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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 12-05-2009, 03:08 PM   #1
GreasePig
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Default HELP! My WSM temp is dropping FAST!

Never had this happen before. Fired up the WSM this morning (9 am) for a couple of butts, some fatties, etc...

Filled up the ring and added my wood. Dumped a chimney of lit K on top. Everything started off great. Caught it at 225 going up. Set vents at about a 1/4. First 3 or 4 hrs it was locked in perfect at 225 and never waivered. Checked it a 5 hrs and the temp was down to 200. Kicked the legs, stirred the coals a lil bit and opened up the vents a touch. Just checked it again a few minutes ago and temp is 190. Cracked the door and looked and the coals were all white and looked good, but I guess they are too far gone.

Lighting another chimney...

What did I fark up? Temp outside is about 40 and the wind isn't very bad. I have cooked 9 hrs on the same amount of charcoal several times.

I am confused...


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Unread 12-05-2009, 03:11 PM   #2
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Ive never cooked on a WSM but someone will chime in here shortly!
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Unread 12-05-2009, 03:20 PM   #3
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Added the other chimney of lit and got the temps back up. When I took the middle section off to add the charcoal there was PLENTY of charcoal left. I wonder if my charcoal got moist or something. It was a half a bag that I had left from Thanksgiving that I loaded the ring with this morning. I just don't get it. Never had this happen before.
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Unread 12-05-2009, 03:28 PM   #4
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I haven't experienced that with my wsm (only my second cook on one today) but its happened to me before on my drum because of wet charcoal and on an offset because I didn't clean up the ash below the charcoal so it could breathe.
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Unread 12-05-2009, 03:36 PM   #5
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After adding the new charcoal it popped back up to 225, but that lasted for about 10 minutes. now it is back at 200 and it doesn't want to move. Vents are not blocked. I stirred the charcoal really well when I had the top off. Friggin ring is full of charcoal. Got the vents at over 1/2 open and it still won't come up. The charcoal I used in chimney this morning and when I added a few minutes ago was a new bag. My old bag never got wet either. It has been in the garage since Thanksgiving.

UUUUGHHHH! I have 2 fatties ready to throw on but I guess I'll leave them in the freezer. Maybe my MOINK balls will finish. They have been on for about an hour and a half. Probably gonna have to finish the butts in the oven.
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Unread 12-05-2009, 03:38 PM   #6
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Got a hair dryer? Blow some air into the intakes.
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Unread 12-05-2009, 03:40 PM   #7
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kick it..... move the coals around...
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Unread 12-05-2009, 03:43 PM   #8
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Sounds like moist charcoal. I had a very similar problem with my wsm not wanting to stay up to temp but had a bunch of charcoal left.
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Unread 12-05-2009, 03:44 PM   #9
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could your thermo be malfunctioning? a chimney full of red hot coals should have kept you going for a while! Set the dampers wide open until it comes back up, and check your thermo if you can

i dont really cook with briquettes, and I've only had my fire nearly go out on my egg a few times by setting the dampers TOO miserly - opening the dampers wide open fixed it in a jiffy.
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Unread 12-05-2009, 03:44 PM   #10
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I've kicked. It hurt.. :)

I'm still farking with it. The wind kicked up quite a bit outside. dammit... It was locked in so friggin perfect.
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Unread 12-05-2009, 03:45 PM   #11
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Sounds like you have too much ash in the bottom and lost your air flow.

Pop the mid and top off and pull your coal grate. Empty the ash.
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Unread 12-05-2009, 03:45 PM   #12
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also, I picked up two Kingsford Kaddys at lowes this summer - that way i can store the charcoal air and water tight outside. The bags stay in the garage, and only come out to the grill when i put them in the kaddys.
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Unread 12-05-2009, 04:01 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Skip View Post
Sounds like you have too much ash in the bottom and lost your air flow.

Pop the mid and top off and pull your coal grate. Empty the ash.
I moved the smoker where it is a little more out of the wind and pulled off the mid and top and stirred the coals again ad went arounf the ring and made sure the air could get to it. It's edging back up now (with the vents all the way open). There is enough charcoal in the ring to last another 5 or 6 hours. Maybe it'll come back to where I need it.
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Unread 12-05-2009, 05:01 PM   #14
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Put a 1/4" shim under the lid. This will increase the air flow. watch it carfully, because when it starts climbing it can get away from you.
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Unread 12-05-2009, 05:02 PM   #15
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I think it's sometimes just the charcoal. I did a cook on mine a week or so ago, using K and couldn't get the temp over 200 degrees no matter what I tried. It did manage to boil all the water out of the pan.


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