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I'm not stupid, just would like some help

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Ok I'm doing the 5 day smoking course and I got a question about day 2

~quote from e-mail~"The first thing you want to do is take the charcoal pan and using a drill motor with a 1/8 inch drill, create a hole pattern in opposite sides of the pan. the pattern should be about 4 inches in diameter with the holes spaced at about 1/4 inch. This will allow more air into the charcoal pan creating a better burn."

my charcoal pan has a pattern already cut out to allow air to get to the charcoal from underneath. would it matter if I drilled holes on the side with flaps to cover them on the side of the main pan(to the outside)? just like I am going to do on the top for smoke to release. or is this not advisable? I'm trying to find the best ways to regulate the temp inside my smoker. Thanx
post #2 of 10
hey, bud - definitely not a dumb question.

in my opinion, the charcoal pans need as many holes as possibe, on the side or in the bottom or wherever, so that they can work as an "incoming" corridor for airflow. the reason for the "as many as possible" statement is that as time goes on, they can be choked with ash.

putting flaps on so that you can regulate and control the amount of airflow makes good sense and will help you have fewer holes when you don't need as many, but more when you have to open up a bit to compensate for ash. it seems to me that your idea will make your smoker a more versatile tool, so i would say to go for it.

having said all that, i still consider myself a bit of a newbie ~
post #3 of 10
What brand of smoker ya got? Equiring minds want to know so we may better help you out.
post #4 of 10
PICs would help also, I love that header, got me to look at a good question
post #5 of 10
If you already have air holes, I wouldn't mess with drilling any new holes. Unless you find the holes aren't big enough.

This tip pertains to smokers (mainly the Brinkmann) that don't already have air holes.
post #6 of 10
good ? yours is just fine the reason you drill the holes is if you have a pan without any. this is for air flow to keep the coals hot
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
Its a Brinkman bullet style(ECB) and its got slits all around the charcoal pan. I was wondering if I should cut holes on the smoker itself, maybe 2-3 around the smoker at the base where the charcoal pan. there is a hole in the bottom(about half dollar size). Maybe I won't. I'm going to try to smoke a pork roast sometime next week and I don't wanna fudge it up. Will cutting a vent in the top for the smoke help to regulate the internal temperature?
post #8 of 10
Here's a link that should help you with your Brinkmann. www.randyq.addr.com/ecb/ecbmods.html These mods should take care of any issues.
post #9 of 10
You have a Brinkman "Gourmet." There is NO NEED to modify the coal pan. Here is a link for mods specifically for your model:


All you really need to do for your smoker is to install a raised grid to get the coal off the floor of the pan (easy and cheap) and get set up with a real thermometer. Originally, I got a thermometer from Home Depot for 7 bucks and put it in the cover, about half way between the handle and the bend in the cover. I run my smoker with that thermometer at 240* and get great results. I only just now got a digital thermometer for checking the grate temperature, and haven't tried it yet.

I also added some handles to the outter pan that the coal pan sits in. I was using the grill portion for awhile, and it made it much easier to handle that way. Good way to be able to shake your coals without worrying about getting burned too.

By the way. Your lid fits loosely and doesn't seal on purpose. There are no vents in the lid, because they designed it to vent out the side of the cover. For smoking, you really don't need to add a lid vent. However, when you grill, the lid sits much tighter than when you smoke. I had my coals start to snuff out when I grilled. I just set the cover a little cockeyed so it wasn't sealed 100% If you intend to use it to GRILL a lot, I would add a cover vent.
post #10 of 10
Oh, forogt. In that link I provided, the guy glued some blocks to his smokers legs to raise it off the deck. I think a more effective way to prevent heat and fire problems is to sit it on a metal pan. I got one from Brinkman. All it really is a large Pizza pan, the kind a pizzeria would use. You can get those cheaper around town, or use your imagination for something similar. There really is no reason that I can see to add height to the smoker.
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