What's the most you've ever fit inside your Big Block

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Fire Starter
Original poster
May 6, 2007
Lenexa, Kansas
The wife caved in and let me get a Big Block. My question is, what is the capacity? I can see that it has "x" amount of cubic inches, but how many pork butts can I comfortably cook if I had to? I know it's extra wide, but how many slabs of spare ribs can I cram in there? Lots of adjustable shelves, but how many briskets can you do at once? Has anybody ever smoked chicken wings? How many of those would it take to fill all the shelf space?
I just did the biggest load I've done so far in my big block. Two large (14-16lb) briskets, and an 8 lb pork shoulder. I could probably fit two of the briskets on the top shelf, giving a total of 8 in one smoke. As for shoulders, probably 3-4 on each shelf, but height might be a problem so maybe 12 total with three racks?

http://web.mac.com/kenglishpc/iWeb/Site/Big Load.html
You can't do as many butts and briskets as you would think because due to their thickness you usually can't use all four racks. For butts, 6-9 depending on their size and 3 for full packer cut briskets. Ribs, 8 slabs, ten if you buy an extra rack. It comes with 4 racks and has 5 slots for holding them. I can get 8-10 chickens halved or a bunch of thighs in one load with 4 stock racks.

Remember, when loading it up, you need to maintain good airflow up and out the top vent so you don't get stale smoke. Personally, I also like to have a little room to work as well instead of being just stuffed full with no wiggle room at all.
I went and looked at your pics after I responded to the post. Did you trim down the point on those briskets any. The big briskets I get around here for the most part are too tall in the point area to use the next shelf up. I have to skip one like you did with the butt. Just curious about the difference in the cuts. Are those the norm for your area? Good looking meat either way. Looks like you got some great bark from the GOSM on the briskets.
Here is what I know for sure will fit.

1. 12 racks of babyback ribs on 4 cooking grates. Been there done that.

2. Four 6-8 pound meatloafs on 4 cooking grates. Formed with a 13x9" pan. Been there with 3 and had room for another one.

3. 12 small whole chickens on 3 cooking grates. Stagger them laying either face down or face up. I have already have put 4 whole chickens on a cooking grate.

4. 12 or at least 9 of 7-8 pound pork butts on 3 cooking grates. Stagger them.

When smoking thicker items you can only use three cooking grates.
i havent been able to fill mine up yet, but i think with ribs if you get one of those rib racks that let you put em on their side one could prolly get 20 racks of ribs in there
2 Butts, 1 Brisket (12 pounder) 6 Racks of Ribs(in rib racks) and 12 chicken quaters, and a batch of beans.............the sad part was not enough left over food for the chef!!!!
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