I've just got myself a Char Broil, American Gourmet offset smoker / grill / bbq. I've got one batch of venison sausage through it, and they are ok...not great...but ok. The first few of what you can expect to be many questions from me is how long can I expect a batch of charcoal to burn for? And do you add charcoal throughout the burn cycle? I know it is relative to the amount I've got in there, so let's say there were roughly 30 - 40 briquettes burning in the firebox. The issue I ran into was I wasn't able to maintain a high enough temp, even with all the vents wide open. It is winter here, and outside temp was just above freezing (not sure if that is a factor or not). As well, I was adding charcoal a few briquettes at a time, but ended up with a pile of unburned chunks afterwards. Even as I am writing this, I am expecting someone to call me a knucklehead, condescendingly pat me on the head, smile and tell me to stick to pasta ) Any help you folks can offer is greatly appreciated!