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Ready to give it a go....

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

My Family took the hint! They knew I was interested in getting a smoker, so they looked around, did a little research and bought me a Masterbuilt Dual Fuel Smoker for Fathers Day! (I got it early cuz they couldn't find a place to hide it!) I don't know anyone else who even has a smoker (other than the butcher shops) here in Moose Jaw, Sk. Canada., so I am about as raw as you can get. The only things I know about smoking I have learned from reading on these forums and similar websites. I have found there is quite a bit of contradictory information out there, which leads to questions:

 

1) The Water Pan is too small, they say. What will happen if I use the pan that came with it?

 

2) The manual says, NEVER use wood chunks, only chips. Why? Why do people say they use chunks anyway? How often will I have to add chips / chunks to the smoker box?

 

3) Is there a benefit to charcoal over propane? (or vice versa)

 

4) Should I really use a cast iron frying pan instead of the chip box that came with?

 

5) What is the number 1 tip for controlling heat? How do I set the dampers

 

Anyway, I will likely start with smaller smokes before I tackle the bigger chunks of meat, but I am looking forward to getting started. I was thinking this weekend but rain might put a crimp in the plans.

 

Angus

post #2 of 6

Hello fellow Canadian. I am relatively new to smoking and don't have the answers to your questions but I suspect you will get them answered on this forum. There is so much information in the postings and the experienced members are so generous with their advice. They have been great in dealing with my Newbie questions and I hope you enjoy the forums as much as I do.

 

Disco

post #3 of 6

Welcome , Angus. We hope you enjoy our site enough to call it home ; we're nicer anyhow, and know more...biggrin.gif

Here's MHO to your questions :in red...

Quote:
Originally Posted by AngusMcIntosh View Post

My Family took the hint! They knew I was interested in getting a smoker, so they looked around, did a little research and bought me a Masterbuilt Dual Fuel Smoker for Fathers Day! (I got it early cuz they couldn't find a place to hide it!) I don't know anyone else who even has a smoker (other than the butcher shops) here in Moose Jaw, Sk. Canada., so I am about as raw as you can get. The only things I know about smoking I have learned from reading on these forums and similar websites. I have found there is quite a bit of contradictory information out there, which leads to questions:

 

1) The Water Pan is too small, they say. What will happen if I use the pan that came with it?You should have no problem with the stock pan...in fact placing play sand in it instead will make a better balast(cover with foil to keep clean). Water , IMHO , is to keep the food moist, I've not had that trouble and I cook with Wood only ., and no water pan...

 

2) The manual says, NEVER use wood chunks, only chips. Why? Why do people say they use chunks anyway? How often will I have to add chips / chunks to the smoker box? You will enevitably use Charcoal(which burns hotter) , so why not chunks, I feel you get a better Smoke out of them (I use pieces appox. 8"X4"X4" pieces and have no trouble at all. (Secret is to pre-heat the chunks on top of the FB or to one side inside the FB , a few min. before adding to the Embers. This way they light quicker and release less white smoke, usually the smoke continues to be Blue.

 

3) Is there a benefit to charcoal over propane? (or vice versa)

I have a problem with Charcoal and don't use it, however - Gas produces "no" smoke (except for the igniting juices) and an alternate must be used (thus chip/chunk trays or generators).

4) Should I really use a cast iron frying pan instead of the chip box that came with?

This is a really good suggestion, the CI will hold a more even heat to keep you smoke source going. IMHO , I would find a small one , 8" , at a garage sale and you'll still have room to 'turn' the handle in the FB.

5) What is the number 1 tip for controlling heat? How do I set the dampers

Honestly , PATIENCE , see my sig. biggrin.gif

Anyway, I will likely start with smaller smokes before I tackle the bigger chunks of meat, but I am looking forward to getting started. I was thinking this weekend but rain might put a crimp in the plans.

You have a fine idea for starting small... Chicken is a great meat to start with , then to Pork Butt (it's very forgiving and teaches a lot about temp. control.

Angus

Good luck Angus , and as always ...

post #4 of 6

Welcome to the forums, Angus!  Glad you've joined us.  You've found a great place to learn and share ideas on our favorite pastimes...grilling, smoking, and curing great food!  There are lots of friendly and knowledgeable folks here who really enjoy helping one another.  Just ask any time you need help and you'll get plenty!

 

Stan's got you covered...good luck with your first smoke!  And be sure to post some qview to let us know how it goes!


Red

post #5 of 6

welcome1.gifto SMF!  We are so glad you joined us!

 

Jeff offers a free 5 day E-Course.  It's packed with great information to use...no matter what your experience level might be!  http://www.smoking-meat.com/smoking-basics-ecourse

 

If you didn't read the "Terms of Service" notes.....please do.  There are a few things that everyone should know about those pesky little rules before plunging into the forums. http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/a/terms-of-service

 

If you need any help roaming around the forums....just holler!  Happy to help out!

 

Kat

post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thanks! I have already devoured day 1 of the 5day course....can hardly wait for day 2!

This Forum is awesome....just sayin'

Angus
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