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Square Brinkmann Charcoal - Temps too high

post #1 of 18
Thread Starter 

Need help. I have a Brinkmann vertical square charcoal smoker and I guess I am alone here - my temps run too hot. Everyone else with this smoker can't seem to get the temps up high enough. I have the basic mods done, grilling wok for coal pan, sand in water pan, felt seal around upper door, orange RTV around stock thermometer ( although not used ) and I keep it out of the wind and sunlight. It doesn't seem to matter much what position the vents are in at times, the temp will just "climb". If I shut the bottom vents almost closed and leave one of the top vents 1/2 open later on it will stabilize at around 244 deg. But you have to watch it.

Anyone else with this issue?

post #2 of 18

Leave the top vent wide open. use bottom vent to control heat. you may have enough air leaks that you can close the bottom vent all the way or close to all the way. you will just have to play with it and find out what you pit likes.

Happy smoken.

David

post #3 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by themule69 View Post

Leave the top vent wide open. use bottom vent to control heat. you may have enough air leaks that you can close the bottom vent all the way or close to all the way. you will just have to play with it and find out what you pit likes.

Happy smoken.

David

This, David is exactly right.

post #4 of 18
Thread Starter 
I am in it right now. Closed bottom vents and open both top completely. Temp is holding at 234-6so far for an hour or so. More to come today ( 10hr smoke). I have to add 3-5 coals every 40 min or so.
post #5 of 18
You're doing better than I ever did with that thing. I had the 1 door model and was rarely able to get it to within 50 degrees of what I wanted. Like others, I had trouble getting it hot enough, Unless it decided it wanted to run away with itself. Then I couldn't get it below 300.
post #6 of 18
Thread Starter 
Well. I left it for an hour to go see my sons baseball game down the street and that was a mistake. I threw in 5 coals before I left and it was at 235...when I got back just now it was at 168 . So 10 went in and now vent adjust. See what happens. The top vents are open....I think that was a big help.
post #7 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jomadav View Post

Well. I left it for an hour to go see my sons baseball game down the street and that was a mistake. I threw in 5 coals before I left and it was at 235...when I got back just now it was at 168 . So 10 went in and now vent adjust. See what happens. The top vents are open....I think that was a big help.

Keep playing with it. You will find the sweet spot. you said earlyer you add 3 to 5 every 40 min. so if you leave for an hour after 5 coals. That is a change to what you have been doing to keep temp.

 

David

post #8 of 18

You're doing great, you'll lose some BTU's as the coals burn down and you'll have to adjust the O2 via the bottom vents.   Good luck on the cook!

post #9 of 18
Thread Starter 
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post #10 of 18
Thread Starter 
I will post a recap tomorrow on how the whole thing went. The butt was unbelievably good. My wife called friends over to take samples home to their hubbies. I am very thankful for all of the insight here. More tomorrow. Beers now
post #11 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jomadav View Post

I will post a recap tomorrow on how the whole thing went. The butt was unbelievably good. My wife called friends over to take samples home to their hubbies. I am very thankful for all of the insight here. More tomorrow. Beers now

beercheer.gifLooks great. Nice smoke ring. will be waiting110.gif for more picsthumb1.gif.

Happy smoken.

David

post #12 of 18

Batta-Bing....Dang that looks good!

post #13 of 18
Thread Starter 
post #14 of 18
Thread Starter 

Sorry guys, but the forum upload locks up when I try to post pics....so they are a above as attachments - worked fine from my phone though - strange.

So, my WHOLE problem was the 2 top vents I believe. I was checking this forums replies as I was "in the smoke" and that's when (themule69) posted  his suggestion about the top vents. I went outside and did this, my temp dropped almost instantly from the 270's down to 234-8 and held there. Night and day difference. Now the only issue left is fuel management. I used regular Kingsford "blue and white" bag charcoal briquettes and had a total of maybe 10-15 in the coal pan at any given time. I had to throw in 5 or so about every 30-40 minutes to keep it stable. In the end I went through close to a whole bag of coal over 11.5 hrs. Any ideas on other fuels or methods? or am I close enough? I want to say thanks to "themule69" for his post earlier about the vents - If you were in Minneapolis I would buy you a beer. I have been hating this smoker up until now - I can deal with it.

So, the meat : 7.6 lb. Boston Butt bought at Gordy's in Chetek, WI for .98/lb - yes I bout a few for that price! I used "Mike's Memphis Dust" for the rub. Rubbed a whole day ahead of time and wrapped in plastic wrap - put in fridge for 24 hrs. Lit smoker at 5:30a and put but in @ 6:00a. The rest of the day involved baseball, beer, checking coals, etc. Butt came out of smoker at 4:30p when internal temp was @ 180 and went onto plate, tightly wrapped with foil for 30 min ( told to do this by a buddy ). Pulled apart fine, tasted incredible, family and neighbors want another one sooner than later. I served it on buns with jalapeno- cilantro sweet coleslaw on the side, sweet tea or beer, and 73 in the shade. Perfect end to a day.

Thanks to everyone hear. I appreciate the collective knowledge base and try to implement what I learn. I am not totally new to smoking, but by no way refined. I pay attention to the details. Thanks again for everything.

P.S. Sorry again about the pics. None of the plated food w/ coleslaw were taken. I'm learnin' . JD

post #15 of 18

JD Glad it turned out good. Try taking the IT to 200 or 205 for pulled. You will like it a lot better.

Happy smoken.

David

post #16 of 18

Looks good. nice smoke ring. I see a brisket in your future

David

post #17 of 18
Thread Starter 

Gottcha Dave. I was aware of that also. what I was told was 180 is done, 190-200 for pulled, and 200-210 for sliced. Sound right?

post #18 of 18

I do 190-200 for sliced 200-205 for pulled. If it goes a little over or under it is no big deal. A butt is pretty forgiving

Happy smoken.

David

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