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Smoke Daddy Pellet Pro Vertical Smoker

jbinfla

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Joined Jun 21, 2014
Well I bit the bullet and bought one. While I was doing my research I couldn't find much information on this smoker. There are quite a few YouTube videos, but they are all by the manufacturer or people that I think are affiliated with them. I don't mind this, but it's not what I would call an objective review. So, I figured me, regular guy looking for a smoker, might post something here in hopes that Google will crawl it and others looking for info can find it easily. I won't go into the details on why I picked this one, suffice it to say I wanted something I thought would last, would hold a temp well, and had enough room to cook for large gatherings.

A bit of a background on my smoking first. I started with a small offset smoker. Used it, sometimes with wood, sometimes charcoal, and had mixed results. It was small and seemed I couldn't get the fire "just right", either too big or too small and this led to less than desirable results. I ended up getting a Masterbuilt Pro gas smoker and have had it many, many years and got my go-to ribs down to a science on there. I do have to watch because it seems it's either creeping up, or creeping down on the temp so I was always fiddling with it to keep it where I like to smoke (225° but reality was 225°-275°). Used wood chips and replenished them often to get a nice smoke flavor. My smoker finally gave up the ghost and although I tried to repair it I did see the bottom was rusted out, etc. So I started looking, and really I don't know what the best bet was I was open to a vertical charcoal smoker, a kamado style, but didn't want another offset. Plus I have a nice grill so I only wanted a smoker. I ruled out the Kamado because I don't think on the few times a year (pre-covid) that I had large gatherings it would be large enough for my needs. I ruled out the charcoal because my original budget was sub $1000 and I couldn't find one that I liked for under $3500. Yes, the Smoke Daddy blew my budget a bit.

The Pellet Pro Vertical was out of stock for several months, and I have been sorely missing smoking meat! I had emailed and talked to Dan a couple times anxious to put in my order. Very helpful. He finally called less than 2 weeks ago to tell me they were in stock, and I put in my order. Also got the Big Kahuna cold smoker because I have never used a pellet smoker and some internet post question whether pellet smokers can give a good smoke flavor. Just in case, I wanted to be able to add it. Well, I think it was about 8-days from order to arrival. Shipping from Illinois to Florida was 3 days. They shipped it on Wednesday, and it showed up on Friday. I can say this, it is packaged WELL. Very well. I would venture to say if you order one and it comes damaged it was hit by a Mac truck or something.

I spent last night assembling it because I was quite desirous of using it. Putting it together wasn't hard, I did spend a couple hours doing it but I took my time. I have not installed the recirculating fan yet, but will. I will do that the first time I smoke some cheese. I can say it is built very well, and the size is astounding. I have a picture of it next to my old Masterbuilt. I could probably cook 20+ racks of ribs. My masterbuilt I had to cut them in half, and could get 6 racks in there which was fine but not the best. Really I could double that if I bought 4 more racks since these racks are 7-8" apart and I could do ribs with half that clearance. I could probably do 16 pork butts without problem.

Today I seasoned it. I was worried it would be quirky or somehow not be as simple as I had it in my mind. My one time using it has been a breeze and I am happy. I set to 350° per the instructions and it got up to temp and held it there, spot on according to the pellet PID controller temp guage. I am also using a Thermopro 4-probe Bluetooth temp monitor, with one probe up high and one down low. They read 343 and 344 respectively. The temps never fluctuated more than 1-degree once it was up to temp, the graph was amazingly flat. Wow. This is what I was hoping for. I will get some boiling and freezing water and see which one need to be calibrated but really it doesn't matter to me it holds temp and I can adjust if necessary. I did note there was tape on the Pellet Pro probe during assembly that I took off but I did not clean it with alcohol or anything like that. There may be residue that needs to be cleaned up but either way I am happy.

