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Joining the ProQ Club :-)

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Apologies in advance, this post is pic heavy just to show to anyone who might be thinking of getting one of these.

 

So, my ProQ Frontier arrived today.  I was supposed to be going out on a work do this evening, but I made an excuse as I was far more interested on getting home to put my new bbq together! 😂

 

First impressions upon opening the box were that it was incredibly well packaged, plenty of polystyrene and packing cardboard keeping all the parts well separated and protected. The individual stackers, lid, base, grills, basket and pan were also all wrapped and protected in plastic

 

The next thing that struck me was how few pieces there were to put together.   Having spent a good 3 hours or so assembling a Landmann in the past, this was a huge relief!  In fact there were only 6 pieces and 6 screws to contend with (for attaching the legs) - see photo.  Just as well really,  since as I explained to @Icefever earlier today,  when it comes to doing anything remotely handy, I'm a cross between Frank Spencer and Mr Bean!

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This is all there was to do! (I left hooks in the picture, so ignore those)

 

The legs were the only fiddly part of the build for me - although that could well be my cack-handedness at play there!  Everything else just slotted together as per the clear diagram in the manual.

 

The whole unit feels solid and good quality.  I haven't put it outside just yet, on the albeit slim off-chance that it rains (I have a cover on order), so it's residing in the kitchen for now, but I'll give it a go later this week.

 

A few pics below of the unpacking and build.   Overall I'm very impressed and haven't even used it yet!

 

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Welcome to the club GB :thumb1: these smokers are really well made and of good quality,  so what's planned for the first cook on her?? :yahoo:may I suggest you do a dry run, a few bits of lump or whatever you use,  stick a thermo on the top grill and watch the temp as you adjust the airvents.

Ice,

 

 

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Congratulations. New BBQ day is fantastic. Actually, old BBQ day is fantastic too.

Good advice from Ice. Although I somehow managed to chuck a chicken on for my dummy run. 😆 

There are a few Pro Q threads on here that are worth a read. Some are struggles, some are tales of wonderous joy when things work just right. Some are mixed in other sections so worth doing a search. 

Have fun, Phil.

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2 hours ago, Icefever said:

Welcome to the club GB :thumb1: these smokers are really well made and of good quality,  so what's planned for the first cook on her?? :yahoo:may I suggest you do a dry run, a few bits of lump or whatever you use,  stick a thermo on the top grill and watch the temp as you adjust the airvents.

Ice,

 

 

Thanks Ice!  I think I'm going to start out with something nice and easy as cooking with charcoal is relatively new to me - maybe a chicken or some babybacks 😋

 

Good idea about the dummy run, it'll be useful for me to learn how to control the temps (and also burn off any gunk from the factory!).  I've been reading a lot about something called the 'minion method' which sounds like it might be pretty effective, so I reckon I'll give that a try and keep an eye on temp with the Inkbird while I fiddle with the vents.

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1 hour ago, Phlashster said:

Congratulations. New BBQ day is fantastic. Actually, old BBQ day is fantastic too.

Good advice from Ice. Although I somehow managed to chuck a chicken on for my dummy run. 😆 

There are a few Pro Q threads on here that are worth a read. Some are struggles, some are tales of wonderous joy when things work just right. Some are mixed in other sections so worth doing a search. 

Have fun, Phil.

Cheers Phil,  must admit I'm pretty excited, I've only cooked a couple of times with charcoal in the past (just a few rather sad looking sausages and burgers), so I'm looking forward to the learning curve!

 

I'm currently just reading through every ProQ thread I can lay my hands on.   At this rate, I reckon I'll be an expert before I even fire her up! 😂

 

And you're absolutely right - any BBQ day is fantastic! 😀

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2 minutes ago, Guitarbloke said:

(and also burn off any gunk from the factory!)

I got talking to Ian at Brew'N'Q and I asked him about "seasoning" and he said that there was no need for it, as it's porcelain coated 1mm steel,  just a wipe with a hot soapy cloth is enough.

 

Ice.

