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Bar B Chef offset smoker temp


Joined Jun 3, 2018
Just purchased a new to me Bar B Chef offset smoker. I am having problems getting it above 230. Curious; how full do you normally load your firebox? I am graduating from using a weber kettle and I can get that up to 300 with very little charcoal. I have about 5 starter chimneys worth of coals and lump mesquite and with fire box vent wide open only hit 230. I know my temp is accurate. I use a Thermoworks Thermo Q. I have the thermo Q thermocouple style sensor mounted on the grate center of the smoke box towards the back. In the smoker is one chicken and one rack of ribs.



Master of the Pit
Joined Jul 28, 2013
That doesn't make sense! Is the stack vent fully open? Not blocked with anything to impede the draw?
My older New Braunfels is similar to yours and one chimney of briquets and a couple of splits will get it to 400 if I would let it!
Is your fire elevated on a rack or in a basket of any kind? They don't do well with the fire in the bottom of the firebox. You have more than enough coals, so the issue nearly has to be that it is not drawing for some reason


Thread starter
Joined Jun 3, 2018
For people with offset smokers similar to mine how big of a fire do you build in your fire box to maintain 250 deg? How many chimneys of briquettes or lump? Do any of you just use briquettes or lump or do you all use a combination of either or with wood? Trying a brisket for the 4th.


Joined Mar 15, 2012
Reviving this zombie thread,...

I own this same Bar B Chef smoker. It has performed well for me except for yesterday 5/26/19. Was able to get the smoker up to temp rather quickly to 235-250 and slid the 7lb butt in. Everything was great until the butt hit began to stall at 150. I had thrown in 3 full racks of ribs in the chamber about the same time and could not get the smoker higher than 200 after that. It actually started floating around 190 with all the meat in there and I started to get a bit concerned.

Everything turned out excellent, just took longer.

In retrospect, I started thinking about what might have happened. The only thing that could have effected the temperature was that we had a little bit of wind come thru our backyard for 1-2 hours, which could have affected the smoker's draw. I had my smoker in an elevated location on my backyard deck. I ended up blocking the wind with some pieces of wood to shield the box and smoking chamber. Temps started coming back up but it took awhile and never reached 250 again. I too, was adding charcoal in an elevated basket. At times, I had the firebox door and chimney wide open, too.

I think the operation of these particular smokers are dependent on the weather but would like to hear from others on the forum that might have some thoughts and suggestions on what to do when the smoking chamber temps drop and one can't get the temps back up. I would love to blast through that stall with temps at 250+.

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