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Temp controlling fan on offset

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    Temp controlling fan on offset

    Has anyone tried using a temp controller on a horizontal offset wood burning smoker?
    I have the Thermoworks with billows which put out 46 CFM. I know I'll have to modify a little too get it mounted so it won't get to hot.

    How would that work when you need more wood added? 😕


      Well with my temp probes and the app it would let me know when it starts cooling off a bit. Add a log and the fan should regulated how fast it burns.


        Honestly, I would just work to get better at tending the fire the old fashioned way. By the time the temperature drops enough to trigger the alarm, it might be too late and your fuel may be mostly burned away or extinguished.
        Last edited by Steve R.; January 11, 2021, 01:11 PM.


        • Loren
          Loren commented
          Editing a comment
          Agree 100%

          My experience with an offset taught me it's more important to know how to have a good fire then follow my thermometers (dear lord did I go nuts the first few cooks!). Once I figured out the whole fire thing, it was a completely different level of fun compared to a charcoal smoker.

          Part (a huge part) of the charm of an offset is the amount of energy involved in making the fire work right.

        I thought the very same thing when I got my offset. And looked into what system to buy, but as rickgregory indicated, it really does not work since you are adding fuel quite often on these smaller offsets. You want your wood to catch fire. That's complete combustion and good smoke. You can load up a WSM with charcoal and control the burn with an ATC, but not with wood in an offset.


          You don’t want to control air flow with a wood fire. Let that baby burn naturally or you’ll end up with a lot of nasty dirty smoke. I leave the firebox door wide open on my offset so it has all the air it wants.


          • Steve R.
            Steve R. commented
            Editing a comment
            Yep. And your avatar is exactly what I want to see when I look inside that firebox!

          Moved from a comment:

          If you end up going with a blower it might work, but there's so much more to an offset then just throwing a stick in a box that you'll miss a huge engagement with the experience. Learn how to use it without a blower first...if it doesn't suit you, you can change it; but don't miss out on the experience first, it is incredibly unique!


            To me it's the same as trying to add a fan to a pellet grill, kind of an oxymoron in a way.


              Joetee I have to agree with everyone else. Based on my experience, if burning wood, a fan controller on an offset just doesn't make any sense. The only way I can see it work is if you use a charcoal basket, and use charcoal as the primary heat source, with a few wood chunks. Charcoal doesn't need the airflow that wood does, to have clean smoke.


              • Joetee
                Joetee commented
                Editing a comment
                Thank you. Well tonight I've fired out up again and have been able to keep a close temp to 250 +- 15 degrees or so just by adjusting the fb vent. I've only had this thing for about 5 days. So I'm learning. I got confused with some saying leave the door wide open and others say adjust the vent. It's been pretty good. Probably my best attempt do far.

              • jfmorris
                jfmorris commented
                Editing a comment
                Joetee my offset always wants to run around 250 to 275. Trying to maintain 225 is almost impossible, and 350 for chicken and turkey is easy if I build a big fire. You will learn your new cooker's ins and outs and have fun trying...

              • kenrobin
                kenrobin commented
                Editing a comment
                Completely agree with jfmorris

              The pellet hopper is offset from the cooking chamber on a Pellet Grill. Therefore a Pellet grill must be an offset cooker.
              Since pellet grills have temperature control fans the answer to your question is YES.
              Love mine.


                Has anyone tried a Tip Top Temp on an offset?


                  Temp controlling fan on an offset? KBQ.


                  • lostclusters
                    lostclusters commented
                    Editing a comment
                    I believe Joetee has a kbq

                  • Joetee
                    Joetee commented
                    Editing a comment
                    I used one on my Weber kettle for a couple years. It worked outstanding. Got a lot of sleep durning long cooks.
                    Tried it on my stick burner once. Well, if you switch to charcoal it would probably be fine. Of course this would be after about 4 or 5 hours with wood unless you don't want a lot of smoke.

                  Temp control fans work by "stoking and choking" the fire to keep cook chamber temps stable. The "choking" part makes a wood fire smolder and the smoke turn dirty. No bueno. The way to control temps in a stick burner is by controlling the size of the fire, not the heat of it. Small hot fire. A fan can't do that. I use a fan to control temps in my offset when burning charcoal and chunks, but not when burning sticks.


                    Not KBQ.
                    Stick burning cooker with a thermostatically controlled draft fan.

                    As per AR on the FS,
                    "At its crux is a patented firebox that burns logs above the cooking chamber and sucks heat and extremely clean blue smoke into the thermostat controlled oven"


                      I have the Billows and an OKJ Longhorn. Given the configuration of my patio where I have the smoker, there's not alot of air flow, so I find the fire doesn't stay hot. I do leave the firebox door open, but I find the addition of the billows ensures there's always good airflow.


                      • UncleSpike
                        UncleSpike commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Do you leave your top vent open when using the billows? I would think that would prevent it from choking..?

                      • phbern
                        phbern commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Yes, I do leave it open, but it doesn't always get enough draw.


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