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2 minutes ago, Icefever said:

I got talking to Ian at Brew'N'Q and I asked him about "seasoning" and he said that there was no need for it, as it's porcelain coated 1mm steel,  just a wipe with a hot soapy cloth is enough.

 

Ice.

That's really handy to know!  I'll still go with a dry run anyway as you suggest though - if only to get my temp control technique nailed 😁

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13 minutes ago, Guitarbloke said:

cooking with charcoal is relatively new to me

I started off with lumpwood...tried many other types of fuel and returned to lumpwood....give it a go.

Ice.

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8 minutes ago, Guitarbloke said:

if only to get my temp control technique nailed 😁

As Phil said do a run and throw a chuck on that way you get dinner and learn about the air vents.

Ice.

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9 minutes ago, Icefever said:

As Phil said do a run and throw a chuck on that way you get dinner and learn about the air vents.

Ice.

Yeah I think that's probably a good idea! 

 

I've got 16kg of Weber briquettes sitting in the shed at the moment, so I'll have a first run with those, but I'll pick up some restaurant grade lump from Amazon and use that for the second try and compare them.  

 

Is there much of a difference? I think I had read somewhere that lump didn't burn as consistently as briquettes, but I can't recall where I read that now.

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Welcome to the ProQ Family Guitarbloke!

Good quality briquettes give a more consistent burn due to their uniform shape and lumpwood can have spikes in temperature due to it being inconsistent in size.

Be warned that with all types of fuel, there are good and bad versions... we've noticed quite a few brands of coconut charcoal now available, unfortunately they're not all made the same. If after a burn, you're left with loads of ash, this is usually an indication that the manufacturer has used fillers (which can be just about anything) to bulk up the product.

 

Chuck on an Chook for your first run, but bear in mind that this is "Low n Slow", so expect it to take around 3.5 hours. Also with chicken the smoke reacts with the flash to produce a pink colouring near the bone which people often mistake for the meat being uncooked. Get yourself a good quality digital probe thermometer, as this is the best way of determining whether or not food is done.

Looking forward to seeing how you get on.

 

Ian

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How did you find the clasps? One set on mine didn't line up very well and another has a thick gauge of wire sticking out of it preventing it from shutting properly easy fixes but a touch annoying

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2 hours ago, Mack said:

Welcome to the ProQ Family Guitarbloke!

Good quality briquettes give a more consistent burn due to their uniform shape and lumpwood can have spikes in temperature due to it being inconsistent in size.

Be warned that with all types of fuel, there are good and bad versions... we've noticed quite a few brands of coconut charcoal now available, unfortunately they're not all made the same. If after a burn, you're left with loads of ash, this is usually an indication that the manufacturer has used fillers (which can be just about anything) to bulk up the product.

 

Chuck on an Chook for your first run, but bear in mind that this is "Low n Slow", so expect it to take around 3.5 hours. Also with chicken the smoke reacts with the flash to produce a pink colouring near the bone which people often mistake for the meat being uncooked. Get yourself a good quality digital probe thermometer, as this is the best way of determining whether or not food is done.

Looking forward to seeing how you get on.

 

Ian

Thanks Ian, I'll experiment with both lump and briquettes and see what I prefer.  Sounds like briquettes might be easier but we'll see!

That's interesting about the pink colouring on the chicken - I didn't know that and would have probably let it keep on cooking!!

Will report back once I've done my first cook (most likely this weekend) :D

 

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22 minutes ago, Montyb82 said:

How did you find the clasps? One set on mine didn't line up very well and another has a thick gauge of wire sticking out of it preventing it from shutting properly easy fixes but a touch annoying

Hmmm.. I don't believe I noticed anything untoward - I'll have a closer inspection of the clasps when I get home tonight though and let you know

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2 hours ago, Montyb82 said:

How did you find the clasps?

The ones on mine are spot on, no problems at all.

Ice.

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Thinking this may be the last lo&slo cook on mine for a while as getting something else this month. Will keep it for cold smoking though. 

Couple of racks of ribs on it chugging along at 225F in windy and cool conditions. Nice and dependable, it has served me well for nearly 4 years.

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