Even temp. mod

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Smoking Fanatic
Original poster
OTBS Member
Feb 11, 2007
Cumberland Co. PA
I would like to modify my Smoke Hollow Smoker so that I can set at a certain temp & it stays there like a oven. Any suggestion on how to do this? What I need?
I have a Smoke Hollow 38" box - the temperature is pretty steady when set.

It wasn't always like that - before I replace the regulator (with a replacement from Smoke Hollow) I was all over the map on temperature using a needle valve.  I would think I had the temperature steady at around 225, then come back out 40 minutes later and it was way above 300 (or down around 150).

Now with the replacement regulator in place (no needle valve needed) I set it and the only variance might be if the temperature outside goes up or down.  Otherwise the smoker temperature is rock solid.  In fact, with the new regulator cranked up on high I see maybe 275-300 degrees max - it won't spike like before.

Not sure if you're running with the original equipment (and have the regulator problem that plagued a lot or owners).  Maybe you can provide more backround on your setup.
First let me start by saying sorry for the short detailed question. (lack of time) I'm using my smoker for bologna & sausage. I have modified it with the smaller valve & burner from Smoke Hollow Smoker plus a needle valve I put in myself. The problem is I preheat to 130 then add sausage to have temp. drop to 105. Then as the wood heats up & the sausage heats up the temp. slowly rises. Which I feel is the right thing but when the wood is done & the sausage is around 130-140 the temp. starts to drop. Turn heat up a little (1/4 turn on needle valve) an the next thing you know the heat is around 180-190 which cause the grease to cook out. Looking for a way to set at a certain temp. an hold it there just like a oven or guidance on what I'm doing wrong.  I have had great results with my smoker but it took a lot of babysitting. Looking for a more fool proof way.
Hey Buzzy,

The needle valve I had on my unit (before I replaced the regulator) cost me almost $30 on Amazon.  However, there was just enough play in the threads of the valve that I could change the setting just by giving the knob on the needle valve a wiggle-jiggle in it's fixed position.  That is why I could set it and think I had a good temperature, then come back later and it either spiked up or down.

Maybe you're having the same problem with your needle valve.  Not that price means everything, but the $30 valve I bought seemed a lot more sturdy than others that I saw, but it just didn't hold a temperature steady.  I wish I could give you a better recommendation, but maybe if you create a new posting and ask for needle valve recommendations you might get a good lead.  I did not replace my needle valve once I replaced the regulator - my smoker now holds temperature (and I don't do any cold smoking).  Good luck!
Hey Buzzy, did you get you problem solved?

One quarter turn is a lot on a needle valve, I turn mine in increments of 1/16 or even less.

You might want to watch your flame as you turn your valve and watch how much it increases with a 1/4 turn.

Just thinking..., you have a 25° temp drop, how about preheating 25° hotter before you load the smoker, you will also lose heat from the door being open, but your needle valve will be adjusted at your target temp of 130° taking into consideration the time for the meat to reach target temp, then as the meat heats up the cabinet temp will rise to 155° and you will be at a good smoking temp, requiring just a slight nudge of the valve to go a little higher.

I believe I just need a little more practice with the needle valve. The only time I use it is this time of year when making sausage. I did look at the flame when adjusting & you're right about it being alot. I did get a set of heavy duty magnets to hold the door open a little & can hold temp at 125 steady.
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