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Reply to "Lessons for new users"

Here's a post I found while doing my Administrator duties todaym from Halter:

I began smoking about two years ago using a Brinkman water smoker. Within six months I realized this was for me and upgraded to a Cookshack. Since then I have used this site extensively and have never had an unsuccessful experience. I read posts to this site occasionally of new smokers who are having bad experiences and feel guilty that by taking the advice on this site I have found smoking great food to be pretty easy.

As a way of saying Thank You to all of you who have been such help and maybe to give a little something back, I have put together "my" Ten Commandments to help those who are still starting out. I'm not near as qualified as so many of the experts on this site to be giving advice, but I hope these basics are of help to someone.

Good luck and good smoking!


1. Buy the Model 55 and a Food Saver. - It's just as easy to make more and the Food Saver allows you to keep it without any loss of taste. This type of food is so economical you will pay for the extra capacity within a year.

2. Never make anything unless you have plenty of time this sport is not for spur of the moment urges or last minute meals

3. Never make anything the first time for guests refer to rule commandment #2

4. Understand and purchase the right cut of meat study info and pictures on this site and talk to your butcher

5. Don't worry too much about perfect recipes it's the smoke and the slow cook that brings the flavor (but do learn how to brine poultry and fish)

6. Really! You don�t need that much wood you just have to take a leap of faith on this one

7. Always trust your thermometer (Polder type) � I like the ones with remote readouts (to set by my recliner) so I feel like I am doing something while the Cookshack works.

8. If you do not trust your thermometer use a secondary insta-thermometer and this does not give you the OK to open the door every 10 min and stab the meat

9. Leave the door closed there is nothing to see but a piece of meat getting darker. You couldn't tell if something was done by looking at it anyway.

10. If in your research you come across two different opinions take the one offered by Smokin' Okie - he is never wrong! He could have led Dante through hell.
Last edited by Former Member