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Calibrating an Infrared Char-broil Gas Grill

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    Calibrating an Infrared Char-broil Gas Grill

    First shot at calibrating my infrared gas grill...

    Equipment: Char-broil 3 burner infrared gas grill. Burners are front to back configuration.

    Environment @ 1730: Temp @ 100F, dewpoint 60F. Grill is shaded. Wind 5 mph from South.

    Grill: empty... no Grill Grates installed. Just standard Char-broil grates.

    Water: 2x pans under grills. 4 cup capacity per pan. Water temp is about 190F.

    Burners: Only lit left side burner. Only 3 burners available with this rig.

    Left burner: @ lowest setting

    Water pans: over middle and right burner. 2 pans. 4 cups hot water per pan (190F). Pans under grills.

    I crept the flame up on left side only. I can get 225 -250F with one burner with water pans.
    - I noticed the grill temp (between burners 2 & 3, 1" above grate using a Maverick setup) will vary with wind speed. Wind picked up after dark & dropping temperature.
    - My tank was 1/3 full. Started with full blue flame and then orange parts showed up after awhile.
    - I had 4x thermocouples installed. Hot side over burner 1 on the lower and upper grate. And 2 others on the cooler side between burners 2 and 3. Upper and lower.

    Observations,
    - I think gas tank level is a factor pressure delivered to grill
    - Wind speed is a factor in temperature; higher wind speed, lower grill temperature
    - upper rack is hotter than lower rack
    - I think gas with wood chunks will work when smoking meats
    - I need to do more testing....

    Question,
    Once I have confidence in my grill on dry runs, how do I factor in meat loads? Like a 5 lb Boston butt or a 15 lb packer brisket? I assume to drop meat into smoker cold to maximize smoke adhesion. Any feedback in appreciated. I'm experimenting with pork and beef this weekend, so input well help, thanks!

    #2
    Excellent test man! It makes perfect sense that wind speed will drop the temp in those CB gassers, I have the 2-burner infrared CharBroil, and it holds heat about as good as a mailbox with the door open. (I like it, not knocking it, but it is an issue with 'em). Yes, drop meat in cold, always. Upper racks are usually always hotter. The amount will vary by cooker and other factors, but my offset smoker is about 50* hotter on upper racks, heat rises as we all know, and it rises a lot especially in insulated models. Water is your friend in keeping heat leveled out, good job there. Always best to start with a full tank on a long smoke, this is probably obvious advice. Better yet to have a second tank as a spare, or an oven nearby as a failsafe if a 2nd tank is not an option. Hard to say exactly what temp drop you'll find from varying hunks of meat. It's not much. Take your smoker to 250 if you want 225, and see what happens. With big hunks 210 - 260* is fine, with packers 275 or 325 is fine. And you can fire up a burner easily or crack the lid if your temp varies too much.

    EDIT: What model is your CB Infrared (Professional, Gourmet, etc) Does your have the trough? The Gourmets have the trough, which mine has (but mine is a couple years old so it's called the "Red" before they changed it to "Gourmet") in which case they can easily accept chucnks of wood or chips (chunks preferred). I haven't personally used the others to testify to their wood worthiness but the worst you can expect is ashes all over the burners. Boo hoo, right?
    Last edited by Huskee; August 7, 2014, 10:15 PM.

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      #3
      Thanks, Huskee. My CB is a Red too with trough.

      Comment


        #4
        Just sold my Red a few weeks ago to a friend. We replaced some of our deck furniture and re-arranged things so the Red and the KJ would not fit side-by-side on the deck anymore. Darn it all - I had to go buy a new gas grill! I wound up with a little Weber Spirit E-series from Home Despot.

        I was very happy with the Red. I was skeptical of the design at first but that darn thing worked really well and withstood a lot of use. I did find it hard to keep hot in the colder months, the thin sheet metal doesn't want to hold the heat well in my experience, but still good enough to get the job done.

        I was never a big Weber fan, but I have to admit for the price this little Spirit is really growing on me. Works great for weeknight grilling sessions so far. Cheap and Cheerful.

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