Hello to all the members out there.
My name is John and I live in Helena, Montana. I am a retired CPA - sold my interest last year in a practice I helped build from scratch. I lived in Charlotte, NC for about 25 years, but after selling out, I retired and moved to Montana. My wife and I love hiking and exploring the outdoors - thus the 2400 mile relocation! I am learning to fly fish - not very good yet but getting better. Absolutely love it, though!
I have grilled most of my life - but due to my professional career, never seemed to have the time to explore smoking. I have a Weber 18.5 kettle and a Weber 22.5 kettle. I have grilled on a gas grill, but in my opinion, the flavor is much better using charcoal.
Last year I purchased a Smokenator, and have used it to do baby back ribs and some beef jerky; but this coming year I want to try greatly expanding what I smoke. I figured this forum site would be a great place to get some tips (I also bought Jeff's book).
My biggest concern right now is that my kettle does not seal well so I have a hard time keeping temps low using the Smokenator. I have seen some tips I am going to try, but I suspect the chance of keeping temps below 225 will be tough. 225 to 250 is probably sufficient for most things, but I may end up upgrading to a more dedicated smoker where I can keep the temp at closer to 175 for my beef jerky. The beef jerky I did with the Smokenator was good, but I think it could be better.
Looking forward to learning from all of you experienced smokers!