Masterbuilt Cookmaster Propane Smoker - first smoke problems

Discussion in 'Propane Smokers' started by mayor mcpork, Apr 17, 2012.

  1. I got my intro into smoking this past weekend. I picked up a Masterbuilt Cookmaster propane smoker (model #20050511). I did a lot of reading and emailed the company to get their seasoning instructions. I twice seasoned the smoker by spraying down the insides and racks and then getting the temp above 400 degrees.

    I bought a Maverick dual probe thermometer and did a couple of test runs. I had no problem keeping it around 225 degrees. My initial test runs with mesquite wood chips using the stock wood tray lead to tons of white smoke and then just charred remains. After reading advice on these forums, I put a cast iron pan on top of my stock wood chip pan and used cherry wood chunks. I started cooking a 6lb pork butt on Saturday without water in the pan. I got the smoker to 225 around 6am and then ran some errands around 10am. While gone, my wife called to say that the smoker was losing temp - the flame blew out. It probably dropped to 160 degrees before she got it restarted. She played with the damper for a bit and the temp before getting it to settle in around 245 degrees. Once I got home, I spent the afternoon keeping the temp in the 225-235 range. Around 1pm when the stall was on, I noticed that the wood hadn't smoked/burned so I stuck it back in the stock wood box. The smoker bellowed white smoke for about 20 minutes and then stopped. Around 4pm I added more wood chunks and got more white smoke for a brief period. By 6pm the internal temp was still only 160 so I turned the smoker up to around 280 degrees. By 8pm the internal temp hit 190 degrees. I opened up the door and stuck a fork in the side of the pork butt. It didn't turn all that well but I pulled out the pork regardless since it had cooked/smoked for 14 hours. I understood the rule of thumb to be 2 hours per pound, so I expected it to cook for 12 hours.

    The meat was good but we could definitely tell that the connective tissues had not melted. The bark was perfect and had good flavor from my rub, but the internal meat lacked any flavor.

    My questions are:

    1) What can I do to temper the wood chips/chunks from burning and not producing TBS?

    2) Why would a butt not be done after 14 hours of smoking mostly at or above 225?

    3) What can I do to get better flavor to the meat, or is that just a product of the meat itself?

    Any other tips?
  2. stonecracker

    stonecracker Newbie

    I am having the same problem. what did you do to fix it? Keeping the smoke rollingnever works right....
  3. I cook at about 225* - 240* until IT hits 165* using only a couple nice sized hickory chunks every 1.5 hours. once you reach 165* i pull the butt and foil it put it back in and cook until IT reaches 205* . ***Important*** then take it out foil again with another layer and wrap it in a towel and place in a cooler for a solid hour. should be very tender and flavorful. 
  4. duke trana

    duke trana Newbie

    Do you have a separate oven thermometer?  The first time I used mine, I found out that the thermometer that is built-in is subject to too many variables (like the wind and the sun hitting it).  I bought an oven thermometer at Target for around $10 and temperature control has been much easier since. 
  5. I would reccomend a et-73 made by maverick it has a smoker probe as well as a meat probe and its wireless. 
  6. I have the same unit. When my electric one died and no parts were available for a long time they were kind enough to send me a Propane one. I am very grateful for that. I did mod mine a touch with 2 racks from my electric ones carcass. Had to send back the control unit but go the rest to keep.

    I simply use both the water bath (line with foil to help keep clean) and then SOAK the wood chips. Starts a bit heavy with smoke shortly after putting them in but then get a good hour of Thin Blue Smoke and at 1 hour generally have a few embers still in the pan.

    Also got a cast iron box smoker box from Walmart for a second chip box. This allows me to change chip boxes with one door opening not two. 

    The water bath makes it real easy to maintain temp.

    Soaking help slow the burn down.

    Here is my post on our unit..

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