I'm not new to smoking or the CS SMO55, bought mine in 98 or 99 but I learn things all the time in this forum. One thing I would tell new smokers is go easy on the wood and buy cheese cloth. Smoking poultry especially can leave a bitter tasting skin, a cheese cloth soaked in oil or butter will stop this problem and meat will still have that great smoke flavor, 30 minutes in the oven after smoking gives a great color and crisp skin. On briskets I just roll them up tie them with cotton string and stick them in the smoker for 12 hours, After maybe 100 briskets using Pecan, Hickory, Mesquite and others I'v never had a bad bite of meat, people rave on it, It's so easy I feel guilty for taking the praise. We had a new home built in 2003 and I actually had an area in the garage built for my smoker with a 30" by 30" wash basin beside my 55. I buy a product called PBW (Pro Brewers Wash) that is harmless to Stainless. Everything that can come out of smoker goes in it for the night after the smoke even the pipe,jam nuts, and washers on the smoke hole, I learned this when foul drippings ruined part of a rack of ribs. The book that came with my smoker is my smoking bible and there are maybe 20 added pages of stuff I'v learned. Advice is just a phone call or key stroke away-long live SmokinOkie.