Tomorrow I'm going to try some ribs. That was always my favorite. One of the big reasons for getting a pellet grill was the desire to add briskets and other long smoke time meats to my menu. Given a brisket can run 16+ hours, if I want to serve dinner at 4pm, that means starting about 10pm night before (includes resting time). There's no way I can stay up all night, then enjoy myself the next day at a gathering, I need a smoker that I can set and forget. I don't mind waking up at 6am or something to check, but I can't babysit all night. So, once I can convince myself this thing is a steady as I've heard (and as todays test indicates) I will buy a packer and give it a go.

And that's it for now. I will update this periodically. I couldn't find much when searching so hopefully someone else coming along will find this useful. In the mean time, below is the only real pic I have of it now, next to what it is replacing. I appreciate the heavy duty castors, I will be able to roll it in and out of my lanai for smokes easily.

- Joe

Pellet Pro.jpg
 
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chef jimmyj

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Congrats on a Sweet New Smoker...JJ
 

jbinfla

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Joined Jun 21, 2014
The filter canister looking thing is the Big Kahuna cold smoke generator. I'm about 2.5 hrs into my ribs I'm hoping to eat for lunch :) I have been monitoring remotely and temp is staying pretty flat so I'm happy. I just went out and checked and the chips in the cold smoke generator were burnt. I think you only get 1-hour out of this one using chips. I may get some chunks too. Instructions say best is a mix of chips, chunks and pellets. I am not sure what to expect, some of the forum post lead me to believe pellets will not satisfy me (who likes heavy smoke) others say it does just fine. So, this is my test.

Normally I do the 3-2-1 method but I'm thinking of not wrapping these. Not sure if I will regret that or not.
 

jbinfla

Newbie
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Joined Jun 21, 2014
Okay so my first smoke was today. I guess I'm happy, and sad, with the results. Happy because it kept the temp right where I wanted it, sad because it didn't get the smoke flavor that I'm accustomed to. Really sad because if I can't get that heavy smoke that my family has came to love I'm gonna have some regret about going the pellet route.

So I do have the Big Kahuna cold smoke generator. I filled it and lit as I was preheating the grill. It was still smoking when I added the ribs. I have a remote thermometer so I didn't even go out and look for 2.5 hours. When I did the cold smoker had burned out and there was ever so slight smoke coming out the stack. So, I refilled and relit the cold smoker. I checked an hour later and it was burned out, so I really am not sure how long it smokes. I also know I was burning wood chips only so I will get some chunks to add.

Also of note is that I DID NOT PUT IN A WATER PAN. I don't spritz, but I've always had a water pan in my other smokers. I think this was a mistake to leave out. Ribs were otherwise good, done how I wanted them maybe a little refinement left but not dry or tough. What I am wondering is if the water pan adds humidity which will help the smoke flavor set in. There was a smoke ring on the ribs, just not that smoke taste. And it wasn't just me, my wife and youngest who was over also commented on the lack of smoke flavor. I'm probably guilty of "oversmoking" usually, but this is what we like so I'd like to get that out of this smoker. As far as temperature control it is exactly what it promised, except when I opened the door it maintained 225° - 231° the whole time. Opening the door the temp would dip to 190° then after closing spike to about 250° before normalizing.

I guess now off to figure out how to get more smoke to flavor the meat. They do make something called the "Heavy D" heat diffuser which you can load some wood sticks but I've read it can cause heat spikes. Any way, I guess there's a lot of info to read about smoke flavor and pellet grills. The stuff I see on youtube people have their Pit Bosses with no cold smoke generators, just regular pellets and they say they do great smoke flavor. Maybe I need to start off at 180° or something to get more smoke? I don't know. Any way just where I'm at after smoke #1. I plan to do another smoke next weekend and use wood chunks with the chips in the cold smoker and add a water pan to add moisture. I think I'm going to skip the wrapping this time. I may put some chips on the diffuser to see if I can get more smoke. I always kept a pan of chips above my fire on the gas smoker so maybe that's the easy answer.

Until next smoke...
 
