First Time User Of The Cobb Cooker

Submitted: Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 08:04
ThreadID: 46253 Views:5300 Replies:4 FollowUps:7
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My workmates sought advice from my husband of what I wanted for MY 40th birthday. He told them a front locker for the 4wd, but said that was too much, so may be a Cobb Cooker would be a good idea. (He's always thinking.....) Anyway, I arrived at work and there it was - this large interesting looking box. I opened it up and knew straight away that they'd had 'outside help'. But I was pretty happy, because even though my husband had an ulterior motive, the idea of buying one for ourselves was something we'd tossed around for a while, but just wasn't sure whether our useage would justify the price. Well, we tried it out on the weekend at home just to see if it was as good as it says... A roast lamb rack, onions, potatoes and pumpkin - (enough for the 3 of us) all fitted in, with red wine and garlic in the moat... All cooked to perfection on just 8 briquettes! The verdict? Absolutely divine!!! Yep - I'm really happy! Easy to use, simple to clean, portable, versatile and very efficient. Anyone thinking of getting one, trust me, even after only one use I have to say it's worth it. Admittedly I was skeptical, but it is better than a camp oven, as it is safer and of course you can use it in places where you aren't allowed to have a camp fire which kind of makes a camp oven difficult to use. I can't wait to try out some other stuff - eg bread, scones etc & there's a lot of accessories available too. Vanessa S
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Reply By: Member - Bruce and Anne - Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 08:19

Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 08:19
Good to see your enjoying your pressy Vanessa, and heh that a party and when are you turning 40 again haha. You guys take care and we will catch up soon.
Cheers Bruce and Annie.
AnswerID: 244579

Reply By: Outa Bounds - Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 08:35

Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 08:35
We got one for ourselves recently too and so far I've done damper in it (the beer damper recipe is great, although a bit expensive if you make one every day), and a roast lamb, results were pretty good, the damper tasted great although I have to get hold of a cake rack so the bottom doesn't get burnt.

Ps - don't light the beads inside your house as it tends to set off the smoke alarms, but once they're going it's fine to bring it in. And considering the winter is setting in leaving the beads to finish burning warms the house nicely.
AnswerID: 244582

Follow Up By: Bongo (Darwin NT) - Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 12:00

Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 12:00
Cobb America Inc. Warns Charcoal Grill Purchasers of CO Hazard
Marketing Material Showed Product Being Used Indoors
The following product safety alert was voluntarily conducted by the firm in cooperation with the CPSC.

Name of Product: Cobb Premier Charcoal Grills

Units: About 2,000

Importer: Cobb America Inc., of Deerfield Beach, Fla.

Hazard: Like all charcoal grills, this grill emits carbon monoxide gas, which can kill within minutes when used indoors. The Web sites, recipe book, and visuals in a promotional video create the impression that the Cobb Cooker can be used indoors. The recipe book says that it can be used on your dining room table, and the promotional video showed a man carrying the grill into the house while the charcoal was still burning.

Incidents/Injuries: No incidents or injuries have been reported.

Description: The product is made of stainless steel with a wire mesh bottom and a dome-shaped lid. It has a non-stick-coated grill grid. It weighs about 10 pounds and is about 10 inches tall. An outside label reads “Cobb Premier.” It comes with several accessories, including a black carrier bag with “Cobb” lettered in yellow on top.

Sold at: Cobb America Web site and other outdoor and camping stores including some web sites nationwide from March 2006 through October 2006 for about $140.

Manufactured in: China

Remedy: Consumers should never use any charcoal grill indoors. Charcoal grills should only be used outside. The promotional video, which created the impression that the grill could be used indoors, has been removed from the firm’s Web site,, and a warning about the hazards of indoor charcoal use and carbon monoxide poisoning has been posted. The firm is sending warning letters to all known consumers.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Cobb America collect at (954) 427-5202 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or write an email to

FollowupID: 505617

Follow Up By: Pajman Pete (SA) - Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 15:05

Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 15:05
Hmmm. That is talking about charcoal use, not heat beads, but incomplete combustion of any carbon based fuel will create carbon monoxide. The trick is to ensure adequate ventilation. Without that even the average gas fire can kill.


Ardent Cobb user, even inside the house.

