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Early troubles with my camp chef smoke vault 18

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
Hello, I am new to the forum. I posted in section for the newbies but I thought I would start a new thread for my questions. I recently got a Camp Chef smoke vault 18 and I had some troubles keeping the temp up on my first go around.  I seasoned it like the instructions said and didn't seem to have much trouble getting that thing quickly up to 300 (not on purpose!) My first try was an 11lb turkey.  I got the turkey in and with the setting on high, I could only get the temp up to 225.  After reading on here that I could do a wide range of temps to accomplish the cooking, I wasn't too concerned as I had planned for the longer cook time to be safe. I had read before I got the smoker that this particular one would hold the higher temps in the cool/cold weather with no issues so I was a bit concerned.  No matter what i did, the temp stayed at 225 for about 3 hours.  Then it slowly got to 250 without me doing anything.  Then when the internal temp of the turkey got to about 150 the temp increased dramatically and the turkey zoomed past 160 (higher than I wanted)  within 30-45 min the internal temp of the smoker went from 250 to 300 and wham, the turkey was overdone. The last 30 min I added a pan of stuffing and had to keep turning the smoker down to keep the right temp after the turkey was out. I had a internal temp thermometer in there and the temp on the door was spot on with what it was inside and it was 40 outside so it wasn't terribly cold. Could it just be the bulk of the turkey that caused the low temp or do I have a faulty smoker?  The turkey turned out amazing even though it overcooked so Im happy with that but I want to make sure this is normal and I don't need to return my smoker due to the fact that it couldn't hold the temp.  Thank you!
Edited by Inferno12 - 12/26/14 at 9:49pm
post #2 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inferno12 View Post

Hello, I am new to the forum. I posted in section for the newbies but I thought I would start a new thread for my questions. I recently got a Camp Chef smoke vault 18 and I had some troubles keeping the temp up on my first go around.  I seasoned it like the instructions said and didn't seem to have much trouble getting that thing quickly up to 300 (not on purpose!) My first try was an 11lb turkey.  I got the turkey in and with the setting on high, I could only get the temp up to 225.  After reading on here that I could do a wide range of temps to accomplish the cooking, I wasn't too concerned as I had planned for the longer cook time to be safe. I had read before I got the smoker that this particular one would hold the higher temps in the cool/cold weather with no issues so I was a bit concerned.  No matter what i did, the temp stayed at 225 for about 3 hours.  Then it slowly got to 250 without me doing anything.  Then when the internal temp of the turkey got to about 150 the temp increased dramatically and the turkey zoomed past 160 (higher than I wanted)  within 30-45 min the internal temp of the smoker went from 250 to 300 and wham, the turkey was overdone. The last 30 min I added a pan of stuffing and had to keep turning the smoker down to keep the right temp after the turkey was out. I had a internal temp thermometer in there and the temp on the door was spot on with what it was inside and it was 40 outside so it wasn't terribly cold. Could it just be the bulk of the turkey that caused the low temp or do I have a faulty smoker?  The turkey turned out amazing even though it overcooked so Im happy with that but I want to make sure this is normal and I don't need to return my smoker due to the fact that it couldn't hold the temp.  Thank you!

 

 

 

Could have just been the turkey.   Did you have water in a pan ?  Was the gas knob on the smoker turned completely off when you opened up the valve on the propane tank ?

post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Demosthenes9 View Post



Could have just been the turkey.   Did you have water in a pan ?  Was the gas knob on the smoker turned completely off when you opened up the valve on the propane tank ?

I did have water in the pan and I don't remember on the valve. Why would the valve have made a difference? I do know that I had full flame on high. I also cooked some Mac n cheese yesterday and had no issues keeping a higher temp even though I didn't want to. This time though the door thermometer was way off compared to the internal one however I feel having to open the door to check it was causing issues. Im going to be ordering either maverick or igrill2.
post #4 of 5
Quote:
Originally Posted by Inferno12 View Post


I did have water in the pan and I don't remember on the valve. Why would the valve have made a difference? I do know that I had full flame on high. I also cooked some Mac n cheese yesterday and had no issues keeping a higher temp even though I didn't want to. This time though the door thermometer was way off compared to the internal one however I feel having to open the door to check it was causing issues. Im going to be ordering either maverick or igrill2.

 

The valve possibly could have made a difference because of a safety feature built into propane tanks.  Long story short, the tank will restrict the flow of gas.   What usually causes this is someone doing things backwards and turning the knob on the smoker first, then opening the propane tank.      You might still be able to light the burner, but you don't have the full flame on high.    Someone else on another forum had this exact problem just the other day.

 

 

If you were opening the door a lot that could certainly have caused at least part of the problem as these things will lose a lot of heat when you open the door and it takes time for the temp to build back up.     

 

Water in the pan will also act to hold the heat down as it takes a lot of energy to heat the water and even then, it only goes to 212 degrees or thereabouts.   I lined my water pan with foil and filled it about 2/3rds the way up with sand.   For each smoke, if I want water, I'll lay some foil over the sand and fill the remainder with a bit of water.    This helps to get higher temps while still using water in the chamber.

post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Demosthenes9 View Post
 

 

The valve possibly could have made a difference because of a safety feature built into propane tanks.  Long story short, the tank will restrict the flow of gas.   What usually causes this is someone doing things backwards and turning the knob on the smoker first, then opening the propane tank.      You might still be able to light the burner, but you don't have the full flame on high.    Someone else on another forum had this exact problem just the other day.

 

 

If you were opening the door a lot that could certainly have caused at least part of the problem as these things will lose a lot of heat when you open the door and it takes time for the temp to build back up.     

 

Water in the pan will also act to hold the heat down as it takes a lot of energy to heat the water and even then, it only goes to 212 degrees or thereabouts.   I lined my water pan with foil and filled it about 2/3rds the way up with sand.   For each smoke, if I want water, I'll lay some foil over the sand and fill the remainder with a bit of water.    This helps to get higher temps while still using water in the chamber.


Thank you so much for the suggestions and advice.  I will give it a go using the sand instead of water and see if that helps and keep the door shut with a new thermometer. 

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