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View Full Version : Assassin Grill Questions/advise


LordisGod
06-04-2017, 08:17 PM
This one may be a long set of questions but I need to get it straight in my mind before I place an order..
so I made up my mind on the 48 Assasin Grill but I do have some questions for those that either own one or are in the know... also some advise about some of the customizations I'm thinking about..
1. I currently use a 18" wsm and really enjoy the Q that it produces.. but tired of the limited space for ribs and having to remove the upper grate to access the lower one.. would the assassin produce also the same level of smokiness as the wsm?
2. I use a Bbq Guru, is the assassin grill also good for 225 degree range or just hot and fast?
3. Since I like using the water pan I'm thinking about having 2 doors on each side made with only the daisy wheel on the left side. This is to have the water pan only split in half and can remove them from each side. Also an added convenience of accessing the charcoal grate and v pan from either side.
3. Additionally from requesting the regular vpan, thinking about requesting a vpan without the vents, so it will be a solid vpan for smoking.
4. With the waterpan on there how does the smoke travel from the coal pan to top? Is it from the edges? Sides only or all 4 sides? How big are the openings?
5. Initially After commenting with bbqfreak on YouTube, he mentioned that he would of added a second smokestack at the end to make it work like an offset. I was thinking about adding the second stack at the left hand side so when using the vpan I close the middle one and open the first one to make it a reverse flow style but if there are openings for heat and smoke to rise all around the grill then this is not possible making sense for using it offset style.

Sorry for the long questions, I just want to make sure of my purchase as apart from the cost of grill, shipping is going to be like $550 for shipping.. for a nice total penny. I want to avoid a " I should have gone with this or that"...

Thank you and God bless!!!

SmittyJonz
06-04-2017, 10:27 PM
PM BBQFreak

http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/showthread.php?t=238402
.
.

LordisGod
06-04-2017, 11:46 PM
Thanks SmittyJonz! Done did :grin:

KevinJ
06-05-2017, 09:16 AM
The V-pan is made for people that don't want to use the water pan and since you plan on using the water pan it isn't needed. The slits in the pan are designed to help even out temps across the grates.

You should give Jeff at Assassin a call, he's a really good dude and easy to talk to.

biglag
06-05-2017, 09:20 AM
Let me know what u find out. I just ordered mine a few days ago.

LordisGod
06-05-2017, 01:59 PM
Thanks Kevin! The only reason I'm thinking about the vpan is when I do my Chiken.. that's when I don't like using water pan. I did not even think about the slits in that way..
I will call Jeff when I have a chance..

Biglag, I will do!

olewarthog
06-05-2017, 02:31 PM
The Assassin Grills are awesome cookers. However, remember it is a grill that can function as a smoker. Even with the V-pan, it will be a bit more hands on wrt fire management that a WSM or their gravity feed smokers. (disclaimer: I don't own one (yet) but I do see a lot of them in action at BBQ comps). I can't speak about a second stack. Talk with Jeff & he can give the pros/cons of adding that option.

KevinJ
06-05-2017, 02:33 PM
I will call Jeff when I have a chance..I think you'll be glad you did and good luck with your new cooker.

THoey1963
06-05-2017, 03:15 PM
The Assassin Grills are awesome cookers. However, remember it is a grill that can function as a smoker. Even with the V-pan, it will be a bit more hands on wrt fire management that a WSM or their gravity feed smokers. (disclaimer: I don't own one (yet) but I do see a lot of them in action at BBQ comps). I can't speak about a second stack. Talk with Jeff & he can give the pros/cons of adding that option.

Again, no experience with an Assassin, but I tend to agree with Jim. I am not saying that you won't be able to make Q like you are used to from the WSM, but you will need to figure out how to use it to get the same results.

Since you are happy results you produce with the WSM 18, have you thought about getting a WSM 22? How much are you trying to smoke at one time? I hated bending over into my WSM to grab the lower grate too. Have you tried stacking the lower grate on top using small cans or bolts?

BBQ Freak
06-05-2017, 04:51 PM
after looking at mine it has gaps on the sides so heat is still going to vent all the way around the diverter plate so I would not try and make it a reverse flow. the only thing I would do different is put the stack on the far right side so it pulls the heat across the whole cooker like a offset smoker instead of venting up in the middle . you either haft to use the diverter pate or use the water pan and can not use both the way it is made . I do not even use my Guru at all anymore , I do a straight maze down and back for a 13 hour cook or one straight maze down for a 6 to 8 hour cook . if cooking at 275 degrees I will run a maze with Royal Oak Chef Select Charcoal three wide and two tall and the pinwheel vent closed and stack open about a 1" and will stay steady the whole time . with the same charcoal two wide and two tall it will run between 225 to 250 degrees with the same pinwheel and vent settings . hope this helps and feel free to ask away if you have more questions .

