• Some of the links on this forum allow SMF, at no cost to you, to earn a small commission when you click through and make a purchase. Let me know if you have any questions about this.

1st & 2nd smoke on the new WSM 22.5

kevin james

Meat Mopper
Joined Jul 30, 2012
Fired up the new WSM for the first time Saturday morning. I bought a 3 pack of ST Luis Cut spare ribs and also a pork tenderloin Friday night and got everything rubbed down and prepped first thing Saturday morning while the smoker was coming up to temp.

Unfortunately, the temp way overshot my target of 250 and kept climbing all the way up to a peak of 400 even with all the vents closed off (my attempt to bing the temp down by starving the fire of oxygen... which didn't work). I had elected not to fill the water pan for this smoke. Since the temps were way out of control I decided to only throw one rack of ribs on. They came out way too dark with a pulled pork style black bark. Luckily all was not lost, as the temps finally came down to 275 (after 6 hours) and I threw the pork tenderloin on, which came out great!

On Sunday I tried again. This time I cut the number of hot coals down to about 8 or 9 using the minion method, and put cold water in the water pan. This seemed to do the trick and I got temps up to 250 +/- 25 which stayed pretty stable for the duration of the cook. I did a modified version of the 3,2,1 closer to 2.5, 1.5, 1 and the ribs came out amazing this time. They got a perfect dark mahogany color, and perfect bite through tenderness that came clean off the bones. I used my own rub and put a little turbinado sugar and honey in the wrap which gave them a nice sweet flavor, but not too sweet and with some heat. I was very happy with the results for my second attempt with the WSM. Pics below!


JC in GB

Master of the Pit
SMF Premier Member
Joined Sep 28, 2018
Love pork ribs... Nice looking cook.. Well done. :emoji_cat:


SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
Staff member
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Joined Jun 22, 2009
Fantastic looking ribs!


Legendary Pitmaster
OTBS Member
Joined Sep 15, 2012
Your ribs look mighty appetizing to me. Nicely done. As for controlling the temps on your WSM you heading in the right direction. Starting with 8 or 9 lit coals is good. I like to start with my vents wide open. When I'm within 30 to 40 degrees of my target temp I start closing the bottom vents and letting it settle for about 15 min.. Then I make adjustments as necessary. Some days I have 2 of the 3 bottom vents completely shut down and control the temps with just one. It's all weather dependent. As you've seen it's easier to raise the temp then lower it. After a few smokes your WSM will be seasoned and you won't see any major air-leaks.

Point for sure


Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
Joined Feb 27, 2018
Those ribs look great nice job! Always fun learning a new smoker

Latest posts

Hot Threads

Top Bottom
AdBlock Detected

We get it, advertisements are annoying! (But that's how we keep the lights on.)

We noticed that you're using an ad-blocker, which could block some critical website features. For the best possible site experience please take a moment to disable your AdBlocker.

I've Disabled AdBlock
No Thanks