So I successfully completed my first smoke over the weekend. I have a Smoke Hollow 4in1 and smoked a turkey breast this past Sunday. Turned out pretty good, but my rub was way to salty. I picked the worse day for my first smoke. Rain, wind and chilly temps all afternoon so it took me a little while to get my temp. control dialed in. But once I did things went pretty well. I ended up using over a half bag of charcoal for a 3 hour smoke. Also used almost 2 small bags of hickory chips. Here is where the questions come in.
How do I go about keeping my wood chips from burning up so quickly? I tried placing them away from the charcoal in the firebox, but they would still end up in flames in short order and would shoot up my pit temp. I also tried soaking some which seemed to work ok, but that ended up lowering my pit temp. I'm not sure if I should have wood in the fire box constantly creating smoke? Or if I should just be throwing a handfull in every half-hour or so to create some smoke? I have an unused "smoke box" that my wife picked up a year or so ago. Would something like that work better than just throwing my wood chips in the fire box?
I also need to seal up my smoker a bit. My pit lid seals well from the back to about half way up the sides but the rest has a good 1/4"-1/2" gap. My hinges don't have any adjustments so I'm not sure what the best way is to go about sealing up my lid. Any suggestions? The fire box cleanout door, which also houses the damper, seals worse than my lid. Any suggestions to get this sealed up?
I'm planning on doing a boston butt next. So I'd like to try and fine tune some things before I tackle that.