How Long to Apply Smoke
Meat will continue to absorb smoke for as long as it is exposed. for this reason it is sometimes ok to smoke the entire time and other times you will want to stop prior to the meat being fully cooked.
You must understand that certain woods are stronger flavored than others.
As a rule if you follow it usually lends great results. If using a medium to strong wood, I stop smoking when the meat reaches about 140 degrees and only apply heat from that point forward until the meat is done cooking.
These medium to strong woods include:
walnut (very strong, not recommended)
Some woods that are found to be lighter in flavor are:
The strength of the flavor is somewhat subjective in that it is relative to its seasoning process. Wood that has been dried for 6 months to a year will be stronger in flavor than wood that has been in the dry for 2 years or more. sometimes this history is not known making it hard to gauge the result and this is why it is not recommend to apply smoke past 140 degrees most of the time.