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Got a question for mini wsm users

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Anyone using the snake or minion method for long smokes on a mini? What is my best option for a long cook, newly built mini wsm? Thanks

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post #2 of 16
Side light method is the best option to get the longest cook. Load your charcoal basket full. Add 3-4 chunks of smoke wood. Take a propane torch light it and stick it in one of the side or lower vents. Leave running for 3-5 minutes. Check your temp. More than likely you will be around 300+. That's okay because when you remove the torch the temp will drop dramatically. Repeat as needed until you get to your target temp. I can get a 14-16 hour burn (225-250) on one basket if the wind isn't blowing like mad. With this method you don't waste heat and fuel that you would using a chimney to start.





I use the same method for hot smokes too. I light through both of my side vents for that.
post #3 of 16
Thread Starter 
Sounds good, I only have one bottom vent, Silver model and don't have a basket made for it yet. Hoping to get a decent burn on it tomorrow for a butt?

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post #4 of 16
Well with only the bottom vent and no basket, ash build up is going to be your main issue. If you haven't already make an ash deflector to keep the ash away from the lower vent. With out the basket and no side vents you probably will get 6-8 hours of cooking time. No big deal, if you remove the pot to add more fuel set it down doña quick dump of hot ash into an approved container. Add more fuel and put the pot back on.
post #5 of 16

Minion works great on a mini! It stays hot longer than I need to smoke! b

post #6 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by BDSkelly View Post

Minion works great on a mini! It stays hot longer than I need to smoke! b



You really should try the side light B. Your just wasting heat and fuel lighting a chimney.

Another thing you didn't mention is you're using a gold and not a silver which is a big difference. The OP is using a silver without a charcoal basket or diffuser. The Golds side vents make a big difference. But even with that said Keith will tell ya side light rules!
post #7 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by dirtsailor2003 View Post


You really should try the side light B. Your just wasting heat and fuel lighting a chimney.

Another thing you didn't mention is you're using a gold and not a silver which is a big difference. The OP is using a silver without a charcoal basket or diffuser. The Golds side vents make a big difference. But even with that said Keith will tell ya side light rules!


Thanks for the correction Case.  i'll take that in consideration. b

post #8 of 16

Steve how did it go?  I made a mini from a Silver about a month ago and as they were telling you the bottom vents do tend to fill with ash after 4 or 5 hours and temps start to fall off.  I'm getting ready to add some side vents, plan on calling it a Super Silver!  I've ordered the lower vents from a WSM and plan on adding a pair of them, will post a picture as soon as the work is done.

post #9 of 16

Here's a few photos for inspiration. The first is my ash diffuser. After 5 years of solid use it finally has succumbed to the heat and I need to make a new one

 

 

This photo is after a 6-8 hour burn

 

 

Use the existing charcoal grate and wrap expanded metal. 3 1/4" tall if the bottom of the pot is still in. If not go taller if you want. Depending on where you are Home Depot, Lowes, Ace Hardware all carry the sheets. It can be cut easily with tin snips or a jig saw with a metal blade. If you don't weld just wire tie it together. That's what I did with my first basket and it is still working.

 

http://www.lowes.com/pd_168753-37672-11786_1z0xzpd__?productId=3051815&pl=1

 

 

post #10 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aggie94 View Post

Steve how did it go?  I made a mini from a Silver about a month ago and as they were telling you the bottom vents do tend to fill with ash after 4 or 5 hours and temps start to fall off.  I'm getting ready to add some side vents, plan on calling it a Super Silver!  I've ordered the lower vents from a WSM and plan on adding a pair of them, will post a picture as soon as the work is done.


It went well, I tapped on the side of the base occasionally to allow ash to fall out of the vent and never lost temp. I will, however, make a vented ash deflector with a can or bowl.

I did a spatchcock chicken and about a 7 3/4 butt. Obviously the chicken came off well before the butt, did just a little ash removal then and when I wrapped the butt at 165, I added a little more fuel. Overall, it burned about 10 hrs, I probably used about 4 lbs of coal.

I am very pleased with the ability to regulate the temp. I left top vent open and could go anywhere from 200 -325 with the bottom vent. I played with this after I wrapped the butt.

On my cheap offset, I could use 15 lbs or more on an 8 -10hr cook, and not have near the control on temp.

Thanks for the input.

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post #11 of 16

10 hrs on a mini is a long cook, you should be pleased.  Great picture Dirtsailor of the ash build up around your deflector can.  I tried to make a ring of foil and put that around the air intake and not put charcoal over it, but ash still would slide under it and clog it up.  Guess I'll be making the can now.

post #12 of 16

Hey Dirtsailor, what did you make your ash can out of?  I've heard of people using tuna cans but that one looks different.

post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by Aggie94 View Post
 

Hey Dirtsailor, what did you make your ash can out of?  I've heard of people using tuna cans but that one looks different.

This was a cheap (1$) stainless pet food dish I found at the dollar store. It was about a 1/4" too tall so I cut it down to fit. If you go the tuna can route, I'd recommend getting a can of chicken that comes in the larger can. A 55oz bushes backed bean can would work too, cut down to size and then you could make Dutch's wicked beans!

post #14 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by dirtsailor2003 View Post
 

Here's a few photos for inspiration. The first is my ash diffuser. After 5 years of solid use it finally has succumbed to the heat and I need to make a new one

 

 

This photo is after a 6-8 hour burn

 

 

Use the existing charcoal grate and wrap expanded metal. 3 1/4" tall if the bottom of the pot is still in. If not go taller if you want. Depending on where you are Home Depot, Lowes, Ace Hardware all carry the sheets. It can be cut easily with tin snips or a jig saw with a metal blade. If you don't weld just wire tie it together. That's what I did with my first basket and it is still working.

 

http://www.lowes.com/pd_168753-37672-11786_1z0xzpd__?productId=3051815&pl=1

 

 

I like that case great idea.

Richie

:points:

post #15 of 16

Thanks for the great suggestions for an ash can, I'll probably end up using that Bush bean can.

points1.png 

post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 
So today, I tried the "snake method" in the recently built mini. I have also, since the last time I used it, made somewhat of an ash deflector. I used the bottom portion of a baked bean can and made some holes with the old style can opener, that punches triangular shaped holes. Both of these methods worked better than I could have ever imagined. I got better than 7 hrs on this on probably 2 1/2 lbs of coal. This build will pay for itself in 3-4 cooks. I'll try to put a pic of what was left, coal, when I shut 'er down.
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