Smoke isn't right

UDS Plans, Projects and discussions concerning Ugly Drum Smokers.

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Smoke isn't right

Postby 4rdaddy » Sun Sep 27, 2015 9:06 pm

I built my first UDS and I've been cooking quite a bit on it. I can't seem to get my smoke right. It's heavy and light gray/white. I'm filling the basket with Kingsford hickory and adding 3-4 chunks of wood. I'll light my chimney starter with a dozen or so pieces of charcoal and a chunk of wood and poor it on top. Then I open all my valves and put the lid on and give it a half hour to get up to temp. What am I doing wrong?

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Last edited by 4rdaddy on Sun Sep 27, 2015 10:24 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Smoke isn't right

Postby ChileFarmer » Mon Sep 28, 2015 8:56 am

Sounds like your fire is no burning well. I let my fire burn with the lid off, until its burning good. Put the lid on and adjust the air valves to the target temp. Then start cooking. No heavy white smoke. Others may do different but this works for me. CF :D
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Okie Sawbones
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Re: Smoke isn't right

Postby Okie Sawbones » Mon Sep 28, 2015 9:25 am

Lid off, chimney of coals on the bottom and then add other charcoal and wood chunks on top.
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Re: Smoke isn't right

Postby BluDawg » Thu Oct 01, 2015 11:07 am

Leave the lid off until your with in 25 deg of your temp and you have TBS. You won't see TBS until you're over 200 deg. on the pit thermo.
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Re: Smoke isn't right

Postby Finatic » Thu Oct 01, 2015 3:50 pm

Make sure you have an actual flame coming from your charcoal before you put your wood chunks in. Only put one chunk of wood over the lit charcoal. Let the fire spread towards the other wood chunks. I use a square shaped charcoal basket in mine and I place a couple of splits (on each side of the charcoal basket close to the edge) about halfway down then one split on top- TBS every time. Also make sure your wood chunks are well aged and not green.
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Big Ed
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Re: Smoke isn't right

Postby Big Ed » Mon Oct 05, 2015 10:23 pm

I light mine with a full chimney and choke it down to the desired temp, burns clean every time.
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Re: Smoke isn't right

Postby Swamp Donkeyz BBQ » Tue Oct 06, 2015 7:51 am

Sounds like you're not getting enough air, or you don't have enough exhaust. What are your intakes and exhaust sizes? How much of an air gap do you have below the bottom of your charcoal basket and the bottom of the drum?

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