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Thread: New, but not new

  1. #1
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    New, but not new

    I have owned my WSM 22.5 for a couple of years and have struggled getting up to ideal temps. I am currently cooking some St. Louis style ribs. During prep I hit my ideal 250 temp, but now canít get it over 200. I am doing the snake method with all vents wide open. Any tips would be appreciated!

  2. #2
    TVWBB All-Star Lew Newby's Avatar
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    I've never used the snake method but it seems that it works fine in a kettle. As I understand the snake you can only have so many coals burning at one time. Most folks that have a WSM use the Minion method and you can get more coals burning at the same time. 10 to 15 hot coals poured onto a nearly full charcoal ring. With the 22.5 you should be able to get from 225 to 350+ using the vents to control the temp.

    Will someone who has used the snake method chime in. I don't so I'm assuming that it limits the high temp.
    Last edited by Lew Newby; 09-10-2018 at 06:05 AM.
    Old dog, learning new tricks - one cook at a time :-). -14.5", 18.5", & 22.5" WSM, SS Performer, Auber ATC. CB Rotisserie, Rec Tec Mini Pellet Grill

  3. #3
    TVWBB Diamond Member Timothy F. Lewis's Avatar
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    My understanding is that the “Snake method” is primarily designed for kettle use as well.
    If you want to use it in a WSM you might need to increase BOTH height and breadth of the snake, purely conjecture from me. My grill pal from the UK, turned me on to the “Sidewinder Minion” method which he accredited to the esteemed Enrico
    Brandizzi (from this forum) which, I have used with considerable success for several years.
    So, that being said, it’s all about learning what works better (not always best) for YOU!
    If you really like the “snake” add one briquette in each layer (height and width) and try again. Of course if that doesn’t get you desired temperature, try another ignition design, I’ve only really had an under performing execution of the Sidewinder, and that was through under powered ignition point, my own fault.
    The ribs were still mighty good, just a little later than anticipated!
    Distinguebant Sed, Ignoret In Particulari!
    "If brains was lard, that boy couldn't grease too big a skillet!" J. D. Clampett

  4. #4
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    Light the snake in more than 1 spot. or more spots than you had been using.


    Light it at 12:00 4:00 and 8:00 to get it burning. {those aren't times, those are clock positions as you view the round charcoal chamber}


    I never understood the problem of "not getting hot enough". Either add more fuel or more airflow (which ever you are short on), and you get more heat. Plain and Simple. DOn't overthink it.

  5. #5
    TVWBB Hall of Fame timothy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by JLeon View Post
    During prep I hit my ideal 250 temp, but now can’t get it over 200.
    So you started an empty WSM and let it come up to temp, then added cold meat and the temp stalls. Makes sense cause you added a heat sink.
    Try the Minion Method and load your meat right away, let the temp come up slowly till about 25 deg less than target, then start closing the vents.

    Tim
    Different smokes for different folks. Wish the Dollar Store sold gas!

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