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New Smoker and New to Smoking.

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 

Wife bought me a new WSM 14.5, and we put I through it first smoke on Labor day.  We did a pork shoulder, with KBB and maple, and the WSM maintained heat for about 6 hours running at 240.  Everything came out fine, but it had a slight bitter taste.  I have been looking on the site and found that I may have started the meat on the smoker.  I have also read that many have ran the wsm for 12+ hours with out having to add coals.  Was wondering if those were on larger model like the 18 and 22 if you have run your 14.5 for a 12 hour smoke with out adding coals what was you set up?  Also am I correct in that I put the should on to early with to much smoke going.  I did add hot coals and a fresh piece of maple at the 6 hour mark due temp being below 200 after I opened the bottom vents.

post #2 of 9

I don't do a lot of pork shoulder so I hope you get some more comments, but the bitter taste sounds like it might be over-smoked a bit.  I usually stop adding chips to my MES 40 at about 2 to 3 hours depending on the meat.


Welcome to the world of smoking though...enjoy!

post #3 of 9

Bitter taste usually means creosote.

Did you have a lot of heavy white smoke?

You should just be seeing very light smoke.

My 14.5 will run 8-10 hours without refilling.

My 22.5 will go 23 hours with out adding any charcoal or wood.



post #4 of 9
Thread Starter 

I did have a lot of smoke at first then again after I put in more coals.  I used the minion method for the coals at first.  then just replenished the coals 6 hours later.  It was the very first smoke on the WSM not sure if that has anything to do with keeping heat control and slowing down the burn rate.   

post #5 of 9

I just thought of something...did you season your smoker before using it for cooking the first time? 

post #6 of 9

Is your exhaust wide open?  It needs to be to prevent the smoke from condensing into creosote.  Temp regulation is done with the lower dampers.

post #7 of 9
Thread Starter 
I ran it for six hours with hoy coals and smoke wood chunks. I brought it up to 300 degrees and then got it back to 250 once at 250 I threw in some wood chunks for a few hours. Then I started playing with the vents raising an lowering the heat. When it was all done the smoker appeared to have a nice coating on it. I did not try to run fatty meats threw.
post #8 of 9

Sounds like it was good and seasoned.  So I agree with my earlier comment, Al, and CrankyBuzzard comments above.


Good luck!


Be sure to post your cure once you figure it out because it will help someone somewhere.  

post #9 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thank you for the responses.
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