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RCAlan

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The filter canister looking thing is the Big Kahuna cold smoke generator. I'm about 2.5 hrs into my ribs I'm hoping to eat for lunch :) I have been monitoring remotely and temp is staying pretty flat so I'm happy. I just went out and checked and the chips in the cold smoke generator were burnt. I think you only get 1-hour out of this one using chips. I may get some chunks too. Instructions say best is a mix of chips, chunks and pellets. I am not sure what to expect, some of the forum post lead me to believe pellets will not satisfy me (who likes heavy smoke) others say it does just fine. So, this is my test.

Normally I do the 3-2-1 method but I'm thinking of not wrapping these. Not sure if I will regret that or not.
A few helpful tips when using the SD Smoke Generator... SmokeDaddy recommends to not use Wood Pellet in their Smoke Gen. Canisters because a full canister of pellets will impede the airflow. What I’ve found is that if you use good quality Hickory, Oak or Mesquite Lump Charcoal as the heat base... about half canister full, then add a mixture of 50% CharHickory or Hickory LumberJack Pellets to 50% Hardwood Chips. This setup will give you a nice, clean, steady smoke. You’ll benefit from the TBS Smoke Profile of the Lump Charcoal and the clean smoke of the pellets, plus the Hardwood Smoke from the Chips. Also, using Pellets and Lump Charcoal will also help decrease the production of creosote and make the fire and smoke management easier. Will the interior of the canister still darken when used? Yes, but the production of creosote will be decreased and the cleaning maintenance will be much easier as well. Hope the info and tips help.

Pellet Pro Austin XL and a few more mods... In SoCal and Always... Semper Fi
 

jbinfla

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Joined Jun 21, 2014
Thanks for the tips. I'm going to try again this weekend with some more ribs. It is really important to me to get the smoke flavor, otherwise it's just a glorified oven.

I'm going to go full tilt boogie this time. I have an AMAZN tube gonna fill it with Mesquite pellets. Gonna get some lump charcoal, more chips, and some chunks and try and keep the cold smoker going. I'm guessing I'll check every 30-minutes and add chips/chunks. This is a lot of work but if I can get the smoke flavor added I will be happy.

I also read some post on here about using "sawdust", basically pellets that were broken into the dust and packed into the AMAZN tube for longer, thicker smoke. Mostly it was done for cheese, so I'm not sure if it's something I should try or not.

Here's to my next smoke!
 

jbinfla

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Joined Jun 21, 2014
Well smoke #2 under way. Today it's supposed to rain so doing this on my Lanai... Wife does not approve, but it's far from the worse thing I've done :) Tomorrow will be beautiful and before this one even gets going I'm already planning it.

I bought some extra-fine wood chips, a bucket of oak and a bucket of hickory. I tried to pack the AMAZN with these chips and couldn't keep it lit, so went with Mesquite pellets I got from Smokedaddy. I also have my Big Kahuna loaded, I started with chips, put some chunks on top, then some of the fine wood chips, then some more chips. Right now it's billowing nice smoke. I guess I'm gonna keep up on the Big Kahuna and try to keep it full and smoking, hopefully the AMAZN will stay lit. It should, I've used it before on my gas grill with pellets stayed lit. This extra fine stuff not sure why it wouldn't stay lit I thought for sure it would be similar to the sawdust I see but maybe not. I will have to try that different.

So, if I can get enough, or too much, smoke on these ribs I'll consider this a win and maybe do a pork butt tomorrow. If ribs aren't smoky I'll do it again...
 

RCAlan

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Well smoke #2 under way. Today it's supposed to rain so doing this on my Lanai... Wife does not approve, but it's far from the worse thing I've done :) Tomorrow will be beautiful and before this one even gets going I'm already planning it.

