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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 01-22-2010, 09:22 AM   #1
bottomsupbbq
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Default WSM and Outside Temps

During last night episode of BBQ Pitmasters Harry Soo was concerned about temps in the 40ís and felt the need to wrap his WSMís in water heater blankets. I have only been cooking on my WSM since mid November ant the temps have been in the 50ís 40ís and even low 30ís I havenít noticed the need to make any large adjustments to the lower vents add extra fuel during the cook or wrap the cooker in a blanket. Do any of you do this? This also got me thinking a little more about outside temps. What kind of adjustments if any will I need when the temps get into the 70ís 80ís and even 90ís
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Unread 01-22-2010, 09:33 AM   #2
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I have cooked in temps as low as -5 degrees farenheit with no wrapping. I light my coals with the Minion method, and adjust the number of lit coals I add based on outside temp, andwhere from 12 to 24 lit coals. This can affect overall burn time, but in most cases we are talking the difference between 12 hours and 24, so it is usually not any problem.
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Unread 01-22-2010, 09:38 AM   #3
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We've cooked in WSMs anywhere from 20 degrees to 117 degrees with no problems and no reloading of fuel.
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Unread 01-22-2010, 09:46 AM   #4
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We do a lot of low temp cooking in the winter. As low as -30. The biggest challenge for us was wind. a friend of mine built these collapsible wooden boxes for us the inside of them has the duct insulation stapled to them:
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Unread 01-22-2010, 09:52 AM   #5
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I have cooked in -20 with the wind chill last month. I use the Minion method too but needed to add charcoal at 4am,started at 930pm. I did this to ensure the WSM stayed at 225-230.. the wind(used a wind block) kept the fire stoked pretty good all night. The pork was done by 600am @2 hours earlier than I planned. I dont wrap the smoker. The hottest temp otsied was 109 in the High Dessert in CA.
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Unread 01-22-2010, 09:54 AM   #6
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Wind is your enemy not cold.
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Unread 01-22-2010, 10:06 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Diva Q View Post
We do a lot of low temp cooking in the winter. As low as -30. The biggest challenge for us was wind. a friend of mine built these collapsible wooden boxes for us the inside of them has the duct insulation stapled to them:
Quote:
Originally Posted by BruceB View Post
Wind is your enemy not cold.
What they said...^^^...

I built a wind shield out of some insulated wrap and velcro strips...works great...





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Unread 01-22-2010, 10:58 AM   #8
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Thanks all. This may be a question for another thread but would the use of a Stoker add to the fuel consumption on a WSM
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Unread 01-22-2010, 11:42 AM   #9
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We had a cold snap here in South Florida, temps in 40's and windy. Doubled my cooking time, but due mainly to the wind. Took 30lbs of lump + wood. I'll think twice about the wind next time...
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Unread 01-22-2010, 02:48 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bottomsupbbq View Post
Thanks all. This may be a question for another thread but would the use of a Stoker add to the fuel consumption on a WSM
For me, the Stoker stretches my fuel. I like to get a clean burning fire before putting on my meats. Before the Stoker, I would let my fire go about 2 hours before starting the meat. With the Stoker, I'm getting a clean burn 45 minutes after lighting the fire.

I also think with the more controlled induction of the Stoker, it's using fuel more efficiently. I haven't done a test to see how long a load of charcoal goes with a Stoker, but I think other variables like outside temps, wind, humidity (ever do an overnight cook at the beach during a heavy fog?) and altitude have a greater effect on fuel consumption than induced air systems like the Stoker or Guru.
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