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keeping the flame


Smoke Blower
Joined Mar 24, 2011
I have a char broil off set smoker, I have to replish the coal every 45min to an hour after I have started smoking . this normal or do I need more wood to star t with? I begin with one chimney full of lump coal


SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
Staff member
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Joined Jun 22, 2009
First of all welcome to SMF. I don't have your smoker so I can't help you on your question, but there are a lot of guys on here who do. Hopefully one will be along shortly.


Smoking Guru
OTBS Member
Joined Aug 1, 2008
Welcome to the forum!

I use about 1 2/3 chimneys to start a smoke on my CGSP.  Once the unit is up to temp, I ad about 2/3 to 3/4 of a chimney every 1 1/2 to two hours depending on weather conditions. Your weather conditions may be a tougher deal, especially in winter. Ambient temps and wind can play havoc with these units unless you have taken defensive measures.

If you have done no modifications, such as a charcoal basket, you might want to do a little searching around the forum.  In any case, you will find that offsets are less fuel efficient and require more fire tending than uprights.

Good luck and good smoking!


Fire Starter
Joined Oct 25, 2010
Welcome to SMF. I have a chargriller with the sfb like yours. Have you made any modifications to it yet?

Mine was about the same way yours is. I bought a shaker basket and ran two pieces of all-thread through that so it would be supported by where your racks would go in the SFB. I then went and got some dryer hose and extended my exhaust stack almost all the way to the grill surface.

In my opinion I think the shaker basket was the best mod there is for this rig. I was having trouble with high fuel consumption as well. Mostly towards the middle to end of the smoke. I generally start with one chimney full of Wicked Good lump and then right after that goes in the fire box I add another half of chimney and get the temps up around 300+ and add my meat to the grills. Then choke my fire dampers down to 1/4 open and let it stabilize. Then add another half of a chimney after a couple three hours depending on weather conditions/wind ect.

I was having trouble keeping my temps in range as well before I added the shaker basket to the fire box. I was using briquettes at that time and with the ash they put off it would clog up (under the grate in SFB) my draft and my dampers wouldnt make up for being clogged with ash. So I had to either try and empty the ash or run full bore burning fuel like crazy. Any other questions feel free to ask. I will try and find a link with mods for your smoker that I found on youtube that I went off when I did some  of mine.

Here is the link hopefully it works I am not such a computer genius. 



Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Joined Jun 5, 2009
You definately want to get a charcoal basket in the firebox..... and use the minion method. Do a search for charcoal basket and you will find lots of differant threads showing all kinds of differant baskets you can make or buy for usually less than $20.

The minion method is to fill your charcoal basket about 3/4 full of unlit charcoal, then dump about 1/2 to 1 full chimney of lit charcoal into the middle of that. Using this method you should be able to get about 3-4 hrs. of burn time before you need to add more fuel in a Char-griller. Also if you do the mods to seal up all the air gaps you will get a much more efficient smoker, but some of those mods can be a pain to get them to work correctly.


Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
Joined May 20, 2010
Welcome to SMF, the minion method is what you want. I have one, PM me if you want the mods i made  


Legendary Pitmaster
SMF Premier Member
Joined Oct 17, 2009
Welcome to the SMF. Glad to have you here. Lots of good folks, great recipes and knowledge. Looking forward to your first qview.


Meat Mopper
Joined Jan 20, 2011
 to SMF chefmjg! I'm glad you joined us.
 You will find this a great place for increasing your BBQ knowledge
, from a bunch of great people. Have fun and Happy Smoking.        


Epic Pitmaster
OTBS Member
Joined May 1, 2007

Welcome to SMF, Glad to have you with us.

This is the place to learn, lots of good info and helpful friendly Members.

For those of you new to Smoking, be sure to check out Jeff's 5 Day Smoking Basics eCourse.

Click Here it's "FREE" ... 5 Day eCourseE

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