Author Topic: Unexpected Whoosh  (Read 3552 times)

vintner

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Unexpected Whoosh
« on: November 03, 2016, 12:16:30 PM »
Doing my burn in with three chunks and was out with the dog.  Standing in front of the #1 smelling the smoke (was it wood, oil, clean, hot?) and taking it all in to get a sense of what was going on at the time.  Suddenly, whoosh.  The backdraft effect.  I didn't touch the handle on the door or anything, but out the vent hole and the door seam came smoke and steam.

Hopefully it won't do that often, little shocking when it happens as you stand in front of it.

At the end of the burn, everything looked fine, chunks burned well, no worse for the whoosh.

Now onto actual smoking.
Don
In order of use: Big Green Egg, Traeger pellet grill, finally #1. 
Plus,  I am a wine maker, woodwork, orchid and carnivorous plant grower and have a short attention span.

swthorpe

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Re: Unexpected Whoosh
« Reply #1 on: November 03, 2016, 01:12:49 PM »
This happens when the wood catches fire in the wood box and it typically only happens in the first heating cycle.   It does not have an effect on the meat, but it is pretty scary when it happens!   One way to reduce the possibility of combustion is to use wood with a high moisture content.   I have been getting my wood from smokinlicious.com and they deliver wood chunks with high moisture.  I have not experienced combustion with their wood.
Steve from Delaware
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vintner

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Re: Unexpected Whoosh
« Reply #2 on: November 03, 2016, 01:39:27 PM »
Glad to know it isn't going to happen with each smoking.
I have gotten a backdraft when opening the cover of the egg, easy way to get rid of arm hair ::)
Don
In order of use: Big Green Egg, Traeger pellet grill, finally #1. 
Plus,  I am a wine maker, woodwork, orchid and carnivorous plant grower and have a short attention span.

swthorpe

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Re: Unexpected Whoosh
« Reply #3 on: November 03, 2016, 02:31:07 PM »
LOL.   If you are monitoring the box temp while smoking, the whoosh for me usually occurred at about 180F inside the box.   You will get a hint that it is likely to occur if you notice short interruptions of smoke coming out of the vent hole...like puffs rather than a constant stream of smoke.   Shortly after this starts happening (around 180F), combustion may take place.
Steve from Delaware
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DivotMaker

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Re: Unexpected Whoosh
« Reply #4 on: November 03, 2016, 07:51:03 PM »
Most of us have been there, Don!  It does decrease, with use and more seasoning.  Good wood is the key.  I also use smokinlicious.com wood; great moisture content for smoking, no bark, clean heartwood.  If you use dryer wood, you can ramp-up the temp, starting out.  Run at 140-150 for about 30 minutes, then on up to your desired temp.  This gives the wood a chance to start smoldering, without the constant blast of heat from the element.  You can also wrap the bottom of your wood chunks with foil (kind of little foil boat).

Funny thing, but I never had this happen in my #1!  It wasn't until I starting using the #2 (with the 800w element vs 400w in the 1) that I had the infamous "smoke belch!"  You were right to keep the door closed.
Tony from NW Arkansas
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SconnieQ

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Re: Unexpected Whoosh
« Reply #5 on: November 03, 2016, 10:03:32 PM »
You'll see it called the "belch" on the forum, and my #1 really had a really big belch during seasoning. Almost like an eruption. And for the first few smokes, my #1 would belch at the beginning as it was heating up, right when it got to around 180 degrees as others have said. I learned very quickly not to stand there and stick my face over the hole enjoying the smell of the smoke! It comes from your wood being too dry, and sudden combustion. In the beginning I tried to use up some Weber wood chunks I had on hand, and I imagine they were pretty dry, even when new. Once I wrapped the bottom half of the chunk in foil, no more belch. I never thought I would buy "fancy" wood from the internet, but once I finally broke down and bought smokinlicious.com wood, I would never, ever go back to that wood you buy in home centers, big box, or hardware stores. I wish I had bought smokinlicious sooner. It is that good. And worth every penny. A small box of smokinlicious wood properly stored will last a very long time, because these smokers use such a small amount of wood.
Kari from Madison WI "77 Square Miles Surrounded by Reality"
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