Pre-burn explanation

Discussion in 'Woods for Smoking' started by rcdatadude, Nov 23, 2007.

  1. rcdatadude

    rcdatadude Newbie

    First of all, to anyone that responds, thanks for taking the time to help out. Could someone explain the pre-burning process? I have alot of red-oak and hickory, but I'm a little unclear on how to pre-burn the wood and how to tell when the coals are ready to use in my smoker. I've read that you should start out with lump hardwood charcoal, but I would rather use the wood I have, if I can. Can anyone help?
  2. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    first off, charcoal is used for heat. If you want to make charcoal, there are threads here for that. If not, get some lump and start there.

    Second, the preburn is important in that it gets rid of the undesirable components in the wood smoke. Preburn till you have edges of white on the wood chunks. But, if you feel you need a bit more smoke, by all means do not hesitate to toss a chunk or two on a good bed of coals. Just don't start with a bed of coals with a bunch of raw wood on top.

    Seek and cultivate the "Thin Blue". Experience will be your guide.
  3. wavector

    wavector Smoking Fanatic

    I'm sorry if I'm off subject a bit, but here it is. How I intend to do my charcoal production.

    I preburn my oak for coals (especially if it's a bit green), and use them instead of continuously adding hardwood charcoal, It's more labor intensive, but the rewards are far less expensive for me as I can cut down trees and burn them down to coals that can be shoveled into the firebox. For green wood this is a must. Making hardwood charcoal is also somewhat labor intensive, but again you receive the rewards of your labor. If I ever get my own home, and some land, I will continue this until the day I die. I find enjoyment in doing this because, I'm in control of the consistency of my fire and temps; moreover those nasty corporations don't get as much of my money (Gold Bug here) and I feel closer to nature. Smells great, too. I love the smell of freshly cut wood, especially hickory, oak and pecan.

    Best of Luck,

    Wood Gas Truck:


    Charcoal Biogas:

    Wood Gas stove:

    What I like the most about this is type of energy is it can be used to run a rotisserie motor, the truck to transport you pull behind, or whatever. At compitetion there would be no need for outside energy sources. I hate waste.

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