The FUSE or SNAKE method is a great way to control heat in your BBQ or Smoker
The idea is to arrange your briquettes or charcoal so that only a small amount is lit at one time.
This will control the heat that is available for cooking
Lets have a look at the FUSE in a standard Weber Kettle.
Here we are making a FUSE two briquettes wide with one on top.
If we start the FUSE with 6-8 lit briquettes, this structure will provide roughly 110-120°C (225-248°F) perfect for Low and Slow cooking.
If you start with more lit fuel the temperature will be hotter and the fuse will run slightly faster. Its this initial lit fuel dose that is important
You can also add extra fuel to the FUSE or change the structure but this will not have a huge effect on the heat or speed. Making the FUSE with additional briquettes simply means the FUSE can be shorter.
Start with two briquettes laid flat
Then continue laying that 2 x 2 pattern in one direction.
A third of the way around a standard kettle will give roughly 6 hours of burn
Now place one “Stabilising” briquette flat on top of the first four briquettes, all the other briquettes will lean on this
Lean briquettes against this first briquette of the top layer.
Leave a few without the top layer at the starting end. This is where you will place your first lit beads, this is the start of the fuse. Lighting this end ensures that the Lit Fuel is always Leaning on the Unlit Fuel, this helps the fuse progress.
Place some wood blocks along the path so they smoulder as the lit fuel gets to them if you want smoke, if you don’t want smoke, just eliminate the wood blocks.
This FUSE is good for roughly 12 hours of smoking and plenty of space for a drip pan
Light the Start of the FUSE with 6-8 lit briquettes.
The FUSE will burn slowly along the length maintaining a constant temperature as it goes.
Once you understand the principals, the Fuse method is useful in many BBQs, you just need to adapt it to suit the BBQ you are using and the temperature want to achieve.