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Chips VS Chunks


Joined Jun 16, 2019
So, I just started researching this. I have the Masterbuilt 40in XL elite. I received it back in 2017. I love it. But, here is the thing. When I use chips (dry) always, I get a huge burst of white smoke for about 10 minutes, then some thin blue smoke for about 5 minutes, and then it is all done smoking. What would happen if I used chunks?

Can I use the chunks in the original chip pan, or do I need something else? How many chunks?

I am trying to get a much longer smoke then just 15-20 mins....... Then I have to reload again and again. I keep my vent wide open all the time. And I use water in the pan.

How are these guys with the electric smokers getting this thin blue smoke for 45 mins to an hour?


Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Joined Sep 29, 2018
What temp are you using? If too low of a temp, the electrics have a hard time getting hot enough to burn the chips. I would think chunks would be even worse.
Either an Amazen tray or tube, would get you anywhere from 2-8 hrs ( or more) of continuous smoke.


SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
Staff member
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Joined Jun 22, 2009
I’m not familiar with your smoker, but my Smoke Vault gasser uses wood chunks quite well. So I’m assuming that since you posted this in the propane smoker section your smoker is a gasser too. Give it a try & see how it goes.
Here is how I set mine up, chips & chunks at first, then just chunks every 45 minutes or so.


Joined Jun 16, 2019
225-275. My MB can get to 375. Well the longest smoke I have done is poor man burnt ends. 8 hours. But you don't smoke for the full 8 obviously. So really that is it. I have no desire to do briskets or anything. I have read soaking chips just makes steam and not actual smoke, like dry chips. I use 2 handfuls of chips in my stock MB tray. I have had a bunch of flare ups. But I have figured out I was adding too many chips. I am looking for that nice blue thin smoke. How do I even achieve it? That is the question. But if I run chunks, I won't be able to close that chip lid. So do I just forego it all together?

Steve H

Smoking Guru
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Joined Feb 18, 2018
I use chips. But I use a small cast iron pan to hold them instead of the tray. As stated. You can use the A-Maze-N tray. When I do I just leave the bottom door cracked open for air flow.
Joined Sep 12, 2020
I have a Smoke Vault also and use chunks exclusively. Chips seemed to burn through way too quickly, and by the time I got some good smoke going, they were already spent. A put a few chunks in at a time when I'm smoking and they seem to last about 60-90 minutes before needing to refill.

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