Looooong WSM cooks!

Discussion in 'Charcoal Smokers' started by woundedyak, Apr 11, 2011.

  1. woundedyak

    woundedyak Smoke Blower

    Okay, a little history about myself first. I work for a high end appliance dealer and I've used just about every grill/smoker out there. We always test and put the product through the ringer before we take the line on. So anytime in the last few years that I felt like doing some serious slow and low, I would just choose between a Green Egg, Primo, Texas Barbecue, Traegaer, ect...ect. Well, I finally got sick of not having a "upright" smoker at the house. Out of all the choices that I had to choose from, I picked the 22 WSM. I chose it for it's capacity (61lbs so far) Ease of transport, break down, and cleaning. I don't care what anyone say's, A Green Egg is not going to make your Que any better then a WSM. The factor there is the cook, I've used both several times and I get the same results. Were is does differ obviously, is the duration of cooking time. I'm not asking or expecting the WSM to run as long as a Komodo Kamado. But I would like to get a solid 10-11hrs without a drop in temps and without refueling. The best I've got is 8 1/2 at 245 using 10lbs of royal oak spilling over the ring(minoin style) and using ceramic drip tray foiled. So what's the secret? Do I just need to use more fuel? I've heard of people fitting 15lbs of kingsford briquets and getting 12hrs, but I will never use those things. So any tips will be appreciated
  2. jirodriguez

    jirodriguez Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    If you are only getting 10 lbs. of charcoal into that big ring then you need to pack it better. Best method is to hand stack it into the ring one piece at at time to pack the space as tight as possible, a faster but sometimes not as efficient method is fill the ring half way then rotate it back and forth a few times to "shake" the lump down, then fill it the rest of the way and repeat. You should be able to get 15 lbs of lump in if you do a good job packing the ring.

    Once the ring is packed tight dump 1/2 a chimney of lit on top in the middle. Put your main body section on, let it run for about 5-10 minutes, then put HOT water in your water pan, put the lid on with the top damper open 100%. As soon as the lid therm hits 200° damp down two of the bottom dampers 100%, and the third one down to about 50%. You should even out between 220-250, and it should run that way for 16+ hrs., unless there is high wind or sub 40° temperatures. Also keep the lid on and the door shut as much as possible, lump wants to take of fast as soon as it gets a big gulp of fresh air.

    I used one ring of lump in my 22.5" WSM this last Sunday to cook a brisket. It ran for 17+ hrs. at 220°, and when I got done I had enough to still run for another 4 or 5 hrs. Just make sure you catch your temps on the way up, once lump gets away from you it is very hard to get it to come back down in temp, and you will waste a lot of fuel waiting for it to settle down.
  3. cabin fever

    cabin fever Smoke Blower


    Those are some great WSM tips you posted. I copied your response to my ever growing "bbq folder" for future reference.   [​IMG]
    Last edited: Apr 11, 2011
  4. jirodriguez

    jirodriguez Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Glad to help, by all means holler if you ever need any help, there are a lot of WSM owners here besides me that have some great experience and knowladge.
  5. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I've done 20 hours on my WSM without adding any fuel. The only difference is I used Kingsford.
  6. woundedyak

    woundedyak Smoke Blower

    Thanks JIR! You just save me about 10 cooks of guess work!
  7. jirodriguez

    jirodriguez Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    No problem, glad to be of help. [​IMG]  Also keep an eye on SmokinAl's posts,  he does a lot of great stuff on his WSM as well.

    One of the reasons some of us use Kingsford for really long smokes is because they stack so well into the ring due to their uniform size. With a 16 lb. bag of Kingsford you can run for 18+ hrs., but around hour 12 you have to stir the charoal a bit to knock off the ash, then repeat that every 3 or 4 hrs. after that (or when you see the temps dip). But for long slow cooks sometimes the Kingsford Blue Bag can be a life saver.
  8. meateater

    meateater Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    Ugly Drum Smoker! Not pushing , just an alternative. 
  9. woundedyak

    woundedyak Smoke Blower

    Everytime I use Kingsford, I just taste charcoal.I'll buy a bag a few times a year when they release a new flavor. It doesn't seem as bad with the older none groved stuff. I will agree thou, it does go a lot further then lump! I've never had the opportunity to use the Kingsford Comp. By any chance does anyone know the difference?
  10. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Kingsford Comp burns a little hotter with less ash, but it also burns up faster.
  11. fife

    fife Master of the Pit

  12. jirodriguez

    jirodriguez Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    +2 .... except for the less ash part. I found it to produce about the same amount of ash and like Al said it burns faster...... so if you are going to use Kingsford, just buy the reg. blue bag, you will get longer burns, and it costs $2-$3 less per bag.

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