Masterbuilt propane smoker

Discussion in 'Propane Smokers' started by smokie bill, Sep 20, 2012.

  1. smokie bill

    smokie bill Fire Starter

    I'm going to get a new smoker & I'm looking at the Masterbuilt Vertical Propane Smoker Model #20050412.  I would like to hear from any/all who have this smoker & let me know what you think of it.  Does the door seal well?  Does it come up to temp pretty fast?  Does it hold the desired temp during the entire smoking time?  And anything else you want to mention.

        I won't be using the chip tray since I'll be installing a Smoke Daddy generator to the side of it. 

       I know this is an ambiguous question, but approx. how long does a 20# bottle of propane last you?  I think the gas control would be set at or nearly at LOW which should keep the inside temp round 225 or so.

  2. s2k9k

    s2k9k AMNPS Test Group

    Try using the search bar at the top for that particular smoker and you should get a lot of good info.

    I have a GOSM widebody propane and I tracked a 4.7 gallon bottle (I think that's the same as a 20#) and after 42 hours I quit tracking and it probably went a few more hours before it ran out.
  3. smokie bill

    I have a Masterbuilt Vertical smoker 30" and it runs a very long time on a 20lb. bottle. The door does leaks pretty bad the lowest temperature I can get with door closed and no water in the pan is 175F highest temp was 450F just to burn some fat out of it. Even with it's shortfalls I have been pretty happy with it. I have an  AMNPS from A-MAZE-N

    that has made life a lot easier when it comes to producing good clean smoke "TBS".

    I hope that helps.
  4. maximushjn

    maximushjn Newbie

    I purchased one about a month ago and after seasoning process. it has worked like a charm for me. i first did a batch of wings and thety were great. i cooked for this pass motheres day A 18lb. brisket, two pork shoulders , three slabs of babybacks and 6lbs. of sausage. All at the same time so you can smoke a lot of meat on this thing. there is a little leaking around the top of the top of the door but no biggie. i have read that the temp gage on door is off but the one my door is pretty much on the money. i backed it up with a probe temp. gage. the drip pan is not large enough but i used a large foil pan that you can pick up at any supermarket for a dollar and i used a cast iron skillet on top of the burner and that works great. use can use wood chunks instead of chips. Bottom line is in my opinion you can't go wrong with this purchase, it will remind you of one of those big commercial smokers on a small home scale.
    george merrill likes this.
  5. maximushjn

    maximushjn Newbie

    tank should last for about two to three 14hr. smoke periods
  6. pastorgadget

    pastorgadget Smoke Blower

    I have the two door model of the Masterbuilt. I prefer the two door. Both are very similar smokers, good results all around. The mods mentioned by others, skillet instead of using chip and using a seperate therm than the one on the door are good ideas. 

    I love my Master Build Vertical smoker. 
  7. jason hardin

    jason hardin Newbie

    Does anyone have pictures of their mods? I just got my 2 door delivered and I am starting the seasoning process. I am wondering what the skillet and the better rip pan look like in use.
  8. mavrik

    mavrik Newbie

    On my two door I just raised the OEM wood pan putting rocks under it, reduces wood incinerating. Instead of the drip pan I use a stove top Korean BBQ, catches all the grease, but heat flows right thought it.

  9. I like my two door Masterbuilt propane. The door leaks, but if you search there are some mods that you can do. The only thing that I don't like is the chip tray, but the short term work around is to place chips in foil and then place them in the tray. I tried the cast iron mod that was suggested and it didn't work for me. I'm looking at either going with chunks or AMNPS, but haven't decided yet.
  10. ps0303

    ps0303 Meat Mopper

  11. jason hardin

    jason hardin Newbie

    I finally got around to writing up my modifications. 

    I did only 4 things. 
    1. Bought a thermometer
    2. Modified the pan based on TT Ace's initial setup discussion
    3. Sealed the door, top and bottom with RTV silicone
    4. Bought a Nomex gasket from
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 30, 2013
  12. smoke n brew

    smoke n brew Newbie

    I have had my 40" Masterbuilt propane smoker a little over a year now. At first it was "great, look how big this baby is" and became "the temps are off, I ran out of smoke..." you get the idea. I also tried the cast iron skillet method with little to no success. All it did was suck up the I use a foil lasagne pan from the dollar store for my water pan in the factory pan frame, and i have a 1-1/4 " fire brick broken in half  placed on both sides of the burner with a bbq grate on top for the smoke pan. I use a dollar store round cake pan for my chip/chunk pan, and slide it toward the burner, or away from the burner depending on how much smoke I am producing at that minute, but here is the life changing trick I figured out to make even heat with.  I put foil on the front and back of the water pan rack, so only the left and right sides of the pan can pass heat/smoke. I then took another rack and placed it above the water pan, and covered the left and right sides only as far as to the opening of the water pan. So I have a baffle on the front and back of the water pan rack, and the rack above it covers the left and right, so the heat is never directly open to the meat above. I now no longer have meat done in one part and burnt in the next. A couple of things are working here: the water does evaporate a little faster than before, but for some reason the the smoke chunks last over an hour each, as opposed to 20 minutes or so, and by not opening the door every twenty minutes my cooking times have gotten shorter. I leave the vent in the top 1/2 way closed, and I can hold 225F without having to babysit the smoker like I used to. There is smoke leakage around the door and I haven't bothered to try to fix it. I don't believe I ever will.
  13. chazmo

    chazmo Newbie

    Hey "Smoke N Brew", I have a favor to ask of you. Can you please post a good photo of your "life changing trick" modification? I just opened and used my Masterbuilt Smoker this weekend, and experienced a few of the same problems you initially ran into. Many thanks!
  14. phxsmoking

    phxsmoking Fire Starter

    Bill, I got a 2 door Masterbuilt back in June.