LordisGod
06-05-2017, 10:55 PM
Hi Biglag, Ok, so I spoke with Jeff and this is what he commented on..
- don't go with a solid v pan as its triangular it will just hold the heat turning it into an oven basically.
- the venting is all around the waterpan/vpan so it won't really work as a reverse flow. The only way would be if I covered the vent openings side with something like aluminum foil..
- he would charge 25$ for every smoke stack and (if I rennet correctly) 30 or 35 for the extra door on the other side of the grill.. no charge to split the water pan in half.. which I think are awesome prices as some extras from other makers charge a lot.
-lead time is 4 weeks for a grill.

LordisGod
06-05-2017, 11:08 PM
Warthog: that's true. I did ask Heff about the extra smoke stacks and it would add to the versatility as I can close the ones that won't be in use.

KevinJ: I am glad that I spoke with Jeff. Good advise!

THoey: I like experimenting so I know it will take some time to get the hang of it, but may take some time to get the same results as the wsm, which I have been using for over a couple of years.. I have thought about the 22 wsm along with getting the Weber hangers and hanging ribs, chicken etc... but there are times when I have company over and need to grill. So I will be still using the 18 as my pork butt and brisket smoker but the assassin as the rib, Chiken, tritip, etc cooker. Actually I narrowed it down between the assassin and the 22 and being able to grill was the final benefit that helped me lean towards it. But it's the shipping cost of the assassin that has me keeping the 22 in mind.. just the shipping alone on the assassin pays for the 22. But I do see the many options on increasing the capacity (I looked into your wsm mods link).

LordisGod
06-05-2017, 11:17 PM
BbqFreak: thanks for the pics, it sure does help with the visuals!
When using the vpan, do you only place the charcoal under the solid part or run it all the way unto slits side as well?
Now I see why you would run it like a offset and only going with the smoke stack at the end. Man you got it down to the amount of charcoal! Now that's due diligence! I might still use my guru till I get the hang of it... or when when I need to do things and can't hang around.., there's a metal shop near my house so I also ask for the same se of pieces of square tubing to create the snake.. was that 2"x2"? How thick metal?
Thanks again bbqfreak. I really appreciate taking time to answer my questions.

biglag
06-05-2017, 11:27 PM
I ordered mine with the insulated fire door and 1.5" ball valve, so no pin wheel for me. I've wondered about the smoke stack being in the middle but I would hate to argue with the success people have had so far with the grill. BBQ freak, u turning some good que with that cooker right? Idk if I wanna make too many adjustments. 13 hour burn time with no guru and consistent temps sounds pretty good. I'll be picking mine up in a few weeks, can't wait. Also I asked Jeff to add a side propane burner for me to light my chimney. Hope it turns out good.

myedition
06-05-2017, 11:29 PM
Thats great information!

LordisGod
06-05-2017, 11:35 PM
What! You can request a insulated fire door? Could you attach the Guru to the ball valve? I am still thinking about getting 2 smoke stacks.. one for the water pan (middle) and the other for the vpan (far right) to use as bbqfreak suggested..

Rhawkin
06-05-2017, 11:40 PM
I have doors on both ends of mine. I split my water pans and ash pans. Have the guru adapter. I've found that using the guru with my charcoal starting about half way burning away from the fan. Using a maze of fire bricks down the middle of charcoal pan I have better luck controlling temp around 250. I blanked off the daisy wheel opposition the guru and added gaskets to the doors.

biglag
06-05-2017, 11:41 PM
I do not know anything about gurus ...but there was a Facebook post with an insulated fire door. I requested one ..he said without a guru I would need to keep the door open til it reached temps, then control with the valve. I will not be using the water pan ever I don't believe, so maybe I should move the smoke stack to the right...?

biglag
06-05-2017, 11:43 PM
Image

LordisGod
06-06-2017, 12:01 AM
Rhawkin: so you start your charcoal on the apposing end of the guru?
Biglag: I am going with at least two. My thinking is I would have the versatility and if I don't use it I would just close it off not affecting the performance of the grill.
Now, I wonder how much it would cost to have the whole grill insulated.... hmmm.

biglag
06-06-2017, 12:04 AM
Find out brother and let me know. I'd be interested for sure! I really only want one smoke stack, I may wait for freak to respond before making adjustments.

LordisGod
06-06-2017, 12:12 AM
I will do. Lol.. I think I better stop asking questions.. it's costing money!

JS-TX
06-06-2017, 10:09 AM
I have an Assassin 36, BBQ Freak/Jeff and his videos helped out quite a bit. I would also agree with moving the smoke stack to the right. It's a great grill and capable smoker. I've had mine almost 6 months and have cooked several briskets and ribs on it. Good smoke flavor and heat retention. I would opt for the half size charcoal pans with double doors, the full size pan is really heavy. Plus it's less metal to heat up when smoking cause you may just be using 1 pan when you are smoking something short like ribs. I also recommend getting an ash vac, it's a deep cooker and getting that thing really clean can be a chore.

LordisGod
06-06-2017, 01:47 PM
I have seen those ash vacuums.. I did even think about it for this application... when you smoke do you use chunks?

JS-TX
06-06-2017, 01:54 PM
I have seen those ash vacuums.. I did even think about it for this application... when you smoke do you use chunks?

