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Thread: Waterless temps??

  1. #1
    TVWBB Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2009

    Waterless temps??

    I've been cooking on a WSM for 12 years and consider it to be the best smoker available!

    Usually I use water in the pan and smoke at around 225 to 250F. I use waterless only for smoking turkey at around 300 to 325. Am thinking of trying waterless for a long smoke of a butt. 10 or 12 hours.

    My question is how hard is it to hold temps around 225F using any of the waterless techniques? Can I hold temp as steady as I do with water in the pan?

  2. #2
    TVWBB Super Fan
    Join Date
    Dec 2018
    Probably not

    But imo, temperature doesnt matter much from 215-260 or higher

    It mostly affects the time it takes, not quality of results.

    Temp doesnt have to be rock steady at 225.0F. thats all in peoples heads.
    Last edited by MartinB; 01-10-2019 at 08:17 PM.

  3. #3
    TVWBB All-Star
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Marietta, GA
    My WSM is pretty easy to dial in at 225 without water.
    Bunch of Webers, Smoke EZ, GMG Daniel Boone, White Thermapen MK4

  4. #4
    TVWBB Guru Bob Bass's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Corona, CA
    As Lew noted, it's easy to run at that temperature range. Just start with less lit coals and gently work up to your intended operating temperature.

    Low vs High(er) temperature product differences... Better fat rendering at high(er) temperatures. I use 275 for both pork ribs and boston butts.
    KCBS, SCA, Operation BBQ Relief

  5. #5
    TVWBB Diamond Member Dustin Dorsey's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2014
    Burkburnett, Tx
    I don't sweat my temperatures as much as I used to. If I'm going for 225 and and drift up to 248 to 250 I'm not going to sweat it that much. I probably will fiddle with the vent to get it to go back down. I'd say temp control is definitely harder without water but THAT much harder and once you get used to it, it's pretty easy. I rarely use water these days. When I do I don't noticed any difference in the finished product. The smoke ring might be marginally better.
    22.5 WSM, 22.5 OTS, Smokey Joe, Genesis 1000, Slow N Sear 2.0, Smokenator 1000, Old Country Pecos, Thermapen, Smoke, Maverick ET-732, Igrill 2

  6. #6
    TVWBB Emerald Member Jerry N.'s Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2003
    Livonia, Michigan
    If you can keep the WSM out of the wind it is not hard at all to hold temp without water. It’s best if your smoker is tight and out of the weather. Outdoor temp does not matter. I used to get my 18” up to temp and then I’d have one vent open about 1/2 (other vents closed and top vent wide open) and it would hold temp rock solid for 8 or more hours. Just gotta spend some time and get to know how your smoker reacts and how it settles in.
    1880 / Genesis S-320 / Jumbo Joe

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