    1.  Added a Rutland Inc Gasket Kit Rope 7'x3/8" 96-6 to the top door because of smoke leak

    2. Added 8 " cast iron frying pan on top of the chip pan for small amount of wood chips

    3. Got a  Maverick Wireless BBQ Thermometer Set - Maverick ET732 to monitor the chamber and food temperatures. 

    4 Got a AMNPS for smoke instead of wood chips or chunks. Had problems with temp spikes when the chunks or chips would catch on fire and with the AMNPS you light it and forget it.

    5. I use foil pans instead of the water pan from Masterbuilt,  wrap them in foil and you can reuse them again. COSTCOS has foil pans for water and cooking for a pack of 30 that averages 20 cents each.

    6. I'm in Phoenix, AZ and have outside temperatures in the 100's so it's been a challenge adjusting the gas for temperatures for the 220 range but working with the propane tank and control knob down low I'm getting use to it. Come this winter when it's in 60's and 70's controlling the temp will be less of a problem for me.

    7. I mostly keep the temps in the 225-250 range except for poultry and get about 40 hours out of a tank with gas to spare. 
    slider n copa likes this.
  15. I've had mine all summer and love it. I did a couple of mods, but not anything to expansive.
    1. Bought a Maverick ET-732.
    2. After wrestling with the chip tray I decided to eliminate it all together and went with amzn pellet smoker. This is the best mod I made since you set it and forget it.
    3. Bought the gasket seals which have worked really well.

    I have found that when the ambient tempuratures are in the 80 and 90s it is some what hard to control, but you have to lightly move the dial. I'm sure it will be easier this fall.
  16. hardrive

    hardrive Newbie

    I have 30' MGS trying to decide if I should get amnps or the tube one and if I do, where do i place it in the smoker?
    Last edited: May 5, 2015
  17. smokie bill

    smokie bill Fire Starter

    I, too, have a 30" Masterbuilt propane smoker & really like it.  As for the type of A-maze-n smoker to use, definitely get the tube type that burns pellets.  The sawdust type just doesn't work well, if at all, in it.  I use the 12" tube.  Just be sure to get it going really well.  It takes more than the 10 minutes they say.  I have to place mine on the bottom of the smoker & I find it does best if placed just inside the lower door.  It does a pretty good job but I'd prefer a little more smoke especially on large meats such as pork shoulders, butts & hams.  When I need more smoke, I have a Smoke Daddy smoke generator that I'll use instead of the tube smoker.  For the tube smoker, I built two small L-shaped brackets to sit on the bottom of the smoker to raise the tube off the floor for more air circulation around it.  You can't let the tube get too close to the burner or all of your pellets will quickly burn up.  Likewise, if I place the tube on either side of the smoker near the intake vents, the pellets will burn quickly.

    I don't know where you live but I live in Colorado at an elevation of 5000 ft.  We don't have as much oxygen in our air as those who live a lower elevations. I could not even begin to use the dust smoker.  The tube works a lot better.  As I said, just be sure you really get it burning before you put it inside the smoker.  I can get about a 4 to 4 1/2 hour smoke out of my 12 incher.  Hope these comments help you.

  18. smoknjoke

    smoknjoke Newbie

    Just got this smoker a few weeks ago and have had a major issue that has ruined my first couple batches (brisket and ribs).

    It is having a very hard time keeping the temp low enough (210-220).  At first I thought it could be all the flare ups I was having on the first go around and then I changed out the chip pan to a large metal pie pan and that stopped that, but I just can't keep the temp down.  I set the controller on the smoker all the way down and then I am having to set the propane tank knob to nearly off (actually to the point where it is kind of hissing or whirring).  It is really just a touch from being off and very hard to set. The problem now becomes that the flame goes out with any wind at all and/or the tank fluctuates enough to cut it off. I have tried a different tank and adjusting the smoke vents to no avail.

    Any suggestions on how I can get the flame reduced to keep my temps in that 220 range??
  19. I strongly suggest you install a needle valve in line between the propane tank and the smoker. I just bought a Masterbuilt Dual Fuel 2 door smoker last week and the first time I ran it, there was no way 250F could be accomplished on my unit. I had already been reading here before I bought the smoker, so I knew a needle valve might be needed. I ended up ordering parts off Amazon and got them installed before my next smoke on the 4th. Now with the needle valve, I don't have much issue hitting the lower temps with the newly added finite controls over propane flow. If you search "needle valve" you should be able to find tons more info on this mod. I went with parts that aren't as widely used as others because I wanted the added benefit of some more length on the propane hose. A lot of people end up buying a needle valve made by Bayou Classic which you should find tons more info on with a quick search.

    Needle valve: 

    Extension hose: 

    (for true "plug n play" with this valve, you need to order both items so all the fittings match up)
  20. smokie bill

    smokie bill Fire Starter

    I totally agree that you need to install a needle valve in your propane line.  The one I got is from Bayou Classic Depot, cost about $9.00.  You can then finely regulate your propane burner with this valve.  The valve on the smoker itself cannot be finely regulated.  Once I get the temp set in the box, it stays pretty much there, varying only a couple of degrees up or down throughout the smoking process.  You won't be sorry you installed the needle valve.

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