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New Smoker in Northern Virginia

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
My name is Mike and I live in Norhtern Virginia about 30 miles south of Washington DC. My main hobbies before adding smoking to the list were my Jeep/off roading, shooting, hunting, and a DIY'er in general when it comes to cars and the house. Bought my first smoker a couple weeks ago. ECB $37 special from walmart just to test the waters. First smoke was a disaster. I had way too much nasty white smoke and ruined a chicken and a pork tenderloin. Wife asked if I still had the receipt to return the smoker, I took that as a challenge. Found this site, did a lot of research and took the 5 day ecourse. Smoked a rack of ribs last week with Jeff's rub and a nice thin blue smoke and they were great. I did a rack of baby backs and did the 2-2-1 method. I didn't get any pictures, but the in-laws are in town for the weekend(no pressure) and today I am doing two racks of baby backs and a chicken, so I will post up some pictures later. Thank to everyone for the great information on here and a special thanks to Jeff for the Ecourse and the great rub and sauce recipes.
post #2 of 16
Welcome to SMF, Mike. Glad you joined us. Looking forward to seeing the qview from your smoke today.
post #3 of 16
welcome aboard Mike-your on the right track for many good smokes.
post #4 of 16
Hey welcome to the SMF! You're from my neck of the woods.
post #5 of 16
Thread Starter 
Here's what I am working with:

Mods so far...
Out boarded the legs, put legs on the charcoal pan and drilled some air holes in the bottom:

I just have the holes so far and need to add a piece of sheet metal to control air flow.

Stainless steel wok sits perfect in the charcoal pan with room underneath for air flow:

I went for four legs on the charcoal pan because it seemed like a more stable design to me and makes for a nice fit for the square wok. For those interested, I bought the wok at Home Depot for $15.99, and after using it I found the same one at Target for $12.99.

Now to the meat of my post:
Rack of ribs on the bottom rack and rack of ribs and a chicken on the top rack:

Chicken almost done and time for the ribs to come out of the foil:

Finished Baby Back Ribs:

For the ribs I used my slightly modified version of Jeff's Rub. I also made his sauce today for dipping on the side and that was great also. For the chicken I brined it overnight and it was amazing. Thanks again for all the great information on the site about smoking and smoker modifications that helped to make today's smoke a success. The in-laws were very impressed.
post #6 of 16
Welcome to the SMF gang!

One thing caught my eye while looking at your tasty, q ... when smoking poultry with other meats you'll want to place the bird on the bottom rack, so the drippings don't hit the meat below. Other than that, looks like some good grub!
post #7 of 16
mike - you're going to fit in very well here! i ahve three units just like yours and do very well with them. i also picked up a brinkmann SnP this eyar and am loving the stuffing out of it ~

any questions at all, just ask - if one of us doesn't ahve the answer, the other one will!

post #8 of 16
Welcome to SMF. Glad you didnt take the ECB back and glad you found us. I am originally from southern MD. Nice to have another DC area person here.

Nice smoke too. PDT_Armataz_01_06.gif
post #9 of 16
Thread Starter 
I was actually torn about where to put the bird as I was worried about the drippings but I had read that the top rack would have a higher temperature which I thought would be better for poultry to make sure it cooked through. So my compromise was to put it on the top rack and not put anything below it on the bottom rack. Not sure if that makes sense, but the two halves of the rack of ribs on the bottom rack were directly beneath the two halves of the rack of ribs on the top rack and the bottom rack was empty below the chicken on the top rack. I will try the bird on the bottom next time. Thanks again for the input and comments from everyone.
post #10 of 16

Hey I'm Rick, new to SMF

Hello everyone,
My name is Rick, I'm a firefighter/paramedic. I live in Durant, OK. I've been on your site all day messing around. Just now found the roll call. I've talked to a couple of your members so far and i'm in the right place, they were awesome have already helped me out a lot. I'm new to smoking. I have only had one experience smoking meat. It was a month ago on a smoker we built at the fire station out of a 250 gallon propane tank. I'll get some pics of that for ya. was and awesome job. Took forever. Smoked 4 beer can chickens on it and turned out great. I'm hooked now. I just bought my first smoker the other day. A couple had bought it at Academy never used it and left it outside. I stripped it down and repainted it, just got done today. Can't wait to fire her up. I added some pics and hope to talk to all of you as much as possible. I want to cook some good meat and i think your the ppl to help me do that.
post #11 of 16
Thread Starter 
Welcome to the forum, from another new guy. You may want to start a new thread just for you to strike up more conversation and input.
post #12 of 16

I'm an idiot sry mike

Mike, im sorry for posting on your thread im new man and just getting into this. learning experience, sry again brotha hope all is well and am forgiven.
post #13 of 16
Thread Starter 
No worries, just didn't want your post to get missed.
post #14 of 16
Welcome to the forum Mike. It sounds to me like you are well on your way to some great Q!

Nice "pull back" on the pics of your ribs. They look wonderful
post #15 of 16
nice looking ecb... i remember when mine was that shiny. NOVA smokers unite!
post #16 of 16
Thread Starter 
Thanks for all the kind words and encouragement.

My wife made a chicken pot pie for dinner with the left over chicken from what I smoked the other day...this seems to be working out great.

Harris Teeter has baby backs on sale this week...might have to smoke some more this weekend.
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