First, determine the amount of charcoal required by your specific smoker and place it in the receptacle. Next, cover the charcoal amply with lighter fluid and ignite, allowing the coals to heat for approximately 20 minutes. Add wood chips and place meat on the wire grilling rack to cook.
To access the charcoal receptacle, you may have to first remove the top cover, wire rack and water tray. Most smokers of this kind require between 10 to 15 pounds of charcoal. When lighting the fluid, leave the fire door slightly ajar until a layer of ash has begun to cover the charcoal (about the 20 minutes), then close the door. Next, add your preferred wood chips directly atop the charcoal ash, remembering that the thicker the chips are applied, the more assertive the wood flavor.
Replace the water tray and fill it 3/4 full with clean water, then replace the grilling rack itself. When adding the meat, make sure that pieces are not overlapping or stuck together, and that each piece is spaced equidistantly apart to ensure even smoking. Cook meat for between 45 minutes and one hour per pound, checking and carefully rotating every couple hours. Do not leave the lid open for extended durations, as this lets the smoke and heat escape. After cooking, open the fire door to allow the unit to cool, and then empty the charcoal and water tray to extend the longevity of your smoker.