips? I'm gonna put 4 large ones in at the start. Will that be enough. 

4. How long at 225 for a 10 pounder roughly?

5. Should i wrap it after its barked up well? 

 

Anything else I should know? 

Thanks guys! 

Regarding 3 and 4, your biggest challenge is going to be maintaining that steady temp range overnight. Not to say it needs to stay with 10 degrees or something like that, but you don’t want it to spike above 350 or under 100 for very long.  You shouldn’t need to add anything, but you will want to check it periodically because the temps can fluctuate due to wind or other factors. Some folks have a remote temp monitoring device they can bring to the bedroom and set to alarm if the temp goes out of range up or down (I’ve had both happen overnight). Others just set an alarm to wake them every couple hours and go take a look. Whatever you do, unless you are extremely confident your egg temp is stabilized, you have to monitor it or you risk ruining the cook. I usually don’t go to bed until the dome has been holding steady for at least an hour or two.  If it goes out of range, you’re probably going to be sitting up with it for a while until it stabilizes again, so have some bourbon at the ready. This is something that gets easier with experience.

I assume you’ve read that the spring loaded dome thermometer that comes with the egg is not to be trusted under any circumstances. Best to throw it out now if you haven’t already. Even brand new, they are worthless.

As for timing, as others have noted, there is a huge variance based on a number of different factors so you just have to be patient and let the meat tell you when it’s ready. I’ve had mine for 10 years and I still get aggro with my wife from time to time when she’s hounding me about when the food will be ready. If you need something like a brisket to be ready by a set time, it’s best to leave yourself 2 or 3 hours and just be ready to pull it if it finishes early and keep it warm until you’re ready to serve.  

Have fun, brisket is challenging but worth it.

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4 minutes ago, CletiusMaximus said:

Regarding 3 and 4, your biggest challenge is going to be maintaining that steady temp range overnight. Not to say it needs to stay with 10 degrees or something like that, but you don’t want it to spike above 350 or under 100 for very long.  You shouldn’t need to add anything, but you will want to check it periodically because the temps can fluctuate due to wind or other factors. Some folks have a remote temp monitoring device they can bring to the bedroom and set to alarm if the temp goes out of range up or down (I’ve had both happen overnight). Others just set an alarm to wake them every couple hours and go take a look. Whatever you do, unless you are extremely confident your egg temp is stabilized, you have to monitor it or you risk ruining the cook. I usually don’t go to bed until the dome has been holding steady for at least an hour or two.  If it goes out of range, you’re probably going to be sitting up with it for a while until it stabilizes again, so have some bourbon at the ready. This is something that gets easier with experience.

I assume you’ve read that the spring loaded dome thermometer that comes with the egg is not to be trusted under any circumstances. Best to throw it out now if you haven’t already. Even brand new, they are worthless.

As for timing, as others have noted, there is a huge variance based on a number of different factors so you just have to be patient and let the meat tell you when it’s ready. I’ve had mine for 10 years and I still get aggro with my wife from time to time when she’s hounding me about when the food will be ready. If you need something like a brisket to be ready by a set time, it’s best to leave yourself 2 or 3 hours and just be ready to pull it if it finishes early and keep it warm until you’re ready to serve.  

Have fun, brisket is challenging but worth it.

Great post.  I'm just at the beginning, still not down to my desired temp.  Been holding 300 for about 30 mins, so I basically have the top daisy wheel almost completely closed, just a sliver is open.  

Def fun figure it out and testing, but that's what the fun is all about.

 

I'm going to start spritzing with a mix of Apple Cider Vinegar and hot sauce at 4 hours in.  Once the bark is there, I'm going to wrap in foil to finish.  I used 5 large wood chunks, should be enough without needing to replace.

 

I'm so excited.  Although eating at 2 AM should be fun.

 

My wife is in China for the next month so I have an 8 lb brisket to myself.  She loves brisket so I told her this would be the test run so I could make it properly for her when she gets home

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1 hour ago, John Bender said:

So ive held 275 degrees for 90 mins. WIN!

However, my meat thermometer is reading 145 temp on the meat.  Is it because part of the probe is outside of the meat?  there's zero chance its up to 145 already

Look at this pic for an example of how to probe a brisket and compare it to yours.  Typically it is just the tip of the probe that determines the heat temperature.

http://www.drybagsteak.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/IMG_0702.jpg

Edited by NewlyRetired
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40 minutes ago, NewlyRetired said:

The only way a kamado should spike that fast is with a direct intake of extra air.  Is it a windy day outside?

Yeah heavy winds today.  I closed them all off for about 45 mins to try and bring it down.  Crazy thing is, the cook is only 3.5 hours in and I'm already close to getting max temp readings.  I might let it go beyond 190 because its definitely not tender yet

 

Im also worried the wood cooked off too fast, I dont get much smokiness from it

 

Edited by John Bender
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27 minutes ago, John Bender said:

Crazy thing is, the cook is only 3.5 hours in and I'm already close to getting max temp readings.  I might let it go beyond 190 because its definitely not tender yet

Im also worried the wood cooked off too fast, I dont get much smokiness from it

 

The one time something similar happened to me, I was still using the spring-loaded dome thermometer that came with my grill.  I put it in boiling water and it read less than 100.  I thought I was cooking low/slow, but was actually roasting on high temp.  I was not experienced enough to know from look/feel that my temp was probably at 500 or more.  If your meat is cooking that much faster than expected, the first potential explanation I would check is thermometer accuracy - both for the dome and the one in the meat.

If the meat is really already at 190, I would wrap it in foil and shut the temp down as low as you can hold it - 200 or so if possible - open another bottle of bourbon, and make alternate plans for dinner. You can still have nice brisket leftovers tomorrow, but it needs time in that 150-180 range to break everything down in the meat.  Many folks cook brisket to 205 or more. Alternatively, you could just pull it and finish in the oven where you know it will hold steady at 200 over time. There's not shame in that imo - its an expensive piece of meat and you don't want shoe leather.

Edited by CletiusMaximus
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