maintaining a constant temp?

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by david824, Oct 16, 2015.

  1. david824

    david824 Newbie

    Hey guys.

    Relatively new still to the art/science of "smoking" as opposed to grilling.

    I have a Brinkmann Trailmaster and overall have been pretty pleased with my first smoker.  I guess that my main question is, is there any secrets or tips to maintain that perfect temp during one's cook?  Mine tends to spike way up upon adding wood to the box and I'm afraid I'm doing more harm then good with the higher temps until it comes back down. It seems like it's almost a non stop watch one has to keep on the temp during the cook.  Is this perfectly normal or I'm I missing something?

    The other day while smoking a brisket right at the end of the 4 hour "smoke period" it came a down pour and I lost my fire.  Ended up finishing my cook in the gas oven inside the house.  I know that's cheating but damn that was easier in keep the desired temp.


  2. garyhibbert

    garyhibbert Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

  3. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    In general, Spikes are ok as long as the average temp over the whole cook is maintained. There is no shame in finishing in the Oven. Dinner is much more enjoyable in Dry Clothes...JJ
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2015
  4. joe black

    joe black Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Welcome from SC, David. My cooks are usually done at +/- 25* from the perfect temp. I get a small drop when I need to tend the meat, but it is back up very quickly. When my temp goes down 25*, I put in a couple of splits and the temp will go up about 10* over my desired temp for a few minutes! but will then settle back down.

    Since you're talking about hot spikes, have you considered moving your desired cook temp up a little? Maybe you're trying to maintain a temp that is below where your smoker likes to ride.

    Good luck and let us know how it goes. Joe
    cats49er likes this.
  5. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Smoking then finishing in a pre heated oven is standard practice around here...
  6. crankybuzzard

    crankybuzzard Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Excellent advice right there!  Most pits have a happy zone where they like to run along temp wise.  Just like Joe and Chef JJ said, spikes and dips happen, as long as the average temp is maintained, you'll be fine.
    LOTS of us on here have finished a brisket or butt in the oven...  No shame at all.  There have been MANY times that I would have gotten NO SLEEP if it weren't for the oven finish...
  7. david824

    david824 Newbie

    Thanks all.

    Doing two slabs of spareribs tomorrow and I'll see how it goes.

  8. crankybuzzard

    crankybuzzard Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Keep us informed, preferably with pics!

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