Best Way to Get Started with Smoking?

Discussion in 'Roll Call' started by corrib, Apr 30, 2009.

  1. corrib

    corrib Newbie

    I'm looking for some recommendations on how to get started with smoking, specifically equipment.

    I have a Weber kettle style grill and also a grill/smoker similar to the one in the Smoking Meat logo above. I'm also considering purchasing an electric smoker instead.

    I've produced a few beer can chickens and one brisket using the Weber, but would like to step things up a little.

    If you were me, what's the best equipment option here?

    Thanks for any advice!

  2. rivet

    rivet Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Hello, there. And welcome to the SMF! WHy don't you drop by "roll call" and introduce yourself so everyone can formally meet and greet you.

    As far as "stepping things up a little" sounds like you've already done quite a bit by doing the brisket. Try some pulled pork barbecue, ribs, or even a whole turkey.

    You already have two excellent pieces of equipment that a good many of the folks here use to produce their masterpieces. If it's money you want to spend, well...then, the sky is the limit I guess.

    Give some other cuts of meat a shot first. Your offset smoker can do wonders for you. Once you get a bit of variety down, then you can really know what is best for you, and if you even want another piece of equipment.
  3. pineywoods

    pineywoods Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead SMF Premier Member

    Patrick welcome to SMF glad you joined us. I moved your thread to the roll call section. You have some good equipment now I would suggest looking at some of the mods for those smokers to make them better. Many of us have several smokers of different types and an electric may be one you want to add but you certainly don't need to to produce good smoked products. Read up and ask questions and before long you'll find great success with what you have. Have fun and happy smoking
  4. werdwolf

    werdwolf Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Welcome and Enjoy the Forum
  5. corrib

    corrib Newbie

    Thanks for the recommendations and the welcome.

    I wasn't sure about buying the electric, but based on this advice, I think I'll stick the with offset smoker. Customizing it should provide a good weekend project.

    Is eliminating the air leaks a good start?

    Looking forward to checking out the forum.

    Thanks again!

  6. billbo

    billbo Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Welcome aboard! Post a pic of that offset. If you let us know what model it is I'm sure somebody here can help you get started in the right direction. Enjoy!
  7. Welcome Patrick to the forum. Sounds like you have a good start on equipment already... Maybe before buying more equipment, beef up what you have with mods and do some great smokes from there, and when the time comes you will know more of what you want, if anything else.

    I have an offset, an Masterbuilt Electric Smoker (MES) and a propane grill for (why? I am not sure ;) ) grilling. I started off many years ago (late 70's) with a LJ little chief and got great results with it, but wanted more control and quality after it died.

    good luck and enjoy the adventure...
    aka Rocky
  8. irishteabear

    irishteabear Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Glad you joined us. Welcome to SMF.
  9. corrib

    corrib Newbie

    Could someone point me in the direction of the offset smoker mods? I used the search function but didn't get many results.

  10. pineywoods

    pineywoods Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead SMF Premier Member

  11. ronp

    ronp Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    The only reason I can see for getting a MES is for convenience. If you want an easy quick smoke just plug it in and your ready in 15 minutes.
    No mods needed.
  12. mossymo

    mossymo Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Welcome to SMF !!!
    Pineywoods pretty much nailed it with his post. Also, Creative Rock made a great point on smoker modificatons(this is very important).
    Beides smoker modifications I would recommend having the smoking accesories for your equipment to nail the recipes you want to follow.
    - Make sure you have "accurate" smoker and meat temperature gauges (temp check these for accuracey and your elavation level).
    - A Chimney starter to eliminate charcoal pre burn taste and also to keep your smoker at a steady temperature.
    - Leave your chimney exhaust wide open, creosote tasting fodd is not good smoke.
    - and with your experience it sounds like you will know this allready but, do not over smoke, very thin blue smoke out of the chimney is perfect; in the right light you may not even see it but if you can smell it everything is good.

    I have a couple of MES's and ronp's post is on the money, Masterbuilt electrics are great for conveinient smokes. They are not a do it all smoker (but at times can be if you plan the smoke), but do definetly have their place in the smoking world.
  13. forluvofsmoke

    forluvofsmoke Smoking Guru OTBS Member

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