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Hello everybody from CA

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Well hello everyone here at SMF. I kinda just ran across this forum when trying to find out things about how to smoke meat. Im always on my Jeep Forum so i know how helpful these things really are, so i made it a priority to come back and create an account. And now here i am! My name is James and I was born and raised in California. In a town/city called Bakersfield (armpit of CA). I like to travel and love trying new foods. One of my all time favorites is bbq foods of course. So recently i had the best tasting ribs that i have had, and they were delicious! the smoked flavor was amazing and that is when i realized that i wanted to learn to smoke food. Of course i immediately went to youtube and starting watching videos (amazes me how many techniques there are) but i grew up in my families restaurant cooking all the time. So a part of me shouldn't be surprised with everyone's creative techniques. 

 

I haven't bought myself a smoker yet. I have been looking though. I currently own two gas grills, one that stays home and the other that i take camping with me. So i am interested in getting a charcoal smoker (again i have no clue on what is best so i could be wrong for wanting this) and i do know that i do have to get used to whatever smoker i choose. I consider myself to be a quick learner and with practice, i think i can get used to smoking ribs. So i want to buy the right grill, the first time. Now im not looking at getting the most expensive grill out there. I want to get something that will be affordable ($50-$150) but that will be reliable. 

 

So please, if you guys have any suggestions? tell me! I am always open to new things, since you guys are the ones who know more about smoking than I do. I want to experiment with each different technique and find the one i like the most. But FIRST! I need to buy myself a smoker. I will be going today to start shopping for one, so wish me luck guys. Ill make sure to watch out for any replies with any suggestions that you guys may have. Thanks again! 

post #2 of 10

WHOOP! THERE IT IS ( to paraphrase )!  See the bottom link below ( you might find it cheaper elsewhere, I just wanted to show you the smoker ).  For a new smoker with your budget I can't think of a better charcoal smoker.  In fact, I just bought one.  They are porcelain coated so don't rust ( unless you chip the porcelain ).  They a really heavy and well built.  With very little practice you can control temps fairly easily.  They make a 18" but get the bigger one, better to have the space and not need it.  NOW!!  There are MANY different options out there ( electric, propane etc., but you did say charcoal and a max price of $150.  With that criteria I think this is the best option on the market.  Just my opinion.  NOW!!! for the Welcome:

 

Hello and Welcome to our addiction.  A word of warning: There is no 12 step program for this one!  Many good folk here with a load of experience that they are more than willing to share.  If you have specific questions just start a thread and someone with experience will be along soon to offer advice.  All info you can provide us with such as smoker type, location and so on will help us answer any questions you may have, and pictures help a bunch.  Spend some time doing some research on the forums, tons of advice and recipes already available there.  Check out Jeff’s 5 day smoking E-Course ( link below ) that will help you get started.  We look forward to your contributions.  Have fun.  Good luck.  Keep Smokin!

Danny

 

http://www.smoking-meat.com/smoking-basics-ecourse

 

http://www.walmart.com/ip/Weber-One-Touch-22.5-inch-diameter-Charcoal-Kettle-Grill-Black/876289

post #3 of 10
Welcome to the forums. I'm originally from the Bay Area but have lived in the Modesto area for the last 13 years. So I guess if Bakersfield is the armpit, the Modesto area has to be the belly button... Lol. As far as smoking I started smoking on a hundred dollar 3 burner gas grill. It did the job OK, but eventually I wanted more. I have a super busy life, kids and family, and I personally love my Masterbuilt Electric Smoker. It's easy to use, and I use wood chips, and broken briquets in my pan. It works. Not the best not the worst, but it's good enough for the level of smoking I'm at. Once I evolve and get better I will probably upgrade, but my MES is a god start. It ran me 200 bucks at Lowes. Choosing a smoker is allot about personal preference, and individual smoking style. I'm sure you will get plenty of feedback on this site. While you are still looking, use your gas grill with wood chip packets in foil, and cook low and slow.
MJ
post #4 of 10
I'd recommend getting a 22.5 inch weber kettle as well. Extremely versatile, dependable and you can get parts for it easily and forever. Once you get a hinged cooking grate ($22) and a pair of charcoal baskets ($16), both available at HD, you can practically hot smoke anything.

The best thing is you can get these off of Craigslist very cheaply. Excellent condition ones go for $50 for the silver and $75 for the gold. I bought mine for $5 from a local non-profit in good shape.

You also might look into building your self a mini-wsm. There is tons of info on how to build one here. I have everything I need to make my own mini but can't get the right pot here locally.
post #5 of 10

Hello from East Texas, how is the smoker shopping going ?

 

Gary S

post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 
It went well! I did end up going with a weber grill. One with a table and it has a propane set up to go with it. I went shopping everywhere and of course the regular weber that I wanted was 99. This one I found on Craigslist for 60 bucks! I feel that it is worth it. So I can start working with the charcoal as well. I will post pictures as soon as I clean it up and dust it off.
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 
A kettle. I know I wasn't too specific
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
This is it!
post #9 of 10
You got a performer for $60? Dude! MAJOR score...
post #10 of 10

When you picked that up did you wear a mask and carry a gun??   YOU STOLE THAT!!!!!!  GREAT score!!!!  Nothing to hold you back now.  Keep Smokin!

Danny

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