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Maintaining Temp

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
I have just started smoking. I tried getting a fire going and tried to maintain the temp. I thought while doing this I would smoke something while doing it. I got a temp of about 250 when I through the meat to it. Naturally the temp dropped while doing this. After this the temp would not stay close to constent. It went up and down about 20 deg. It was a little windy while doing this. Could that be the problem? I am using charcoal briquettes and oak. Opening the stack only let out the heat. The vents on the sidebox are open all the way.
post #2 of 9
Click that link in my sig & follow those instructions verbatim as far as loading photos. I know you have a barrel with a SFB. Is your charcoal basket lifted? & you don't want to close the top vent entirely as this may lead to creosote of your meat which is not good. Try to load a pic & let's see what you are working with. Try to get a pic of the inside of your SFB as well. Others will chime in soon.
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 

My equipment

The basket sits on the grate a couple inches off the bottom.
post #4 of 9
It looks like you have the right idea. First off I would calibrate your temps gages so you know there right on. I would start your charcoal in a chimney and place them on fresh charcoal, known as Minion Method. Keep your top vents wide open and control your heat from the lower vent. the more open your lower vent is the hotter the fire "i.e. more oxygen = more fire" Also keep the smoke fom the wood least as possible. If you can smell it and not see it your on track. Happy Smoking. Let us know how you do.
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 

Maintaining Temps

Thanks for the advice. I don't rely on the gauge that is on the grill, all it is good for is plugging the hole. I'm using a "Taylor" temp gauge that I assume is correct. I will try the "minion method".
post #6 of 9
Thanks Caveman! Great advice, I've had a little trouble with that and have almost the same setup.
post #7 of 9

Hi all,  have read the post here and I have a weird problem that I hope someone can help me with.  I am a newbie but very passionate about bbq.

The problem that I just can't get passed is this.... I have a Horizon 16" Classic (SFB).  After researching I started smoking baby back ribs by spreading out

about a chimney full of Royal Oak Lump on the bottom grate of the firebox.   I then lit a chimney full of lump, got them red hot, then dumped that on top of

cold lump.  I guess this is called the Minion Method.  Then I put about 3 chunks of peach wood on top of that and off I went.  No problem getting up to 250 degrees.

After about 1 hour and a half to 2 hours I had a hell of a time keeping the temp above 200.  I ended up adding more hot lump, eventually going through a whole new bag

in just 2 hours.  I don't understand why when I read that others that have used lump say just half a bag will last 6-8 hours.  Needless to say I ended up

finishing the ribs in the oven.  Not very good for my ego.  Help!

post #8 of 9

All I can think of is wind and outside temps. If it is windy and cold you will go threw more charcoal. Sorry Im not more help but I run a LPG smoker and a WSM

post #9 of 9

Thanks, your right about the temp.  It was cold that day and very windy.  I'll have more time to mess with it and try different things now that spring is coming.

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