just bought my first offset smoker

Discussion in 'Messages for All Guests and Members' started by bbqgrasshopper, Aug 2, 2014.

  1. Just got my first offset smoker didn't do to bad my first smoke had alot of trouble keeping steady heat. I made a charcoal basket 12"x12"x6" and filled it half way and it was way to hot even with all vents closed. so im thinking next time a little less maybe? is it so hot because im using too much charcoal? im using royal oak hardwood lump charcoal. can anybody help me on how much to use and how to better control temp or is it just something i need to play around with?
  2. Hello.  Afraid this is gonna be one of those trial and error things until you get to know your smoker.  Good luck.  Keep Smokin!

  3. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    What brand name is your offset?

    How hot is too hot?

    I can put 2 fully lit chimneys of lump charcoal in my Chargriller and keep temps around 240°-250° quite easily.

    You will most certainly need to learn how to build and maintain your fire.
  4. Just a little advice.....I'm not sure what type of smoker your using, but if you have something such as a brinkman or chargriller as I do, do not trust that factory gauge at the top of your smoker. There are two reasons. First the top of your smoker is going to be much hotter than at grate level since heat naturally rises. On my chargriller it's about 75 degrees hotter at the top of the unit than at grate level. Secondly those factory therms are not very well calibrated. If you want the true temp of what your smoking your meat at, get some therms at grate level or buy a digital therm to monitor. Hope this helps.

    Last edited: Aug 15, 2014
  5. Controlling the heat comes down to two major factors.  The amount of burning coals and the amount of air getting to the coals.  Many of the offset smokers have pretty big gaps (the exception being the higher priced units), so controlling air can be tough.  You can get adhesive Nomex gasket tape on Amazon to improve your sealing should this be your problem.  Windy conditions affect both the air feed to your fire box and the amount of heat being wicked away from your smoke chamber; consider placing the smoker in a wind-blocked area.  In colder climates, some people blanket the smoke chamber for more consistent temperatures.  I had a chance to get a large offset smoker for free; it had large gaps (slightly over 1/8th inch) on parts of the smoke chamber and firebox.  I passed on it.  You can't give away a smoker like that in Arizona, except to someone who wants to use it as a grill.
  6. jakesz28

    jakesz28 Fire Starter

    If it is to hot with the damper closed look for all the holes in the side fire box. Fill the empty bolt holes with a bolt and nut.

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