Originally Posted by adiochiro3
I started in a Weber kettle, and still use it quite often -- and it works great.
+1 on the Weber Kettle. It's a great way to get started without breaking the bank. You can get used ones at garage sales or craigslist pretty cheap since they are a dime a dozen.
I put an aluminum pan in the middle, fill it with water a beer or some apple cider vinegar. Or even beans! Then create a semi circle of charcoal briquets around the around edge of the kettle. Two wide and two deep. You can either place chunks of wood or wood chips on top of the ring. Then, light 6-8 briquettes on one side of the ring and let her get up to temp. Think of it like lighting a fuse that slowly burns around the circle.
Keep the bottom vents closed, and top vent on the lid open.
Did this yesterday on a rack of ribs - it held steady between 225 - 250 with plenty of smoke for hours.
It's called the "modified minion" method.