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New menber trouble getting smoker to smoke

post #1 of 8
Thread Starter 
I recently purchased a grand Café smoker I've used it twice the first time I ran the propane on high and the wood chips just burned up very little smoke. I did two shoulders and a turkey this weekend turn the propane down to medium and use the same woodchips throughout the cooking process for 12 hours and no smoke. What I did do was use a pan n used some Hickory charcoal plus added hickory chunks into the charcoal. Both times I soaked the hickory for at least 24 hours. I am new to using a smoker so I need help we used to live in West Virginia I had a barbecue pit there we could get all the hickory and cherry you would need. When cooking there I would burn the wood down to coals. Worked great but here in Phoenix Arizona there's not a lot of hickory but there is a lot of mesquite but I think it is too strong for pork
post #2 of 8

Mesquite is pretty strong. Try chunks instead of chips. won't burn up quite so quickly, also mix some milder wood with the mesquite. Not sure if you have an Academy close, they have a pretty good selection. 

 

Gary

post #3 of 8
Thread Starter 
I did use chunks and also tried chips, even when the chunks were burning they did not put off much smoke. Could I have soaked them too long r not enough like I said i soaked then about 24 hours.
post #4 of 8

The vast majority of the folks on this forum do not soak any wood at all prior to smoking. The theory is that all you are doing is drying the wood and releasing steam until the moisture is gone, then getting actual smoke after the drying out. So the consensus is not to soak the wood.

 

You mention in your post that you ran the propane high and also ran it low. Are you using any kind of thermometer the check the heat? I would think desired cooking temp would determine whether to run the propane high or low. If it has a built in thermometer there is a ~100% chance it is not accurate.

 

When you say no smoke do you mean absolutely no smoke or is it just a little smoke? Thin blue smoke (commonly referred to as TBS) is what is generally desired for low and slow smoking. If you can smell smoke you are getting at least some smoke.

 

Sorry it I am insulting your smoking intelligence/knowledge just trying to get a baseline as to your smoking experience. Also, I have never heard of your smoker and from what I can tell on the Internet it seems like it would be a good unit, but I know nothing about propane smokers.

post #5 of 8
Thread Starter 
Wow thanks for the info I appreciate everything you can tell me.I do have a temperature probe for the meatplus a temperature probe for the grill. Cooking at about 230 to 250. There was just a little blue smoke but as u say I could smell smoke the ribs n chickens I first cooked had good smoke flavor. The pork shoulders turned out really good cook them to a temperature of 190.
post #6 of 8
Thread Starter 
I don't know much about the smokers I am used to cooking in a concrete pit with a lot of wood. Sooo this is a learning experience with propane and would chunks so far doesn't look like much smoke but you can smell the smoke meat taste smoky must be working LOL.
post #7 of 8
Quote:
Originally Posted by dot 2006 View Post

I don't know much about the smokers I am used to cooking in a concrete pit with a lot of wood. Sooo this is a learning experience with propane and would chunks so far doesn't look like much smoke but you can smell the smoke meat taste smoky must be working LOL.


Looks like you are achieving the much sought after TBS!. Also, the higher the tempt the wood burns at the less smokey the result, generally speaking. IF you are in the 230-250 range you should be in great shape. And if you are indeed getting that great TBS you can vary the amount of smoke flavor but experimenting with the type of wood and the amount of wood. Hardwoods such as hickory, mesquite and to some degree oak are considered on the strong side and fruit woods like cherry, apple and peach and such are considered mild. It is common to mix hardwood with fruit wood for smoking. A personal go to for me for pork is hickory and peach combined.

 

Good luck on your lifelong smoking journey. The learning never ends!

post #8 of 8

Glad you joined the group. The search bar at the top of any page is your best friend.
About anything you wanna know about smoking/grilling/curing/brining/cutting or slicing
and the list goes on has probably been posted. Remember to post a QVIEW of your smokes.
We are all smoke junkies here and we have to get our fix. If you have questions
Post it and you will probably get 10 replies with 11 different answers. That is
because their are so many different ways to make great Q...
Happy smoken.
David

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