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Please help a Canadian newbie out!!!

post #1 of 4
Thread Starter 

Hi there! My name is Chris and I'm from Kitchener, Ontario. I'm a long-time sampler of smoked meats, but have just got my very own smoker. I have a Napoleon Apollo vertical water smoker - very similar setup to the Weber Smoky Mountain.

 

Anyways, I tried to do a dry run today, and I need some assistance. I used the Weber chimney starter to get a chimney full of lump charcoal going. I might have dumped the charcoal a little prematurely because the smoker only got to about 250 before pooping out after 30 minutes. So in addition to premature charcoal dumping, I wondered if I wasn't using enough charcoal. So I got another chimney full ready and dumped it on the charcoal that had already been poured in. Got the temp up to 275-ish (all vents wide open), and maintained that for an hour and a half. I closed all the vents halfway to see how well it holds to 225-250. But shortly after that, the fire went out again.

 

What am I doing wrong? 

 

Also, how hot should a smoker get with all vents open fully and all levels of cooking grates on?

 

Thanks!!!

post #2 of 4
 

texas.gif  Good evening and welcome to the forum, from another cloudy and rainy day here in East Texas. Lots of great people with tons of information on just about  everything.

 

 

Gary

post #3 of 4

I've never seen that model smoker but does it have an ash pan of some kind so the ash falls away from the fire to keep from smothering it? What kind of charcoal are you using?

post #4 of 4
Thread Starter 
The ash seems to fall out of the charcoal bowl and collect at the bottom.

I'm using lump charcoal. After the fire was out, there was still quite a bit of charcoal in the bowl. Maybe a chimney worth.
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