View Full Version : Temp control on 18" kettle vs 22"

06-03-2017, 05:06 PM
I'm trying to coach a buddy thru his first rib smoke on an 18" kettle via phone and text. I no longer own an 18, and only grilled on the one I had years ago.

I know in my 22s, a 2x2 snake method with the top vent wide open and bottom vent cracked about 3/16" will get me 250-275 for about 4 hours. Can anyone who has run a snake method on an 18 tell me what temp he's gonna get with a similar setup? Maybe 2 rows on the bottom and one on top, like a pyramid? He doesn't have any therms, so we're flying blind here! I know, I know, an 18 is smallish, but he's just going to skewer pinwheel a single rack in the center over a foil drip pan on the bottom grate, with the snake running around the perimeter of the charcoal grate. Any experienced input on 18s appreciated!

06-03-2017, 05:22 PM
That's going to be tough to do without a thermometer.
I've done snakes in my 18 WSM to smoke/cook pork belly to make bacon.
The probes help make things very precise.
I'd suggest top vent wide open & bottom vents (it's a one touch, right) about 1/3 open.
Your idea of the snake would be what I suggest.
You might have him run to HD or Lowes & buy a replacement grill thermometer - they're cheap. He could put through the top vent & subtract 30* from the reading. That would keep him in the ballpark.

06-03-2017, 05:57 PM
He lives in the middle of nowhere in upper Michigan lol. I agree that therms would be ideal, but won't happen today!

06-03-2017, 07:12 PM
He's gonna have to peek occasionally after 3 hours into the cook.
Tell him about pull back & the bend test.

06-03-2017, 07:19 PM
I did

06-03-2017, 07:49 PM
Id tell him to just bite the bullet and split into 2 1/2 racks and just lay them on the grate away from where the head of the snake is. Rotate grate once or twice as the snake burns around, and also switch out positions on the ribs.

Can't help you on the 18temp though, sorry.

06-03-2017, 11:46 PM
Report? How did remote assistance do?

06-04-2017, 12:53 AM
Haven't heard yet, but I'll let ya know!