Newbie needs help!!!

  • 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.
SMF is reader-supported. When you buy through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission.


Original poster
Nov 11, 2006
Round Hill, VA
Hey guys! I posted on the roll call a couple of days ago saying I was going to give it my first try today. I went and bought a Bar B Chef offset smoker from BBQ's galore. I put it together (about 2 hours ago) and am trying to season it. I lit one full chimney smoker's (standard weber) worth of Green Egg Lump Charcoal, waited until it was a bit ashed over on the top and put it in the firebox. I also threw two chunks of hickory wood on top. It's been an hour and it hasn't gone over 125.
Am I not using enough charcoal? It seems like there is very little charcoal in the box considering it's size. There is a ton of smoke coming out though. Or do you think maybe I got a busted thermometer?
Again, this is the very first time, and all I'm trying to do is season the grill/smoker. Planned on doing a pork shoulder tomorrow, but now am a bit apprehensive.
one sure fire test is to put your hand on the smoker, a rule of thumb a friend taught me was if you can keep your hand on top for about 5 seconds or so its about 180. im not sure how true that is but i was able to do it on his but he did not have a therm.

if you want to be sure get the maveric redi*ckeck which has a probe for the temp of the grill and the meat your cooking. it has a remote sensor so you can be inside where its warm watching your temp.

as far as your smoker i would just add a bunch of coals to it and let it go. i know im not supposed to but i usually dont prestart my coals i just throw them on there a few at a time or a bunch at a time. i guess this is not the right thing to do but i have pretty good turn outs, no creatol flavoring. hell get some oak and get that fire going good!!!!!!!!
I'd bet that you don't have enough fuel to boost the temp in the cooking chamber up to where you want it to be. Buzzzard is on to something. Use a reliable thermometer ..... digital like the Maverick. And don't forget to test it with a pot of boiling water. The accuracy of the thermo can easily be checked with the water. With that in mind, I think you will reslove the question and be on your way to some outstanding Q!! Have a super weekend.
Thanks guys, great suggestions. I'm going to give it another shot tomorrow. I'll update then. Again, much appreciated!
I was so into my new hobby last night I totally forgot I had family pictures today at the mall. So it's a no go for today.
I did however finish seasoning the grill (i.e. burning off all of the factory gunk). Yesterday I only lit a fire in the fire box, not the actual grill.
I bought a 3.5 pound 1/2 picnic. It's ALL they had at the grocery store (I live in the sticks). Also a rack of back ribs. I'm going to wake up at the crack of dawn tomorrow and start my first test. I plan on smoking the picnic for 10 - 12 hours w/ a thermometer. Ribs about 6.
I'm honestly not expecting much, planning this as more of a learning experience. I'll update... hopefully with good news.
Don't forget SoFlaQuer's finishing sauce for your pulled pork. If you don't know what it is do a search and you will find the recipe. Do NOT eat pulled pork without it.

Well good news and bad news. Bad news first of course.
The skins lost to the bucs (don't start buzzard!, I know your from TX).
Good news... my first try was a success. At least the ribs were. My only problem was my appetite. The ribs were hands down the best I've ever had. Between me and my wife, we put down a whole rack. That left very little room for the picnic. Although I did try a few chunks and it tasted great. Looks awesome too. That will be lunch for tomorrow.
I used my own BBQ sauce recipe which is a derivative of Chili's Baby Back rip sauce. Worked great.
I have to say I didn't anticipate this being so labor intensive, but it was really fun. I even got my wife into it. And believe it or not, she hates to cook.
I owe this site and the advice I've received on this forum a great bit of gratitude. I really understand why there is such camaraderie amongst the members. I consider this the X-Games of cooking. It takes a very dedicated individual to give what it takes. And I'm glad to be one.
Again... Thanks for the advice. I look forward to next Sunday. That includes beating the Panthers... Sorry Carolina!!!!
Josh, glad things worked out for you temp wise. You're on the right track when you learn to smoke to a certain temp and not cook by the clock. When it comes right down to it, "It's done when it's done". is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.

Latest posts