I bought some extra-fine wood chips, a bucket of oak and a bucket of hickory. I tried to pack the AMAZN with these chips and couldn't keep it lit, so went with Mesquite pellets I got from Smokedaddy. I also have my Big Kahuna loaded, I started with chips, put some chunks on top, then some of the fine wood chips, then some more chips. Right now it's billowing nice smoke. I guess I'm gonna keep up on the Big Kahuna and try to keep it full and smoking, hopefully the AMAZN will stay lit. It should, I've used it before on my gas grill with pellets stayed lit. This extra fine stuff not sure why it wouldn't stay lit I thought for sure it would be similar to the sawdust I see but maybe not. I will have to try that different.

So, if I can get enough, or too much, smoke on these ribs I'll consider this a win and maybe do a pork butt tomorrow. If ribs aren't smoky I'll do it again...
Good luck... The more you use the Big Kahuna, the better you’ll get at using it and what works best for you... FYI... Keep it clean, keep it hot and keep on Smoking.

Pellet Pro Austin XL and a few more mods... In SoCal and Always... Semper Fi
 

jbinfla

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Joined Jun 21, 2014
A couple things:

1) Don't smoke in a screened in lanai. It was raining so I It got hard to bear at some times since the air doesn't move through it quite like it does outdoors. Wife does not approve, and every time I went outside some smoke got in house. Lesson learned.
2) I couldn't keep AMZN tube going with smoke chips, so replaced with pellets and couldn't keep it going. I'm not sure what the deal is with this, next smoke I will get this going before the meat gets added. I didn't want to keep opening / closing it but I wonder if there's not enough air in there to continue to burn? Maybe I didn't light fully? Dunno
3) I over seasoned the ribs. To much rub. I bought a new rub and it was salty. I shouldn't change things up until I figure this out.
4) I was able to get the Big Kahuna smoking, and I added wood chips every 30-minutes for the first 1.5 hours. Then I got busy, and didn't add any until about 4 hours in. Didn't get a big smoke flavor.

The smoker stayed on point for temp. Wasn't what I was hoping for again. I will try again next week, I think I'll start the AMAZN tube with just pellets (how I've used it in the past) before I start the smoker. Give it 15-30 minutes to smokes to make sure it can smoke in there and it's not too air tight or something. Then if that works I'll start preheating and give it another 15-30 and see if it stays lit. If so then I'm going to start the Big Kahuna and put ribs on. I'm also contemplating putting a tray on the fire box cover full of chips. That's how I did it in the gas smoker put chips in there. So, next go around I'm going to add that. Three smoke sources. if I can get over smoked then I'll start backing it off. I am sure I sound like a rookie as I suspect most pellet smokers have already figured out the smoke. One thing I haven't, and don't plan to try, is the low temp smoke setting on the smoker. I want to have to change all my temp/times if I don't have to.

So, next week I'll post some more let you all know. If I get something good I'll post some more pics.
 

retfr8flyr

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IMHO you will never get a great smoke flavor with a pellet grill of any type, I don't care what extra smoke device you add too it. I love my Traeger grill but I never expected to get heavy smoke flavor from it. Pellet grills give off a cleaner, lighter flavor, that many prefer. I really love the way my Traeger does poultry and think it can't be touched doing that. I feel the only way you will get heavy smoke flavor is with lump charcoal and wood chunks, or a stick burner. The very nature of pellet grills just doesn't allow them to give heavy smoke flavor.
 

RCAlan

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Joined Aug 26, 2018
A couple things:

1) Don't smoke in a screened in lanai. It was raining so I It got hard to bear at some times since the air doesn't move through it quite like it does outdoors. Wife does not approve, and every time I went outside some smoke got in house. Lesson learned.
2) I couldn't keep AMZN tube going with smoke chips, so replaced with pellets and couldn't keep it going. I'm not sure what the deal is with this, next smoke I will get this going before the meat gets added. I didn't want to keep opening / closing it but I wonder if there's not enough air in there to continue to burn? Maybe I didn't light fully? Dunno
3) I over seasoned the ribs. To much rub. I bought a new rub and it was salty. I shouldn't change things up until I figure this out.
4) I was able to get the Big Kahuna smoking, and I added wood chips every 30-minutes for the first 1.5 hours. Then I got busy, and didn't add any until about 4 hours in. Didn't get a big smoke flavor.

