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Can't get your Brinkman R2D2 Hot enough

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
Boy, thought I would do my 8 1/2 lb bone-in turkey breast at some higher heat to get the crispy skin. 325-375º. To do this, I planned on using Playbox sand instead of water and around 3/4 of a pan of charcoal. Using the normal water in the pan, I can sometimes get around 300 to 325º but it does not stay there very long and usually will drop back to 275º or so.
So, after 40 minutes, I had 300º, around 70 minutes I had this.

icon_eek.gif Couldn't believe it. I had to askew the lid to relieve some of the heat. What are my options to control the heat better, using sand? The 'drill the holes in the dome' mod may help ?? Less Charcoal?? Gauge is new and was checked not long ago against an Accurite Oven temp gauge.
post #2 of 16
I drilled a series of tiny hole all around my ECB lid the first night I used it, about 8 tiny 1/8 inch holes and never had any problems since keeping temps up. I just use less fuel to lower temps and it works great. I do use water in my pan but I am curious about the playground sand thing.
post #3 of 16
I'd go with an adjustable lid vent. Hmm think I got a post here somewhere with an ascii art pict. I'll take a look.

Ahhh here ya go:
post #4 of 16
I have a circle of 3/8" holes on my Cajun Cookin' little smoker and it works okay. No damper on top yet, I use aluminum foil plugs.
post #5 of 16
Wow! ... with those temps, I'd put on a prime rib roast!
post #6 of 16
Thread Starter 
I remember that post and one other of mods for the R2D2. I figure that and less charcoal will be my only options.
post #7 of 16
Now this is what I do.

I take a small hickory log (ususally from a branch, like 1½" in diameter by 5-6" long, and put it in the charcoal pan on top of hot coals (see if it burns and temps stay where you want them). Less charcoal and more wood allow for more flavor with less fuel. After having decided that it's enough hickory smoke flavor, I go with something weaker like oak to finish the smoke. Normally, start with charcoal or start a fire from scratch. I use the newspaper/chimney with real wood instead of charcoal or a mix heavy on the wood side. Free fuel better for me. If I can keep my fuel costs down, then that's more money I can spend on food. Just my way of thinking I guess. Remember ventilation is the key here.
post #8 of 16
Here's the mods I did to mine, I use the minion method and less charcoal.
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 

Yeah, thats the one. How bendable is the sheet metal? Does it totally seal it off if closed? i would think with the bend to the top, it would be hard to totally shut it off.
You mentioned another vent mod? What was that?

I like the less fuel, any time you can do that is good. I have always used the minion method though, so know that wasn't the issue.
post #10 of 16
Ya will never need to "totally shut it off". A design flaw in that unit, if ya ask me- omitting a top vent. Crap...where's the smoke suppost ta go?
post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 
Mine vents out from under the lid. I believe Blackhawks lid sets INSIDE the barrel of the smoker, mine fits OUTSIDE the barrel.
post #12 of 16
Hmmm learn sumthin' new every day. OK... well, I'm clueless then... icon_redface.gif
post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 
Well, I went ahead and made the lid vent mod and drilled some holes. Might be doing another butt soon, so will see how it does. I'll start out with maybe a 1/2 pan of coals.
Thing is, I maybe seeing higher temps, but with less coals feel like I will end up adding more coals, more often doing the smoke ? Gotta do, what I gotta do, I guess.
post #14 of 16
That was very thin aluminum that I cut from a small sheet, it was very bendable and easy to form. I ended up with two of them on the top
post #15 of 16
Thread Starter 
Well, yours is a heck of a lot pretty than mine, but I am sure it will work. Of course my smoker is over 28 years old and has rust, can't have some pretty new looking piece of metal on it now can I. cool.gif
post #16 of 16
Heck, I scavenge the dumpsters in the apartment complex where I live, and find all sorts of useful things for my smokers. I very seldom buy anything new anymore, I believe in recycling most everything. Yesterday, I found a calibratable Brinkmann thermometer for my larger smoker. I also picked up a rheostat with a capillary tube from an old range the complex has discarded. Got the gasket material and all of the stainless screws I could get my hands on. Shoot I started to get the elements, but I don't think I need those cause I have no intention of doing any of my smoking with man-made or nonrenewable fuel resources.

Tomorrow who knows.
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