Cobb Cooker - A bit of innovation to improve heat retention.

Submitted: Thursday, Jan 31, 2008 at 21:24
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For all the Cobb Cooker enthusiasts out there here is another bit of innovation to improve the thermal properties of the oven.

When I bought the Cobb Premier I was a bit disappointed that the new steel mesh base allowed a lot of heat loss, particularly if there was even the slightest breeze. Talking to Klaus at In Front canvas and had him make up a wrap around Canvas windbreak which went a great way to solving that particular problem.

I have found though that the thermal properties of the spun steel lid still leave somewhat to be desired, particularly when the heat beads are approaching end of life. Again I gave Klaus the challenge to make a thermal cover for the unit that was easy to use, remove and heat resistant. I tested two of Klaus and Lynn’s creations over the long weekend in pretty windy conditions in the Otway’s. They worked a treat.

Klaus has sown a quilted thermal layer between two layers of H/D canvas and then used an elastic edged skirt to hold the cover down. With a thermometer in the oven, the thermal cover provided an extra 20% in heat and temperature retention with even better results when the wind was stronger.

It has been left open at the top to allow steam and heat to escape and leave access to the handle. It was of particular benefit for those final cooking and baking efforts (Cake and bread) once the roast was out and the heat beads were nearly through.

No issues with heat and both units (H/D and Marine Canvas) came through without any sign of heat damage. Have a few more ideas in relation to the skirt and will post results later.

Cheers. Mick

Photo’s on My Rig Page. Blue one is Marine Canvas.
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Reply By: Member - Cruiser (NSW) - Thursday, Jan 31, 2008 at 21:35

Thursday, Jan 31, 2008 at 21:35
Mick,

Do you know if Klaus is going to make these available on his site soon.

Cheers,

Cruiser
AnswerID: 284837

Follow Up By: Member - Mick O (VIC) - Thursday, Jan 31, 2008 at 22:13

Thursday, Jan 31, 2008 at 22:13
I'm sure he will. He said he had a few more ideas when I picked these up last week.

Cheers. Mick
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trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
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Reply By: Member - Noldi (WA) - Thursday, Jan 31, 2008 at 22:07

Thursday, Jan 31, 2008 at 22:07
Hi Guys, I'm sure I've seen something called a cobb bra at rangers, made from wet suit type material that just covers the wire base,

rgds
Ian
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Follow Up By: Member - Mick O (VIC) - Thursday, Jan 31, 2008 at 22:17

Thursday, Jan 31, 2008 at 22:17
Here is the Cobb Bra that Klaus does. 9 Bucks. Pretty good value. Simple and works.

Mick
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Reply By: Sand Man (SA) - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 07:41

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 07:41
Hi Mick,

So now you will only need 3 heatbeads to cook a roast:-))

The first thing I did when upgrading my Cobb to the SS mesh base was to buy one of the In Front Canvas Bra's from Klaus.

A most innovative design.

I haven't experienced any problem with the heatbeads lasting long enough to cook a roast etc., so probably don't need the "thermal cover" but I will keep this option in mind.

Actually, I find the radiated heat left after cooking is great for keeping the Camper warm for a couple of hours before retiring for the night.

Bill


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Follow Up By: Member - Mick O (VIC) - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 09:39

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 09:39
Hey Sandy,

No problems with the heat beads at all just that often the wind whips a bit more heat away from the oven section meaning a longer cook time. I found that towards the end, quite a few people use the last of the beads to cook off a loaf or a cake and that's when the thermal cover does a great job. Just helps insulate against heat loss through the lid.

I'd reckon if they had a cast iron top, you'd have a better heat retention but at what cost to weight lol. Have used the unit to warm the camper once or twice myself. Does a great job.

Cheers. Mick
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Reply By: Member - Tessa (NSW) - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 08:34

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 08:34
Hi guys
I guess I've been in a time warp. Wasn't even aware of the stainless version. I've got the old original Cobb. It came with a black canvas carry bag. I've got to say I've always found the recommended number of heat beads to be inadequate. BUT, by increasing the number I have been very happy with the outcome. I've just had a look at the stainless model on the net and can see why it would benefit from the "bra". I am wondering if my older model might benefit from using it inside the canvas carry bag supplied? Has anyone compared the performance of the old model with and without the bag? I am going away in about a month and will give it a try.

tessa
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Follow Up By: MrBitchi (QLD) - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 08:57

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 08:57
The idea of the bra is to act as a wind break on the mesh model. Your original plastic base does the same thing, so no, you will not get any benefit from the bra.

