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How much wood is to much wood?
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AutoCountry
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Joined: 14 Apr 2012
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25 12 12:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well if I get a nice layer of coals for the start---how often should I add coal after that? because I think adding one split oak block of wood would be to much smoke. I am just trying to understand this guys.

I've got coal that I don't mind to add in to keep a nice fire but I'd rather build it from the start with wood and maintain it with coals is that the better way of explaining?
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1buckie
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25 12 1:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Everyone's had good answers so far....
If I were in your shoes (&wanted to do things how you've said)
Here's what I would do:
1) Get one bag of high quality lump charcoal
2) Lite a few pieces in a separate burn barrel or box
3) Burn down some of your regular seasoned wood
4) Use tongs to move the burned down chunks to your firebox
5) Close lids & pre-heat the cooker to the temp you want
5a) This takes patience & practice, playing w/intake settings,
seeing how fast the temp rises, etc.
THEN~~~>
6) Add food
7) Add one or two small chunks of your flavoring wood to the coals, waiting until they catch fire before you close the lid....

"because I think adding one split oak block of wood would be to much smoke. I am just trying to understand this guys."

One split block of oak will not oversmoke a whole load of food, UNLESS all that other wood you had in there is still burning down.
The overly smoked taste you may be getting from all the excess smoke it takes to burn down the large load of wood

Hence the reason for the separate burn barrel....If you keep
burning down all that wood in your cooker (Esp. with the lids closed) probably not good....
If you do this a lot, over a long period of time, you'll end up with a nasty layer of crap all over the inside of your cooker & everything you cook will taste oily &"over-smoked"

AND
Cool Practice up with no food a few times, so you can understand the machine......
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AutoCountry
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25 12 1:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have the guys building me a fire pit box to light my wood so I can let all the smoke burn off have the wood turn into black chunks before I drop it into the fire box...

One thing I am told is to lay 1-2 chunks of smoke wood (citrus, apple, etc) before I close the lid allow it to catch fire and let the flame be on the log;; Am I correct??
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1buckie
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25 12 2:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, that should work better....
Apprieciate your enthuiasism !!!

Slow down just a little bit & practice & you'll be fine.....
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Have Fun Playin' with Yer Food !!!
"Dam Silly Sumbitch"-- Myron Mixon
"I will prevail. No pig will ever get the better of me." ~~> Italian Skewer
It's gonna say on my tombstone: Died of thick, heavy sauces ~~~~>K
" The Creepy Guy Down the Street With All The Webers"
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AutoCountry
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25 12 2:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am cooking another set of Drunken Chickens this weekend for my family again. I'm hoping to have the fire starter box ready for those logs. But guys how often do you add more coal to your fire? I understand people say when your temp starts to drop but tell me honestly how often on average do you add.
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1buckie
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25 12 3:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Watch your temp ....should be about every 45 minutes with a cooker like that.....
It's hard to tell
a) I've never run one like that
b) Don't know what your outside air temp / humidity is like where you live
c) Don't know exactly how dry & what size your wood is
d) Exactly how big / hot a fire you're starting with....
e) Assorted other minor variables

This is why I say do a practice run or two if you can, to get to know your rig Very Happy

This is a cook I did Saturday....small amount of coal & small amount of wood in a line on each side
Yours is a way different cooker, and will set up way different but the small fire thing is still the same




Just right smokey flavored ribs ~~~>


Not too strong, not too mild
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Have Fun Playin' with Yer Food !!!
"Dam Silly Sumbitch"-- Myron Mixon
"I will prevail. No pig will ever get the better of me." ~~> Italian Skewer
It's gonna say on my tombstone: Died of thick, heavy sauces ~~~~>K
" The Creepy Guy Down the Street With All The Webers"


Last edited by 1buckie on Wed Apr 25 12 4:18 am; edited 1 time in total
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patruns
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25 12 3:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

AutoCountry wrote:
I am cooking another set of Drunken Chickens this weekend for my family again. I'm hoping to have the fire starter box ready for those logs. But guys how often do you add more coal to your fire? I understand people say when your temp starts to drop but tell me honestly how often on average do you add.


You are cooking on an offset and that is kinda a hard question to answer. Watch the temps on your thermometers and add a little bit of coals as the temps drop below what you want. When you have a nice, light blue smoke you are probably right on if your temps are correct. When the smoke stops and the temps drop add a bit more coals. Eventually stop adding smoking wood and just replenish the coals.

I try to keep mine within 20 degrees of 225......
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Last edited by patruns on Wed Apr 25 12 3:53 am; edited 1 time in total
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AutoCountry
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25 12 3:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well I'm going to run a test run I think on Thursday--I know I want to cook this Sunday so we'll see how the end results are.


I bet I am really over-thinking the concept, I had guys load up my fire box with wood--the next time I cook I will know to only use 1-2 blocks for smoke...


So guys the next question is; how many chunks do you use to smoke with? 4hr smoke time how many blocks of wood are you using???
Lets also say average size you would buy from home depot size.
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patruns
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25 12 3:56 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I use a chunk about every 1/2 hour and usually stop about half way through. You will have to experiment to find what you like.
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1buckie
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PostPosted: Wed Apr 25 12 4:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Pat knows his stuff....
Like he said, every half hour or so
Just cook the last half, so maybe 4 blocks during the 1st part of your total time
You may get some white / gray smoke right after you add them each time,
just watch for constant billowing all the time; in that case the fire needs to be hotter.....
Keep the lid closed as much as you possibly can & trust the process....
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Have Fun Playin' with Yer Food !!!
"Dam Silly Sumbitch"-- Myron Mixon
"I will prevail. No pig will ever get the better of me." ~~> Italian Skewer
It's gonna say on my tombstone: Died of thick, heavy sauces ~~~~>K
" The Creepy Guy Down the Street With All The Webers"
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DUMMY QUE



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PostPosted: Tue Sep 03 13 10:24 am    Post subject: to much grey Reply with quote

get a temp. gage for the pipe on a wood stove put on your firebox run your smoker to desired temp. and chek gage on firebox when it starts to fall you know to add wood leave door open untill split is on fire add splits on at a time if your fire is burning anywhere near wright the oak will not leave an overpowering taste
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patruns
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 03 13 11:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Shocked
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Harry Nutczak
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 04 13 12:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just caught this thread, and being the pit resembles a DPP, there might be something to controlling temps with the exhaust as opposed to the intake;

I run a DPP 70 series, and contrary to everything I have ever done, known, or heard of, the DPP pit works best with the intake kept WFO, and the heat is most easily controlled by dampening the exhaust instead.

As per thick, acrid, grey, smoke:

When you have too much fuel, and not enough air to support that much fuel, this is exactly what will happen, it also happens when your fire is too cold.
A small fire that generates the most heat is the best IMO.

People often ask why they see almost no smoke from my pits, and I explain that it is because my fire is burning correctly.

Think of this in automotive terms, fuel rich combustion belches black smoke at you, so you either decrease the fuel, or increase air, since you cannot really increase air on a naturally aspirated pit (engine), you must then decrease fuel to get the proper air/fuel ratio for optimum burn.

So. I would make sure you wood is at the proper moisture level, (18%-22%) and that you are not trying to burn too much at once.

its gonna take a bit to learn how your pit likes to burn, chicken is cheap and a great indicator of your burn efficiency/

Don't get discouraged, practice with cheap meats, and stay upwind of the exhaust as much as possible/
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