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Tube smoker vs pellet tray for a gas grill

mummel

Master of the Pit
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Joined Apr 8, 2015
I've read the tube is better for grills but can anyone elaborate?  How come?  Thanks.
 

rgautheir20420

Master of the Pit
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Joined Jun 11, 2014
My understanding is that the tube smoker is better suited for a reduced oxygen environment. This is why it's suggested for higher altitude smokers. I imagine it's also why it would work better inside of a grill in a reduced oxygen environment.
 

mummel

Master of the Pit
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Joined Apr 8, 2015
Cool thanks.  It looks like the tube uses pellets less efficiently (12oz gets you 4 hours in the tube vs 15oz getting you 11 hours on the tray).  The tray is more efficient.

Does the tube give off much more smoke?
 

frog1369

Meat Mopper
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Joined Jan 17, 2014
I would contact Todd at A-MAZE-N and ask him what might be best.  The tubes and trays put out and awful lot of smoke for use on a grill.  I tried on a long time ago on my gas grill and it put out some serious smoke, food was much better with chips in foil and then I moved up to a smoker box with chunks, that worked real well once I learned where to put it to get a good slow and clean burn.  Nice thin blue smoke and good flavor.  But again, I don't want to talk you out of anything, Todd's products are great, I use them in my other units, but I would ask his advice.  
 

mummel

Master of the Pit
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Joined Apr 8, 2015
Did you use the tube on a grill?  I've read that it puts out a lot of smoke (and it makes sense, burning 12oz of pellets in 4 hours).  I think the tray would work better (assuming the oxygen is there).
 

frog1369

Meat Mopper
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Joined Jan 17, 2014
 
Did you use the tube on a grill?  I've read that it puts out a lot of smoke (and it makes sense, burning 12oz of pellets in 4 hours).  I think the tray would work better (assuming the oxygen is there).
This has been my experience, your mileage may vary.  


I did try the tube on the grill and way too much smoke.  So, I shelved the tube until I got my vertical gasser.  I was going to buy a tray but talked to Todd and he said there was an issue with oxygen and the tube would better serve me in that case.  Now, it puts out a lot of smoke.  If I'm using chunks in the vertical, no tube for me.  If I'm lazy and use just the tube, no chunks for me.  Also, with the tube and ribs, maybe an hour, two at the most with the tube, otherwise too much smoke.  There is no magic bullet, you need to get your equipment and then learn to make it work for you.  Like any hobby or profession, cooking is not as much about the equipment as it is the cook.  You can put a good cook with bad equipment and get good food, put a bad cook with the best equipment you're food is at the mercy of the cook's skills, probably not good.
 

welshrarebit

Master of the Pit
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Joined Feb 20, 2014
Did you use the tube on a grill?  I've read that it puts out a lot of smoke (and it makes sense, burning 12oz of pellets in 4 hours).  I think the tray would work better (assuming the oxygen is there).
I've used my tube on a gasser grill at work a lot! Yea it puts out more smoke than the tray but a gas grill won't hold smoke like a regular smoker...
 

ak1

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I did last week when I was making pulled pork. Had no issues whatsoever. It worked like a charm.

Idecided to use my natural gas grill, because I wasn't sure how much propane I had in the smoker tank. All I did was load up the AMNPS, light it up and set it on the grate beside the pork away from the burner that was providing the heat. Started around 10:30pm, went to bed around midnight, got up around 8 am and the AMNPS was still chugging along with no issues.
 

veronica

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Joined Jul 15, 2015
I have the same question.

I'm looking to get either a tube or tray for my natural gas Weber Silver Genesis B (three long burners). I live at about 2k'.

I'm leaning towards the tray because I'm coveting an MES 40 but if the tube would be better I could always get a tray later.

Second question: pellets or dust?
 

mummel

Master of the Pit
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Joined Apr 8, 2015
Get the tube for your grill.  Ive tried the tray.  It flat out doesnt work on a grill.  Too much airflow to allow for meaningful smoke collection.  Get the tube now, or if you plan to get an MES down the road, rather buy the tray when you're ready.  
 
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veronica

Newbie
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Joined Jul 15, 2015
Ok, thanks.

I see that the tubes are only for pellets, so that solves my pellet v. dust conundrum.

One last question: what size? How do I choose a size? Is bigger better since it will burn longer? Can I not fill it all the way and treat a bigger one like a smaller one if I don't need as much smoke?
 

mummel

Master of the Pit
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Joined Apr 8, 2015
I would send Todd at AMZN an email.  He will let you know exactly what you need. 
 

smokin218r

Smoking Fanatic
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Ok, thanks.

I see that the tubes are only for pellets, so that solves my pellet v. dust conundrum.

One last question: what size? How do I choose a size? Is bigger better since it will burn longer? Can I not fill it all the way and treat a bigger one like a smaller one if I don't need as much smoke?
I have the 18" tube. If it were me I would prefer the 12".

When I put the 18 in a gas grill, I have to put it in at an angle. This takes up way too much space.

Unless you plan on doing a lot of long smokes....

My $.02
 

mummel

Master of the Pit
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Joined Apr 8, 2015
You probably wont be doing longer smokes on your gas grill.  You'll try it once or twice, but it chews propane.  My guess is the 12" would be a better choice for chicken, ribs etc. 
 

veronica

Newbie
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Joined Jul 15, 2015
 
I would send Todd at AMZN an email.  He will let you know exactly what you need. 
I've already sent one. I'm just impatient. :)
 
I have the 18" tube. If it were me I would prefer the 12".

When I put the 18 in a gas grill, I have to put it in at an angle. This takes up way too much space.

Unless you plan on doing a lot of long smokes....

My $.02
Good info, thanks. It looks like the grill is wide enough for 18 but things will be snug regardless so extra space is certainly a good thing.
 
You probably wont be doing longer smokes on your gas grill.  You'll try it once or twice, but it chews propane.  My guess is the 12" would be a better choice for chicken, ribs etc. 
I have natural gas plumbed to the deck so that's not a concern. Well, except for my gas bill.
 

veronica

Newbie
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10
Joined Jul 15, 2015
Yep. The amount used for cooking is negligible. The only time the needle really moves is in the winter since it's the heat pump backup.
 

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