Vertical Smoker Is Making Jerkey Out Of My Brisket

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Meat Mopper
Original poster
Dec 4, 2006
I just used my Smoke Hollow vertical smoker for the first time and my brisket is burnt on the bottom after only 4 hrs. of smoking and it is a 12 lber. Am I missing something? Is the thermo. not accurate? Do I need to install some sort of baffle? I have always smoked on a horizontal and bought this one for "lazy smoking". WHAT IS MY PROBLEM?

First of all, have you tested the thermo before using it? It really sounds like a HIGH heat situation. Are you using anything as a buffer for indirect heat, such as a water pan? A picture of your smoker might help in trying to figure it out.
Yes,this thing has a HUGE water pan and smoke box.
No, I haven't checked the thermomometer yet, but that will definitely be next. The brisket was done in 12 hrs, not good for a 12lber!

Also, I always have trouble posting pics.......

Thanks for the help!!!!!!!!
Hey ZTex -

You definately have a high heat problem going on in there! Did you have a flame up too maybe? Don't forget you don't need as much wood in the vertical as you woud in the horizontal. One to three chucnks is all you need. Keep the temperatures down to 225° to 250°F.

The themometers on the smoker are not generatally accurate don't go by those unless you have calibrated it and no it's good to go.
Actually I have been using chips in my vertical smoker, not chunks, like I use in my horizontal. Are chunks better in the vertical?

Also... I have been looking at the dual thermometers, the ones that measure the cooking chamber and the meat at the same time. It seems like this way you would know exactly what the temp. is at the meat level, and not the door.

Please let me know what you think.....

I used both chunks of oak and oak chips. I have a digital thermometer that I used to determine temp. My question is it fat side up or down on a vertical
sounds like a high heat problem also I would  get yourself a digital thermometer they are great I have the

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