The smoker stayed on point for temp. Wasn't what I was hoping for again. I will try again next week, I think I'll start the AMAZN tube with just pellets (how I've used it in the past) before I start the smoker. Give it 15-30 minutes to smokes to make sure it can smoke in there and it's not too air tight or something. Then if that works I'll start preheating and give it another 15-30 and see if it stays lit. If so then I'm going to start the Big Kahuna and put ribs on. I'm also contemplating putting a tray on the fire box cover full of chips. That's how I did it in the gas smoker put chips in there. So, next go around I'm going to add that. Three smoke sources. if I can get over smoked then I'll start backing it off. I am sure I sound like a rookie as I suspect most pellet smokers have already figured out the smoke. One thing I haven't, and don't plan to try, is the low temp smoke setting on the smoker. I want to have to change all my temp/times if I don't have to.

So, next week I'll post some more let you all know. If I get something good I'll post some more pics.
Jbinfla, I’m not trying to highjack your thread... I just want to share some valuable information that will help you get the best out of your Smoke Gen and good, quality Hardwood Smoke from your Big Kahuna Smoke Generator. I have a few questions for you, at what temps are you setting your Pellet Smoker when you’re using a Pellet tube or the Big Kahuna Smoke Gen.? Anything above 250* degrees will produce very little smoke... Even using the Big Kahuna or even a pellet tube, the pellet smokers fan is always running and at higher temp settings, even harder. The air pressure produced within the Smokers Cooking Chamber makes it very difficult to produce great smoke volume at temps above 250*-300* degrees. That’s why many Posters with pellet grills and some who don’t, will tell you that it’s impossible for any pellet grill to produce smoke like a true Stick Burning and Charcoal Burning bbq grill, no matter what you add or what modifications are done to it. I must be one of the few that says and knows, that if the right modifications and methods are applied, then you can come pretty close to a Stick Burner. I know people are trying to giving you their honest opinion and I truly believe they are... I’m not here to debate opinions, but I can share with you what has worked for me with my Pellet Pro Austin XL to produce a good hardwood and charcoal smoke flavor profile from my pellet grill. I knew that there had to be a way to make this work... and with a few mods, I was able to accomplish this. FYI. By its general design, a Pellet Smoker is an oven that’s fueled by wood pellets. The Pros to this is with a decently designed pellet grill, you’re able to have an almost Set it and Forget it bbq approach and enjoy consistent temps without the hassle of babysitting the smoker constantly throughout your cook. For many, that’s a winner by itself. The Cons or the trade off is that by its design, it will never duplicate the smoke production of a stick burner. The key to Great bbqing is learning your grill and learning your equipment... Every bbq cooking tool has its own nuances. Pellet Grills are not Off-Set stick burners, they have their own steps and procedures to follow too get the best results. Always, plan your work and work your plan with your equipment... Pellet Grills are not designed to go Hot and Fast for great smoke production ... They are designed for Low and Slow bbqing for the best Smoke production and results... And when I say Low and Slow bbqing, I mean temps that will allow a Pellet Smoker to produce and maintain a certain level of quality smoke within the cooking chamber and not have it blown out by a high running fan... and that’s when using the Big Kahuna or a Pellet Smoke Tube as well. For
the most and best smoke production from any pellet grill, you have to start your cooks at the ideal smoking temps for pellet smokers and maintain those temps for a certain amount of time to enjoy a decent smoke flavor profile on your bbq’d cooks. When using a Smoke Generator like the Big Kahuna or the larger Magnum P.I.G., you can enjoy true Hardwood and Charcoal Smoke when it’s operated and maintained correctly. Does this require extra work? Most definitely, but these Smoke Generators are like adding an off-set stick burner add on to a pellet smoker and running a Stick Burner correctly requires some work to produce good quality smoke. Here a few pics of the Mods. that I’ve done to get Good Hardwood and Charcoal smoke from my pellet grill and to also maintain the volume of smoke as well. I added 4 more holes to the bottom canister cap to help maintain a better burn.
Image.jpeg