(Then there was that time I dropped it taking it back outside. The bush princess likes the new floor covering I laid that doesn't have little heat bead shaped burn holes in it!)
Any mug can be uncomfortable out bush

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FollowupID: 505651

Follow Up By: Muzzgit [WA] - Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 17:51

Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 17:51
heat beads, charcoal, whatever! It is downright dangerous to use any of these heating utensils indoors. There was a family in the outskirts of Perth about 8 years ago who bought the weber inside to heat up their gamesroom and the children ended up in hospital and several warnings have been posted the the local and major newspapers sinse!
FollowupID: 505700

Follow Up By: Bongo (Darwin NT) - Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 22:37

Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 22:37
I have a Cobb and I am very pleased with the results. A dozen heat beads versus half a tree. The Cobb wins!! But I have to ask; what are heat beads, compressed Unleaded? Diesel? LPG? LNG? fallen timber? or are they compressed CHARCOAL. THEY ARE CHARCOAL! Follow the advice of the manufacturer; leave them outside!
FollowupID: 505854

Follow Up By: Sand Man (SA) - Tuesday, Jun 05, 2007 at 00:46

Tuesday, Jun 05, 2007 at 00:46

Good points you have put forward Pete.

Have never had a problem with mine inside.
I often place the uncovered Cobb inside the Camper after cooking to heat up the air a little, before retiring for the night. The beads have done their job on the food and as they are burning well by this time, would not be giving off anything more than good old heat and maybe a little Co2. (Dioxide rather than Monoxide)

Just love our Cobb, but still use the Camp Oven too on occasions.
I sit the Camp Oven on a layer of heat beads on a rack, sitting in a cast iron pan, with more beads on the lid and use it for another joint of meat, more veggies, or baking the bread. (I tend to feed the "mob" sometimes)
I have done a leg of Pork in the Cobb and Lamb & Beef in the Camp Oven for a group of 12 or so hungry campers, including the veggies. Don't get any complaints.

Actually, I haven't tried bread baking in the Cobb. The results from the Oven have always been superb and I have no problem in setting it up.

I'm diagonally parked in a parallel Universe!

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FollowupID: 505877

Follow Up By: Outa Bounds - Tuesday, Jun 05, 2007 at 06:04

Tuesday, Jun 05, 2007 at 06:04
Thanks Bongo, I should obviously think before saying something is ok to do on a public forum just because I do it. You have brought up a very good point.

Yes if you put you head over the cobb you will smell the fumes, but obviously it makes sense not to do it in an enclosed space with no ventilation. Our house is pretty much open plan and the back door near the kitchen is usually open unless it's freezing cold outside.

I always assumed the heat beads were some sort of compressed carbon (I guess it's what charcoal is).

However it is my opinion that using only a few beads and being in a well ventilated place would be of minimal risk.
FollowupID: 505888

Follow Up By: Pajman Pete (SA) - Tuesday, Jun 05, 2007 at 07:23

Tuesday, Jun 05, 2007 at 07:23
Heat beads are a mineral coal product, not charcoal. Their relationship to trees is considerably more distant. They are still a carbon based fuel however and as with any such fuel (diesel, ULP, gas, wood etc) incomplete combustion will lead to carbon monoxide rather than carbon dioxide as a byproduct. This will only happen when the oxygen falls to too low a level to support normal combustion.

People have managed to achieve this with portable gas heaters and kerosene heaters.

The key to avoiding problems is good ventilation. If your space is so tightly sealed that 8 heat beads become an issue, I would be concerned about having more than a couple of people in the space simply breathing. Better not use the gas oven or cook top either, they both draw their oxygen from the surrounding air. A Weber with 50+ heat beads is a different issue.

I also note that Bongo's quote above says:

"Incidents/Injuries: No incidents or injuries have been reported."

Remember that complete warning came from the land of litigation. My pruning chainsaw which is designed for single handed use - it's reason for existence - came with a warning notice to always use 2 hands ...



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FollowupID: 505894

Reply By: Mark & Jo, S/side, Bris - Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 18:23

Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 18:23
Hello Vanessa!!!

hope all is well..
We'll have to have another Imbil gathering soon and all catch up I think!

AnswerID: 244706

Reply By: ZukscooterX90 (Qld) - Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 18:57

Monday, Jun 04, 2007 at 18:57
Howdy there Vannessa & Greg S.We carted our cobb all the way down to Tassie & all the way around the island up throught the island across through the island & all the way home again,bloody excess baggage did not even use it once thats not to say they not any good quite the opposite.Enjoy it hope you had an enjoyable celebration of your 40 th Birthday.
Cheers Bob.
AnswerID: 244714

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