Charcoal Basket for Side Fire Box in Char Griller

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Smoke Blower
Original poster
Jan 1, 2011
Omaha, Nebraska
Hey all,

I'm thinking about building a charcoal basket for my side fire box, but the only problem is, I have those cast iron grates in there that I usually put my water pan on.  The Charcoal basket mod that I've seen all over the internet and this forum would require me to move my water pan elsewhere.  What are your thoughts on this all?
I have a chargriller and side firebox that i made a charcoal basket for out of expanded metal.I use a small water pan under my grates in the body of the smoker.i first lined the bottom with fire bricks and then made a small pocket for the waterpan and lined the firebrick with foil.seems to work pretty good for me.The only other thing you can do is set it on the grates,or make a very small charcoal basket.
The one time I smoked without my water pan, I was smoking two turkeys for thanksgiving as well as some pork loin.  That was the only time i didn't use a water pan in my smoker and it's the only time I ever had kinda dry meat.

I have the fire side box with the cast iron grates.  I was thinking of making an angled smoker basket that would fit under there and also rest underneath the grates.

I've never put anything but the meat in my smoker body.  Does the water actually boil in the water pan when you put it into the smoker body?
The answer is yes.   The one thing to be carefull of is if you put the pan under the grate, that you dont get it to close to the firebox opening, or you will disturb the airflow.   Since the area on the firebox end of the smoke chamber is basically un usable due to high heat, I put a metal bread pan lined with foil on top of the grate and right up against the firebox side.  This is where I put the fluids I am using for moisture.   Just keep in mind that anywhere the temps get above 212° will work for your water pan.
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