While I understand the 10-12lb Turkeys are a much better size for the smoker I've had this 18lb Turkey in the freezer since Thanksgiving and its time to make some room. I'll be using the MES 40 with AMNPS - I'm thinking cherry? The bird is currently in the Slaughterhouse brine after that I plan to dry the bird/skin in the fridge for 24hrs. Here is the plan... Currently I have removed the backbone from the bird as my original intention was to spatch but I think I might try to just crack it open a bit and smoke it like that so it will fit on the rack nicely. My question is will my cook time still be somewhat reduced? I plan to keep the MES40 at its max 275, at that setting my Maverick shows the top rack at around 300 I'm hoping this will get me out of the danger zone in 4hrs? I will keep a close eye on the internal temp and if I'm not going to make it after 3 - 3 1/2 hours I'll put it in the oven to finish. Here is (another members) picture of what I plan to do. Does my plan sound ok? Do you guys think I should just cut it in half? What kind of cook time should I expect with that backbone removed? Any suggestions or comments are greatly appreciated.