New Member in Houston

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Original poster
Dec 31, 2005
Hi Everyone good to be aboard. I'm a new member that is just getting ready to start smoking. I have been grilling for a long time. I currently have a CharBroil Commercial grill, but want to get into smoking. I have heard that a good place to start is with the Brinkmann Water smoker, but that they have a hard time holding the temp. without modifications. I was out looking today and saw some brand that had a Jr. model smoker that had the offset firebox. The temp gauge on this one looked better since it actually had the degrees marked off and just not warm-hot like the brinkmann, this one ran about 72.00. I would appreciate any advice anyone could give me as to a good model to get as a beginner. Don't want to spend a ton, but don't want to cheap out either. Thanks everyone.

Mike in Houston
Hey Mike,
Welcome to the forum! I understand your position. I used to smoke with an ECB, became somewhat discouraged and went back to grilling. Then I found this forum, bought an off set smoker and have been bitten but the bug ever since. I really enjoy the process of smoking and especially the product. But directly to your question..... my recommendation is to go get yourself a Weber Bullett. It's not too expensive, cooks some wonderful meat (many people use it in professional competiton) and is not hard to operate.
I gotta agree with the above post. The Weber Smokey Mountain cooker is one of, if not, the best and easiest to operate bullet type smokers. I started cooking on a Brinkman Smoke-n-Pit and I tell ya, while it can turn out good BBQ, it is more hassle than it is worth. I feel the same way about those ECBs (El Cheapo Brinkman). Too much trouble. Now don't let the sticker shock on the WSM get ya. You should be able to find one for about ~$200.00, but it is worth it.

On my SnP, I was having to tend the fire about every 30 minutes. With the WSM, I can load it up with coals, light it (do a search on the Minion method of starting/burning coals in a WSM), adjust to vents to get it up to temp and then the thing hums along with very little attention needed. I often use my WSM when I don't want to, or don't have the time to, or the food load to justify using one of the big offset smokers.

I've got a ham and 2 pork butts in my WSM right now...

Good luck with your search and Happy New Year!


Mike in Houston, Welcome aboard! Good to have you here!

I have to agree that the WSM is definitely the way to go starting out and if you go ahead and put out the couple of hundred for it you will save that much in headache medicine..

I like a challenge and sometimes I still use the El Cheapo Brinkmann just to prove to myself that I can beat it but it is a hassle and a half even with all the mods I have done to it.

The WSM is a good smoker to start on and I have a feeling after the bug bites you and you become obsessed like the rest of us you will be saving your change for a bigger offset smoker or maybe even a custom job with all the bells and whistles.
Hello Mike in Houston, you have found the best site on the 'net for smoking foods. There is a ton of neat stuff to learn here and some great guys and gals that are willing to help you along.
Hey Everyone, I appreciate the responses. I will be on the lookout for a deal on the Weber Smokey Mountain cooker. I had a few Home Depot gift cards I got for Christmas that I was hoping to use, but the Home Depot by use really did ot have much. It may just be the wrong time of year to be looking for a smoker. Maybe as it gets closer to spring.

Thanks again,

Ask the depot if they can order it for you... They carry Weber products and should be able to get one in on the next truck or two...

Talk to the manager as the average dude/dudette no the floor might not know...

Thanks James, I will be out running aorund tomorrow I will stop by there and ask them.
Well it tool me a while but I finally got my Weber. I also picked up a Maverick Redi-Chek with the 2 probes to check temp. I had a heck of a time finding one locally. I had the BBQ Galore store order me one. I'm going to fire it up this weekend and try making some ribs using the BRITU cooking process that I saw on the Weber site. I'll let you know how it turns out. I also saw a post on changing the water pan and using the Brinkman water pan since it holds more water, so I ordered that this evening.

Mike, I hope you had great results with your rib smoke this weekend.
How did the BRITU method work for you? When you get a chance, try doing ribs using the 3-2-1 method. Did you take any pixs?
yo houston dude,
could you find out the recipe
for GOODES company serving sauce???
his basting and rub are on the
smoke ring main page.

if i remember correctly
its on shepard inside the loop

i believe that he uses the drippings
from the briskets,
in the sauce.

have you been to beef and bun or thelmas????
Hi Mike, I also just joined and have been grill'n and smoke'n on my weber for sometime now and decided to take it to the next step and broke down 2 weeks ago and bought the Silver Char-Broil smoker the cost was 150.00. <my weber was 500.00> I'm here trying to figure out the best smoke'n methods. This side firebox smoker is all new to me but I'll get the hang of it yet.

Happy Smoke'n,
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