Brinkmann Trailmaster Limited Edition

Discussion in 'Charcoal Smokers' started by realtorterry, Mar 6, 2011.

  1. jwg299

    jwg299 Smoke Blower

    I ordered 1 of these grills last week as the Charbroil grill I ordered was a piece of crap.

    I can't wait to get my new grill and do the mods. I'm growing weary seeing all the great Q you all are making.

    I do have 1 question. do any of you use a drip pan, why or why not?
  2. I use drip pans for two reasons. First, I'm lazy and hate cleaning up. Second, the 16 leg bolts are a pain to clean around. I use a the half tray pans from Sam's Club
    jwg299 likes this.
  3. Hello all

    I posted my mods in a different TMLE thread, but wanted to contribute to this thread. I've only been able to cook 3 times on it so far due to a hectic schedule, but I couldn't be happier with the BTLE

    Exhaust baffle made of sheet metal shaped to the curvature of the main chamber.  

    Here's a pic with the grates in place. I only lose maybe 2 to 3 inches of cooking surface.

     Bent another piece of sheet metal to make a cover for ash pan and attached a handle so I can easily remove if need be

    I also made the charcoal basket as everyone has suggested.

    Made a tuning plate out of 1/4" steel and sheet metal baffle that rests on top of it. (I ended up removing the baffle as it restricted the airflow too much)

    forgot to take pic until there were only scraps left

    lance0623 and jwg299 like this.
  4. I use drip pans as well, they just happen to double as my tuning plates. I just got some heavy duty non-coated cookie trays that fit the width. so far they work well and are easy to clean.
    jwg299 likes this.
  5. Being a mathematician in my spare time I found what we need. The concept is equivalent diameter. It relates a duct of a particular shape to a circular duct such that the pressure drop and flow rate is the same. On my grill, the opening is 3x4 inches and oblong. That is equivalent to a circular opening of 3.57 inches. My chimney is 3 7/8 inches in diameter. I have a bit of a constriction at the internal opening. If I calculate a rectangular opening, ignoring the friction caused by the extra length, a 2x6 inch rectangle is equivalent to a circular opening of 3.65 inches. Probably good enough. Making the rectangular opening 2x8 inches is equivalent to a circular opening of 4.14 inches - more than enough. Making the opening skinnier say, 1x12 inches only yields an equivalent diameter of 3.24 inches. Turns out a rectangular duct with a 2:1 ratio in the sides is optimum in lots of ways, in particular lower friction.

    To increase your draft there are three factors we have control over, actually only two. First is the temperature difference between the inside of the grill and the ambient air temperature. Second and most easy to change is the height of the chimney. Third is the size (area) of the opening and diameter of the chimney. Try making your chimney taller.

    From the chimney draft equations you can get a flow rate, use the hydraulic diameter and then the Reynolds number to get turbulent or laminar flow. That's a guess and probably unnecessary. An engineer would have real experience with this.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 27, 2013
  6. Thanks for posting those, Donger!  Horizon charges $116 for their baffle and tuning plate - you could probably sell quite a few of the exhaust baffle, firebox baffle and tuning plate, and the ash pan cover as a package for alot cheaper and still make a good profit!  
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2013
    jwg299 likes this.
  7. s2k9k

    s2k9k AMNPS Test Group
  8. comosmoker

    comosmoker Smoke Blower

    donger22, does your tuning plate sit on top of the bottom racks?  And, after removing the baffle, how does that work with heat distribution?  Also, I love the stack extension!  How far away is it from the end of the smoking chamber?  I'm guessing 2-3 inches since that is all you lose in cooking space.  Nice mods!!!  Happy smoking!!
  9. Hello

