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Mini-WSM

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
Picked up a cheap Charcoal BBQ from B&Q (similar to Home Depot) £20.00



Drilled a 20mm hole in the bottom and fitted a 1/2 bush to and elbow to take the Qmaster mini.

n

Picked up a Aliminium Pan from an Asian Store £40.00




Fitted high temeperature rope gasket around the top of the BBQ where the pot sits

Used the some of the existing holes to attach clamps. Top rivet is for the rack support inside.



Drilled 20mm holes in the bottom of the pan to let the heat in.



Used an old BBQ rack to lift terracotta sauce off the bottom.



Fitted gasket around inner part of lid and around adjustable top air vent as it was sloppy.



Used the Charcoal Basket supplied with the BBQ, but it had a plate bolted to the bottom?? Removed this as I am feeding the air in from the bottom.

So started it up with a set temperature of 115'C, it struggled to get up to 75'C in 3/4 hour.

Removed the terracotta sauce and temperature rose to 115'C quite quickly.

So do I make one big hole in the bottom and refit the terracotta sauce, or leave it out? Would like to leave I as it will protect the meat from direct heat.

Must say, once this hit 115'C, it stays with +-1'C which I have not seen on any of my other builds!
post #2 of 12

Nice looking mini! I like to cut the bottom out of my mini-wsm's. It allows you more versatility. High temp, low temp and everywhere in between. It also allows you to load the basket super full for longer cooks. You can still use a diffuser to avoid direct heat if you want. Or you can remove the diffuser and use the direct heat (perfect for chicken). I can run my mini-s anywhere from 180°f - 500°f+ consistently.

 

Have you made provisions to keep ash from blocking your air intake? On another forum a member there made a similar air intake with blower and during long smokes he was having issues with the ash blocking the intake and with ash being blown onto the food.

post #3 of 12

Looks good

Richie

post #4 of 12

I'm thinking.........    swap out the terracotta pan for an aluminum pan as the first experiment.....  As a second experiment, I'm thinking the 3 exhaust holes should be enlarged to allow for more air flow.....    Your smoker "maybe" has reached the balance point of "heat in" vs. "heat loss" through the metal....   reducing the thermal mass and / or increasing the air flow "might" achieve the balance you are looking for....

 

OR, my thinking is all BS...

post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by dirtsailor2003 View Post


Have you made provisions to keep ash from blocking your air intake? On another forum a member there made a similar air intake with blower and during long smokes he was having issues with the ash blocking the intake and with ash being blown onto the food.

No not made any provision for ash. Could fit the plate back to the bottom of the charcoal bowl. The bowl has 1/4 inch holes in bottom a spacer then this plate. Will get a photo of it.
post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveOmak View Post

I'm thinking.........    swap out the terracotta pan for an aluminum pan as the first experiment.....  As a second experiment, I'm thinking the 3 exhaust holes should be enlarged to allow for more air flow.....    Your smoker "maybe" has reached the balance point of "heat in" vs. "heat loss" through the metal....   reducing the thermal mass and / or increasing the air flow "might" achieve the balance you are looking for....

OR, my thinking is all BS...

I do not know if you can see in the photo, I did drill four more pilot holes, ready to enlarge out to 20mm, but decided not to. May be open these up as well.

post #7 of 12
Quote:
Originally Posted by Smokin Monkey View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by DaveOmak View Post

I'm thinking.........    swap out the terracotta pan for an aluminum pan as the first experiment.....  As a second experiment, I'm thinking the 3 exhaust holes should be enlarged to allow for more air flow.....    Your smoker "maybe" has reached the balance point of "heat in" vs. "heat loss" through the metal....   reducing the thermal mass and / or increasing the air flow "might" achieve the balance you are looking for....

OR, my thinking is all BS...

I do not know if you can see in the photo, I did drill four more pilot holes, ready to enlarge out to 20mm, but decided not to. May be open these up as well.

 

I would do 1 modification at a time....   Fire it up and check temps...    I'm thinking the exhaust is limiting the air inlets...  If the exhaust were opened up, more air would get through those holes in the bottom plate...  ONLY because your smoker is SOOOOOOO air tight.....

post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks Dave, going to play with it again tomorrow. Going to put a aluminium pan in the bottom, also crank the temperature up to see how high it will go. Will remove the exhaust plate for free flow.

Will take some thermo readings of the BBQ part at the bottom versus the Aluminium Pot to see if the heat is being deflected down and absorbed by the BBQ.

Then I will decide if I need to open any more holes up in the bottom.
post #9 of 12

Looks like it's going to be a great mini, when you get the bugs worked out!

 

Al

post #10 of 12
Thread Starter 
Thanks Al.
post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 
Did some more trials today. Removed the terracotta dish and replaced with an aluminium one.

One thing I did realise was, I may not of lit enough charcoal to start with, that's why it took a long time to get going.

Took temp up to 105'C in. no time, then up to 150'C then up to 200'C, peaked at 200'C and dropped slightly.

Dropped temperature back to 105'C (220'F) it's been running at that for more than 4 hours now, so pretty happy with that.

The only way to run this at a constant HIGH temperature would be a larger fuel basket.
Edited by Smokin Monkey - 4/1/16 at 2:38pm
post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
Another two hours on and still holding @ 105'C

That will do for me stable @ 105'C for over six hours.
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