Temp setting for smoking.

Rob Keeble

GTA Ontario Canada
So fired up the new smoker today after having seasoned it during the week.

For those wondering about the motive for Brent putting a PID temp control into the mix with these electric ovens you only need to be where i am at and quickly get to see the benefits.

Have not built mine but it will be high on the list of to do's asap after this initial experience.

These units come with a dial up heating setting thermostat but its not graduated in any meaningful way for smoking other than low medium and hot.

So when you want to get the oven to set at a specific temp like ones stove, well you got to fiddle then let it sit then fiddle and let it sit and so forth until you get to the temp you want.

PID control heck you set it and forget it and it will take it to that temp and be done.

Nothing is as good as real world experience making you see the merit of something. Oh boy without PID its trial and error all the way and always will be especially if one considers outside temps, wind etc variables changing what the oven looses each time you use it.

Big thanks to Brent because without him and the visit to see his setup i would never have risked buying one of these and if i had i can see where it would not have been as enjoyable as its going to be once i get the pid sorted.

Ted if you read this can you let me know how you plan on doing temp control with your propane unit. Initially i was interested in propane but doing a control would be something else no?
I've been reading with great interest the various posts about maintaining the temperature of the smoking chamber during a cooking run. Here I go being all old-fashioned again, but I think part of the "aura" of producing great Q is managing your smoker and making it look simple. Ha! It might seem simple to others who sit around and sip barley pops while I tend the smoker! I sure enjoy seeing them partake of the results! Maybe someday I'll make my life simpler by adding temperature control to my firebox - like after one more birthday - or before!!!
Rob...I worried about temperature control for a bit and then discovered the sweet spot on the grill valve that maintains pretty close to 230*. On mine, it's where the knob is at about the 6:30 position. It seems to work just fine, although not as precise as Brent's PID. Today's batch of ABT's has been delayed a bit since there is a wind blowing and they are aren't done just yet. About an hour delay...but that just means two Mojito's instead of one. The remote thermometer is from Lowe's and seems to be accurate. I'm going to order one of the dual probe systems mentioned in the other post. I'm not a newbie to smoking....lived in Alaska for a number of years and smoked salmon and a lot of other things in an old refrigerator using alder chips and an old electric frying pan as a heat source. Still have the equipment to actually can (in metal). Those were the good old days. :)
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My pellet smoker doesn't really have any settings, just a dial with low/med/high so I have to dial it in about where it needs to go, then adjust in minor increments until it holds where I want it to. Doesn't take long, but doesn't spike like adding new charcoal or logs do. I'll be adding a PID at some point though too.
My gassified wood smoker doesn't have any markings on the burner valve, so it was a bit hit or miss when I first used it. Once i found the 220º - 230º sweet spot, the valve has pretty much stayed there. I nudge it up or down in tiny amounts to compensate for differences in the weather. I leave the burner valve open all the time, and use the valve on the propane tank to turn the gas on or off.
Don't forget the scotch Roger!! Although to warm for it now, during the fall and spring, nothing like a little scotch, good cigar and BBQ!