View Full Version : Cold weather smoking difficulty

12-10-2017, 08:25 PM
Hi I use a uds smoker. It makes wonderful bbq meat. I live in a cold area. I had a lot of difficulty keeping temp during a recent attempt at winter smoking. Looking for advice. If I make larger intakes would I be able get some more heat? Would I run the risk of flame up inside the drum if the intakes were larger. Right now I am using a one inch direct intake and two one inch adjustable intakes. On top I have 4 one inch stacks.

Rusty Kettle
12-10-2017, 09:16 PM
Grab some binder clips and A welding blanket. Wrap the drum up and over the lid. Do not block the exhaust or the intakes. Cap the intake that is getting wind blown in. Wind makes it burn faster and also cools the drum. Block the intake for a slower burn and wrap it up to insulate it better.

12-10-2017, 09:48 PM
+1 ^^^^ I did that starting a few years ago and it works great. My blanket is a little small, so I've got a piece of wire through the corners to hold it on, but it works. At one point, I built a 3 sided wind block out of ply wood, but that got to be too much to haul around and keep in the garage.

12-10-2017, 10:24 PM
I will look for one. Has anyone ever uses larger intakes or exhaust.

12-10-2017, 10:52 PM
You could always adapt on intake to use a Digiq or some other type of fan.

Notorious Q.U.E.
12-11-2017, 12:31 AM
Insulation is the key. I've been to Calgary and those temps are no joke. The huge temperature differential is what makes your cooking different than mine. Blanket is a smart way to go.

If you're willing to plunk down a lot of coin, I've become a new devotee of my IVC. I'm now thinking of the IVC as my foul weather cooker.

12-11-2017, 05:12 AM
Yes, more intake and exhaust will make all the difference. I am not able to get to 800* when we are in single digits, but I can get 650* to just over 700* in those temps. Alot more intake and exhaust is what is required.
For me, I never found using a folded welding blanket as insulation to help at all. Waste of time/effort IMHO. Both run the same and hit the same temps. And us pretty much the same amount of fuel to get and hold there. And, at that time I had an Acorn chargriller. (you can see it in the backround on the left) My UDS's work better/easier and more cooking space.
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/640x480q90/911/9TVVyD.jpg (https://imageshack.com/i/pb9TVVyDj)
On the way to 700*
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/640x480q90/922/mx2ZGo.jpg (https://imageshack.com/i/pmmx2ZGoj)
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/640x480q90/922/wdRGVv.jpg (https://imageshack.com/i/pmwdRGVvj)

12-11-2017, 05:19 AM
I will look for one. Has anyone ever uses larger intakes or exhaust.
I use (3) 1 1/2" elbows and you want at minimum 3 5/8" exhaust. But having 4+" exhaust allows for higher temps. My one drum has (2) 2 1/2" exhaust, the weber style lid has 3 5/8". Running side by side, the larger exhaust total is what gets me over 800*. Can't get there with the 3 5/8". Only around 750* depending on outside temps. And all three intakes are required to get to those hit temps.
Here is one I built for a neighbor. He did not need/want to hit above 500*. Only 2 intakes with the dual 2 1/2" exhausts. It will only get to 550*
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/640x480q90/922/EJfQUv.jpg (https://imageshack.com/i/pmEJfQUvj)
http://imagizer.imageshack.us/v2/640x480q90/924/Fa13P4.jpg (https://imageshack.com/i/poFa13P4j)

12-13-2017, 12:27 AM
Ok thanks for all that information.

12-13-2017, 07:12 AM
I use a heavy wool blanket, the bottom of which is even with the top of my charcoal basket. I guess my logic is to keep the column of heat moving up in the drum from cooling off. I make only slight changes to my vent settings. Hanging meats cook better than grated meats is cold weather, I guess because of heat circulation?? And when the temps are near 0F I will switch to my Big Green Egg, I've cooked overnight on it at -20 with no problems.


12-13-2017, 02:28 PM
wind block and insulation are the way to go. I'd be cautious about increasing the intake or exhaust. Those are permanent.
I'm in WI and cold weather smoking is just a part of life