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FAQ's Of Drum Smoking

Big Poppa

Administrator
Just a little sticky to try to answer some of the more frequently asked questions

Do I need a heat deflector with my drum?

The simple answer is no. The best part of the drum is due to its versatility you can use a deflector plate...the primary benefits of drum smoking (forget the low cost vs fantastic results) is the self basting and flavor that is added to your product by the juices hitting the hot coals and returning to the meat. If you are experiencing a hot spot in the center on lower temp cooks the first thing to understand is that the temp at thermometer placement is lower than the center of the grill. Every grill is different and size of charcoal load, kind of charcoal, how much you initially light, along with how long you leave your lid off after lighting are the key factors to consider. If you are cooking at a low temp start with the bottom sliders with one half hole exposed and the top vents open.

What about a water pan?

Yes. You will need another shelf and place it where the upper basket hooks are...you can use a deflector plate and a water pan.

Lump of Briquettes?

Not all charcoal is the same...even from briquette to briquedtte or lump to lumo. Briquettes are more even temp and recommended...having said that I use lump1 Kingsford Competition is my favorite briquette....no additives.

When I open the lid and work on the meat and replace it the heat rises....what should I do?

The heat rises because you have introduced more oxygen to the coals. The best advice is to keep the lid on and make you moves with it off swiftly....after that don't worry about it ....it will return to the set temp...unless you left the lid off for an extended period.

Which adjustments should I use?

The bottom sliders are your primary source for temp setting. The wheel on top should be as open as possible. Use the top for small fine tuning of the temp....Remember the more you limit the airflow...the smokier the food gets and sometimes thats not a good thing.

How do I clean my drum?

Many people have discovered a deep dish pizza pan as an ash catcher below the fire basket. Some use a shop vacuum. Always make sure the fire is totally and completely out before attempting to clean your ashes.
 

sloppyjoe

New member
What is the best way to fire the bps up??? I was hoping to 3/4 fill my basket, then dumping a chimney full pre-lit on top of it. Will this work for long hours of 250 to 275f??
 

scooter

Moderator
Staff member
I use about 10-15 lit briquets on top and close the lid.
Bottom vents open 1 or 2 holes each, top vent open all holes.
When the temp gets about 40F from where you want it close the bottom vents to about 1/2 hole each. You'll need to adjust for your drum but should be a good starting point.
I cook at 275 for most things so that means about 220-230 on the analog gauge on the side. It's about 50F hotter in the middle than on the side where the gauge is unless I'm using my diverter.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk while driving one handed!
 

scooter

Moderator
Staff member
Don't be nervous! Have fun learning. The drum will do all the work. You're on a lifelong training session of BBQ! Learning what works for you and what doesn't. We're all on the same learning curve somewhere, even BP! If we stop learning we stop growing. How boring would that be, right?
So don't be nervous, just have fun and think of it as your first of many lessons in drum BBQ. And remember, even your fails will still be better BBQ than most people will ever be able to produce! :)


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk while driving one handed!
 
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DjPorkchop

New member
If you take a grinder and go around the outside lip of the drum, you will see a seam. once through the seam, you can use a screw driver and hammer and knock the top off easily. and doing so allows you to use the factory lid if you so choose. I did a quick google and saw pics of the process.
 

BoiseDan

New member
How long will 10-15 briquets last if looking for a 220 temp? I just bought the Big Smoker Kit and my first cook was 2 Tri Tips Roasts. I maust have used way to many briquets and lump. I couldn't get the temp under 350 to save my life. I guess I thought I needed a bunch for a 2 hour smoke.
My next attempt will be a brisket and I know I will need to smoke that for several hours and I want to make sure I don't run out of fuel.
 

Big Poppa

Administrator
Ok this should be in a different thread. But you also can read the answer in this thread. You didn't put too many briquets you lit too many and probably had the lid open too long. Remember it is super easy to raise the temp but difficult to lower it. Start with less intake and be careful with the lid off.
 

truckeqscoot

New member
I have a question, how do you deal with excessive moisture retention? I have tried a water pan. The humidity was so great that the black residue from the under side of the lid would drip on the meat. So I have not been using the water pan lately and am still having a problem with to much moisture. I can take the meat all the way to "wrap time" and my rub is still so wet that I can easily wipe it off. I am so frustrated! I have been pulling the meat off about 20 degrees early and putting them on a pellet grill to dry them out.
 
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