WSM 14.5 issues with getting long smokes

Discussion in 'Charcoal Smokers' started by porkandbeansmo, Jan 31, 2016.

  1. I've tried a few methods now to achieve long smokes with my WSM 14.5 smoker and the longest I could get it to go without adding more coal was for about 5 hours and that was using the side light method, lit with a propane torch, basket full of briquettes with mesquite chunks mixed in and no water in the pan. It held a solid 235 until it got down to one layer of coal left. Is it impossible to get a longer 9-12 hour smoke on the 14.5" without adding coal? I'm wondering if the small fire ring and small coal capacity compared to a 18 or 22" is what causes this model to have a harder time burning long without being refueled.

    My other question is when doing a long smoke on the 14.5 and it's time to add more coal do you add hot coals from the chimney or toss in unlit coals? In my past experiences with the later choice the temp drops as the smoker slowly lights up the unlit coals and a hotter overal temp is never achieved.
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2016
  2. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Down here in Florida I can get about 8 hours on my 14.5 without refueling. I just add unlit coals on top of the lit ones if I'm going longer than that.

    My son is in Kansas & he can't even keep the temps up on cold days. He's adding hot coals all the time on his 14.5.

    I bought him a 22.5 for Christmas & due to the larger fire & capacity he has a much easier time on cold days.

  3. Maybe that's what I need to try doing on mine. It's pretty obvious to me now that climate makes quite a difference for the little steel WSM. I can't choke my vents down quite as much up here in Maine and keep the temps up.

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