Author Topic: Smoke generator not smoking as much  (Read 1899 times)

Offline manxman

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #15 on: May 11, 2019, 10:29:54 am »
At least one part of the problem sorted, nicely done! Good videos as well.  :)
Manxman

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #16 on: May 11, 2019, 01:21:33 pm »
Stills also need to be hosted by a third party, such as Photobucket, but find a host that does it for free. I understand what the problem was, but can't tell from watching the video which part was bent and needed straightening. Glad you resolved the problem.

I was working on my lawn tractor, so I didn't get a chance to run the test. When I did this test with my infra red, I did it indoors so that wind wouldn't be a factor. I may get a chance to do so tomorrow.

The feeder tube (the cylinder that holds the bisquettes) is what I was referring to that can be inserted wrong.


     I
         don't
                   inhale.
  ::)

Offline Broke_smoke

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #17 on: May 11, 2019, 03:34:45 pm »
There was no part that was bent and needed straightening.
I bent a piece to fix the problem. If I get time, I'll post the zoomed in photo that I took. I can understand not supporting videos on this website, but not allowing small photos seems fairly backward. But, I don't have to pay for the servers, so it is what it is.
Thank you.


Offline Broke_smoke

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #18 on: May 11, 2019, 04:43:32 pm »
Ok, here's a link to the photo with explanation.

Here's the problem - https://youtu.be/0YRy_TwoPak

Here's the fix -         https://www.dropbox.com/s/09o2shxbhg8ob2b/The_Fix1.jpg?dl=0              <<<  the photo

Here's how it works after the fix -  https://youtu.be/l0y1Ydpgjck


Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #19 on: May 12, 2019, 03:11:04 am »
Thanks for taking the time to do the videos and photo, and providing the links.


     I
         don't
                   inhale.
  ::)

Offline Broke_smoke

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #20 on: May 12, 2019, 08:31:01 am »
You're welcome. I wanted to share that very fast and simple fix in case it happens to others.
The symptoms, aside from the obvious that pucks don't feed, are that the puck feeder for some reason doesn't move far enough to the left to allow the pucks to drop completely.
I noticed that when the puck pusher reached its farthest point to the left, I could move it a little further with my finger, so I'm guessing that when it was new, it used to go a little farther. The mechanism has a lot of play in it which is probably a good thing normally, but I also noticed that a couple of the drilled holes in the connecting parts were not dead-on, symmetrically drilled. So a slight manufacturing error may have finally manifested itself after wear and tear, dirt and grime. Keep this one in your bag if tricks for this problem as it took about ten minutes to fix. I tested it out with smoked turkey breasts yesterday. There was enough smoke produced to taste good and no jambing whatsoever.
      These Bradley smokers are wonderfully convenient and they are fairly reliable. I wish I could buy bisquettes locally though.




Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #21 on: May 14, 2019, 01:44:41 pm »
There was finally a break in weather and I was able to get to the generator, and test the temperature of the bisquette burner. I have to do this test again, since the temperature was fluctuating as much as 20 degrees when it reached it maximum temperature. In the past when I tested the burner, I recorded a maximum temperature of 556°F and a minimum temperature of 550°F. I may have had the infra red  thermometer at a slight angle when I took those readings.

At seven minutes the infra red recorded 506°F. At 10 minutes the recording was 546°F; at 25 minutes the recording was 574°F.

The testing was done indoors. Today I was getting a maximum temperature of 574°F and a minimum 554°F; once it reached the maximum temperature. When I get a chance I will plug it into another circuit to see if I get those same fluctuations. I replaced the batteries, and got the same results; with the exception of a spike to 590°F. When I recorded the maximum temperature of 574°F, the ChefAlarm maximum temperature reached 496°F, using a penetration probe. I had to monitor this closely since the probe is rated for a maximum temperature of 572°F.

Right now I'm inclined to say that the bisquette burner should be heating to a temperature between 550°F - 600°F. I'm not sure if the wide fluctuations are caused by voltage drop in my current or if it is just the way the burner is designed.


