new GOSM smokes for about 30 minutes

Discussion in 'Propane Smokers' started by scottlindner, May 1, 2009.

  1. To set expectations, I'm a newbie so I don't know what I'm talking about.

    From talking to some friends I should expect my smoker to produce smoke for about two hours and then it's just a big oven after that. I have smoked four times and three of those four times I got smoke for about 30 minutes and that was it. So I farted around with the wood box. I dumped the semi burned wood chunks and put in a bunch of wood chips. One friend with a GOSM says he wraps his wood chunks in foil to keep them from flaming up. So I do the same, but it seems with each smoke I rip the foil off, pull out the chunks and add chips so some smoke is being produced. Today I'm smoking a meatloaf and there was good smoke for about 30 minutes, maybe even 40 minutes, and then nothing. I couldn't even smell smoke if I wafted it from the vent. What am I doing wrong?

  2. jaye220

    jaye220 Meat Mopper SMF Premier Member

    We were all new once so no need to apologize about that. I have a GOSM as well and usually get about 1.5-2 hours of smoke before refilling. I usually start with 3 fist-size chunks and sprinkle chips around them in the stock cast-iron wood box. The smoke usually starts when the temp gets to about 200 and I usually put the food in around 250 and let it steady off around 235.

    Give it a shot and let us know what happens.
  3. To make sure I understand what you are suggesting that is different than what I'm doing is to mix chunks with chips, and not to use foil. Are you setting the temp on high until it reaches 250F, or something closer to what you believe the target setting would be, somewhere just south of medium?

    How full does the box get? Can you set the lid on it or how far above the box does the lid rest on top of the wood?

  4. jaye220

    jaye220 Meat Mopper SMF Premier Member

    I find that mixing chunks with chips helps my smoke but everyone seems to have their own methods. I don't use foil at all. The mix of chunks and chips produces a nice, steady thin smoke for much longer than 30 minutes.

    For me, the lid always rests on the sides of the box. The chunks are small enough, again about fist-sized, to allow the lid to lay flush on the box.

    Hope that all helps and good luck.
  5. I'll give it a shot. I'm smoking a couple of times this weekend so I'll have some time to get it right.

    I'm wondering if the built in thermometer is part of the problem.

  6. richoso1

    richoso1 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I had the same problem when I first got my GOSM. I now use a coffee can with lump surrounding a fist size chunk. I get plenty of smoke for 1 1/2-2 hrs., mainly because the coffee can has many holes drilled in it, thus providing plenty of air. Using lump creates less ash which can choke off the air need to burn correctly. I keep the top exhaust wide open, and open the bottom vents as needed.That's my experience. Good luck my friend.
  7. old poi dog

    old poi dog Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I think that built in thermometer is another issue you will need to contend with. My thermo on the door was way off....I messed up 4 smokes before I got a digital therm...
  8. the dude abides

    the dude abides Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Not sure if I'm off base on this, but don't you need to continue to add wood throughout the cook time. The chunks will burn up meaning no more smoke. So you can add more chunks or chips, either with foil or without, to keep giving you more smoke.

    Is that what your asking?
  9. nomorecoop

    nomorecoop Meat Mopper SMF Premier Member

    I use a 9x9 cake pan & it works well.

    Also, is the chip pan empty after 30 min?

    I found with the GOSM, if you can smell smoke, you're smoking. You don't always need to see the smoke.
  10. rio_grande

    rio_grande Smoking Fanatic

    I agree with Chris,,, Additionaly don't get too hung up on the smoke coming out of the Vents, Sometimes I think I must be out of chiunks pop the door and smoke is rolling out at the bottom it just disapates by the time it exits the top vent.

    Also I run a old cast Iron skillet as a pan and never have flare ups of any type... No cover needed. But I have had people tell me there is no way I can do that,,, Whatever works for you... The stock box just didn't hold or put out enough smoke to suit me.
  11. This is how I do it, too.

    No way the chunks are gone in 30 minutes at anywhere near 225-250.
  12. afreetrapper

    afreetrapper Fire Starter

    I use mesquite chunks I soak for an hour first because I haven't found sawdust yet. As for hickory I will use sawdust only this is based on my experience from working in a commercial meat locker we kept out sawdust damp. As for the amount of time to smoke you should get enough smoke in the first hour. Im sure there are those who will disagree but here is an email I received for Kansas State University about smoke. I posted this on another thread where there was a discussion on smoke I learned form oldtimers that you get about all the smoke thats going to make any difference in the first hour but there was some debate so I needed to find out if the oldtimers gave me bad intell.


    You actually have two different questions that need to be addressed.
    The reason for this is that a smoke ring and smoke are two different
    things. Smoking is generally used as a surface treatment to add smoke
    flavor and smoke color which is brown. The smoke ring on the other hand
    is a chemical reaction similar to the curing process that results in a
    pink ring being formed underneath the skin of the meat product.

