Electric Brinkman Gourmet. First PID attempt.

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by oggg, Jan 2, 2015.

  1. oggg

    oggg Fire Starter


    First time using my PID setup for my Brinkman gourmet electric smoker. I'm using the settings that it came with. No auto tune. Weather is 50F no wind. Aiming for a bearcarver-like 8hr of 96F/200F with hickory then applewood. Water pan below, pie drip pan with pineapple juice. Top rack has mustard spice rubbed spiral ham on its side.

    120V main to 12g 25' heavy duty cord, to an extraneous power strip (14g, for the power switch), then to the PID setup. GFCI wall outlet wired to PID Rex C-100, SSR w/heat sink, 1.5A fast fuse inline to protect the PID. The SSR gets HOT because it is controlling a 1500W element. I screwed on a heat sink with thermal compound and the heat sink is already lightly warm even in the exposed air.

    The whole setup is not yet mounted in the project box so I have exposed wires and everything.

    The Rex C-100 is dirt cheap. Too bad it displays in Celsius. I don't think it can be changed.

    Looks like my thermocouple wire is already weakening as I get a temporary error signal when I move the wire around. So far it returns to working order each time. With my PID on the ground, the wire reaches the top rack without much room to spare so I will try to find a longer wire. Maybe a panel mount in between the PID and the thermocouple next time.

    Wireless weber temp probe in the double smoked ham, receiver in my pocket, aiming for 140F IT. Glaze for last 30-90min.
  2. That should help with making great Q

    Happy smoken.

  3. oggg

    oggg Fire Starter

    Temperature control is working great. +/- 1F as far as I can tell. Now the problem is that 200F is on the low side for smoldering wood chunks. My naked chunks burn out fast, my foil wrapped ones never burn, and my chunk in the tin can didn't smoke although it got brown black at the bottom. I keep coming back to a smoker that isn't putting out smoke :(

    I would get an AMAZEN product but they don't take chunks and I have two half bags of wood left. I have been working on a cold smoke chamber (soldering iron in can with wood, foiled, in a small cardboard box with aluminum ducting and a small fan) but making it heatproof (for use at 200F) and sturdy enough for repeated use is going to be more $$. Probably enough to justify getting an AMAZEN and new bags of pellets
  4. oggg

    oggg Fire Starter

    Ugh lesson learned -- put the spiral ham sliced side down to avoid pieces peeling away and getting dried out.
  5. oggg

    oggg Fire Starter

    Now glazing at 135C/275F. This should cause the PID to keep the relay open to keep the heating element on constantly. The red light on the SSR is having its own ideas though -- it keeps blinking on and off at a rate of about 1.5sec on , 0.5sec off. And somehow I'm at 135 already...
  6. oggg

    oggg Fire Starter

    Because my PID setup isn't mounted, I was just leaving the thermocouple probe hanging inside of the top lid. When I took the lid off to glaze the ham, the wire was found to be advanced and fell down below the bottom rack, and that explains how I was able to hit 275F with ease. Also explains why I had to bump up the temp from 200 to 250 to keep in line with Bearcarvers. And also explains why 275F at the low rack didn't dry up the glaze my ham on the top rack.

    Lastly, my juice drip pan dried out so I had no juice for the drier parts of the ham.
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2015

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