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Question about this Oak

post #1 of 25
Thread Starter 

Last weekend, was heading to the Chevy dealer and a county guy had just dropped a huge Oak that had died, so I stopped and had him cut me some of the limbs up.


After looking closer, I noticed the bark was different and after splitting I noticed it had a redish color to it.


Anybody know what kind of Oak this is and if you think it will be ok?



post #2 of 25

I'm better at boards than logs, but it looks like Red Oak to me.


It will be fine for smoking!!!




post #3 of 25

Red oak. Make sure it is dry and smoke with it.

Happy smoken.


post #4 of 25

I have never smoked with red oak,  id does have a funny smell when burnt. I would burn a little and see what you think

as far as the btu factor its pleanty hot, it does take a long time to season

post #5 of 25


Edited by Black - 10/16/13 at 5:53pm
post #6 of 25

That's Black Jack Oak some people call it Scrub Oak and it's good smoking wood. It's in the red oak family and generally burns a little hotter and better than other oaks. Did you see the hollow spot in the main log? Don't think I've ever cut a black jack that didn't have a hollow spot

post #7 of 25

yea its blackjack. It IS a type of red oak, however I PREFER PIN OAK when I use it but it would be great for fish and fowl.

post #8 of 25
Thread Starter 

Well, Im doing a charity cook out of 120 chickens Saturday. I didnt want to use up my stash of "good Oak" , thats why I grabed this.  I usually go for what we call 'Live Oak" which has a real coarse bark, white when split and has a mild sweat flavor.   I just never had come across this type before, and the redish color and the way the bark fell off leaving a smooth bark beneath was strange to me. The live oak bark will fall completely off when seasoned, Thats why I like it.

post #9 of 25
No your good. That's actually a good way to tell when your wood is almost ready to use, when the bark is falling off freely!
post #10 of 25
Thread Starter 

This Oak did ok, was light in smoke and light in flavor, only real down side was it burnt up faster than Live Oak,  I had to add wood at 2hr mark instead of 2.5-3 hr mark. Was a bit hotter like someone noted. But like I said, was not too overwelming in flavor.  This pick was taken after the cook was over and I opened it up to burn out the coals before moving it, even then, not too much smoke.


post #11 of 25
Oak is an essential part of fire management. As it does burn hotter and faster than hardwoods. I can't emphasize enough that great BBQ starts with good fire management. That's where a Pitmaster is born not with rubs, sauces, injections etc. being able to pick up a log feeling how green it is and determining how hot and how long it will burn compared to a smaller split log of different wood etc. THAT'S how you control your fire. Eventually you can get to where you don't use any charcoal at all even in the smaller smokers. The best way to get practice is not only with BBQ but to have campfires. Most of te people on here will not have to worry with this aspect of BBQ as they will be using electric smokers, lots of charcoal, and or plain wood chips. If you are working with big smokers it is imperative that you get to know your smoker and how different woods burn and which mixture of wood to burn at intervals to obtain and maintain that temp you line to smoke at.
post #12 of 25
Thread Starter 
I can't emphasize enough that great BBQ starts with good fire management

I couldn't agree more. That's why I was nervous about using this Oak instead of the Live oak I have always used.

post #13 of 25
True. But now you have blackjack under your belt!
post #14 of 25
Thread Starter 

I don't know if its just because its what I always have used....but I will stick with Live oak when possible. 

post #15 of 25
Originally Posted by Ribwizzard View Post

I don't know if its just because its what I always have used....but I will stick with Live oak when possible. 



Personally I like the black jack when I can get it but I guess that goes to prove that it's what you get used to

post #16 of 25
Nothing wrong with live oak. On the family land in front of my moms house we have a lie oak that I over 500 years old! The low lying branches made for good climbing as kids! Nothing like driving though Texas and seeing a Mott in a shaded area off the Side of the road
post #17 of 25
When I travel up to Alabama I usually stop at one of two BBQ joints around Perry fl. One of them actually claims hey only use black jack oak. The Q is always good.
post #18 of 25
Sorry to all that think this blackjack oak... As a certified wood technologist frequently called on and paid for my opinion on woods I hesitate to identify wood from photos, especially when I can positively identify wood species from the average tooth pick sized piece... But there are way too many incorrect features of this wood to call it blackjack.

It is probably a red oak, exactly which one I hesitate to call. But if I was willing to guess laurel oak would be my first guess, based ONLY on the photo and with nothing else to go on. There are several "laurel oaks" BTW. The poster's comments on burning quality leave me with laurel and Chapman. Chapman is a white oak though and usually not a real tree... It is often reddish under the bark and when freshly split. But it looks a lot like laurel oak in firewood form.
post #19 of 25
Thread Starter 


This tree was dead in place, so I can not say what kind of leaves it had. A very tall tree, probably 50ft or better.very straight and even in porportions . As you can see, the bark is somewhat of a coarse ( not as much as a live oak) that peels back to expose a smoother bark underneath. The weight does not feel as dense as the live oak, and it split much easier than I expected it too.

post #20 of 25

I like oak as my second wood in the mix. Usually 2-3 chunks of fruit or maple wood and 1 piece of oak. Sometimes I will use only oak for steaks and burgers for a different but nice flavor. I use both white and red and once seasoned, don't see too much difference in smoke smell or taste. I do know of a place in the eastern part of NC that uses only oak for smoking/cooking butts for their Q. No charcoal, just split oak logs, it's very very good. I remember when we had wood stoves, the wet red seemed to smell more when I had it stacked after splitting. 

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