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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 02-25-2013, 11:38 AM   #1
pull_my_butt
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Default Can leaky smoker sometimes be good?

I purchased my first Weber grill a few days ago and I'm loving it. I can't believe I even purchased anything else before the Weber. Heat retention is excellent.

This leads to my question because I was grilling some chicken wings and thighs and no way was the meat cooked as long as ribs, butts, etc. However, because the grill was pretty much leak free, just the brief period I put the chicken on the grill gave it a strong smoky aroma already. I was just imagining, what if I were to smoke something for 8 hours on this thing. The smoke flavor would be way too much to handle.

I guess the downfall of the leaky smoker would be that since it leaks out so much heat, you end up using more fuel. However, with the smokers that are leak free, would all that smoke build up with no where to escape but the smoke stack be too much?

Let's hear your thoughts?
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Unread 02-25-2013, 11:48 AM   #2
CarolinaQue
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How much wood did you use? Chunks...what size? Chips...how many and how often? Soaked or not?

Regarding a leaky smoker...my big smoker leaks a bit, and I don't find it to be a bad thing.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 11:50 AM   #3
HeSmellsLikeSmoke
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I can't think of a single reason anyone would want a smoker to leak on purpose.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 11:52 AM   #4
whiteboycustom
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meats will only take in so much smoke
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Unread 02-25-2013, 11:52 AM   #5
pull_my_butt
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I used the lump wood charcoal. No briquettes for me. No additional wood chips or chunks were added. It was just the smoky flavor from the oak lump charcoal. I did put the lid on the chicken from time to time.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 11:55 AM   #6
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I'm with CarolinaQue on this. It leaks a bit... so what.
All of mine leak some smoke around doors etc. Even the Weber kettles.
If your burn is clean enough, you should barely be able to see any leaks.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 11:58 AM   #7
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Chicken soaks up smoke flavor like a sponge.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 11:58 AM   #8
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Did you control temperature with the top or bottom vents? I have heard that closing down on the top vents to control temperature can do nasty things with the smoke.

Otherwise I'm at a loss. I smoke stuff for a long time on my WSM and use chunks of smoking wood and never felt that I had too much smoke flavor. Of course my 'not too much' may be your 'way too much.'
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Unread 02-25-2013, 12:08 PM   #9
CarolinaQue
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DId you have a clean burning fire before you put the meat on? In other words, was it up to temp and putting out thin blue?

Regarding meat only soaking up so much smoke, that is true. But the smoke from a smoldering fire is very different than one from a clean burning fire. A smoldering fire can put off bitter, white smoke that will leave creasote residue on the meat and give it a very heavy smoke flavor.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 12:13 PM   #10
Carbon
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I don't want it leaking to a point where I can't snuff out the coals at the end of a cook.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 12:14 PM   #11
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I agree that chicken can get too smoky faster than some other meats... Assuming you are getting thin blue smoke, have the top vent wide open, and regulate your heat with the bottom vent, just use less wood. When I cook any sort of chicken, I use one, maybe two chunks of wood at the start of the cook. When those are gone, that's it no more wood. Charcoal only till the meat is cooked through. And if one chunk at the beginning is too much for you, then make that one chunk smaller!
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Unread 02-25-2013, 12:23 PM   #12
pull_my_butt
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I did have the top vent opened all the way and for most of the cook, the bottom vents were all the way opened too. I did have a hot fire and all the charcoal did ash over before I cooked.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 12:36 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HeSmellsLikeSmoke View Post
I can't think of a single reason anyone would want a smoker to leak on purpose.
Me neither.
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Unread 02-25-2013, 02:54 PM   #14
CarolinaQue
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pull_my_butt View Post
I did have the top vent opened all the way and for most of the cook, the bottom vents were all the way opened too. I did have a hot fire and all the charcoal did ash over before I cooked.

What charcoal are you using?
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[COLOR=darkred]“Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts.”[/COLOR] - Mark Twain

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Unread 02-25-2013, 03:06 PM   #15
DownHomeQue
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Leaky smokers aren't necessarily a good thing.. but they can be worked with if.. the operater knows there pit.. my large offset leaks some.. because i have no gasket.. i have cooked in 20 degree weather on her and ran temps up and above 300 no problem.. and held it there..
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