Author Topic: New guy with a #3 and a question  (Read 1393 times)

FunkedOut

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New guy with a #3 and a question
« on: November 08, 2014, 04:35:45 PM »
Greetings,

Joe is me. 
I've had a #3 for about a year now and I'm getting around to seeing results I'm happy with.
I had a 40" MES that was absolutely fantastic for a couple of years until the element gave out.
Stick burners before that.  I'm just hooked on the ease of electric.

This #3 never has been able to "burn" either wood chips or the hickory slugs that came with it on the front half of the smoke box.  I prefer wood chips so I can mix what wood I use easily.
I'll fill the smoke box with wood chips, and no matter how long I smoke, the rear half is ashes and the front half isn't even black.
Is this normal for you #3 owners?
It's like the front half is not getting hot enough to "burn" the wood.

I've got a feeling it may have to do with the fact that the only air inlet is the drip hole near the front.
Wondering if I add an inlet port near the rear, things will even out. 
If I leave the door open for a bit while adding/removing meat partway through a smoke, the front half will "burn" up.

Thanks in advance,
Joe
Joe, in FL
Smoking It #3, Auber PID, 23cfm of boost

old sarge

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Re: New guy with a #3 and a question
« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2014, 10:33:44 PM »
 If you have an instant read thermometer, the probe type like a thermapen, heat up the smoker at 250 for 20 or thirty minutes, then with the tip of the probe check the element temperature front side and rear. Should you find a dead or cold area, and I don't mean a few degrees difference but severely 'cold' compared to other segment of the element, then I would suggest a new element. Hopefully someone out there has a better idea than mine for testing.

I use only chunks in my smoker (different make) and make sure they are placed centered over the element so that they get heated from all sides.  I have never used chips.  Hope this helps.
« Last Edit: November 08, 2014, 10:37:24 PM by old sarge »
David from Arizona
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FunkedOut

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Re: New guy with a #3 and a question
« Reply #2 on: November 09, 2014, 01:14:21 PM »
thanks for the suggestion sarge, and the quick reply.

I did just what you said and ruled out a bad element.
I ran the smoker for 5 min and then measured the element all along its length and found everywhere to be in the 340-420*F range with the exception of the very tip of the element.  Literally only the curved part of the element was in the 200*F neighborhood.

I've opened up a similar post in the #3 sub forum thinking it would get more discussion there
http://smokinitforums.com/index.php?topic=2344.0

Thanks again.
Joe, in FL
Smoking It #3, Auber PID, 23cfm of boost

Pork Belly

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Re: New guy with a #3 and a question
« Reply #3 on: November 10, 2014, 12:46:53 AM »
I have a #3, I have noticed that if it is a short smoke or a low temp smoke a block placed in the front of the firebox will not be fully consumed. I solved this by placing the wood in the back of the box unless I am doing a long smoke then I stagger two or three blocks through the firebox. I think your worrying about nothing. Blocks smoke and the box gets hot, that's all that matters.
Brian - Michigan-NRA Life Member
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old sarge

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Re: New guy with a #3 and a question
« Reply #4 on: November 13, 2014, 09:42:17 PM »
Happy to have helped out.
David from Arizona
US Army 70 - 95
SI 3D & Big Red Controller
CS 066 (retired to my son's home)
Lodge Sportsman Grill
Weber Kettle
Ducane Meridian 42 inch Grill
LEM MaxVac 1088A
LEM Big Bite #8 Grinder
InstantPot Duo80 Plus