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Help Help -Dyna glo vertical Smoker - all I seem to get is burnt meat

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 

I need help.  About 3 months ago I parched a Dyna-Glo Offset vertical smoker. Everything I try to smoke ends up black – like burnt.  Here today example – smoking pre-sliced spare ribs.

I placed the ribs (unrubbed) on the top 3 racks of the smoker.  Smoked them for almost 2 hours – using Hickory and Apple.  Had a water pan in the bottom of the vertical smoker.  During the 2 hours that the ribs were smoking I monitored the tempter very closely.  Most of the time the tempter hovered around 225, the last 15 min the tempter did begin to reach 250.  After 2 hours I open the tower door so that I could place the ribs into a metal pan for braising.  Top layer looked good until I turned the ribs over – burnt black, meat on third level looked dried out on the top side, and dark color, Turned over their black. 

Suggestion appreciated.

post #2 of 15
Were you going by factory thermometer for your temp reading?
post #3 of 15
Thread Starter 


post #4 of 15
Thread Starter 

Yes - which manufacture(s) and which models?

post #5 of 15
I would have to guess that the factory thermometer is not reading correctly, and the temp is getting WAY higher than you think. You need to get some kind of other thermometer that you know (trust) in there to see the temp. I use an IGrill system, and neither my electric nor my modified gas smoker's thermometers are very accurate.
post #6 of 15
You can check temps easily as placing an oven therm on rack. River County makes a nice adjustable thermometer that wont break the bank-Amazon. If your going to be smoking on a regular basis, you will want to look into a dual lead digital thermometer along the lines of a Maverick unit. Factory therms are rarely accurate but you can +/- according to your default units on start up then go by your proven therms.
post #7 of 15
It's pretty crazy how off the stock thermometerso can be... the closest I've ever had one was within ~25* of the grate temp. My weber kettle is 50* off.
post #8 of 15

The first thing I did was add two additional thermometers in the main door.

One right beside the stock thermometer (pictured) and another about 16 inches lower.

As it happens, the stock one read the same, but not everyone may be so lucky.


post #9 of 15
Fricard, its good to check these woth multiple methods... but bimetal thermometers are inherently inaccurant and inconsistant... its cool that they match, but i would assume at least 1 is wrong or both and eventually i would bet money they wont match... im not trying to be a jerk, but its the nature of these.
post #10 of 15

Understood, and thanks.  It'll be easy enough to verify which one is faulty when that day comes.



post #11 of 15
Thread Starter 

To check out the temperature gage on my Dyna-Glo Offset vertical smoker I will run the following test and report back the readings.  I have a Taylor Wireless Thermometer (single lead) which I will place on the second rack of the smoker.  I will start with a chime about ¾ full of charcoal, once they seems to be lite I will dump them into the fire box, not planning on adding wood for this test.  I will record the temperature reading at various times as shown on the Dyna-Glo Thermometer and the Taylor Wireless Thermometer.  Will try and keep the temperature around 225 degrees for about 1 hour 

post #12 of 15

Good strategy
post #13 of 15
Thread Starter 

Looks like the temp gauge on the Dyna-Glow is off by 35 – 50 degrees.  I have listed the information I was able to collect.


                              Digital                                                Dyna-Glow                                       Difference

Started                   72                                                      -  0 -                                                        72

                              170                                                     50

                              184                                                     140                                                         40

                              192                                                     150                                                         42

                              210                                                     165                                                         45

                              237                                                     200                                                         37

                                              ************** Shut down damper ****************

                              283                                                     210                                                        36

                              252                                                     215                                                        37

                              260                                                     225                                                        35

                              266                                                     235                                                        31

                              274                                                     240                                                        34

                              279                                                     250                                                        29

                              283                                                     210                                                        27

If instruction say to smoke meat at 225 degrees for 2 hours.  Then I need to hold the smoker at about 185 until I get the 2 lead digital temp gauge.


1 thing I did notice I had used a piece of wood to hold the digital lead. When I picked it up just now the bottom was colored black

post #14 of 15
Thread Starter 

I was reading some of other Forums question last night.  Could the problem - my smoked meat tuning black and the bottom being chaired - be caused by creosote, from using unseasoned wood, and wood that has been socked for 2 to 3 hours before using?

post #15 of 15

looks like you partially answered the question with your temps, as far as creosote, that wouldn't cause burning, that would make your meat darker for sure and it would make it bitter, but it would be clear from seeing thick smoke coming out of the smoker... if you have light wispy smoke that looks like it almost has a blue tint to it in the sunshine you are good. any wood can put out creosote... unseasoned would be worse than most... you 'can' used unseasoned wood, but it's even more important to have a small hot clean burning fire than normal. soaking wood in and of itself wouldn't produce more or less creosote, but it's not doing you any favors either. all the water needs to steam out of the wood before it will start to burn and produce smoke... it will  cause temp dips and can put out charcoal or smolder it (which would be a situation where creosote would be an issue)


still 260-280 for 2 hours shouldn't be hot enough to burn the bottom of meats. is your Taylor calibrated? here is a site that you can input your elevation and barometric pressure for that day and dunk the probe in boiling water to compare




another small possibility could be infrared cooking maybe? i honestly don't know how big of an impact this could have, but if there is a line of site from the bottom of the meat you are cooking and the fire, it could be cooking that way too.

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