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Brinkmann burning too hot

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 
Hi, I've got a Brinkmann Smoke'N'Pit Professional that I've had for about 15 yrs now. Over the last several years, I've been getting more serious about smoking and am trying to improve on the basic smoker. I've extended the smoke stack down to just above the top grills and have added a baffle to opening between the two chambers that keeps more of the heat in the firebox and allows better smoke distribution. The smoke now tends to come up in the center of the smoking chamber and I get a more even heat distribution from left to right in the smoke chamber than before. But I still have the problem of the unit settling in at about 300 degrees - too hot for smoking. This is with all the firebox vents closed and the stack vent totally open. I use seasoned hardwoods that I soak for about a half hour. The logs are 6" diameter by 8" long, split into quarters. I generally have about 3 or 4 log quarters in the chamber at a time.

I can get it cooler by closing the vent stack but then I get the sharp creosote taste.

Should I make the firebox more airtight using furnace rope or something similar? I'm not sure what else to try.

post #2 of 7
I would start by sealing up the firebox as you suggested. Have you reduced the amount of logs to see if that will lower your temps? Once you have a good bed of coals you shouldn't need 3 or 4 log quarters to maintain the temp. So second I suggest reducing your fuel supply to help reduce your pit temp. Others may have another suggestion to try.

Keep Smokin
post #3 of 7
Yes, first try sealing the firebox better. The more ari the hotter the burn. Also, if your gettin creasote, your wood may not be seasoned "dry" enough. Also, take off all the bark.
post #4 of 7
Sound's like your using way to much wood.
After you get a good bed of coal's, add 1 split at a time and use the vent's to adjust airflow, should be able to carry temp's a little easier!
Skip the soaking, it's just cooling off your coal's and delaying the smoking process..............icon_redface.gif
I don't burn pure chunk's of bark but bark on wood has no affect on heat or flavor!! cool.gif
post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the suggestions

I smoked two pork butts this weekend and with almost constant attention I was able to keep the smoke chamber to between 250 and 300 degrees (closer to 300 though). I used pear wood this time. It came out quite good but I think pear gave a much lighter smoke flavor than any of the woods I normally use (oak, hickory).

Years ago I heated my house in Connecticut entirely with wood. We had an airtight stove and that thing could maintain almost any temp I wanted - and burned a long time by damping it way down! That's what gave me the idea of an airtight firebox. I realize that I won't really be able to get it truly airtight because there's still the passage between the firebox and smoking chamber, but if it slows down the burn rate I'll be happy.

I did cut down to two sticks in the firebox part way through the process. They seemed to burn more quickly than I'd like though and I had to add more pieces pretty regularly. I think making it more airtght is probably the next thing I'll do.

Has anyone ever experimented with changing the size of the opening between the fire box and smoking chamber? I did put in a baffle between the two and it did wonders for helping control the heat level (even though it still burns too hot) as well as the heat distribution in the smoking chamber.

post #6 of 7
Try using some lump charcoal instead of all wood for some heat. Cut back on the wood..and I STILL say don't soak it. Why season it to get it wet again?

Get a good bed of coals with the charcoal, then add bits of wood for the Thin Blue.
post #7 of 7
Hey Bob, I agree with Joe. I have found that if I start the fire with some bigger chunks of wood, let it burn down, then add 1 or 2 kindling size pieces if wood every 20 to 30 minutes, I can keep the thin blue and temps where they should be. Air intake is usually at least 1/2 open. You have to baby sit it, but thats the fun of BBQ. icon_smile.gif
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