Convection Plate vs Reverse Flow

Discussion in 'Wood Smokers' started by pdog, Feb 11, 2013.

  1. pdog

    pdog Newbie

    HI,

    I have a Trail master L.E and have been going strong for about two months.   I just became a member, and bought Jeff's Book last week.  I have been reading a lot of modifications people have made to these smokers.  I just want some other opinions as to whats going to distribute my heat and smoke more evenly?  Convection Plate or make it Reverse?    I burn all wood, and seem to be taking longer cook times than Jeff's book says to.  Also would a burn basket help if i am burning wood instead of coals?

    Thanks,

    Pdog
     
  2. 05sprcrw

    05sprcrw Smoking Fanatic

    I have never used a burn basket in my reverse flow offset cooker, so I can't comment on that.

    Both can be dialed in really good and help to hold a more even temp across the board. For me I decided when I built mine that it would be easier for me to build a reverse flow cooker instead of taking the time to dial in tuning plates. Since you don't use as much metal with tuning plates they are a little cheaper to put in then one big solid reverse flow plate.

    In my 250 gal cooker I have less then 20° of variance across the entire tank. I feel that is pretty good but some others may not.
     
  3. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Pdog, morning.... If the cooking times seem too long, maybe your thermometer is not reading correctly.... put it in boiling water and see if it reads 212 deg F....   
     
  4. bruno994

    bruno994 Master of the Pit

    I'm with Dave, check the accuracy of your therm first, it may say 250, but you might be at 200, this will extend your cook times by quite a bit.  As far as a wood basket, unless your using charcoal, either lump or briquette, I don't think it will help with cook times.  A basket will allow you to use a bed of charcoal to act as the base for your fire, then add wood as needed, this is how I use mine in my RF stick burner (I guess that technichally keeps me from being a "stickburner" huh?).  This will give you longer burn times and a few hours of sleep during a long cook. 

    For an existing pit, already setup for direct flow cooking, tuning plates will be your best bet.  Depending upon the size of your cooker, it may take 5 or 6 plates of differing widths to get your temps even across the grate.  Start out with the widest plate nearest the firebox then work from there.  For a new build, I highly recommend RF, as 05 put it, a 20 degree variance from side to side is the norm for a well built RF pit.
     
  5. pdog

    pdog Newbie

    Ok so after two months of waiting. I have received my convection plate. What a difference on ribs. I went back to charcoal and wood. "Good choice" Going to try two briskest this weekend. Keep you up to date.
     
  6. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    We need pics of smoker, convection plates and ribs and briskets.....    Dave
     
  7. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    And don'f forget to get a GOOD Thermometer.
     
  8. comosmoker

    comosmoker Smoke Blower

    [​IMG]   [​IMG].....
     

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