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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 08-11-2011, 02:29 PM   #1
smokinaggie
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Default Keeping the smoke blue and thin

How do you add fuel, sticks, to the fire without going from the desirable thin blue smoke to the billowy yellow stuff. After a few hours at 225 in the offset smoker, the temp starts dropping and the need for more wood is obvious, what then? Do you take coals from a nearby fire. Do you add only charcoal? do you block off the smoke chamber from the fire til it gets thin and blue again. Do you not worry about it and add a stick or two as needed? I'm still new at this.
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Unread 08-11-2011, 02:33 PM   #2
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One trick is to get the wood pre-heated by setting it on top of the fire box. This allows it to go quickly past that white smoky stage that happens right before it starts burning properly.
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Unread 08-11-2011, 02:44 PM   #3
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The trick is burning small clean fires... using pre-warmed sticks... and not letting the temp to drop too much... adding sticks to maintain a fire.
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Unread 08-11-2011, 02:51 PM   #4
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I have a metal burn barrel that keep a fire going and add the wood once I need to add to the smoker.
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Unread 08-11-2011, 02:55 PM   #5
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> After a few hours at 225 in the offset smoker, the temp starts dropping

After a few more cooks you'll come to know your smoker and how fast it consumes fuel. I try to never let the temperature dip, because when it starts it's getting pretty late in the game. Small hot fire, warm dry wood.
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Unread 08-11-2011, 02:57 PM   #6
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I have a Char-Griller off-set. Doesn't hold a whole lot of fuel so a couple of sticks will really raise a stink. I use a charcoal starter & light 2-3 sticks & get them burning pretty good before adding them to the firebox. Seems to reduce the white smoke quite a bit. YMMV... Cheers!!!
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Unread 08-11-2011, 03:58 PM   #7
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A CG will make you an expert at fire management and pit modifications in no time.
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Unread 08-11-2011, 04:33 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cliff H. View Post
A CG will make you an expert at fire management and pit modifications in no time.
Very true, until you give up on it...
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Unread 08-11-2011, 05:08 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by smokinaggie View Post
How do you add fuel, sticks, to the fire without going from the desirable thin blue smoke to the billowy yellow stuff. After a few hours at 225 in the offset smoker, the temp starts dropping and the need for more wood is obvious, what then? Do you take coals from a nearby fire. Do you add only charcoal? do you block off the smoke chamber from the fire til it gets thin and blue again. Do you not worry about it and add a stick or two as needed? I'm still new at this.
What are cooking on sm or large offset? Do you have charcoal basket? Pre heat wood cleaner burn.
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Unread 08-11-2011, 06:17 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBQ Bandit View Post
The trick is burning small clean fires... using pre-warmed sticks... and not letting the temp to drop too much... adding sticks to maintain a fire.
+1 Yup. Though pre-heating isn't necessary IMHO.
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Unread 08-11-2011, 06:19 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBQ Bandit View Post
The trick is burning small clean fires... using pre-warmed sticks... and not letting the temp to drop too much... adding sticks to maintain a fire.
+1 and if it's a small stick burner (like mine) keep the splits small. About 6" to 8" long and no larger around than your forearm. Hang in there, you'll learn what your pit wants in no time!
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Unread 08-11-2011, 06:29 PM   #12
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Cook at 275-315 and you fix everything!
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Unread 08-11-2011, 06:58 PM   #13
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Smokin' spareribs at 270º, hardwood lump and applewood. Got my thin blue smoke going. Virgin cook for my Baby Bullet happening right now.

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Unread 08-11-2011, 10:20 PM   #14
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Many thanks for the ideas. Got to go add a stick or two before the temp drops any more!!!
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