Wood Burning question

Discussion in 'Woods for Smoking' started by nick, Jun 16, 2008.

  1. nick

    nick Meat Mopper

    I have a homemade smoker out of 2 -55 gallon drums....bottom drum is the fire box, top drum is the smoker. I build the fire in the bottom drum, light it, and let it burn for 45 minutes or so till I have a consistant heat/temp going, and then fill the smoker. I read Jeff's post about "true wood smoking". I don't have a burn barrel built yet.......In the mean time, when my temps start to drop down, I add a split log or two to the firebox. Is it ok to do this with my setup and not get too many nasties from the initial combustion process? I am using split logs for the entire smoke..(pecan, cherry, and or hickory.)
    I've done 2 smokes already and everything seemed good...no numbness in the mouth or bitter tasting food, but like I said, I'm a rookie at this.
    Any input is appreciated.
  2. pineywoods

    pineywoods Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead SMF Premier Member

    Nick lots of people do it just the way you do. At the same time tho pre burning would also give you better temp control by not getting that flare up when they are getting started as well as the extra smoke
  3. tn_bbq

    tn_bbq Smoking Fanatic

    Sounds like it's working for you. Keep doing what works.

    BTW, that's a neat smoker.
  4. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I'd characterize that as a "larger sized pit" and would think you could get away with a split or two during smoking without a pre-burn... seems you have enough airflow and a good hot coal bed to allow this.

    An indication of poor combustion will be a heavy buildup of creosote or black carbon buildup in the chimney or smoker body.
  5. nick

    nick Meat Mopper

    Thanks to all who replied. Rich, I was hoping you'd reply too. When I add the split log, I get a short flare up and a whiter looking smoke but only for a couple minutes, then back to the thin blue. I just wanted to make sure that the couple minutes of the non blue smoke wasn't hurting me.

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