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Newbie from PA

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
Hi All,

New to smoking but been grilling and cooking for years. Finally decided to get a Silver Smoker the other day. Seasoning it now but have a few questions.

To keep the 225 temp how much lump charcoal should I use at a time?

How much wood of the wood chips, I have hickory and apple, should I use so as to not "over smoke"?

I've seen some of the mods on this site for the Silver Smoker so I'm heading down to the hardware store to get what's needed. Thanks in advance!!!

--Matt Kelly
post #2 of 17
Welcome to the forum. I don't know anything about your smoker type, but someone will be along shortly to help you out.
post #3 of 17
Welcome Matt Kelly, glad to have you aboard!
post #4 of 17
Welcome Matt glad to have you...You should check out the free 5-Day Ecourse, you can find it on the left side of the home page. It alone will explain alot of what you are asking. There are so many variables with each smoker even of the same type to be specific. As a guide you want your fire to be small and hot to burn clean and for smoke you want to keep it thin and blue..almost invisible..It will also depend your mods...I have found that experience is the best teacher.
post #5 of 17
Hi Matt

Welcome to the forum. I have a Silver Smoker and am new to smoking. I am still learning the particulars of this smoker, as I have only used it three time. I made a 12"x12"x6" charcoal basket out of stretch plate. I fill the charcoal basket up to 3/4 capacity with lump charcoal. Then I add on one side of the basket (the last 1/4) some brickette charcoal which has been started in a charcoal chimney. After about 15 minutes after adding the brickettes, I top off the brickettes with lump charcoal. I just tried this today and my temperature was 260 degrees near the fire box and 240 degrees near the end farthest from the fire box. It held this temperature for about 4 hours. The top baffle was closed and the bottom was opened about 1/2 to 3/4 of and inch. I should also add the I have made a heat deflector at the fire box and a heat distributor in the smoking chamber.
I have not yet sealed up the smoking chamber lid at this time. But I will as the outside temperature drops this autumn. As for adding the wood chips, I add a few chuncks of hickory at the beginning of the smoke and leave it at that. I sure someone with more knowledge will chime in on this.
I find that tinkering with the smoker is part of the enjoyment of smoking. It also gives me time to enjoy refreshments while slaving over the "hot oven".
Good luck
post #6 of 17
howdy and welcome
post #7 of 17
Welcome and don't forget to share some QVIEW.
post #8 of 17


Welcome from fellow PA smoker.
post #9 of 17
Welcome to SMF. Glad you found us
post #10 of 17
Welcome Matt Kelly.
post #11 of 17
Welcome to the forum, Matt. Give RonF's suggestion a go. Sounds alot like my process.
post #12 of 17
Welcome to the SMF family. Remember, cooking in a smoker is low and slow with thin blue smoke. We will have you smoking like a pro in no time.
Do lots of reading here in the forum. you will find that it is all here just do a search and more reading. Ask lots of questions, we will answer them.
After all, that is why this forum exists, to learn, learn more and teach others the art.
looking forward to seeing your first smoke.
post #13 of 17
Welcome to SMF.glad to have ya...
post #14 of 17
Thread Starter 
Hi All!

I did my first experiment this weekend with about 4 pounds of ribs. I was able to get the temp stable the day before by playing with it after seasoning. I signed up for the 5 day course and followed the memphis recipe. I left the ribs on for about 5 1/2 hours around 215/225 adding a few smoke chips at each hourly flip.

The ribs came out great and I'm excited to try it again. I need to figure out a few things like what peak temp to bring the meat to and how to make them come out a little more tender. I really like fall off the bone ribs. I guess I could try back backs next.

Also going to try a brisket and pork butt over the next few weeks. I'll definitely make the heat baffle as many have described here, also probably extend the chimney down to the rack.
post #15 of 17
Hia Every! Welcome to SMF!

I'm not a fan of fall of the bone.. I make pulled pork for that. But if you so desire... increase the foil time and decrease the last time out of the foil a bit. Or- did you not use the 3-2-1 method of rib cooking? Look in the box on the left of the main page for it if ya din't!
post #16 of 17
Thread Starter 
I didn't try the 3-2-1 method, but I will next time. I like to learn how to do the same type of food in different methods. Sometimes I might like them fall off the bone, other times not. I think that's the best part about cooking!

Going to stop at the local butcher and get a butt and brisket. Also going to try a few small game hens for fun.
post #17 of 17
Consider brining those hens :{) Lots of brining tips, and curing tip here too!
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