A little history. I have been smoking for several years now. I own gas big box smoker (masterbuild xl), lots of mods on that one and you can go to thr gas section and look for really mods on that one from other members.
The reason I got a weber kettle is mainly to smoke when I just want to do a butt or two, maybe a single brisket. I really don't feel like firing up the big one. That one I use when I need to do a lot of meat. Sometimes I really to miss smoking with charcoal. Gas results are good but there is nothing that gets my blood boiling like a good charcoal smoke.
Long story short, I decided on the kettle because it's a hell of a charcoal grill and a very versatile little grill.
On top what I did with it once I got it. Saw a lot of people on the internet and all over with gadgets that you can add to make it easier to smoke on it. I wanted to do something that didn't require me to buy expensive things. I opted to get the weber baskets. Got them at Wal-Mart for $11.00.
Break in the grill and season. Lots of things you can do. I did this:
Fill a weber chimney 3/4 full of kingsford original blue and light it up. Place the baskets ams sear a good ol' ribeye and then indirect cook it. Until medium
Sorry...hit submit before finishing...continuing the edit below.
After that i did some chicken and more meat.
It was time to rub the meat. Pork butt was About 7-8lb after trim.
Next morning i ran into my first hiccup. My wife threw away the bricks I had and planned to use to diffuse heat. Think, think. Looking at my gas weber, I saw the grillgrates I had on it. Wrapped them up and used them as diffusers at charcoal level and main grate label. Foil the charcoal grate and leave a 1 inch opening right in front of the basket. Fill that basket up to the main grate level. The second grillgrate you can hold with the hinged grate. This is how it looks:
Foil basket below the meat side (water is up to you, for the record I did use water in mine) next light up 6-7 briquettes. The way I do it, ia to use your chimney upside down and put them in there with a fire starter in the middle like this:
Make a little dent in the middle of the unlit charcoal and dump them in there when they are about 2/3 lit.
Cover the grill and leave top and bottom vents open ultil you reach about 210-215 and then close the bottom one and top almost completely. You want to leave the top vent on the charcoal side while bringing up to temp. For most of the cook, place the top vent on the meat side. I did put it back on top of the charcoal towards the end of the cook to bring temps up a bit. Once you get it up to temp and from this point on, you will only use the top one to control heat. Leave the bottom alone.
I didn't really move the vent on top maybe a couple of times, throw in the wood chunks. I started with 3 one on each side and one in the middle on top if the lit coals to get things going. One the temp is stabilized, throw in the meat. It really didn't take long to do so.
I use dual thermometers. One for the smoker and one for the meat. My temps held between 225-250 gor pretty much the whoole cook. I did add maybe 6-7 unlit briquettes once and wood every couple of hrs when I mopped.
It really was surprising how well this went. Here is the rest of the pics. Hope it helps.
Almost ready, took out at 196
Getting ready to takr out and wrap to put in the cooler.
This is the only pic my family allowed me to take of the finished product.
Overall, everything worked out wonderful and very satisfied with the results. Cooking time was about 8 and change hours. No spikes in temp not drops at all. This post is for you guys as much as it for me to document for myself for next time, just an outline to follow when using the kettle. Happy smoking!
P.S. excuse the typos and bad writing overall. I did all this from my phone at almost 2am
Edited by caiguar - 9/21/16 at 12:45am