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Super ECB!

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
I have been using my GOSM for a couple of years now but something was amiss, i was craving something.....is it that maybe gas is just not as primal as building a fire and cooking on it? Is it that charcoal/wood just tastes better?
Anyways I have been craving a challenge and wanted to start using charcoal, sooo... I found a little ECB at the local thrift store the price tag on it was $35 BUT it is half off week so I picked her up for $17.50, what a bargain. It is pretty weathered but it was never used as a smoker, I think maybe someone tried to grill on it once or twice. So I did the recommened mods to the fire pan and started this Saturday with some hot wings, they turned out great so on Sunday I slapped on a stuffed pork tenderloin. I will share the QVIEW with everybody this eve when I get home from work. I also have lots of questions about charcoal managment but will ask those later.
post #2 of 12
I think playing with fire is a primal instinct in all of us. Although the GOSM is nice to use, it doesn’t require any tending too like charcoal or wood. I started out on an ECB then acquired my GOSM and I recently added a small electric ugly drum smoker to the mix. Whenever I have the urge to tend a fire (outside of camping), I’ll steal back my ECB from my daughter. My sons and sons-in-law are trying to talk me into getting/building an offset wood burner. It’s just a matter of getting the RV parking area cleared out so I’ll have some place to put it.
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
My ultimate goal is to build a UDS, I am just having trouble finding a good barrel. Is your Electric UDS a 30 gallon? I found a little drum yesterday and thought it might be usefully but wondered about capacity. I saw you mention that you do car shows, but you don't have an offset....do you use your GOSM?
post #4 of 12
$17.50 for a smoker is a steal...no matter what type/brand/size it is...as you said, a few mods and there you go.

I have 3 smokers, all currently burning propane. I do get the craving for that something extra you speak of too. I like to cold smoke & sear smaller pieces of meat with a charcoal/smoke can mod on my kettle grill...but that set-up is too easy...get the fire and smoke going, add the food and walk away for a couple hours,icon_confused.gif until it's time to sear and eat. That is some of the best Q Iv'e ever had, next to my newly found love for brisket. The charcoal does add a nice flavor, and I add it to my smoke box or tray sometimes when doing a bigger smoke.

Maybe one of these days, I'll pull my gas burner out of the SNP and go charcoal fired just for the experience and great taste. I've only done one coal burn on it before converting it to a gasser...never been back there since...I think it's time though.

Good smoke to ya!

post #5 of 12
Yes it's a 30 gal. drum and it's kind of small, but hey, it's just the right size for small smokes.

Here is my electric ugly drum smoker build.
post #6 of 12
Thread Starter 
Cant beat the price, Still wanna build a UDS, i think that would be the ticket! But when winter comes the GOSM is the only way to go. This fall I am gonna add some insulation to the exterior so I can smoke on those cold days, I make alot of Sausage out of the Geese and Ducks I shoot so the gas works great.
post #7 of 12
I'll just get at cha' now about charcoal management on the ecb.

It may be on the mod list..I forget, but drill some holes... about 1 1/2 inch in the bottom of the coal pan. Then I got a small round grate. I didn't measure so naturally the first one I bought (14") didn't fit right. I couldn't find a I ended up finding a perfect sized grate at walmart. Oddly it was a $8 hibachi grill with a little wooden handle. I think it's 11 1/2". I had to take a wire cutters and cut off the handle but it works great. It leaves about 2" of clearance between the coal's and the bottom of the pan.
Since you did the mods I assume you added the feet to the coal pan so you can easily get at your fire w/o using a pair of tongs and getting a face full of smoke and 3rd degree burns. If you added the legs, holes and grate you can put a foil pan under the coal pan and and stir your coals or tap it with your foot and get rid of ash pretty well ( I add a little water to the foil pan to keep it from blowing around)
The foot mod was a lifesaver. The first time that coal pan fell off the brackets and hot coals were all over my patio I knew I had to do sumthin'
Good luck with the mods. Hope this helps.

Helena MT.. very neat place. My dad lives in Lewistown MT. Beautiful state you got there!
post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
I did the foot mods, and yes I have a grate that I stole from my weber smokey Joe, there is only about 1" of clearance, I am thinking that I need to raise that a bit, but after about 4 hours the space below the grate (and some above) was full of ash, is there a need to pull all of the burning coals and dump that ash mid smoke? I did drill about 10 3/8" holes and fashioned a damper so the air could be controled to the pan. On the second smoke I did I noticed that if I just stir and stack the coals I could get some more heat out of it, I was hovering around 235* but could never get it up to 250*...which is fine. But on looooong smokes I guess you just have to add more coals......
I used the Minion method, everything I read just explains how to start the fire, after all of the coals are burn out do you just add more raw (not burning) coals?
post #9 of 12
junkee - if you need any help with that ecb, let me know ~ i love mine!

albee - you hit the nail on the head in every way! i lived in lewistown from 2001-2003 and worked at the yogo inn, which also contains the best restaurant in town. chances are i probably saw your dad - it's a great town and i miss it, but my wife just couldn't work there, so we left.
post #10 of 12
Hahah that's great stuff, been to the yogo a few times when we visit..great place to eat. We always try and eat at the pancake place Empire Cafe too.
Yea you wouldn't have missed my dad...he built a log home out by the hatchery..he's 6' 6" big tall guy from Chicago

Junkie...I found the damper does not do a bunch on the ecb, but I have not used mine in cold weather yet. As far as long smokes... you'll have to add more coals... I add unlit kingsford comp with some lump mixed in. The lump seems to catch quicker.
I'm sure some of the other ECB guys can help out with carrying a higher temp. I've always been able to add unlit coals a bit earlier, before it starts to drop temp, that seems to help it keep up. I am going to try and use a modified minion, just using more coals to start. Or more lit coals to start...
The folks here are great and will give you great advice
post #11 of 12
Thread Starter 
Been to the Yogo also, I love Lewistown, if I had to pick a place other than Helena to live that would be it, my inlaws have some prop on spring creek....or I might live in Sidney if my wife would go for it, great bird hunting.
TasunkaWitko, I will be hitting you up for some help for sure...I will be through Chinook in Oct. headed to Plentywood, I will wave at ya on the way thru.
post #12 of 12
>>>I will be through Chinook in Oct. headed to Plentywood<<<

sounds like a high school football game in the making?

great country up here, but helena is also very nice - my only problem was the size, the politicians and the streets! how do you people drive there?!?!?! lol

we did love it a lot though, when visiting. i went up there eariler this eyar with my youngest son and we had a great time.
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