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gourmand71 07-06-2013 08:45 PM

Modding a Char-Broil COS
I was quite disappointed with two racks of baby backs I did for the 4th. I've had better luck cooking them in the oven. They were definitely not fall off the bone. There's a chance I wasn't patient enough, but a good craftsman always blames his poor equipment when things go awry. :shock:

If you didn't know, I'm new to this. So far, I have done a pork shoulder, which turned out nicely; a whole chicken, also nicely; a rack of spare ribs, which were not so good but the cut was probably poor; and these baby backs.

I have concluded that a big part of my problem is the leakage of my delightful COS (Char-Broil "American Gourmet Deluxe") that I bought somewhat on impulse and without much research. I get smoke coming out all over, which I am pretty sure is not what I want to see if I want to maintain temperature and cook things most efficiently.

My frustration was so great that I was thinking of finding someone to take it off my hands. But, looking around the forum, I think I've found some tips to try and "fix" this sucker so it works better:
  • I have already added a baffle inside the cooking chamber opposite the fire box, made from 22 gauge steel (photo)
  • Look for stove gaskets and use them under the lid of the food chamber
  • Extending the smokestack to the grate. This will involve removing the "warming rack," but that doesn't seem like much of a loss.
  • Build and use a charcoal basket

On the subject of the charcoal basket, is it typical to start off with roughly two chimney's worth of charcoal? Maybe part of my problem is that I don't start off as good as I should.

Also...the unit game with two cooking grates for use in the smoker box, for grilling. Just noticed they fit nicely lower down in the cooking chamber, a couple inches above the baffle. Would there be benefit to smoking food on those lower in the chamber?

Oh, the things I should have known before going down the smoking road. The Char-Broil might have been cheap to start with but....all these mods will make it just as pricey as something better out of the box. Experience is a tough instructor.

Richard_ 07-06-2013 11:01 PM

can you resize your picture , its a pain reading your post

Bludawg 07-06-2013 11:05 PM

Keep palying with it you will get it dialed in. I recommend you rethink the charcoal basket.Offset smokers are all about Flow from the intake to the exhaust. The fire box on these pits are to small to start with. Stuffing a charcoal basket full of charcoal in it will give you a whole different set of problems in temp control and a clean fire. Trust me It will give you less headaches if you run a small clean fire and burn splits, raise the wood rack p a little to get more air under the fire.

Your rib Problem sounds like your not cooking them until the pass the bend test. Spares will take 4.5-5 hrs and BB 4-4.5 hrs at 250

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