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Smoke Ring on Drum Cooks


New member
Hi all,

Quick question - I recently did a head-to-head rib cook-off between my MAK 2-Star, and my BPS Drum. Both with a Apple/Hickory mix. The drum had about 6-8 chunks of wood total, spaced to burn at different times.

The MAK had a crazy smoke ring (as usual). The drum had great smoke flavor and the ribs were moist and delicious - but there wasn't a hint of a smoke ring.

Taste/texture is the most important thig to me but I was curious why no smoke ring on these ribs.

Anyone have any thoughts?



Staff member
The MAK is burning 100% wood, the drum is burning mostly charcoal (precombusted wood) with small chunks of wood for flavoring. A smoke ring is the byproduct of wood combustion.
You will get more of a smoke ring burning 100% wood than you will from charcoal and small wood chunks added for flavor.

Big Poppa

there is a ton more to do with smoke rings....ph of the meat...the amount of citric acid in your rubs...convection...


Staff member
How was the taste? Smoke ring can be cause by many things and is one of the reasons as Barbecue Judges we DO NOT take it into consideration when scoring.


New member
Thanks Scooter, makes sense - and I should have already known that on some level - I guess I was just surprised at the dramatic difference on this particular cook.

Sterling, had the same rub on meat in both pits, so I don't think it was as much a factor in this particular example, but I'll experiment a bit and see what works. I did a chuck roast Friday (shredded beef) with a combination of DSSR and Peppered Cow, and it had a respectable smoke ring!

Jim - The taste was great. I found nothing lacking in the flavor. This is more a case of learning the differences between the drum (which I only have a handful of cooks on), and my MAK which I have been using for 4 years.
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