Smoker Help

Discussion in 'Side Fire Box' started by bigholmes, May 20, 2014.

  1. bigholmes

    bigholmes Newbie

    Hello everyone sorry i haven't posted more been busy!

    Heres my delima i have.

    I have my damper wide open and the stack wide open.

    If i close the firebox door the fire will die down or out.

    IWhat do you guys think could cause this with both sides wide open.

    I have been thinking should i add a fan i have found one from the wood stoves pretty cheap.
  2. 5oakssmoker

    5oakssmoker Smoke Blower

    What kind of smoker?

    I have a Brinkmann charcoal smoker, and it would do that, because it used a solid metal bowl for the charcoal to sit in, I went to WalMart and got what they call a Grill Wok(Recommended somewhere on this site as a solution) and then put the bowl on the bottom to catch ash. It made a big difference.

    Will see if I can find that other post, he had pictures.
  3. 5oakssmoker

    5oakssmoker Smoke Blower

  4. bigholmes

    bigholmes Newbie

    this is my firebox it has a wire rack under the wood. 

    with the damper open door closed the wood refuses to burn it either gets a very low flame or it goes out.

    The exhaust is wide open as well.

    if you open the firebox door you get a raging inferno close it and it goes out.
  5. 5oakssmoker

    5oakssmoker Smoke Blower

    Its definitely an airflow issue, I have seen posts where they recommend to raise the grate, so that there is more room for air flow under the fire, also maybe try a smaller amount of wood, you have you box crammed full, that will create a lot of ash at once and also block flow, not to mention needing more air to feed the fire.

    One of the other guys went so far as to put a vent directly below his fire grate, to allow air flow and had a hanging pan to catch ash.

    I would definitely try the smaller fire, and raising the grate up a bit with something before I started poking holes, those are cheap and easy to try and won't mess anything up.
  6. 5oakssmoker

    5oakssmoker Smoke Blower

  7. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Great advice here..... Look for the air flow blockage..... from the air inlet in the FB through the CC to the exhaust.... How much room under the RF plate..... You have NOT given us a lot of information.... pictures of the smokers insides and inlets and exhausts and cooking grate and RF plate... and not cropped pictures... the whole shebang..... Dave
  8. I agree. Fire needs oxygen, fuel, and ignition. You have fuel and ignition with no oxygen IMHO. Check your flow path and visualize a column of water following the smoke path. If the flow chokes down that might be the issue, if the path is open and smooth it's most likely an air intake issue. JM 2.
  9. bigholmes

    bigholmes Newbie

    Im gonna try less fuel and see if i can get my temps the way i want. 

    If not i have a wood stove fan i can use.
  10. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    With the proper dimensions, you won't need a fan..... thousands of smokers draw air/heat/smoke without them...
  11. bigholmes

    bigholmes Newbie

    this is a charbriol offset smoker i did not make it.
  12. bigholmes

    bigholmes Newbie

    And to make sure i am correct when using all wood it should burn not smolder correct?
  13. in order to keep the air flowing from the firebox through the chimney, the damper door needs to be open...that is how you control your temps.  Open it more for more heat, less for less my old brinkman I used to have, I had to raise the firebox grate up higher to keep air flowing below it and not get clogged up with ash.  Sounds like you definitely have an airflow problem, especially if it flares up when you open the door....
    Last edited: May 23, 2014
  14. bigholmes

    bigholmes Newbie

    Let me make sure i said it right.

    the damper is wide open but when i open the firebox door it flares up.

    the stack is wide open as well.

    I'm now thinking its the wood its seasoned almond that refuse to burn most times.
  15. bigholmes

    bigholmes Newbie

    Here are pictures of the smoker.

    I have removed excess wood, open dampers all the way, and exhaust fully.

    Close the firebox and cc door flame out.


  16. Get a good red hot bed of lump charcoal going. Add some wood on top for smoke flavor. Add lit chimney of lump as needed (adding unlit charcoal might cool temp too much). Hope this helps. Good luck!!!
    Last edited: May 24, 2014
  17. bigholmes

    bigholmes Newbie

    Your unit looks better built than mine! 

    I tried my wood stove fan and can get the wood to burn.

    If i don't i can get over 150 with out almost filling the firebox.

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