I use splits 9-12 inches long, 2-3 inches thick.
I start my fire with 1 1/2 chimneys of fully lump charcoal placed in the SFB, when the CG gets to the temp I want I put the food on and add a couple of chunks to the charcoal fire. At the same time I put 1 or 2 splits on top of the SFB to heat. When the charcoal begins to lose heat I add a split. The heated split will catch fire almost immediately. I continue this way until done. Make sure that the splits burn, you want to keep a small, hot, clean burning fire not smoldering wood. If you do your food will not be overly smoky.
I use maple a lot because I have a good steady supply. I have used oak, but it must be completely seasoned, here in Maine that takes about 3 years.
Stick burning is all about proper air flow to keep the fire burning.
Hi What did you mean by this?
Just started my COS going with Kingfords Blue this time, since I don't the right size wood for the heat.
Added a 1/2 split of cherry 2/3" X 6" long just for the smoke flavor...I'm looking around to see where I can get for 12" splits for the heat.