Hello out there! I joined up last fall but haven't been on since then. I have to say that there is an amazing amount of experience out there and I appreciate everyone's willingness to share. These are the kinds of forums that make it a joy to have a hobby and enjoy with others. Now, to my setup. I am going the route alot of people probably do. I scored a Brinkman Square Vertical on craigslist with a large bag of chunk charcoal and a good size bag of hickory chunks. All for $40. Not a bad start. I, again like alot of people, was very excited to get started. I threw 2 chickens in, hot charcoal, water and wood. Sat back and waited expectantly. And waited. Never did get it up higher than 200 degrees. Cooked those things for 6 hours, called it good and tore into them. Well, no one got sick or died so I'm calling it a success but after reading all the posts in here about this type of smoker, I have made modifications. Sealed the door with an oven door seal, added a square grill wok to hold the charcoal and have a Maverick ET-73 on the way. A 6 lb. brisket is waiting in the fridge for my attention. Now all I need is time. Thanks for all the info so far. Wish me luck!