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post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I'm new to smoking - actually, never done it before, but I've just borrowed my father's smoker - an electric Brinkmann Smoke'n'Grill. I've attached pictures in the hopes someone might be able to clarify some things about it. It's an old smoker - before they started putting the doors on them to add wood and water, so my dad installed one himself. It hasn't been touched in probably 15 years, so needless to say, it's in somewhat sore shape. Does the small metal "stand" go over the element to hold the water bowl, or does the water bowl go on the bottom of the two racks and the wood go on the stand? Also, do I need any lava rocks or anything around the element?

What's a good thing to smoke for a first-timer?

post #2 of 12
Jim, I'm just gonna welcome you to the SMF. Sorry I don't know diddly about electric smokers. BUT, you can bet your Boston Butt there are plenty of people in here that do!
post #3 of 12
Welcome to the SMF. I also don't really know much about electric smokers but im gonna guess you have it set up right. Looking at the pics I can't think of anything else that could be used for. Does the water pan make contact with the heating element without the stand? I would take a wire bursh to it before seasoning to try and remove some of that rust first. Also check the accuracy on the temp gauge because most of them that come with the unit are not accurate.
post #4 of 12
Welcome to the forum Jim. I suggest taking Jeff's 5 day Ecouse its free and filled with great info. Lots of good people and good info around here.
As to your questions I'm no expert and kinda guessing here but the metal u shaped piece looks to me like it would go over the element and hold a cake pan with wood chips in it. The water pan should have a place to sit toward the bottom to middle. The rack should have holders for it to sit on highest up in the smoker
post #5 of 12
Thread Starter 
If the stand wasn't there, the water pan would be sitting right on top of the heating element. My dad said the pan goes on the bottom rack and the wood pieces go on the stand, but that seems like an awful large gap between the heat and the water pan. The temp gauge just says low, good, and high, so I plan to get a digital thermometer to keep track of the air temp in the smoker, as well as another to keep in the meat.

post #6 of 12
at least two digital thermometers one for the smoker and one for the meat smoking is about internal meat temp not time
post #7 of 12
What your dad said seems right. Instead of putting the woodchips right on the metal try cutting a coffee can down and drilling some small holes around it to allow airflow. After you have seasoned it fire it back up without meat and test it out with the water pan on the second rack.
post #8 of 12
Welcome tot he SMF, you'll have plenty of feedback on the electric smoker.
post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
Ok, so after further discussions with my dad, he has clarified that the water pan goes on the tabs that hold the bottom grate, but under the grate, which makes more sense to me. He also said that the smoker was originally a charcoal smoker, which he converted to electric. Here's the zinger - there's no way to regulate the heat, which is why he rarely uses it. Hopefully, I can figure out a way to modify it further to allow me to reduce the power going through the heating element so I can maintain the proper temperature in the smoker. Looks like there's going to be more work for this trial run than I thought! Any input will be appreciated.

If this thread should be moved to a different part of the forum, that's fine - it's turned into more than just an introduction icon_rolleyes.gif

post #10 of 12
You might be able to "un-convert" it into a charcoal smoker.

Chicken (thigh or leg quarter) is real easy & quick and that's we're I'd start

Fish is nice and not all too difficult

Sausage it's almost too easy (I'm refering to the store bought variety)

Pork Boston Butt takes quite a bit longer, but it's worth it

Pork tenderloin doesn't take all too much time, but it's easy to overcook

Ribs are a treat, but don't quite fit on a "bullet" type smoker (I usually cut em in half)

Brisket can be quite a handful (i think most folks still love the challenge of smoking a brisket)
post #11 of 12
Hey Jim. Welcome to smf from another Iowan. Quite a few of us here. Good look figuring out your smoker. Wish I could help ya. Don't know anything about those.
post #12 of 12
Thread Starter 
With all the rust in this thing, I went and bought a wire wheel and am using my drill to clean it all out. After I've removed all the rust, should I spray on some high-heat resistant paint (Rustoleum makes some that withstands heat up to like 1500 degrees)? I'm planning on spraying it on the spots on the outside after cleaning them up.

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