Stainless steel sleeve... Better Smoke results and easier cleaning.
Image_1.jpeg

Shutoff valve to dial back the volume of smoke if necessary...
Image_2.jpeg

Relocated smoke outlet to obtain ideal smoke throughout the grill... Not effected by the Pellet Hopper fan air pressure.
Image_3.jpeg

Smoke Gen. smoke only...
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Another option also is adding a Smoke Basket that can be loaded with lump charcoal and hardwood as well...
Image_5.jpeg

Smh... Hardwood smoke is not possible from a pellet grill... Yeah right...
Image_6.jpeg


I wish I could post a few videos as well... Here’s a few good reads that have great information on Smoke Management and info for the SD Big Kahuna as well.



And if you have any questions, ideas or need help, just ask. Good luck.

Pellet Pro Austin XL and a few more mods... In SoCal and Always... Semper Fi
 
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jbinfla

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RCAllen, thank you so much for the tips. I know I got good wood smoke from my gas grill, so it can be done with chips / chunks just a matter of using what I got. I'm not opposed to redoing everything I've done just to get a good baseline to start from.

As to temp, I'm smoking everything at 225°. It produces a very faint smoke if looking out the exhaust stack. And you're right, there is a pretty decent outflow of air, so that leads me to believe my AMAZN tube didn't go out because of lack of oxygen it went out because I didn't light it fully. I will give that a whirl. I have not cleaned out my Big Kahuna yet. Is that what you have, or is that the Magnum PIG? I spoke with Dan and he said the Magnum will not fit without rubbing up against the enamel. I've got a metal pan I'm going to put on top of the firebox guard (forget what it's called, heavy metal plate that sits over fire). I'm going to load that up with chunks and chips, cover with foil, poke some holes and give it a whirl. Already thinking about another smoke this weekend. Once i can get the ribs nice and smokey I'll venture into a brisket, which I've been dying to try.
 

RCAlan

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Joined Aug 26, 2018
I
RCAllen, thank you so much for the tips. I know I got good wood smoke from my gas grill, so it can be done with chips / chunks just a matter of using what I got. I'm not opposed to redoing everything I've done just to get a good baseline to start from.

As to temp, I'm smoking everything at 225°. It produces a very faint smoke if looking out the exhaust stack. And you're right, there is a pretty decent outflow of air, so that leads me to believe my AMAZN tube didn't go out because of lack of oxygen it went out because I didn't light it fully. I will give that a whirl. I have not cleaned out my Big Kahuna yet. Is that what you have, or is that the Magnum PIG? I spoke with Dan and he said the Magnum will not fit without rubbing up against the enamel. I've got a metal pan I'm going to put on top of the firebox guard (forget what it's called, heavy metal plate that sits over fire). I'm going to load that up with chunks and chips, cover with foil, poke some holes and give it a whirl. Already thinking about another smoke this weekend. Once i can get the ribs nice and smokey I'll venture into a brisket, which I've been dying to try.
I have the SD Magnum P.I.G. attached to my pellet grill. I went with the largest Smoke Generator that SmokeDaddy sells. No more excuses for the lack of hardwood and charcoal smoke... The Magnum P.I.G. can putout some serious smoke. Oh and definitely give those links I posted a good read and keep the interior of your Smoke Generator clean.. You don’t want a buildup of creosote in the canister. Creosote will definitely effect the quality of smoke being produced by the Smoke Gen.

Pellet Pro Austin XL and a few more mods... In SoCal and Always... Semper Fi
 
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bill1

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In addition to RCAlan's great suggestions, you can also add some resistance to the power lead to the induction fan. The less air you move, the more it starts behaving like a conventional smoker, giving more smoke flavor, less wood consumption. I have 50, 100, & 200 ohms in series, with 3 switches across each, so I can successively dial in 8 different speeds...about a $5 mod. Caveats: you may lose a little temperature control, esp if you're not careful in how you switch these in, and you raise the risk of errors on under-temp (fire out) and pellet overflow, which if you're not savvy can subsequently lead to a serious fire issue, so if you truly want set & forget, don't mod an engineered design.

