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Old 05-06-2018, 05:24 PM   #1
kumathebear
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Lightbulb Buld the Heat...Smoker tips wanted?

I've always been a propane griller, but my wife is just the opposite and all she cooks with on the smoker/grill is charcoal.

Basic HOW TO question's:

The cooker she uses is the typical barrel where she puts the charcoal with a pipe smoke tube. On the end is the "smoker" smaller barrel that feeds into the main cooking space.

Susan wants to learn how to smoke so how and what do you use to build the fire in the smoker section? In my ignorance I told her I would guess start maybe with charcoal then add " soaked wood" and keep feeding it during the smoke? I had an electric Master Built smoker at one time and used the "water soaked" wood chips and refilled when the smoke began to ease off and she is NOT interested in any electric smoker or I would buy her another one after the old quit working.

I know, basic but she can't find anything suited to "beginners" on YouTube or other searches. Any help is much appreciated and it will add to my love of her skills in traditional grill cooking.

Kuma
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Old 05-06-2018, 05:31 PM   #2
cylomedia
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There is a video called brisket basics on www.HillBillyMojo.com that really simplifies it. See the blog tab on that site. Talks about fire management, temperatures, and prep. Pretty short.

www.HillBillyMojo.com

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Old 05-06-2018, 05:36 PM   #3
kumathebear
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Thanks!! The more the merrier....
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Old 05-06-2018, 05:43 PM   #4
kumathebear
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Wife just watched the video and it did not really give the answers she was looking for. Again, what do you use for the fire/heat?
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Old 05-06-2018, 05:47 PM   #5
Axis FMJ
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kumathebear View Post
Wife just watched the video and it did not really give the answers she was looking for. Again, what do you use for the fire/heat?
Oak logs for me.
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Old 05-06-2018, 10:55 PM   #6
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Mesquite for me, all the way
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Old 05-07-2018, 02:33 AM   #7
Pedernal
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I use oak logs to get the pit heated up and a good bed of charcoal... I will then use chunks of soaked hickory (soaked for about 24 hours) to get the smoke rolling... Depending on your pit it might be all you need to keep the temps up as the hickory will eventually turn to charcoal... You can also add mesquite lump charcoal pieces to generate additional heat depending on what temp your are attempting to maintain.... With a little practice controlling the air flow to regulate temps will be the easy and is the key IMHO... Best of luck and don't forget to post some pics...
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Old 05-07-2018, 05:04 AM   #8
BigCohiba
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Start a chimney of charcoal. Add to firebox then add the wood of choice. My main cooking wood is red oak. I have also used pecan, hickory, and apple a few times. I usually cut and split my own firewood so I can size it right for my firebox. Fire management is the biggest challenge with cooking on a stick burner. Practice a lot and you will get to be good friends with your pit. I routinely cook brisket, pork butt, ribs, beer butt chickens, jalapeño poppers, shrimp, sausage, and holiday hams & turkeys. It’s my preferred way to cook if I have the time. BBQ brethren is a pretty good forum with a lot of information. You can also google search just about anything you’re looking for when it comes to BBQ.
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Old 05-07-2018, 10:30 AM   #9
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No need to soak wood...that is a farce and penetration is minimal anyway. It does not produce extra smoke....it just produces a little steam. One the steam quickly leaves the extreme outer edge, it burns as normal wood would.

https://amazingribs.com/more-techniq...our-wood-first

https://www.grillbeast.com/blog/the-...ing-necessary/


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Last edited by Smart; 05-07-2018 at 10:33 AM.
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Old 05-07-2018, 10:41 AM   #10
bigbad243
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Yep just straight wood. I use oak for my ribs, brisket and pork butts. And the. Use pecan or Apple for chicken.
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Old 05-07-2018, 05:43 PM   #11
kumathebear
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Thanks a bunch.....several answered exactly what she wanted to know....and me too of course!!
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Old 05-08-2018, 06:46 AM   #12
Goldeneagle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BigCohiba View Post
Start a chimney of charcoal. Add to firebox then add the wood of choice. My main cooking wood is red oak. I have also used pecan, hickory, and apple a few times. I usually cut and split my own firewood so I can size it right for my firebox. Fire management is the biggest challenge with cooking on a stick burner. Practice a lot and you will get to be good friends with your pit. I routinely cook brisket, pork butt, ribs, beer butt chickens, jalapeño poppers, shrimp, sausage, and holiday hams & turkeys. It’s my preferred way to cook if I have the time. BBQ brethren is a pretty good forum with a lot of information. You can also google search just about anything you’re looking for when it comes to BBQ.
I have one of the cheap Wallyworld smokers. I used this method but could not get it to stabilize in the cooking chamber. I played with the air flow until I was blue in the face. Had the fire box so hot, it burnt the paint off and melted the plastic handle on the dampner. I haven't tried again. Just went back to my electric.
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Old 05-08-2018, 10:39 AM   #13
boomer453
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A little charcoal to get going and then the smoking wood of your choice. Chunky or logs are up to you and also depend on your smokers ability to hold heat. Have owned a few lower quality ones that needed a pretty good fire in the Firebox to get to the temp I wanted in the smoker
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Old 05-10-2018, 11:27 AM   #14
coker737
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https://www.pitbarrelcooker.com/

The Last Smoker I will buy. Perfect Everytime
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Old 05-10-2018, 02:58 PM   #15
boliverpete
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someone posted a tip for this years ago on here and I tried it and it works perfect for me.

My smoker isn't huge but I can squeze a couple 12 lb briskets in there. I start with a 15 lbs bag of charcoal, fill up a chimney starter with the charcoal and light it. While it's heating up, pour the rest of of the bag in the fire box. When the Chimney is glowing orange and the coals are white, dump them on top of the pile of coals in the fire box. Then I add a couple sticks of wood and close the fire box. In the summer I can close the vent on the firebox and smoke stack almost completely. Enough air still gets thru and my smoker will hold 225 for 8 hours without hardly touching it. In the winter I may have to play with it a little more to keep temp. If I want more smoke, I'll add another stick of wood every couple hours but the charcoal gives me plenty of smoke most of the time.
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Old 05-10-2018, 03:24 PM   #16
wloftis
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You can lay a bed of charcoal in the fire box ("smaller barrel"); light it and when burning good put your wood (or woodchips if you want to constantly feed it) on. If you have time then you can light the logs and let it get going. (Don't use just any wood; some wood will give your meat a bad taste - like other I like mesquite, pecan, etc.) Working the temperature is kind of a "learn as you go" type thing and will depend on type of wood and whether or not you are using a combo of charcoal and wood; but can be regulated by monitoring the temperature and either opening the fire box door to heat up, or close up the entire pit to smother the flame and smoke more. You both will get the hang of it pretty quick, and is always fun to sit around, monitor, and have a beverage or two if you choose.

You can always start with something easy and less expensive like ribs before going out and buying a brisket.
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Old 05-10-2018, 03:53 PM   #17
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Go to smoking-meat.com. Jeff is a good dude. Even if he is from OK.
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Old 05-10-2018, 05:16 PM   #18
kumathebear
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Thanks again all...been a big help!!
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