     I
         don't
                   inhale.
  ::)

Offline Broke_smoke

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #22 on: May 14, 2019, 06:20:40 pm »
Great info. Based on your figures, I'm wondering if my thermometer would have recorded higher temps if I checked for as long as you did. I might try again just for kicks.
Thanks for taking the time to do the tests.  :-)

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #23 on: May 15, 2019, 03:08:25 am »
My ChefAlarm would not record over 496°F, but I was only measuring using the tip of the probe. Maybe if it was flat against the burner, I may have got higher readings. Since I recorded temperatures as high as 590°F with the infra red be careful using your Dot probe. The probe is rated as 572°F as a maximum temperature.

Right now I'm doing my annual deep cleaning of the generator. I plan to repeat the test in a few days.


     I
         don't
                   inhale.
  ::)

Offline Broke_smoke

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #24 on: May 16, 2019, 03:10:23 am »
I'll take that advice. If it hits 550, I'll stop there and call it a win. The new bisquites are on their way. So, I'll be able to run that most important test.
I'll see if I can make time for a second probe test today.
Thx

Offline Broke_smoke

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #25 on: May 16, 2019, 07:41:20 am »
Ok, now this is interesting. I also cleaned the heating pad with
a brillow pad pretty well before this test. I took your advice and stopped it at
552 degrees. I had let it preheat for 20 minutes. It was still going up too, so who
knows where it would have stopped. I'm guessing my issue was mostly old, moisture
soaked bisquittes. But that's a guess. I had taken the generator apart and sometimes
just jossling things around can help...as I've read. And of course the cleaning...
But, it does sort of disprove the theory about all probe-type temperature gauges being inadequate.   ;)

https://www.dropbox.com/s/a65k5v5fegbs3an/Bradley_temp_reading_DOT.jpg?dl=0

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #26 on: May 16, 2019, 02:00:18 pm »
I should have laid my probe flat like you did, and probably would have gotten a higher reading on my ChefAlarm. With the reading that you are getting, your burner appears to be functioning as it should.

"But, it does sort of disprove the theory about all probe-type temperature gauges being inadequate."
This statement you will need to debate with ThermoWorks. ;D


     I
         don't
                   inhale.
  ::)

Offline Broke_smoke

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #27 on: May 17, 2019, 04:25:49 am »
So my smoke generator is working pretty well. I got the new bisquittes in the mail
Yesterday and smoked a thick ham slice. There was the usual amount of smoke and the ham slice was tasty despite using alder. I usually use alder for foul and then hickory or pecan for pig,
But I see that I've been missing that alder is quite good with ham too.
     The remaining things I'm concerned about are that I have to push some of the buttons like the on/off multiple tines til it takes. Is there maybe smoke residue ir sonething behind the external plastic membrane? Can anything be done to fix that problem? Lastly, after all the error codes and beeps, and even though I cleaned the connectors and hot it working again, I don't have that feeling of reliability that I did with the analog model. I guess that's the price of the extra convenience of digital.
      No need for debate with Thermoworks. The probe detected temps just fine, albeit maybe infrared is a little more accurate; no idea.. By the way, I didn't lay it completely flat. I put the tip on an angle to the surface. Still only a tiny part was touching. Thanks again for all the assistance. If there's any fix for those membrane button contacts, I'd love to hear.

Offline Habanero Smoker

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #28 on: May 17, 2019, 04:55:05 pm »
I recall when the first release of the digitals, many members where having problems operating the buttons; especially if they had large fingers. The solution to that was to make sure the user pushed the buttons dead center. If that doesn't work, and you are still under warranty give Bradley a call.


     I
         don't
                   inhale.
  ::)

Offline Broke_smoke

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Re: Smoke generator not smoking as much
« Reply #29 on: May 18, 2019, 12:37:08 pm »
I got regular fingers from the Sears catalog.
The buttons used to be more responsive, so I don't think it's how I'm hitting them. I'll just have to hope it doesn't get any worse, as it's certainly not under warranty.
Thx for responding.