Smoke stops after 20 mins. Can't hold 250 degrees

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by mcvfd12, Jun 15, 2013.

  1. mcvfd12

    mcvfd12 Newbie

    Hi guys, guess I should start by telling you I have a master forge 2 door smoker that I have modified with fire place gasket to help keep the heat. I need to buy a thermometer for it because I'm sure the one in the door is off. I seasoned it yesterday and figured while it was already up and running I would throw on the brined pork chops I had in the fridge. During seasoning I had removed the water pan and it was easy to reach 250 and I needed to turn the heat down actually. Filled the pan and threw in apple chips and put the chops on. Well it smoked light blue for about 20 mins then stopped so I put a few hand full in foil and poked a few holes in it, that only lasted about a half hour. I just got upset and kept throwing chips in every 20 mins for about 3 hours. Chops tasted great it I want to do ribs or brisket next which takes longer and I'm not planning on putting chips in every 20 mins. What did I do wrong? I did order10 pounds of chunks off eBay. Sorry this is my first post and I tried to search but didn't see a whole lot of the same problems. Thanks in advance!
  2. seenred

    seenred Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    Don't get too impatient...that's about right for using wood chips.  They'll give off smoke for around a half hour.  If you want to add wood less often, get some fist-sized chunks instead of chips.  Throw 2 or 3 in at a time and they'll smoke longer than the chips.

    If you really want to take smoke production up a notch, go over to  and take a look at Todd's smoke generators.  I don't know your smoker...if it's electric, take a look at an AMNPS...if it's gas, look at the AMNTS.  Those little gadgets will produce perfect thin blue smoke for hours without having to reload.

    If you are struggling to keep your smoker temps up, try running without water or other liquid in the pan.  Many people put sand in the pan and cover with foil. That might help get your temps up.

    Good Luck, hope this helps.

    Last edited: Jun 15, 2013
  3. One of my smokers is the Master Forge dual door propane smoker.  I have used it for about 2 years now.  Like already stated fist sized chunks of wood work way better then chips.  Don't worry about the lid of the wood tray sitting correctly.  I load it with about 3 chunks and put the lid on top.  As the wood burns it lowers down the lid and works great.  I only add wood about every 2 hours or so.  That depends on how cold it is out which relates to how high the flame is set.  I also drilled out some extra holes so I could move the wood tray closer of further away from the fire so the wood would burn slower in the winter when I have to turn the heat up. (upstate NY)

    I also had a horrible time getting the smoker above 200F when I first got it.  I would take out the water pan and the temp would sky rocket.  I found that the water pan was too restrictive and wasn't allowing enough airflow through the smoker.  I cut off two lips of the water pan which was for the front and back of smoker (not needed since it glides on the racks on the sides).  That worked better but not great.  I found a disposable foil pan that fits in the side racks perfectly.  I fill that with water and on most days I only have the gas valve about 1/8-1/4 the way open.  Wood burns for a long time and I have very even temperatures throughout the whole smoker.  I shared this info because you mentioned removing the water pan.  Not sure if you were having issues with temps or not but this was a major obstacle for me to figure out.  It was just a horrible design.  Maybe they have fixed the dimensions of the water pan by now.  I also like using the foil pan because I just throw it out after each use.

    I have produced a lot of great food in this smoker.  I think you will like it once you get to know her.
  4. davidhef88

    davidhef88 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

  5. mcvfd12

    mcvfd12 Newbie

    Chunks should be here tomorrow as well as the maverick et73 thermometer. I'm going to do some cutting to the water pan and try to smoke again this weekend and do a rack of ribs. Do the mods and toss in 3 chunks and see what happens is the plan. Am I missing anything?
  6. yes!... have fun!
  7. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Yes..... manufacturers put a water pan in the smoker because they haven't engineered it correctly.....   The burner is too big and the temps can't get low enough for a good smoke unless the water pan is in the smoker to SUCK UP the Btu's.......  Folks have installed a needle valve between the pressure regulator and the burner to reduce the gas flow to the burner.....  VOILA !!!!  a smoker you can control the heat without using a water pan....  That is a mod that is done quite frequently by many gasser owners....   In the search bar, put needle valve for a search.... there may be links to where to get one and adapters for the install....  Chunks are a great way to go for longer smokes...   W-mart usually has them if you live near a store.... also stores that sell BBQ's usually sell chunks....   Also, there is the AMNTS tube smoke generator, T Johnson sells.....  He is a forum sponsor and a darn good sponsor at that.... he supports the site and has the best customer service anywhere....   In the bar at the top of the page, click on Sponsors and you will find Amazin Products...  Call him and talk... he will answer all your questions....    


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