I'm new to smoking. I got an vertical brinkmann box smoker and learned a lot right away. I had trouble getting a temp right away and did some research only to find out it was a design flaw. I did what was suggested and got a wok for the coal pan, however that gave me huge spikes in temp. I always have the upper vents completely open and right now am running with the lower vents completely closed. The only thing i have found that kept it lower was to add less coal. I am only on my 3rd smoke ever tonight and the temp is holding tight at 220 so I'm optimistic. I have a butt and a rack of baby backs in right now. i'll try to add some pics. Any advice will help me out considering I have no idea what I am doing. The second try worked out well, and everyone was happy, but it wasn't as tender as I would have liked. I did 2-1-1 on the second try, but with the spikes in temp I think it cooked it way too fast. Anyway, look forward to learning a lot.