Good afternoon all!
I had lot's of good advice here last summer when I had just started as a novice smoker. I admit that my first two shots were not very successful, but I seem to have worked out my problems. I could not seem to get my smoker up to cooking temp last year, and I was having temp measuring problems. My ribs tasted great last year, but I had to get them up to temp on my gas grill after smoking them.
My problem was inherent in the cheap smoker I am using. The grill under the charcoal is poorly designed and does not let enough air in to allow for convection. I added a grill a few inches hugher than the one supplied, and I am good to go.
I am using the base model Charbroil stick burner. It was enough to get me started , but as I get more adept I plan on moving up.
Right now, my smoke chamber temp is 210 degrees, my meat is out of the danger zone, hickory smoke is drifting out of my stack, and it smells wonderful.
I have two racks of baby backs working. Yesterday afternoon I oiled them lightly with some good olive oil and rubbed in a dry rub from Penzey's spices called BBQ 3001. ( I plan to experiment and develop my own rub)
I left them to sit in the fridge overnight, and I let them sit out for an hour while I got the smoker up to temp.
Now, I just have to watch my smoke chamber and meat thermometers and drink some cold Corona.......
I will report back!