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I could use some pointers on my new offset...

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Joined Jul 4, 2015
 I've had the chance to cure and break in my new off set smoker last week with minor success.
The first attempt was a "Mortons" Tri-Tip cut from Costco (where I work) that we've had in the past and have always thought they were pretty darn good. However in the smoker at around 200-225 for 6 hours it didn't turn out as I was expecting. I was thinking it would just fall apart and that wasn't the case. It turned out very tough and I couldn't even tear through it
I did do some chicken quarters  turned out decent (skin was tough and tasted like an ash tray
  I assume it's because it was only done with charcoal and not chunks or sticks) but I will definitely be brining a whole bird next time. I'm hoping to get some apple wood from a local u pick orchard this year that our family frequents. Hopefully someone else doesn't have the same idea!


Any tips on the Tri-Tip would be much appreciated!
 

daveomak

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Looks like too much/heavy smoke..... Smoke on the right is what you should be looking for......



The way to "thin" out the smoke is leave the exhaust wide open, maybe use less fuel and open the air inlet more, or add another air inlet to the Firebox above the fuel to add more air... the extra air will help cool down the cook chamber, burn volatiles while closing the air inlet to the fuel will help cool the fire also..... it's a delicate balancing act.....

of course all of this is a guess not knowing what exactly went on during the smoke..
 

lemans

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What was the IT? I would have pulled it at 135 and let in rest for and hour. Don't get discouraged just Learn from each smoke
 

bluewhisper

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Give it more tries and learn the quirks of that rig. I'm running a similar offset and it's like fussing with a steam locomotive.

Edited to add, take good pics of it now before you scorch the paint heh heh
 
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venture

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Good advice above!

Get a couple of good digital therms,  put one toward each end of the cooking grate.  Do some dry runs and experiment until you know what is going on and you can control the cook chamber.

I agree your smoke doesn't look too pleasant. Even the pic on the right in Dave's post is heavier smoke than I like.

Also, some disposable drip pans below the cooking grate will save you a lot of grief cleaning out the bottom of that baby.  If you do use drip pans, put them in while you are experimenting cause they will modify your air flow.

Good luck and good smoking.
 
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joe black

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To me it looks like poor combustion. It also doesn't appear that it smoked long enough to get as tender as it could have. Depending on your cook temp, the important thing is not the time, but the IT. Also, I would use Royal Oak lump to establish a goo bed of coals and then cook with wood splits. Your fire will burn cleaner, hotter and will not create as much ash. This will be true no matter what meat you're cooking.
Good luck and good smoking, Joe
 
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Joined Jul 4, 2015
Thanks for the info guys, I do intend to get a pair of good thermometers for each side as well as a wireless internal temp thermometer.

I just got back from picking blueberries at a local farm that does apples as well and they said I can all the free wood I want come pruning season!

I appreciate all the tips, I'll post some Q-View with my next attempt with a bunch of CSR this week end. This forum is awesome! Thanks again everyone!
 

areallynicegirl

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Thanks for the info guys, I do intend to get a pair of good thermometers for each side as well as a wireless internal temp thermometer.

I just got back from picking blueberries at a local farm that does apples as well and they said I can all the free wood I want come pruning season!

I appreciate all the tips, I'll post some Q-View with my next attempt with a bunch of CSR this week end. This forum is awesome! Thanks again everyone!
these guys know everything about everything concerning cooking, building, smoking.  They have helped me out of some bad spots before where I thought maybe all might be lost but I was able to prevail because of their sound advice!!

Also, welcome from another oregonian!  We are in South Lane county on 40 acres 12 miles south of Cottage Grove.  Its beautiful here!!
 
17
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Joined Jul 4, 2015
I've spent hours browsing the forums. I just finished a $2.00 mod on mine getting it ready for some ribs!
Added a heat shield and extended the exhaust down to the cooking grate as well using an aluminum roasting pan. I'll add some q view later. We are up north in Salem. I love the are down south, it's beautiful country!
 

areallynicegirl

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Me too!  Ive spent so much time on here and my poor husband get tired of me "hey honey come check this out!!  We gotta build/mod/smoke/etc this!!"    Though he does enjoy the fruit of my labor, just last night we had a breakfast sausage fattie stuffed with obrien potatoes and wrapped in bacon that i smoked on the Little Chief.

Soon you will be the Master of the Pit!!
 

stickyfingers

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I noticed in your picture that the exhaust damper is slightly closed. Keeping it wide open will help with a cleaner smoke. Regulate the temp with the firebox damper.  
 

aggie94

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Good job on the mods, they help.  Adding some mass helps with temperature fluctuations too.  I'm sure there are better thermometers, but I've had good luck with River Country 2" gauges, about $13 each on Ebay. 
 
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