Don't understand "using it inside the canvas carry bag supplied".... Please explain...... ;-)
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Follow Up By: Member - Mick O (VIC) - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 09:42

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 09:42
Hey Tessa,

I would reccomend using the unit inside the bag it came with as the bottom of the unit needs to remain clear. This is where the Cobb draws in air to keep the heatbeads going and if you cover it, you won't get the heat beads going or burning efficiently. The bra covers the mesh only and doesn't extend down past the bottom edge leaving a clear airflow underneath.

Cheers. Mick.
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trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
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Follow Up By: Member - Tessa (NSW) - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 10:10

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 10:10
MrBitchi
I was suggesting that I would leave it in the bag while cooking. But as Mick has said its not really an option. The bag is shown here - interestingly they also have what they call a "Sock" for use in "foul" weather.:
http://www.cobbaustralia.com.au/
BTW I saw a guy once who turned up at the campsite next to me to visit with a roast already cooking in the Cobb and he had brought it from home in the closed carry bag.
tessa
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Follow Up By: Member - Mick O (VIC) - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 10:35

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 10:35
Sorry guys and girls,

my reply should havve started "I wouldn't reccomend" but I think everyone got what I meant. Brain fade today. TGIF!

Mick.
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trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
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Follow Up By: Sand Man (SA) - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 16:57

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 16:57
Hi Tessa,

Like yours, my Cobb cooker originally was of the solid type (mark II) but one day, I had an accident and cracked the plastic base.

Rather than chuck the whole thing, you can buy just the base from Cobb Australia, or any of their agents.
At the time of replacing mine, I could have actually bought the solid base (about $50) but opted for the stainless steel mesh base ($80) as I believe it is more robust and will last much longer.

You can also now buy a standard steel base model but the SS one is much more practical IMHO.

As for the carry bag, no I wouldn't attempt to use it while cooking as you will smother the fire. When lit the oven relies on an updraught of air through the base and out the top lid vents.

So your Cobb will be just fine on it's own so let it "hang free" i.e. no bra:-))

The sock shown on the Cobb Web site is designed for marine applications where the cooker is attached to the handrails of the boat and wind would be a real problem. Some form of lid retainer is also required to stop loosing it to "the deep".

Bill


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Follow Up By: Member - Tessa (NSW) - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 18:46

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 18:46
Sand Man
thanks for that. Guess I'll just continue to use 10 beads instead of eight and stiil enjoy the meal!!!

tessa
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Reply By: Ron173 - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 08:41

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 08:41
You would think that Cobb would make these things so that they work good out of the box without the need to stuff around doing all these mods to cope with wind, and transfer heat properly.

Its one toy I dont have in my box, but dont think its on my wish list yet.
AnswerID: 284882

Follow Up By: Member - Mick O (VIC) - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 09:47

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 09:47
Hey Ron,

They're great as a portable oven and lighter than a camp oven. Do the same job but also provide you with a lot of other options. I've used mine predominantly for turning out bread on extended inland trips. Geez they draw a few people in for a chat in camp areas when the smell of a roast gets whafting about on the breeze tho.

Cheers Mick.

What's the old saying "He who has the most toys wins!" Or is it "He who has the most toys needs a bigger roof rack!!" lol. MO.
''We knew from the experience of well-known travelers that the
trip would doubtless be attended with much hardship.''
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Reply By: Member - Alastair D (NSW) - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 10:00

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 10:00
Mick,
I am sure the canvas 'bras' are good but I just wrapped some Alfoil around the base after realising how much heat was being lost. Cheap and no worries about heat damage or burning.
alastair
AnswerID: 284900

Follow Up By: Member - cuffs (SA) - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 11:05

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 11:05
I put a piece of card board inside does the job
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Reply By: Member - Brian (WA) - Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 18:19

Friday, Feb 01, 2008 at 18:19
I got a sheet of Ali cut it to fit inside the mesh
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