    If we think of smoking as a process to impart smoke flavor and a brown,
    smoke color then we can think of it as purely a surface treatment.
    Smoke particles have numerous large molecules involved that are unable
    to penetrate the meat product very far. In addition, the amount of
    smoke applied is directly related to the amount of moisture present on
    the meat surface. As the meat is smoked it will continue to adhere to
    the surface as long as there is moisture present. However, as meat is
    cooked along with the smoking process the meat surface generally dries
    out limiting the adherence of any additional smoke. So to increase
    smoke deposition on the surface you need to make sure you get more
    moisture on the surface. Be careful though as too much water will
    impede some of the other browning reactions that are occurring and you
    may end up with too much smoke on the product. This is a very important
    point because one of smokes constituents is acid, and if you get too
    much acid on the surface it will result in bitter flavors. Thats why
    most people (bbqrs) and the meat industry only smoke meat for a limited
    time period. The point being is more is not better.

    Secondly, the smoke ring is formed as wood is burned giving off nitrogen
    dioxide. This nitrogen dioxide produced is water soluble and will
    attach to the outside of the meat product and be converted to nitric
    oxide. Nitric oxide is the same compound responsible for the pink color
    in cured meats. Nitric oxide is much smaller than other compounds found
    in smoke and is therefore able to penetrate the product. However, as
    mentioned previously at some point during smoking the amount of water on
    the surface is dried off limiting the amount of nitrogen dioxide that
    can be absorbed and thus limiting the amount of pink ring formation that

    Additionally, the only way to get more smoke into the center of a
    product is to add liquid smoke. In fact, this process is done on most
    food service bacon and a great deal of frankfurters that are made here
    in the U.S.

    Finally, I don't know of any research available documenting different
    rates of smoke application on fresh vs. cured or pork vs. beef. Again,
    smoke application has more to do with water availability and how the
    cooking process is regulated (humidity and temp).

    I hope this helps


    Terry A. Houser Ph.D.
    Assistant Professor
    251 Weber Hall
    Kansas State University
    Manhattan, KS 66506
    Phone: 785-532-1253
    Fax: 785-532-7059
    [email protected]

    > Dean-
    > I am forwarding your message to a colleague who has done some work
    > with smoke rings.
    > Liz Boyle
    > -------- Original Message --------
    > Subject: Smoke in cured meat
    > Date: Fri, 1 May 2009 09:51:44 -0500
    > From: Dean <[email protected]>
    > To: <[email protected]>
    > Dr Boyle
    > I have searched KSU Extension website for information on smoked in
    > cured meat and have not found what I am looking for. Has KSU done any
    > studies on smoke in cured meat. More specifically I would like to know
    > does smoke penetrate the meat beyong the smoke ring? Does smoke
    > contihue to penetrate the meat the longer you smoke and how deep will
    > smoke meat.
    > When I speak of meat I mean both cured and non cured meat e.i. cured
    > ham and bacon and fresh non cured pork ribs and pork butt.
    > Does smoke react differently on beef than it does on pork?
    > Do you have any research that covers these questions?
    > Thank You
    > Dean Parsons
  13. travcoman45

    travcoman45 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I use the 9x9 cake pan with foil, always have had good luck doin it this way. I use chunks a cured wood. Ifin I'm smokin at low temps I switch ta chips. Ever now an again I shake the pan so the ash don't insulate the wood from the hot pan.

    This be what my chunks look like afte bout 2 1/2 hours.
  14. Maybe I'm packing the wood in too tightly? When you put the chunks and chips in the box, do you make sure there's room for air movement? I've been filling it up like I'm playing Tetris.
  15. travcoman45

    travcoman45 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I don't pack mine in real tight.
  16. jaye220

    jaye220 Meat Mopper SMF Premier Member

    That might just be the problem. Mine are never packed tight. Smoked this weekend and kept track of how long the first chunks gave off smoke was almost exactly 2 hours.
  17. Thanks guys. This is good stuff. I will try to not pack it tight the next time. I think the complaints I've read about the wood box being too small has led me to try to pack it in. Two days ago I smoked and the lid didn't rest on the box, it was resting on the wood. I think I need to dial back the quantity of wood I'm using and see where that takes me.

    BTW... no offense intended, but I took some humor from your words, "almost exactly". [​IMG]

  18. jaye220

    jaye220 Meat Mopper SMF Premier Member

    Definitely no offense taken but if you think about, it does make sense, right? The way I see it, almost 2 hours could be 1:45 or so but "almost exactly" 2 hours is more like 1:58 or 1:59....or I could just admit that I screwed up.
  19. forluvofsmoke

    forluvofsmoke Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Regardless of the size of the smoke box, or the amount of smoke wood in it, you have got to regulate the amount of air entering the box. Hotter fire under the box = less air and vice-versa. Use a larger box with more wood for a longer smoke, smaller/less for a shorter smoke. If you smell smoke, you're smokin'. No rolling white smoke...that will kill your food. It might impress your no-Queing neighbors, or get the fire dept called...that's all it's good for.

  20. justsmoke2

    justsmoke2 Smoking Fanatic

    I also use 9 X 9 cake pan with foil. I use chunks, mini chunks and chips. I just did some fish and after 5 hours I still had wood left. the fish had an excellent wood flavor. I also go by if I can smell smoke or wood burning even though theres no smoke exiting then I happy. there used to be a OTBS (order of thin blue smoke) is more of what ya want to go with. Most of all experiment, take notes and then you will find out what works best for you.

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