Yes sir, primarily chunks and even some wood chips. I try to have a hot small fire in my maze setup so I get nice clean burn. Smoke level is about on par with a WSM, maybe a tad extra. I got my 36 used (locally) and got a great deal on it, however if I was buying new I definitely would get the 48.

BBQ Freak
06-06-2017, 04:05 PM
BbqFreak: thanks for the pics, it sure does help with the visuals!
When using the vpan, do you only place the charcoal under the solid part or run it all the way unto slits side as well?
Now I see why you would run it like a offset and only going with the smoke stack at the end. Man you got it down to the amount of charcoal! Now that's due diligence! I might still use my guru till I get the hang of it... or when when I need to do things and can't hang around.., there's a metal shop near my house so I also ask for the same se of pieces of square tubing to create the snake.. was that 2"x2"? How thick metal?
Thanks again bbqfreak. I really appreciate taking time to answer my questions.


I run the snake under the solid part of the v-pan and under the openings but keep the smoking meat on the solid part for the most part unless I am grilling some wings or chicken at the end of the cook through the openings . the tube steel is 2" X 2" X 3/16" thick and have never had it jump the maze with the 2" gap .


I ordered mine with the insulated fire door and 1.5" ball valve, so no pin wheel for me. I've wondered about the smoke stack being in the middle but I would hate to argue with the success people have had so far with the grill. BBQ freak, u turning some good que with that cooker right? Idk if I wanna make too many adjustments. 13 hour burn time with no guru and consistent temps sounds pretty good. I'll be picking mine up in a few weeks, can't wait. Also I asked Jeff to add a side propane burner for me to light my chimney. Hope it turns out good.

I have the ball valve to but had to use it since it dials in real easy and yes it turns out just as good of food as my Shirley .

biglag
06-06-2017, 04:47 PM
Freak, do u think that using firebrick for the maze instead of the tube steel would make the fire jump?

And should I move the stack to the far right?

And what if I were to smoke a lot of meat at the same time, would I just have to rotate it since the slots are on one side?

BBQ Freak
06-06-2017, 05:29 PM
Freak, do u think that using firebrick for the maze instead of the tube steel would make the fire jump?

And should I move the stack to the far right?

And what if I were to smoke a lot of meat at the same time, would I just have to rotate it since the slots are on one side?

I would doubt the fire would jump using the bricks but have never used them though but have some in my garage still unopened . on the stack I do not want to tell anyone what to do for they might not like it but if I did it over again I would and the owner Jeff about it . and on the meat if the snake gets to the holes and is too hot just put some gloves on and flip the v-pan 180 degrees around .

morgan-que
06-06-2017, 07:10 PM
[QUOTE=biglag;3808332]Freak, do u think that using firebrick for the maze instead of the tube steel would make the fire jump?

I have a 36 and was have been using fire brick and have had in jump 2 times now. I think it could have to due with the stoker coming on and blasting the air in possibly causing an ember to fly over. Have not had it jump just using the vents.

LordisGod
06-06-2017, 11:25 PM
Bbq freak, do you put wood on the bottom and on top of the maze?

Rhawkin
06-06-2017, 11:48 PM
I use about 2/3 of charcoal tray and start my lit coals toward the guru. The guru on the end with no charcoal. Burning away from the guru to the far end then back towards the guru. Fire bricks down the middle. Seems not to overshoot my temp that way

LordisGod
06-07-2017, 03:21 PM
Thanks Rhawkin! How did you seal the doors? What gaskets did you use?

Rhawkin
06-07-2017, 11:56 PM
I used 1/8 x 1/2 wide wood stove door gasket material. Found on eBay I had the best luck with the self adhesive type. Tried 2 types that came with tube of adhesive neither stayed very long.

LordisGod
06-08-2017, 03:27 PM
Thanks Rhawkin! Do you remember the brand name of the gasket?

Rhawkin
06-08-2017, 10:12 PM
Imperial was the brand
144602

LordisGod
06-08-2017, 11:33 PM
Thanks for the tips Rhawkin! Much appreciated!

slim2061
10-08-2017, 01:37 AM
I would doubt the fire would jump using the bricks but have never used them though but have some in my garage still unopened . on the stack I do not want to tell anyone what to do for they might not like it but if I did it over again I would and the owner Jeff about it . and on the meat if the snake gets to the holes and is too hot just put some gloves on and flip the v-pan 180 degrees around .

I am in the process of ordering an Assassin 48 and I am considering moving the stack to the right. My concern with moving the stack to the right is when I use a long run of fuel the length of the pan in conjunction with the V pan, what kind of temp fluctuation or drop can be expected on the left side, where say a brisket may be?

Part of me wants to pull the trigger and move the stack to the right, but on the other hand, I have read many posts here and seen many pictures of quality product with the stack in the center.

I have to decide soon, as I will be ordering ASAP, since I sent an email to Assassin late Friday evening.

Anyone else have any further thoughts about effects of moving the stack to the right?