If you do the mods suggested, and are happy, then we can discuss the air inlet mods to the FB....
If I raise the height of the stack, would that help suck heat through the CC? Ideally, would it be better to have a larger diameter?
I can easily order some 3" truck exhaust pipe and connect it to my current stack to raise it up to 30". That seems really tall, but I guess the stacks on the other smokers I've seen (i.e. Lang) are much taller and wider.
Also do you think that the 90 degree bend on the stack is causing issues? I looked at several other smokers with decent reputation that have the same design - Oklahoma Joe, Horizon, Brinkmann Trailmaster LE.
As for the firebox, I can raise the grate up a couple of inches to give some airflow under the fire. Would your next suggestion be to add an inlet further up the FB above the fire?
Thanks for your help, and thanks to all as well.
Looks like you got a lot of questions answered, One thought is if you look at the plenum design that Dave has as well as quite a few other members that would allow you to go with a larger ID pipe and a shorter stack, just a thought.
Smoke Stack Question for Dave;
I see what Feldon's says about size But if you increase the pipe diameter would that not allow a little shorter stack? I thought it was based on Cubic inches, What is your opinion, Does your calculator figure the stack size?
This is a good topic I have seen a lot of different answers and builds with long and short stacks, I know you spend a lot of time on calculations and helping lots of new smoker builders (and some old ones)
Your input and thoughts would be greatly appreciated
Thanks for all of the great suggestions. Really appreciate everyone's help.
I ordered 3" diameter truck exhaust pipe with a connector and clamps to add on to my stack, I'll raise it up to around 27"-30" tall. I'll also probably roll-on some high temp paint.
I'll also do the other two suggestions from Dave - removing CC/FB damper if possible, and raising FB grate 2"-3".
Since I am waiting on the truck exhaust pipe to ship, it may be a week or two before I can make the adjustments. At that point, I'll likely smoke something next weekend (maybe MLK day vacation!) after adjustments are made and will report back to everyone on any progress made with temps.
Thanks again! This is the reason why I joined the forum. I've been smoking for a couple of years now, but I still consider myself a newbie. And it is great to get some tips from guys who have been doing this for decades.
Yeah, as with a probably lot of custom built pits found on Craigslist, there are bound to be a couple of design flaws. Hopefully with these easy and cheap modifications it will improve performance. I was really pleased with how it performed last weekend, getting an even temperature and holding temperature. It sure beats the cheaper offsets found at big box stores. It just took a while to get up to temp and I had to leave the damper half way open to hold 240. Maybe a taller stack and removing the CC/FB damper will create a better draw and suck heat on through. We'll see!
I ordered the truck exhaust pipe, it came earlier in the week, and I cut it to length last night. This evening I am going to put the pipe on the stack, try removing the CC/FB damper, and I'll be doing a brisket and butt smoke for Saturday's supper.
Q-view to come, and results of mods will also be shared out.
Thanks again - more to come soon.
Howdy! I think that people are going to tell you to practice, practice, practice. Sounds like you got some things figured out. I just cooked on my reverse flow for the first time this weekend and it's different from what I'm used to. I think the practice will be fun and delicious though. Good luck!
I too start with charcoal in a chimney, a little charcoal in my basket,then start adding splits. sometimes, I usually dump some charcoal in my basket, fire up my weed burner, charcoal is ready to start adding splits in about 5 min. I then take my weed burner an go over my racks and inside the cook chamber, helps speed up the warming up process. I have started with just wood used weed burner to get it going. Also make sure your wood has been seasoned, green wood is hard to start and imparts a bitter taste to me.