How do i make my charcoal grill a better smoker?

Discussion in 'Charcoal Smokers' started by smokin jason, Jun 3, 2011.

  1. smokin jason

    smokin jason Newbie

    Hello everyone,

    I am very new to the whole forum thing so forgive me if this subject has already been addressed.  I currently own a grill very similar to the "Brinkmann Single Zone Charcoal Grill."  The main difference is that my grill does not have the rivits in the lid for a rotisserie attachment.  I have been looking online alot about smoking and i think i am ready to start doing it.  I have attempted to smoke a brisket a few times and though they were not horrible they were not as fall apart tender as i wanted them to be.  After much more research i have a new technique but the problem is i have trouble maintaining the heat on my grill.  The last few times i tried to smoke i noticed alot of smoke leaking from around the lid of my grill.  Do i need to make the grill air tight so only the air vents allow entry and exit of air and smoke?  or is it fine the way it is?  Also if i do need to make it air tight what would be best to use to plug these leaks?
  2. alblancher

    alblancher Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Not familiar with the Brinkman you describe but if you are trying to smoke briskey you should probably have a smoker.  As a beginner may I suggest you consider purchasing an ECB (el cheapo brinkman).  These models of smoker are around 50 bucks, have a fire box separated by a water pan and normally 2 racks in the smoke chamber.  Many, many of us started with this inexpensive, reliable piece of equipment and personally I have 2 of them in reserve for when I run out of room on my larger smoker.

    Maybe I should do a search for your grill before posting this comment but from what you described it sounds like a BBQ grill and not a smoker.

    Good Luck and welcome to the forum.  Why not go to the new member area and sign in so you can get a real SMF welcome from all the members.

  3. michael ark

    michael ark Master of the Pit

    Wal -mart just rolled back prices of their smokers.Sorry but a grill will always be a grill.
  4. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    [​IMG]   Glad to have you with us!   Spend a few bucks & get a Weber Smoky Mountain.
  5. fpnmf

    fpnmf Smoking Guru OTBS Member

  6. roller

    roller Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    Welcome and what ever you decide to do have some fun with it...I made my first smoker from a trash can.
  7. figjam

    figjam Meat Mopper


    I started with an ECB to see if I liked smoking meat and how much I would be doing it.  Recently upgraded to a WSM.
  8. smokin jason

    smokin jason Newbie

    Thanks all i may just have to drop the cash and get an ECB for now till i can afford a better quality smoker.
  9. venture

    venture Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    We joke about the ECB, but many of us here started with one.  With a few simple mods, you can get great smokes out of them.

    Good luck and good smoking.
  10. michael ark

    michael ark Master of the Pit

    Before you spend ecb .I would look at makeing a uds or fridge.You can always do it in stages.I will give you a drum free  were are you located.You can make a uds cheap.
  11. so ms smoker

    so ms smoker Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Welcome to SMF. Take the free 5 day e-course before you do anything else!  Great ideas there.

  12. weberinpa

    weberinpa Newbie

    I dont think so, I have smoked a lot of meat over the years in a weber kettle.

    Just takes a little practice is all.
  13. beer-b-q

    beer-b-q Smoking Guru OTBS Member


    Welcome to SMF, Glad to have you with us.

    This is the place to learn, lots of good info and helpful friendly Members.

    Many of our members have years of experience in smoking meat.  They are more than happy helping Newbies learn the art.

    We have members who cure there own Bacon, Hams, Jerky, Snack Sticks, Make Their own Sausage, etc. if you want to learn,
    this is the place. 

    Don't be afraid to ask questions of them and follow their advice. You won't be sorry, you will be making great Q in no time at all...

    Just remember, when curing your own meats follow the instructions included with the cure to the letter, this is not something to experiment with.  

    Never use more cure no mater if it is Tender Quick or Cure #1 or Cure #2 than the manufacturer says to use, this can be very dangerous.

    Tender Quick and Cure#1 or Cure #2 are not interchangeable, neither Cure #1 interchangeable with Cure #2 or vise versa

    Tips For New Members.
    1. Go into your profile and Under Location put where you are.
    2. City & State or Area & State will do. This will help members when answering your questions.
    3. Go to ROLL CALL thread and tell us a little about Yourself (A Name We Can Call You) and Experience & Equipment.
    4. Do Not Post  your other questions and smokes in the Roll Call Forum.
    5. Post your questions and smokes in the Proper Forum, Beef, Pork, Sausage, Electric Smoker, Charcoal Smoker etc.
    6. Use the Wiki Section, many of our members have posted great tutorials and instructional threads so take advantage of them.
    7. When you can't find an answer ask plenty of questions, we have some highly experienced members willing to help you.
    8. When posting about your smokes be sure to post plenty of Qview (Pictures) Our Moto, "No Pics, Didn't Happen".
    9. Get a good Probe Thermometer, Don't Depend on the Built in Thermometer in your Smoker (They are notorious for being off).
    10. A good choice for a remote dual probe thermometer is the Maverick ET-732
    11. Remember, We Always Cook by Temperature and NOT BY TIME...
    12. Sign up for Jeff's 5-Day eCourse.  Click Here
    13. Don't Take Chances, Always Follow USDA Safety Guidelines When Handling Meat.

    14. If you are wanting to get into curing meat, there are many members here more than happy to help and give good advice.

    15. If you are unsure of a procedure ASK, don't ASSUME, It will make your Smoking experience much more pleasant...

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