I I just got my SV 24 this week and plopped a 5 lb butt on it yesterday. Previously, I had used my gas grill to smoke a couple and got some pretty good results, the last one the best pulled pork I've ever had (I live in Ohio). As expected, with a new unit the results would be varied until I learn it. Also, I come to find out that in general , I HAVE NO IDEA WHAT I'M DOING.
After building my SV, I seasoned it as directed in the manual. I read about other ways of doing that one here, but also read a few people suggest to make sure to follow the manual, which I figured can't be wrong. that method was to load it up with wood and water, and run it at about 175* (I erred on the side of hotter) for about 45-60 minutes.
I have learned after reading some here that I'm running entirely too much smoke. I loaded up the smoke tray with soaked apple wood chips and watch the clouds of smoke pour out for about an hour and a half max. Al little stoke got me some more for a but. I filled it back up and continued smoking for another hour, estimated half of my smoking time. I ran out of chips but since I'm more worried about figuring this out and eating dinner tonight, and I had read on here some people only smoke for the first half, or up to 140* I thought I'd be ok just to cook the meat the rest of the way. I had the dampers all as closed as they get on a SV which is still pretty open, but I'm learning that I should have the top one all the way open pretty much all the time, right?
I'm going to move to chunks I think now that I have a proper smoker, but one question I have is, how much wood do you guys put in the tray of one of these? Jut a few handfuls of chips or a couple chunks? I LOADED it up. Clearly wrong.
Should my SV 24 look like the pics below after only being seasoned and one 7.5 hour smoke? I did glaze my butt every 45 fwiw.
Cleaning, what to do abut this? I cleaned the grates and that was rough. Soaking and subbing and brushing and more scrubbing until the towel no longer was brown. They still don't look like new, very bronze colored, but no hunks of meat/fat/grease. Do I need to clean the inside of the smoker, especially if this looks a little too rough after one smoke? Just a simple wipe down, steam clean, scrub until it looks new?
What does everyone do with the grease/water from the water tray? There was too much for my normal grease disposal method when cooking inside.
I read about creosote which has me concerned given the smoke i had and the look of my smoker after smoking. However, I never, and I confirmed with my wife, have tastes anything metallic or had out lips/tongues feel numb, so I guess I'm good/dodged a bullet there.
I welcome any/all other tips.
The back looks like that b/c last night, in the dark I gave it a gentle wipe to see what I was dealign with.