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Unread 07-02-2013, 10:07 PM   #7
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Originally Posted by DownHomeQue View Post
cheaper offsets don't like the rain.. if you have a tent i would suggest using that next time.. the white smoke comes from water dripping onto your fire from the firebox lid... Try to cover the firebox and cooking chamber next time and you should have better results..
The rain at the time was at most a light drizzle any water getting in the fire box was minimal. I think wind was more of the issue.

Originally Posted by legendaryhog View Post
If your smoker is throwing lots of thick white smoke it probably is burning your fuel at too low a temp. Also, you could have low quality charcoal (I've never used Stubbs so I don't know). As well, if it was rainy and the wind was gusting you may have had wind blowing down your chimney.

You mentioned that your smoke became thin but you would get some belching of thick white smoke. You may have had wind blowing down your chimney and when you got a little break in the wind the hot air was coming out the chimney properly. This can cause big fluctuations in your temp on your chimney side. If you think this description sounds like your day, you want to position your smoker so the wind is blowing perpendicular to it (ie, the wind is blowing west, you have your two ends, chimney and firebox air valve, going north/south). If you can't move your smoker you can make a wind block. Sometimes I see guys making one out of aluminum foil, kinda like a bent tube so the exit is facing away from the wind.
I forgot to add that part to my original post. At one point, I watched the temperature drop by about 30 degrees in five seconds. When that happened I closed the cover on the chimney to about 1/4. Seems like I might need to improve the sealing as well.

Originally Posted by oldbill View Post
I would suggest ditching the charcoal as your primary fuel source and start using splits. Starting the fire with a chimney of coal with a split or two is a great way to get a quick bed of coals but that should be the end of the charcoal for the day. Offsets are designed for stick burning unlike the Eggs or WSMs and by maintaining a small hot wood fire you'll have a much easier time of holding temps. Offsets require good airflow and if you put too much charcoal into the firebox at once you always run the risk of too much of it igniting at once and then you end up with runaway or wildly fluctuating temps. Start with a chimney or less of charcoal and a large split or two smaller ones, as that burns to coals add another split and so on. The idea is to have the wood combust and not smolder as soon as it is put in the firebox. Combusting wood makes very little smoke which is the thin blue stuff that you want. You'll be putting a split on every 45 min. or so, your exhaust damper should be wide open and your intake should not have to be choked way down to control the heat, (mine is usually about a third to half of the way open). Just try this method and adjust as needed since all cookers are different but I think that it will really help you to get control over your offset.
Yeah, I tried the minion method but everything ended up igniting. I think I'll give the splits a shot. I'm in suburban purgatory so I don't have a good source for wood for the splits. In the interim, could I use campfire wood with hardwood chunks?

Thanks all
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