Another suggestion is to add a little electric heat. The idea is when you're in "smoke mode" the temp doesn't drop as quickly so you can stay in smoke mode longer. I discovered that somewhat by accident when I added a hot water heater element to my pellet smoker water pan to increase the effect of a simple water pan in a pellet machine. Of course, moisture potentially helps large, complex smoke molecules stick to meat better--so I was somewhat adjusting two variables at once--but you get the idea.

Akin to the RC Alan's charcoal basket, replacing the first heat diverter with a cast iron pan containing chips and/or pellets works pretty well too, at least for an hour or two. In my vertical pellet machine, that pan is easily gotten to so is easily tended; in my pellet grill where everything loads from the top, not so much.
 

RCAlan

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Joined Aug 26, 2018
In addition to RCAlan's great suggestions, you can also add some resistance to the power lead to the induction fan. The less air you move, the more it starts behaving like a conventional smoker, giving more smoke flavor, less wood consumption. I have 50, 100, & 200 ohms in series, with 3 switches across each, so I can successively dial in 8 different speeds...about a $5 mod. Caveats: you may lose a little temperature control, esp if you're not careful in how you switch these in, and you raise the risk of errors on under-temp (fire out) and pellet overflow, which if you're not savvy can subsequently lead to a serious fire issue, so if you truly want set & forget, don't mod an engineered design.

Another suggestion is to add a little electric heat. The idea is when you're in "smoke mode" the temp doesn't drop as quickly so you can stay in smoke mode longer. I discovered that somewhat by accident when I added a hot water heater element to my pellet smoker water pan to increase the effect of a simple water pan in a pellet machine. Of course, moisture potentially helps large, complex smoke molecules stick to meat better--so I was somewhat adjusting two variables at once--but you get the idea.

Akin to the RC Alan's charcoal basket, replacing the first heat diverter with a cast iron pan containing chips and/or pellets works pretty well too, at least for an hour or two. In my vertical pellet machine, that pan is easily gotten to so is easily tended; in my pellet grill where everything loads from the top, not so much.
Great info bill1... Thanks for sharing. The more sound advice given, the better the outcome for those who need proven information... and not just someone’s opinions... .02

Pellet Pro Austin XL and a few more mods... In SoCal and Always... Semper Fi
 

kstone113

Meat Mopper
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Joined May 24, 2019
Hey Bill1,

RCAlan and I and other have a long thread about the magum pig through smokedaddy on here.

I wanted to throw in my 2 cents as I have a similar background as you. I started "smoking" meats on my gas weber with a smoke basket. Then I got a vertical propane smoker similar to yours. I wore out that smoker(kind of like you) and went the pellet route. I got the RecTeq Bull. While I LOVED the convenience, I noticed there was not as much smoke flavor as I was getting my vertical propane that I would have to refill with wood chips/chunks. So like you, I went searching for answers. I initially got the Heavy D by Smokedaddy which was better but still not what I was looking for. I eventually got the magnum PIG and have LOVED IT! Your big kahuna is fine for what you need.

With pellet grills, you want to go low, the lower, the more smoke but also the longer cooks will take. One thing I have noticed with my Bull is that the more you use it, the more smoke will absorb to your food and less to the walls and such. So just using it alone more, you should get better results. It just won't happen over night or even over a month. Just takes lots of cooks and time and getting to know your grill.

All the tips above are great! The chips on top of the heat diffuser is something a lot do(I haven't in awhile though). So I'm probably repeating RCAlan again but with the cold smoker, fill it up 75% with charcoal. Either put in hot from using a chimney OR light only the charcoal with a propane torch, turn the air pump on high and let it go 15 to 20 minutes until most coals are white/hot. Then add a chunk or two on top of those hot coals. I do usually check every 30 to an hour. Sometimes as the charcoal goes down the canister, I will add wood chunks and some more charcoal.

