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??? heating wood smoker electric 12cubeft.uninsulated will 110 brinkmann element heat it to 180 in m

Discussion in 'Smoker Builds' started by ironmike323, Oct 23, 2013.

  1. needing to see if you think element will heat this up to 180 carsiding wood build 20deep 24wide 40 tall.live in michigan wondering if would do it in 30 degrees outside with no wind???need idead of what to use to line bottom and bottom sides where element and amazin smoker go?[​IMG]have build pid to run element works great. 
  2. dward51

    dward51 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Metal is a great conductor of heat. And in this case, the direction of the conduction will be out on all sides of the smoker.

    No insulation will make it hard to keep a temp up in an electric in cold weather.  I could not get the photo to open so I did not see what your smoker shell looked like.  Have you thought about adding some 1 inch square tubing as a spacer to add an inner liner? You could insulated between the two.  It will make a big difference in performance no matter what your outside temps are.
  3. daveomak

    daveomak Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Mike, morning.....  Car siding..... remind me....  is that stuff 1 1/4" tongue and groove....   If it is, a 2x2x3 smoker should be OK heated with a 1500 watt element....   I can't open the link.... it don't work for me...   use cement board in the bottom part of the smoker...  air gap it so it doesn't come in contact with the wood....  an air gap is good insulation...   cement board will conduct heat and the wood could catch fire...   Just insurance...   

    Last edited: Oct 25, 2013
  4. t is 3/4 thick tounge and groove.i ang gonna line bottom with unglazed ceramic tiles.it is the smoker i have pic for my profile.right now 4 ft x 24 x19 gonna downsize hieght to around three ft to help.i hope brinkmann element on myh pid will bring it to 180.
  5. daveomak

    daveomak Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Don't cut it down until you try it.....   I'd get a bigger element and keep the room in the smoker for sausage, beef sticks, bacon and the like...    

    Double up the wood if necessary to hold in the heat....  Do anything, but don't cut it down..........

    Last edited: Oct 25, 2013
  6. running a pid with only 110.what is the biggest element brinkmann keeps coming to me?
  7. handymanstan

    handymanstan Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    I like your smoker.  I think you will be able to get to and hold 225 in this size box with a 1500 watt element.  Don't know if you will be able to get to 350 or not.  I think a good amount of thermal mass like a dish of sand or bricks would real help.  Nice artwork on the door.  [​IMG]Looks good.

  8. dward51

    dward51 Master of the Pit OTBS Member


    Now I see the photo (could not get the original link to open).  Totally disregard my earlier comment about metal and needing insulation.  Your "uninsulated" post threw me as I thought it was a metal cabinet.

    Yes, wood has an insulation quality just by the nature of the wood cells so that cabinet will perform much better than an uninsulated metal cabinet.  Cement board, ceramic tile, hardi-board type sheet material, etc... all would work for lining the bottom area.  Thick floor tiles would be the easiest to clean if any drips or spills hit them (and it will).  That 1,500 watt element will probably be just fine in that cabinet.

    Nice looking cabinet....
    Last edited: Oct 26, 2013
  9. well ran a test run bought just a 1100watt hot plate and took an hour to get to 150 and thats is where it stays?i lined all the bottom and bottom sides  with ceramic tile an burner sitting on two firestones.do you think a 1500 watt brinkmann element would do any better?i have ceiling insulated also.All i am wanting is to make venison jerky.cold smoking i am not sure of the temps i need but would like to maintain 180.you thought and advice needed???
  10. forgot toon 49 and little breezy here today.i have reached 157 degrees but that is about it so let ne know what u think??
  11. handymanstan

    handymanstan Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    Mike  I might be wrong but I don't think anyone has had success with a hot plate.  Too many protections built in to let it run full blast all the time.  I believe 1500 watt would work.  Do you have the possibility to go up in voltage to 240 volts if so I can send you a PM with a link to a element  that's 2750 watt.

  12. daveomak

    daveomak Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Mike, you will have to tear the hot plate apart and remove the housing, remove the "overtemp" switch, and set it all together in a non flammable base....   then you can get the full potential out of the element.....   I've done it on my "Totem Smoker"......

