Hi everyone, new forum member and new smoker owner as well.
I cured my new Brinkman following the instructions in the manual:
- vegetable oil on inside pieces of both FireBox (FB) and Grilling section
- 3.5 lb of coal added to FB and 8 lbs to grilling section
- started fire, all coals lit up and red hot
- closed lid with recommended FB and Smoke Stack (SS) vent openings
After 42 minutes, the temp reached the recommended 250 degrees. Kept it there for 2 hours, then tried to get it up to 400 degrees by adding more coals in both FB and Grilling sections. Could NEVER get it hotter than 325. After a couple more hours, shut vents and put fire out. I figured from a curing perspective, this probably was pretty close to getting the job done.
Today, I tried just putting coal in the FB only to see if I could get the temp up to 225 considering it took me 42 minutes to reach that temp with coals in FB and Grill section yesterday. I want to try and smoke a chicken as my first test.
I could never get the temp higher than 175 degrees after 2 hours. At that point it started going down in temperature.
For these tests I was using Kingsford coal although after reading the forums, it's not what I would cook with. I simply wanted to do this testing with a cheaper coal considering I wasn't cooking anything.
I played with opening up the vents on both the FB and SS, which helped to increase the temp if I opened them up all the way, but never raised it close to the temp I needed.
I don't have any modifications to this grill (just put it together on Saturday). I don't see any obvious gaps in the smoker.
Would appreciate any help. I'm on vacation the next two weeks and I had visions of smoking chickens, ribs, pork shoulder, you name it. If I can't get this figured out, it will be nothing more than a grill.