Break in of the new smoker

Discussion in 'Pork' started by hvacscoutdad, Nov 12, 2014.

  1. hvacscoutdad

    hvacscoutdad Newbie

    Got my smoker for an anniversary gift from my wife.  Upon doing research and finding this site, I decided to break it in with smoking a boston butt for some good pulled pork. Definitely have a learning curve with smoking. 

    Here is the selected pork

    After reading post after post and having the views I do on properly flavored meat (I believe if meat is flavored properly before and during cooking then, additional sauces, when consuming, are not needed), I decided to both inject and marinade the pork and let it set overnight.

    Here it is the next morning with rub on before going into the smoker

    Here is my helper throughout the day, this was taken at 7 in the morning and about 32 deg outside.

    After letting it smoke for over 4 hours I checked temps and sprayed apple juice coating about every 1 1/2 to 2 hours.  Used hickery wood chips over charcoal for the smoke.

    Look at the smoke

    Had a really hard time keeping the smoke going and temperature in the smoker constant.  keeping temp was so bad I ruined my new food thermometer as the temp suddenly shot to 600 deg at one point.  Thankfully the food was not ruined and turned out great.  Had the pork on the smoker from 7 in the morning til 10 at night when the internal temp wouldn't increase above 160 after a few hours.  I even tried wrapping it with foil for a few hours to break the lag but to no avail.  I ended up putting it in the oven for an hour and went a head and pulled it and put it in the crock pot overnight until supper the next evening.   I will say it was the best pulled pork I have had.  Just wish the wife would have gotten a pic of it for me before they dug in before I got home from work.

    Since, I have only been able to use it once and that was to smoke some brats and italian sausage over this past weekend.  Used apple wood chips for the brat and sausages.  Didn't think of pics at the time.

    Let me know what you think. I am all about making changes and suggestions at this point in this area.

    Would like to have some suggestions on how to keep smoking box temps close to what is needed for the meat cooking, I seem to have an issue with either too low temps or to high temps.
  2. I had that issue when I first started smoking so I bought a gas smoker and it was much easier to keep temps right.

    With your type of smoker you have to play with it a lot to figure it out.
    Use the vents to raise and lower temps
    put the wood chips in a old coffee can on top of the coals to get good smoke.
    Play with it and learn what works best for it.
  3. Also you don't want thick white smoke but rather a thin blue smoke.
  4. mdboatbum

    mdboatbum Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I don't use an offset, but I see a lot of folks have pretty good luck with them by sealing up leaks in the firebox and using a coal basket made of expanded metal. You didn't mention what you used for fuel, but if you're using charcoal look into a good hardwood all natural briquette like Stubbs. Then look up the Minion method. I think with a few tweaks to the smoker and to your methods you'll get it dialed in pretty easily. Looks like you did a pretty good on the pulled pork!!
  5. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Scoutdad, Hello and welcome to our Neighborhood. I feel your heat problems and offera bit of reding for you , this could help in controlling the burning and heat:

    Sorry about your thermometer , and hope you have a good stand-by , or for Christmas , ask for a Maverick or Thermopen.

    Better luck ,have fun and as always . . .
  6. jbills5

    jbills5 Meat Mopper

    You can find some good mods on here for offset smokers for colder temps.  My friend had a cheap Brinkmann and had all sorts of trouble in colder temps due to the thin metal and open areas of the smoker.

    I would get some high heat resistant gasket tape for the areas that are open and also a heat deflector from the charcoal box to the chamber.
  7. hvacscoutdad

    hvacscoutdad Newbie

    Thank you all for the comments and suggestions. I am trying most of the suggestions when i get a chance especially dealing with temps and smoke.

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