    Yes, the tuning plate sits on top of the bottom racks and was made the same width as the racks. I removed the baffle above the tuning plate because I was burning thru way too much fuel and trapping all the heat in the firebox, which made getting the main chamber up to 225 almost impossible. I burned thru 45 lbs of lump doing two 10 lb butts and 12 lb brisket. It felt like using dollar bills for Taking out the baffle solved that problem. The stack extension is spaced out about two inches from the side wall. Thanks for the compliments and a huge thanks to my father-in-law for helping me with the mods. I always enjoy spending time with him.
  10. comosmoker

    comosmoker Smoke Blower

    Thanks for the quick reply and answers.  I think I will adjust my tuning plates to sit lower and try without the baffle, or maybe the baffle covering only half the opening.  I will have lots of time next week to play with it.  Thanks, again!!  Cheers!!  [​IMG]
  11. texaninmd

    texaninmd Newbie

    So what is the general attitude of the boards towards baffles? I have one that is a 1/4" steel plate, 12" long and 6" wide. With it and the tuning plates I get great heat distribution, and I didn't seem to have trouble getting the heat up because sometimes it would spike up to 300 with the changing winds, but I was smoking brisket so I was keeping it at 225. For the smoke of the 20 lb brisket, I used a 20 lb bag of kingsford, around 5 pounds of frontier lump, and 7-10 pounds of pecan, oak, and mesquite mix. Seems like a lot of fuel, but it was my first smoke, not sure if my baffle is causing me to use more fuel.

    Without the baffle though, my side to side temps go from a 5 degree difference to more around 30.

    Not really sure which route I should go, and just wanted some input. Thanks.
  12. How would you characterize the level of sealing on your firebox? It's my guess that the battle is fought between heat leakage (like through the FB door, sides, etc) and proper draft.
  13. Just did not like the metal mesh work tray, so I decided to add a more user-friendly countertop to my TMLE. I picked up a 1" x 12" x 74" piece of finish-grade pine at my local HD for $12. I cut it into two 35" pieces (only used one), sanded the sharp edges and finished it with a honey-maple stain/sealer. It is mounted to the mesh tray with galvanized screws and fender washers. It has about 1.25" of clearance between its inside edge and the cook chamber.

    I also installed 4 rubber-coated hooks on the underside (two at each end). The Brinkmann cover still fits over it as well.

    Last edited: Jul 31, 2013
  14. texaninmd

    texaninmd Newbie

    Everything is sealed pretty well. I used rutlands 500 RTV when I was assembling it and then used it to create gaskets around the doors for the firebox and smoking chamber. The only area I still have a little leakage is on the door of the smoking chamber, but I cut a lot of that down by using toggle clamps. I'm not sure if I should possibly create a larger charcoal box, the one I use now is 11x12x6, switch to using more lump charcoal than a mix with briquettes, or switch to split wood from wood chunks. I think the swirling winds near my smoker attribute to the high fuel, but that seems like its going to be a constant so I'll need to learn to combat that.

    I like your wooden front shelve and may need to try that on mine.
  15. smokin nw

    smokin nw Smoke Blower

    Remmy, the wood shelve is a real good idea, I have had a mishap or two with the metal mesh.

    I was thinking the same but with a piece of stainless over it.

    Your looks great.
    remmy700p likes this.
  16. Isn't Wash St. famous for their apples? I'd be looking for apple wood and as much as I could get. Just a thought.
  17. In the quest for better airflow/draft and a steadier, more stable burn, I decided to raise the stock charcoal grate (that my minion basket sits on) with a simple "lift kit" so it would be even with the top of the intake vent, thus giving more room for airflow under the coal bed. I used 1/2" x 3 1/2" hex bolts, fender washers, and 1/2" hex nuts to create "legs" (cost me $7.50 at HD).

    The cool thing is that, due to the curvature of the firebox's bottom, it is height-adjustable simply by moving the bolts in (lower) or out (higher). Pics:

  18. Have you cooked with it since raising the grate?  If so, what difference did that make for your temps?  Did the fuel burn faster/cleaner?
  19. Not until tomorrow. I'll post up my thoughts/results/conclusions.
  20. And pics please:)

Share This Page