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water pan

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

ok. three questions. I have read here that some people put sand in thier water tray. Can anyone tell me why. I also sw some wrap the bottom of the pan. why. Last but not least how do you achieve a goodTBS?


post #2 of 13
Originally Posted by nordo0 View Post

ok. three questions. I have read here that some people put sand in thier water tray.   Can anyone tell me why.  The sand filled water tray absorbs heat and helps to keep the temps steady.  It acts like a large thermal mass inside the smoke chamber.  I also sw some wrap the bottom of the pan. why.  Wrapping the pan simply makes cleanup easier.  I line the pan with foil before putting the water in then throw the whole mess away when the cooking is done.  The bottom of my pan gets a sticky residue layer from the smoke and lining the bottom will make clean-up easier there also. Last but not least how do you achieve a goodTBS?  What is the issue?  Too much smoke?  What is your smoker?  Wood used?




post #3 of 13
Thread Starter 

Not to much but maybe to little. Just thoght there might be a trick to the perfect tbs.  Thanks for the other info. does the sand let you smoke at a higher temp without over evaporating the water?


post #4 of 13

You really don't need to see the smoke, if you can smell it so can the meat. Yes the sand will let you smoke at higher temps easier.

post #5 of 13
Thread Starter 

 Thanks Al. Will the sand be a problem when smoking atlow temps. How much sand in respect to water ratio

post #6 of 13

I would use the smoker per manufacturers directions.

There are many different views on this subject of Water and sand, I am sure each has its own value, however I use water.


The following is my 2 cents.


Water/Sand acts as a heat sink

Water helps keep temps at an optimal smoking temperature, Sand does not

Water aids in the Smoke ring, Sand does not.

Water will help keep the food moist by reducing evaporation from the surface of the meat but will not add moisture. Sand does not



I tried lining the bottom before, I don't bother now, however Curt is correct you will get a nasty buildup, but what I do is take out the pan while warm after a cook and wipe with paper towels then wash.


I pretty much always line the inside but sometimes you get a tear in the foil and its more of a mess.



THIS is unique to the type of smoker and how the smoker is being used, but for the most part, you want to limit the oxygen to the wood and make sure not to deliver too much heat or it can burn up rapidly, giving you some nasty by-product.

I always use chunks and have great TBS however sometimes when the chunk is near spent it will smoke more than I like, this is when I replace the chunk with another.


A tip I can suggest is when using large chunks is to stand them up on the narrow end instead of flat, sometimes this helps achieve a long burn.


Some folks soak their wood, I am not one of those,  when you soak wood and then place it in the smoker, it will first expel the moisture and appear to be smoking, this is actually water vapor, after the water vapor has been expelled, the wood will heat up then start to smoke.

However I would like to point out many folks have success with soaking, I have not benefited from it.


You can click on my TBS Less is more post in my signature or CLICK HERE


I based this post with my GOSM in mind.


The bottom line is you will need to find out what works best for your smoker and your style of smoking

post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 

 Thanks SQWIB. Did I misunderstand. I thought you use the sand under the water not

instead of.    Len

post #8 of 13

Some people fill the water pan with sand then put foil over it to keep it from getting nasty with the drippings.

There has been lots of debate as to whether or not the water pan adds moisture and some believe it does some believe it doesn't. Personally I use water in the pan like SQWIB does.


If you can smell the smoke then so can the meat you DON'T want thick white smoke that can lead to creosote and that tastes nasty

post #9 of 13

Has anyone ever tried using a rectangular pizza stone as a heat barrier? You could even put a water tray on top if you wanted moisture. People who cook on the green eggs use a "player setter" as a heat shield, which is made of the same material as a pizza stone. I've used a regular old pizza stone as a heat shiel in my egg and it works.

post #10 of 13

On my MF I  use sand in the water pan 3/4 full, covered with foil, to provide a small catch basin for drippings, that may miss the drip pan. I also add a disposable pan of water on a rack just above the sand filled pan. Why do this you may ask. The sand filled pan retains heat better then water. It allows me to get higher temp. I fill the water pan much less often. I have tried many ways and found the sand to work the best.

post #11 of 13
Thread Starter 

 Thanks every one.


post #12 of 13

I use a 12 inch clay pot saucer in my wsm.


No water.


Works for me..



post #13 of 13

What sqwib said.

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