  13. I believe i am just gonna get a brinkmann element 1500watt .I would love to go 220 i could possibly get 220 but i have allready built a pid but i think it would work.if so what element would you recommend.Also i seen somewhere where someone rand just one leg of the 220 through pid and was able to use it.
  14. dward51

    dward51 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Yep, Dave Omak is right.  All of the retail hot plates have a thermal limiter in them.  Years ago, I tried to put one in my WSM for better low temp jerky making and found out it hit a certain point and that is all she wrote.  Basically you want the hot plate element "straight wired" to the 115v AC source like the brinkman 1,500 watt element would be.  You would then use the PID to switch the element on and off to control your temps.  I'm also not sure how well the housing of a hot plate will hold up to running full on like that, but it should not hurt the element (you may need to take it out of the housing also).  The one I bought was a thick plastic (bakelite?).

    Since you already own the hot plate, might as well tear into it and bypass the thermal limiter.  How many watts is the hotplate?  The one I bought was 1,100 watts.  I never took mine apart though.  We still use it during the holidays.  I think it was $14 at Walmart.
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2013
  15. handymanstan

    handymanstan Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    Mike the pid does not care if you are using 120 or 240.  The pid controls a ssr and the ssr can use both voltages . I will PM you the link for the 240 element.

  16. update! i received brinkmann element today installed it.couple of questions?

    56 degrees out little breezy fired it up took 28minutes to reach 180 and 50 minutes to hit 220 and from there just kinda sat at 220.is that about right time period to heat them up?

    so know wondering if 30 degrees out if i will be able to maintain 180??

    Also dont know much about adjusting pid but is it normal for it to wonder from 175 to 185 when set at 180?

    It flicks on and off alot just for short 1 maybe 2 second burst any setting adjustment that would help this i did auto tune.

    So help with my questions and any opinions on if it will hold 180 when colder out and what could be done to help it i have installed tile around heat chamber.up higher wood was pretty hot the ones that hold drip pan what is combustion degrees for pine?lol
  17. handymanstan

    handymanstan Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    Morning Iron Mike,  When you ran the auto tune was it up to temp or cold.  I let my smoker get to heat then run the auto tune again.  It will remember the auto tune  so you only need it once unless you change something.  My pid will hold the temp within 2-3 degrees depending on the weather.  My pid runs at about 10 -20% most of the time.  My smoker takes about a hour to warm up all the mass in the smoker like bricks and sand in the water pan then I add the meat.  What are you smoking at 180* most of my smokes are at 225* to 250*.  Was 220* the max it got to?  If the pid was cycling then it must of got to the temp you had it set for.  What was that 220*?  Try not using the pid and just plug the element in and let it go max for a hour or so and see what the max temp you can get.  

  18. dward51

    dward51 Master of the Pit OTBS Member


    Did you add the ceramic tiles, cement board, or other "mass" to the smoker?  I remember you talked about adding tiles.  Any of those adds mass and in addition to providing protection to the wood from the heat, it will also help moderate the temperature in the smoker.  Think about a brick wall that stays in full sun on a sunny day in the fall.  After the sun goes down, you can feel the warmth of the wall for hours if you put your hand on it.  Tiles, concrete, bricks and other "mass" items perform the same function in a smoker.  The absorb heat as the smoker heats up, and if the smoker cools down, they release some of that heat back into the smoker.  The "mass" naturally wants to stay at the air temp, but since it has "mass" it also can store heat.  That is why it may take longer than you expected to get the smoker up to temp when first started.

    And Stan is dead on about auto tune.  Let the smoker run for a while until you are certain the mass is at "equilibrium" with the desired temperature.  Then do an auto tune.  What auto tune does is basically "learn" the performance of your smoker so the PID can anticipate how it should respond to slight changes in temps.  This lets it hold temperature very closely to the desired set point.

    If it still seems to wander too far from your set point, most PID's have a user adjustment in the software as to how tight they work to the set point temperature.  If you bought the PID off E-bay, someone might have set those values a little wide previously. We can look at that setting if we need to, but do the "up to temp" auto tune first.

    Oh, and if you want to mostly smoke at 225*, I would do the auto tune cycle at 225*.  It will still be tuned for other temps, but do it at the temp you use most.
    Last edited: Nov 2, 2013
  19. bought pid new from aubrin.Why smoke so hot gonna smoke jerky and 180 seems kinda high to cold smoke.I do want to use cure to my meat.everyone was saying from 140 to 180 to dry the meat?
  20. dward51

    dward51 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Auber Instruments is a great source for a PID.  You did good with that.

    If 180* is your target then auto tune for 180*.  So you are looking at jerky and sausage smoking more than traditional pork butts and brisket which would be in the 225* range.  Sounds like you are on the right track.