I knew it wouldn't be long before I had some questions

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tundra smoke

Original poster
Jul 10, 2006
The Tundra
Well, I am seasoning my GOSM.

I traded out the cast iron box for a Bakers Secret type pan. I also picked up a Redi Chek (ET-73) thermometer. I tossed in 5 chunks of hickory and turned the smoker onto medium. The temp came up pretty good and was around 270ish. I cranked it down a bit and it came down to about 243. While it was at 270 the smoke was just billowing out of it. It eased up a bit when the temps came down. I opened the door to check water level in my pan and how the chunks were doing (This was about 1.5 hours into it) The water level hasnt changed much and the chunks looked as though the had about 25% remaining (uncharred)

I have a couple of questions. The first is how much smoke should there be? Am I using too many chunks (3" X 2" approx) not enough?

When I opened the door to check things out, the temp dropped a tiny bit (expected) but then it jumped a good 45 degrees) it is slowly slowly going back down
Is this a normal occurance? for the temps to jump 40+ degrees after a door open/close?

Thanks...I'm sure there will be more. I have a rack of baby backs I'm dying to try out. I have a rub all picked out and will be going with the 3-2-1 method (modified a bit for the baby backs)

Hi TS,

For me it varies on the size of the wood chunks and flavor of wood. What you want to shoot for is a thin blue smoke coming out the top damper.

On the tempature spike after the door was shut, this could be a wood flair up. If so close the side dampers while leavnig the top damper open. A few minutes should kill the flairup.

Take care,

TS, when I run my GOSM, I have my side vents shut down to about half and the top vent wide open.
Remember white visible smoke = bad, sweet blue is hard to see, just about impossbile to film. i don't have your model, so I will let those who do, answer your questions about it's particular "habits"
Tundra, I find hickory and mesquite to be strong to my taste and with 5 chunks at a time it would be a bit too much for me.

I like pecan and apple they are milder and go well together (again, to me) so I would easily put 5 chunks in the wood box.

That said, you'll have to discover what wood flavors you like and how much. A tip, start out with a little smoke at first and then if you think you would like more then increase the amount of wood you use on the next cook. Too much smoke can ruin it for some folks, but having too little smoke flavor won't.
I went to the local grill sales place here and picked up some hickory chunks as well as hickory chips, and apple chips (They said they cant get apple chunks here)
I figured since I was only seasoning it to toss in a bunch of chunks...get some smoke flowing and see where I was at.

I am going to try the apple chips along with one chunk of hickory tomorrow for my first attempt (Baby Back Ribs) I plan on getting the smoker up to 215-220 and toss the ribs on the rack directly above the water bowl. Take them up to an internal temp of about 140 then wrap them in foil (along with some AJ) I'm going to let them sit in the foil for a bit then remove them and wait until the internal temp reaches about 168-170

I will be using a rub to start with and maybe a light mopping after about an hour. I also plan on sauce during the last cooking stage

Hows that sound?
Ribs are thin in respect to a Boston butt and will take on smoke easily.

I've never taken the temperature of ribs so I couldn't say if 140* is a good target or not. 2-2-1 is one method for foiling and seeing the meat begin to shrink back from the bones is another indicator that I'm familiar with.

Once the ribs are foiled there is no need to add any more smoke wood. It would be smoking only for affect since the meat is no longer exposed.
I had intended to add that I was going to remove the smoke once they hit the 140 mark. I chose 140 simply because of other posts/hints/tips I found on this site. I will also check for the meat to shrink back. I am going to try the 3-2-1 method (modified for the thin baby backs)
140* is when the smoke ring stops forming, the meat will continue to take smoke as long as you pour it on 8)
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