I have a good supply of maple trees on my property and I am going to start trimming them for use in my smoker. I have read tons of post on here about maple wood and how great it is for smoking, but have not found any information on curing it or not curing it. I know obviously cured wood is optimal but is there any down fall to using it green? I suppose if it has to be cured for 6 to 9 months or until the ends start to crack as I read in one post, I can go back to buying wood for this year but if I have free wood on my property it would be really good if I could use it now.
Maple wood info needed
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Green wood doesn't work very well. You do need to season it. Maple will season in 9 months if it is in a sunny and windy spot. Splitting it also helps. I split pieces to under 4" so my table saw can cut them into pieces about 1 1/2" thick. This also speeds up the drying.
To me it the smoke tastes different on the food. Maple sweetens the meat when it is dry and seems less sweet and maybe a little bitter with green maple.
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If you are going to be using chunks of wood cut them 2-3 inches long and split them up 1 1/2-2 inches thick and store in a dry place, they will be ready to use in 4-5 weeks. Fire wood sized splits for an offset stick burner will take 6-8 months depending on the size you split them and drying conditions.
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Smokesalittle , you can burn green wood if you pre-burn it in a pit of sorts. This boils out the water content and thus the Creosote and Phenols as the gasses combust. The embers left from the pe-burn is geat for cooking and will give off only good smoke.
a modded barrel like this will be a blessing when faced with GREN WOOD. A grid as this(#) of 4 rods about half way down the barrel and some holes for air , and you got it. Drop more logs in as they turn to embers .
A hole at the bottom will access the Embers for the Smoker FB. Watch the temp. from here and add coal as needed.
Good cooking and as always . ..
Well problem solved I ran across a guy yesterday that had cut down an 80' tall sugar maple 3 years ago and just happened to have about 10 or more cords of cured sawed and split wood and he gave me about a half a rick of some really nice stuff, this will last me until I can get some of mine cut and cured. He wanted nothing in return, I was really wanting this to smoke some buckboard bacon this weekend, been curing 10 days tomorrow so it is ready to smoke and I thought the maple would be worth trying I will take him a package of bacon in return for his kindness. In the mean time I have also found out my son has cut down a butternut tree so I will be picking up some of that to try as well, I believe this has been cut down for a year or more so it should be ready to go as well. Thanks for all of your comments, advice and suggestions for now the problem has been solved. Now I just need to find a source for some oak, cherry, apple and hickory, I have a ton of maple trees and other varieties but so far I have only located 1 lone hickory tree on my 3 acres and I am not willing to sacrifice that, I did find a couple that are about 1/2" around but it will be years before they are ready for the smoker so for now I will have to beg, barter or buy some.