I do use a smoke tube from time and time when I don't want to go through using the smokedaddy. The tube does need enough air flow to keep it going. One thing I do is I alternate pellets and wood chips in the tube. That does add some real wood chip smoke along with the pellet smoke which does help.

Keep smoking and learning the smoker. I live in IL about 50 minutes from SmokeDaddy headquarters. I picked up my magnum PIG in person and met Dennis....great guy! I have seen your smoker in person and it is a beast!!!!

From knowing a little bit about that smoker, are you opening the vents on top and the reverse flow one on the side? I know from videos closing off the top and just opening the side vent can help with smoke staying in and getting more smoke flavor.

One other thing you can do is use 100% variety pellets. I personally like 100% hickory pellets and also 100% cherry pellets. The blend ones are fine but you do get more flavor from the 100% ones. The blend ones are more for pellet grills on getting higher temps. Since you are only doing smoking with this smoker, stick to 100% varieties.

Good luck and I believe over time, things will work themselves out with all the options you have been given in this thread.
 

RCAlan

Smoking Fanatic
316
142
Joined Aug 26, 2018
Great reply Kstone113... but I think you are referring your response/post to Jbinfla, the original poster and not Bill1. You know it’s funny when I read from other posters, what you can’t do with a pellet grill and what won’t work when trying to add real hardwood smoke to a pellet grill. Smh... If you try hard enough, all things are possible. In my setup, I can have 3 smoke systems going at the same time. Facing my grill from the right, I can load my Smoke basket with lump charcoal and wood chips and chunks. The volume of the hardwood and charcoal load is almost triple the amount of what the SD Heavy D Stick Burning diffuser could hold. From the center of my Pellet Pro Austin XL, I get the heat source and pellet smoke from the burn pot and from the left side, I get hardwood and charcoal smoke from the SD Magnum P.I.G. smoke generator. Some work and time was required to get everything figured out and all dialed in, but now it’s all good and my set-up works... FYI... Smoke from when I first got the SD Smoke Generator and not knowing what I was doing...
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TWS... lol... and now with my modifications.
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To the Original Poster jbinfla, you can put out some great bbq with your Pellet Pro Smoker and Smoke Gen... just don’t take any shortcuts in the proper operation and maintenance of each. Good luck.

Pellet Pro Austin XL and a few more mods... In SoCal and Always... Semper Fi
 

bill1

Smoking Fanatic
856
295
Joined Apr 25, 2015
...the more you use it, the more smoke will absorb to your food and less to the walls and such. So just using it alone more, you should get better results...
Now that's definitely not expected. The newer the walls, the cleaner and smoother they should be, and hence the LESS smoke would stick to the walls, leaving the meat the sticky thing. Then again, smoke in a pellet machine doesn't "loiter", it shoots through pretty fast, so any smoke not passing by the meat really isn't sticking to the meat and so anything you do to keep smoke away from walls and direct it toward your meat is a good thing (if you want more smoke flavor).

Which is why I think in any smoker, paying some attention to baffling is a smart thing, and of course that varies whether you're cooking a pork butt "sphere" or a batch ("plane") of burgers . Pellet machine makers fret so much about grease fires that the drip trays are huge. Yes this diverts fats and oils to the outside, away from ignition sources, but it also diverts all the internal smoke to the outer walls. If your meat is directly over that silly drip tray, the smoke shoots right over the top of it. This is why it pays to stuff in foil balls, empty soup cans, etc around the periphery of your meat...anything to force more smoke to pass closer to the meat. Of course for a given volumetric flow, reducing the flow area increases the flow velocity. You want turbulent flow, but not too much, so another reason to add some series resistance in the induction fan power lead, reducing the cfm's you're pushing through.
 

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