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Newbie with new smoker questions

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
Hey guys, just found this forum. I have always wanted to smoke meat and I have the opportunity to get in for no cost at all. Someone I know offered me their old smoker that they don't use. I also had a huge live oak taken down out of my backyard 6 months ago and it is chopped up in my yard as well.

I am attaching a link to the smoker they gave me.


It is rusted and used, but it looks like a nice smoker. Here is my question, it is one of those smokers with the firebox under the meat. Will this work okay?

Also, another newbie question is how to start a fire to use the live oak? How much live oak logs should I use?

I'm sure I will have lots more questions, thanks!
post #2 of 15
Welcome to the forum! Sounds like you got a real deal on a quality smoker. I'm not familiar with that type, but someone will be along shortly that can help you. Meanwhile, just peruse the site and father all the info you can. Also consider signing up for Jeff's 5 day course on smoking meat. It will help you imensely. Keith
post #3 of 15
Howdy westtexas, the norm is for the newbie's to run themselves through roll call.We like to get to know a fellow smoker first-just seems more friendly to everybody with a proper intro.As far as your smoker I couldn,t bring the link up so not sure-if it hasn't been used in a while it will need a good season before u use it.Go through roll call and I bet sombody be along soon to help ya instead of giveing you a hard time. Glad you found us.
post #4 of 15
Hey Cam,
welcome to the end all be all of collective smoking knowledge. Thats a heck of a pit you got and free, great find. Try taking the 5 day e-course, very informative http://www.smoking-meat.com/smoking-basics-ecourse.html. Where in W TX? I am over in Lubbock. Good luck.

post #5 of 15
Thread Starter 
I'll give you some background on me to introduce myself. I am 31, live in Midland, Texas with 3 year old twin boys, a lovely wife of 8 years, a 10 year old black lab, and a crazy 6 year old Bloodhound named Reuben. I am full time teacher and a part time Bible teacher and lawn maintenance professional. I do almost all the cooking for my family because I love to cook and I love to eat. I also love to hunt deer with my wooden longbow, fly fish, and tie my own flies. I am brand new to smoking but have always wanted to.

If this smoker has been setting out for a while, anything I need to do to it to get it ready besides a basic cleaning?

If I went to Sam's and bought something to smoke, what would be a good first item?



post #6 of 15
Thread Starter 
Oh yes, forgot to mention, I already signed up for the 5 day course.


post #7 of 15


If I was you the first thing I would try is pulled pork, There are a couple of good postings here on how to do it and it is very forgiving not to mention tastes great. get yourself a Boston butt I belive it is also just called a pork butt. Get the one with the bone in it and read the postings

Good luck, Gary
post #8 of 15
hey westtex, a good cleaning with mild dish soap to get the dirt out-spray the inside with pam or wipe down with evoo and put a fire in it to burn the oil's away-should be set to go than.as far as a piece of meat I would say a pork butt.read through some of the threads under pork or do a search on pork butts.
post #9 of 15
Welcome to SMF Cam. First, clean the smoke box out, removing loose rust and anything stuck in there. If it's really crapped up, a trip to the local car wash may be in order. Spray or rub veg oil/Pam/lard on the inside of the smoke box and grates. Then what you'll want to do is get a bed of coals going in the firebox. I have no idea how big this thing is, but start with some lump charcoal, and get it nice and grey . Add some small wood chunks and shoot for a nice light thin blue smoke coming out and let it season.

Then we'll talk meat :{)
post #10 of 15
Welcome to the site..............Looks like you got a heck of a deal................
post #11 of 15
Welcome aboard, glad to have ya!
post #12 of 15
You got a Spitts for free.....NICE!!!!
post #13 of 15
Welcome to SMF.
post #14 of 15
Thread Starter 
Well, went to Sam's tonight and bought 2 pork butts for $20. $1.27 per pound is a good meat price. Will they keep in the fridge until Saturday?

Do you guys make your fire with charcoal and just add wood for smoke and taste or do you burn the wood for heat?

post #15 of 15
If the meat is shrunk wrapped I would say that yes it will keep. It should have a date of when it was packed or when it should be used by on it.

As for the fire you could do it either way. I believe the unit you have was designed to burn logs but lump for heat and small chunks of wood for flavor will work. Just be careful as oak has a strong flavor with can get bitter if there is too much smoke. Remember that when smoking you don’t want a lot of white smoke billowing out but a thin blue smoke.
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