First, thanks to all the vets for such a great forum. Lots of great advice and have already learned some great stuff. I bought this model: http://www.masterbuilt.com/index.php/smokers/30-electric-smokehouse.html earlier this year and *thought* i had a pretty good handle on smoking through it. Although the site has great insights into cooking tips, I'm finding that quite a bit about smoking in general can't be replicated on this unit. It suffers from two major problems, IMO. First is that the covered wood chip tray is small. With a cup of dry wood chips, it takes 25-30 minutes on "high" setting to get wood to start smoking. The next major problem is that the chip tray is not easily removed/refilled. It requires the entire smoker to be open and then the task of replacing old wood chips with the new ones in a scorching hot tray isn't easy. In other words, the major compartment loses all or most of its heat and the process of replacing the chips is onerous . A cup of wood chips gives about 1 hour of consistent smoke once the chips have been brought to temperature. Once the smoke fades, the chips have to be replaced and then it takes another hour or so for the new wood chips to start smoking again (remember this time the smoker is on a "LOW" setting). So on a three hour smoke session, the tray has to be refilled twice to give the chips a maximum of two hours of smoking time. This, plus opening the doors and letting go of all the heat has an effect on the meat. So my question is this 1) Have any of you experimented with or advise boiling water and pre-heating wood chips with electric smokers? What are ways I can extend life of the smoke or perhaps make the entire process of replacing the tray/water negligible? 2) There are some suggestions to punch holes the chip tray on the forum. Is this advisable for an electric smoker? If I consider doing this, would I leave the wood chip tray open? 3) I nearly always wrap up my meat in foil leaving the top part open for the cooking. Uncovering it makes it dry IMO. Is this because I'm not prepping the meat correctly or does it have something to do with my smoker? Thanks!