Well, you asked for it. Here, Smoky answers the most commonly asked questions. He is direct, honest and offers an insight into the time proven techniques to preparing great barbecue that is unavailable elsewhere. If you are unable to locate the exact answer you are seeking, feel free to contact him directly and ask!
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FAQ Subject: Making store bought smokers more efficient
A few years ago,I baught a New Braunsfelds smoker. I either read how to customize it on your site or a link from or to it.The info was for all specific kinds of smokers-making a bullet,water smoker easier to use by putting legs on the fire pan and reversing the legs on the smoker...Putting a baffle on my black diomond and a chimney below the grills... Friends are allways asking me about smokers and smoking stuff. I would like to give them a link to go to,instead of using my 1 typing finger to pass on the info. I have been nicknamed Smokemaster by my friends and the guys in my fishing club.So a lot of times I am asked about smoking just about everything that walks,flies or swims. In the summer I get treated like a king by my friends because I bbq at their parties... I cold smoke or grill over wood,using charcoal only to get the temp. up while the real coals and food are getting ready(charcoal to heat the metal etc. ahead of time). Here in California,7 bone roasts are on sale from$.79-$.99 a lb.The butchers sell me 30 lb. chunks of it(thier scale only goes that high.3 pieces fit in my smoker at a time(90 lbs.or so). I put a 1/8-1/4 inch of rub on it 2-3 days ahead of time.Bag it in the fridge to let the meat do its thing with the rub.I mix some of the rub with water to use as a mop.I smoke the meat anywhere from 24-36 hours(wind etc.). Mop every couple hours. I put a throw away aluminum pan under the grill to collect some of the juices to add to the mop for a finnishing sauce. or use it to do up some veggies,mushrooms or whatever(smoked corn,squash...) to go with the beef.California has so much produce year round that fresh stuff is no problem . I have a Smokeout/Grubfest every year for my friends and fishing club. Lots of fun. Might have it at the beach this year,smoked pig.3 day event. 1'st day-pot luck(I'll be too buisey getting the pig going so it will be ready for day 3).2'nd day a clam bake(start up the pig) lobster,clams,crabs,shrimp... potatos,corn on the cob,hushpuppies... I've been getting your newsletter for a few years(there was a while you were off line I think)and have given your sites address to a ton of people(there are over 3000 in my fishing club and a lot of them got tired of the price and quality that the comercial smokers offer when they smoke their tuna.)They all ask me for advice...I give them your site and a couple others to give them an idea of whats involved. Fish doesn't seem to be to popular on your site though. These days I hardley brine fish anymore,a rub with the same spices is less work and just as tastey. I do smoke a lot more lbs.than the average person at a time. Guys bring me several hundred pounds of Tuna fillets from a long range trip all the time.They pay for materials and I barter for labor-my freezers allways full of the freshest Tuna(Mahi Mahi,yellowfin,yellowtail,Albacore,shark,cod and whatever else) they bring me,I just gotta love it. That doesn't even cover the Trout and Striped bass,croppie…
I love smokin stuff!So does my stomach.
I guess I've babbled enough .If you could help me with the info for making store baught smokers more efficiant it would be great.
Your message just came wandering in. Wonder where it has been for a month?
The main thing you must do on NBs and other grills of their ilk is to stop up the holes. The air vent must be able to shut off completely and other leaks must be stopped up. Go to a hardware/fireplace/stove store and pick up some insulation (fibreglass) cords with cement to chock the cracks. You will find much improved performance. Also, I highly recommend a thermometer with a remote probe and digital read out. You can lay the probe on the meat initially and find what the temp. in the cooking chamber is AT MEAT LEVEL then insert in into the meat near the end to check your progress.
I do lots of fish and try to get more folk to try them. Loaded my freezer with Mahi mahi not long ago. You sound like you have a good deal going.
Will get back when I have more time. LOADED with e-mail today and heading for KC for the American Royal Barbecue tomorrow.