possible smoke issue

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by axpilot, Feb 6, 2010.

  1. axpilot

    axpilot Fire Starter

    I can't tell a difference between white smoke and blue smoke. does the stream off the water pan make thin blue look white?[​IMG] Also, my wood keeps catching on fire. I placed chunks between the element and I can't keep it from burning
  2. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    What brand of smoker do you have?

    Most likely steam.

    Put a pan on the element and wood in the pan.

    Shut down the bottom vent.

  3. axpilot

    axpilot Fire Starter

    brinkman electric (ECB) I was told not to put anything on the element. what if i elevated the pan over the element?
  4. flash

    flash Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    You more than likely will need some contact with the element. Try foiling some chips or place a small can with chips/chunks in it on the element.

    Bad smoke on left, good smoke on right.
  5. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Flash.....Great Pic of "White" vs. "Blue"!!

    Years ago, I had a ECB and set a cast iron fry pan on the burner. Without something on the burner, I got flames rather than smoldering wood.

    Flash is right, you can use a tin can or make a foil pack with chips in it. Just poke a bunch of holes in it. Easy Clean Up!

    Good Luck!

  6. axpilot

    axpilot Fire Starter

    I have a cast iron pan I can fill with chunks. I just pulled my first Fatty off and it is ok, I am doing some ABT's tomorrow and i will try the pan.
  7. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    You may want to put some chips in along with your chunks. Chips get going faster and chunks keep going and going and going!

    You may have good luck making a pouch and filling it with chips and chunks. Close it all up and poke some holes in the top. I do this on my gas grill.

    Good Luck!

  8. axpilot

    axpilot Fire Starter

    yea I will try the pan first. i think my chunks didn't last long enough because they just burned up
  9. rdknb

    rdknb Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    WOW great picture to show difference
  10. phil brown

    phil brown Fire Starter

    Flash, that pic should be in a sticky somewhere. Was it staged? I can't imagine how else you got two identical smokers sitting side-by-side spewing billowy white and thin blue at the same time. [​IMG]

    Something I would like to add, though: the appearance of smoke is going to depend on your light source. Most people probably have a good handle on what smoke is supposed to look like in daylight, but things change quite a bit in artificial light. Incandescent lights don't put out much blue light, and most CFLs are made to mimic incandescents. For more accurate color rendition, you need a light source that puts out more blue. Without getting too technical, there is a measure of the spectrum of a light source that is useful: it's called correlated color temperature (CCT), and is measured in Kelvins.

    Daylight, noon: 6500K
    "Full spectrum" fluorescent: 5500K
    Typical fluorescent tube: 4100K
    Incandescent light: 2700K

    Here's a shot I took of the smoke coming out of my Weber kettle. The smoke is illuminated by a high-powered LED flashlight, roughly 3700K.

    The smoke looks just a tinge bluer IRL. When it looks like this under the flashlight, I know it's just about right. It's been extremely windy tonight, which made it really hard to find a good moment to snap a picture. I hope this helps you figure out when you've got the right smoke!
  11. the dude abides

    the dude abides Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Nice. I thought I was the only one around here that new about color temperatures. And your right, it's going to look different to the eye under different conditions. But if you keep it thin and not billowing, you should be ok. The other thing you mentioned was steam. This time of year (depending on what your weather is like) I get a lot of steam and yes, it looks white and billowing. You can also go by smell. You should be able to notice if it's just a whisp of smoke or something really heavy going on.
  12. So, what exactly causes the bad white smoke and why is it bad? Im new here and have been wondering.
  13. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Ole flash has a good example of the thin blue smoke and the bad white billowing smoke of all. I also think that chunks last alot longer then chip in my smoker.

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