Got a offset smoker for Fathers Day, new to smokers need help...

Discussion in 'Roll Call' started by danalito123, Jun 23, 2016.

  1. danalito123

    danalito123 Newbie

     Hello I got a pretty good size CharGriller off set smoker,... I am use to regular charcoal grills, and am very new to smokers so I have a quick questions that I can't seem to find info on thanks...

      I researched and understand the concept of the "firebox" and using it as pretty much the heat/cooking source and such, however,...I am trying to learn if this is ALWAYS the only place I should place charcoal and wood chips? Are there circumstances where I place charcoal directly under the meat in the large cylinder? 

      To further elaborate on this question, say I want to cook something along the lines of a hamburger, hot dog, chicken thighs, a steak (basically thinner items that I would put directly above a fire on a typical grill, am I still only using the firebox to smoke these items or can I put the charcoal directly under it in the large cylinder?  I would think so because I notice I have an adjustable height ashpan, yet I have yet to see any videos of someone cooking on a smoker where they were not "smoking" an item.

    any advice and info is greatly appreciated thanks a ton :)

  2. gearjammer

    gearjammer Master of the Pit

    Hi Dan, glad you decided to hang out with us here.

    I'm afraid I can't help with your question, I'm a wattburner.

    If you jump right out into the forums, I think you might get a better

    response to your question.

    Remember pictures are good things.


  3. mike5051

    mike5051 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Welcome Dan!

    I don't have an offset, but for smoking, the heat would be coming from the firebox.  If you add charcoal/wood to the cooking chamber, I would think you are now grilling.  This isn't bad, just different from low and slow.  The hamburgers and hot dogs would like this grilling style.

  4. gonavy

    gonavy Smoke Blower

    Welcome, as to using your smoker as grill, I suppose you could, but why would's a smoker, if your going to grill something use a having said that, I have done grilling on my smoker but I did it in the firebox.  My smoker came with a cook grate for the smoker, not much room on it, but ok for a quick hamburger or dog during a long smoke, the problem is you don't want to be opening the firebox for any length of time you'll let too much air in and spike your heat or lose heat if open a real long time.  If your not smoking anything then yea, just use the firebox with a cook grate over your fire and leave the lid open.  The main problem with using the cook chamber is clean up, no way or very difficult to get all the ash out, the FB has a vent door to clean it out with, not to mention losing all that great buildup you get in the CC from previous smokes (adds to the flavor, and smells GREAT) that ash will stick to everything in there.

    Since this is a new smoker hopefully you did a seasoning first, basically rub the entire inside (some folks do the outside too) of the smoker with veg or some type of other cooking oil, you can even use PAM then do a burn for a few hours in the firebox at high temps 300 to 400.  The oil penetrates the metal and seals it, prevents rusting.  Ash is not going to react well in that kind of environment in the cook chamber.  I would think that later when you do smoke something your gonna get a ash taste to your food.  Don't know this for sure just my guess.  Other folks may have a different take or experience doing what your asking.
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2016
  5. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★


    Glad to have you aboard!

  6. phatbac

    phatbac Smoking Fanatic

    Welcome to the forums!

    You could smoke a burger or steak with great results. Smokeba steak till about 125 internal temp and the take it to your range and sear both sides with high heat and you'll love the flavor.

    I also recommend wood chunks and dont soak them!

    Hope this helps,
  7. bdc3

    bdc3 Smoke Blower

    First welcome aboard, there is a great amount of help and instruction here.
    On your question, I tried this with my first smoker. It was an offset and it was well seasoned from much use. I decided to throw charcoal in the bottom of th CC for burgers. When I lite the charcoal the whole smoker caught fire and burned all my seasoning out. Things were so hot I couldn't cook nothing for a while. Then I had to start over with the seasoning process.
    Like GoNavy said use the grate that came for your fire box. Smaller I know but it's a good place for burgers.

    Again glad to have you here.

  8. [​IMG]   Good morning and welcome to the forum, from a hot day here in East Texas, and the best site on the web. Lots of great people with tons of information on just about  everything.

  9. Hello Dan.  As others have expressed, we have different grills/smokers/bbqs for different applications.  Some lend themselves better to multiple use, others may not.  I can easily see why BDC3 had a grease fire and as GoNavy pointed out the clean up when using the cc is a REAL pain and you have to reseason your smoker (ash EVERYWHERE!)  If you want to grill burgers and such, and the firebox grill is not large enough; I suggest a couple options:  Go to Wal-mart and buy a cheap grill.  You will probably need a new one every couple years.  OR look at the Weber compact kettles.  YES! you will pay more for the Weber but so long as you do not crack the outer coating you should have it for 10-12 years.  Maybe you may have to replace some things like grills or dampers but those are cheap to buy.

    I am a poor boy; I only have 5 smokers/grills.  Keep Smokin!

  10. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    The answer to your first question is no and the answer to the second is a yes. CharGrillers are set up to be both a BBQ pit and a grill- that's why the cooking chamber comes with a charcoal grate.

    I've had mine for 9 years and use it as a grill often, since it has a large cooking area.

    Here's a few burgers, the set up is lit charcoals in the main chamber on the firebox side where the burgers get seared and then moved to the side with away from the firebox to cook indirect. I use the same method for steak.

    Here's a link to the CharGriller Owners group here at SMF, you should take some time and join it as well. If you have more questions ask away we'll be happy to answer.
  11. smokeymose

    smokeymose Master of the Pit

    I'm with OldNavy on this. I have a CharGriller "Competition Pro". I tried a charcoal cook in the main chamber once, and yes you can do it, but then you have to clean the ashes out very well or you'll get ashes on your next smoke. Mine came with 2 grates for the firebox, which is plenty of room for 2 or 3 steaks, 7 or 8 thighs, hamburgers, brats, etc.
    Save the big chamber for smoking and get a regular grill for other stuff or use the firebox....

  12. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Never had this problem, I simply remove the charcoal grate( and the ashes) before I cook with the SFB.
  13. Hello Cliff.  Don't you find that ash sticks to the seasoned cooking chamber?  Or do you use a vac to clean the ash?  Usually when I start cleaning the ash I get it stuck to the seasoned cooking chamber.  Keep Smokin!

  14. smokeymose

    smokeymose Master of the Pit

    Never really said it was a problem, just more cleaning. I'm lazy...
  15. I had a Chargriller for a while and used it for both a grill and a smoker. Agree with the others about the removable charcoal grate. I wouldn't get crazy and fill the whole smoke barrel with charcoal, but a half chimney or so of hot coals in there never gave me any cleanup problems.

Share This Page