Can't Keep Temp Steady

Discussion in 'Charcoal Smokers' started by rp ribking, Feb 25, 2010.

  1. rp ribking

    rp ribking Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    I have a WSM 22 and 1/2". I fill the ring to the top with Kingsford briquettes and a full chimney of lit briquettes, I'll smoke for a minimum of 5 + hours, depending on the internal temp of the meat . After the coals are ashed over I add some chunks of wood (5). I have the WSM under a roof. I can't seem to maintain a steady temp for more than a couple of hours. I fill the water pan with hot water cause it is cold outside, below 30*, and it seems to dissipate quickly also.

    I keep the top vent open and adjust with the bottom vents. Maybe this is my problem?

    The Virtual Weber Bullet website says to keep all bottom vents closed and the top one open. How do WSM Smokers keep a steady temp?

    Thanks RP
  2. ak1

    ak1 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    After a few hrs, the coals are dying. It's time to add new charcoal.
  3. jmantbbq

    jmantbbq Newbie

    I have the same 22 inch WSM. You always want to keep the top vent open. I live in NH, and smoke regularly in the winter cold. Start with a full bag of unlit Kingsford, bury some of the smoke wood in the unlit coals. add a few chunks on top. Light a full chimney of coals (winter only) and throw on top when they are lit. Bottom vents 100% open.

    When the temp rises to about 200, add your meat. When the temp climbs to about 225, close the bottom vents to about 1/4. Should chug away for 10+ hours. You may need to close the vents more if the temp starts to climb. I usually end up with 2 of the 3 bottom vents closed completely.

    I do not run water in the pan, I run a flower pot saucer instead. I get 14 + hous out of a bag of Kingsford. I feel water is not needed. The water acts as a heat sink to keep the temps from rising, as it boils it uses energy(heat). The water just uses extra coals. The moisture in the meat comes from the fat, not the steam.


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