Help sealing leaks

Discussion in 'Charcoal Smokers' started by bigterp, May 14, 2013.

  1. bigterp

    bigterp Newbie

    I have a Smoke Hollow 4-in-1 and need to seal around the smoker lid, firebox lid and firebox clean out door. I have some 1/4" stove rope gasket and some RVT high temp silicone (red). I plan to attach the stove rop to my smoker lid with RVT silicone and also around my firebox clean out door to fill the larger gaps. For smaller leaks around the smoker lid and firebox lid I plan to run a bead of RVT silicone, cover with plastic wrap and close the lids on top. I'll leave this sit for the reccommended cure time (24hours) then remove the plastic wrap.

    Am I going about this the right way? I'm not trying to make my smoker airtight enough for space travel, but it certainly needs improved.
  2. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Air tight improves temp control....   seal it up.....    Dave
  3. bigterp

    bigterp Newbie

    Thanks, thats my plan. I just want to make sure my materials and methods are on the right track.
  4. bigterp

    bigterp Newbie

    Sealed up my lids last night using the stove rope. Was alot easier than I thought it was going to be. Seemed to work really well and create a MUCH better seal than before. I used the stove rope with RVT silicone on the larger gaps. Tonight I"ll use straight RVT silicone covered in saran wrap to seal up the smaller gaps I have around my lids. Smoking 2 chickens over the weekend, so my work will get tested rather quickly.
  5. bigterp

    bigterp Newbie

    Ended up smoking 3 whole chickens over the weekend and the sealing job worked GREAT!! Chickens turned out excellent as well. I ended up having to spacthcock them since my smoker lid is just a tad short to fit a 5+ lb bird standing up. Starting to get a better feel for what my smoker likes in terms of keeping temps in check. I was able to easily get to 300 + degrees and did most of the cooking at about 310-325. Pulled the single bird I cooked on Friday at 165, but the thighs were every so slightly pinkish. The 2 I cooked yesterday I kept on until 173 or so and the thighs were perfect. Cooked 2 of the birds yesterday afternoon and after about 2 hours in my temps wanted to keep dropping. I was using Royal Oak lump. Was also using some regular Kingsford for added fuel after the 2 hour point when the temps started dropping. Had trouble getting them back up to 300+, but I wasn't pressed about it since the chicken was close to 160. Curios about the minion method (or something else) with an offset smoker like I have. So far I just start with half a chimney or so of unlit in my firebox and dump a full chimney of lit on top. I keep a space closet to the smoker for my wood box which I throw in once I'm at temp. I have to keep my wood box off of the coals or my wood chips end up in flames. Having the box beside the charcoal works perfectly. I don't have a charcoal basket and don't think I could get something to fit because my firebox is small, the door is small and the cleanout door is even smaller. I'm planning on doing something like a Boston butt or brisket so I'd like some suggestions on how I can best maintain a longer burn with my charcoal. I'll try and get some pics up to show you guys what I'm working with. Thanks!!!!
  6. so ms smoker

    so ms smoker Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

      Hi Big. I am not familiar with your smoker but any type charcoal basket will help. Allows you to start with more charcoal that will burn longer. On my SFB I  generally fill about 2/3 full of charcoal, throw on a handfull of wood chips, then fill with charcoal. Once lit (at one end) and up to temp, it will burn steady for several hours. On long smokes I refill with unlit charcoal before it is all used up but don't add chips. Usually has enough smoke by then. Hope this helps.

  7. bigterp

    bigterp Newbie

    Thanks for the suggestions. I'm not sure what type of basket would fit my fire box. May even need to make something custom??

    Here is what I'm working with. The smoke pit is just big enough to handle 2 spacthcocked chickens. Not the biggest in the world, but should work fine for my wife and myself.

    Here you can see the sealing work I had to do to my lid. After 2 smokes it seems to work really well. I used 1/4" round stove rope for the larger gaps, and straight RVT high temp silicone for the smaller gaps.

    Here is my firebox. It is pretty small, but the lid is actually bigger than I thought. This is the spent charcoal from Sundays chicken that I cleaned out last night. You can see I've been building my fire towards the damper side of the fire box and leaving a space towards the pit for my smoke/wood chip box. There is a nice gap at the bottom of the cleanout/damper door that needs sealed. I ran out of stove rope though so that'll be for another day.

    So far I'm happy with this grill/smoker. Especially after the sealing mods I did. But am always open to any suggestions on how I can improve upon what I have.
    Last edited: May 21, 2013
  8. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Yep, that's an excellent way to up your efficiency . If it's still not drawing enough, add length to your Ehaust. Will help a lot...

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