Greetings SMF community,
A few weeks ago I decided to upgrade from my old home made Clay Pot Smoker, to an Oklahoma Joe Highland Smoker.
I finished the assembly Sunday evening and didn't have time to 'Season' it (break it in), so I waited for this last weekend.
I had time on Sunday and started a little before noon. Got the inside all coated in Vegetable Oil (as the instructions state), then did the following:
- Got a small Charcoal Fire going in the Firebox with all doors and ports wide open until it was nice and warm.
- I then closed the Main Lid and Firebox Lid, but left the stack and access door for the Firebox wide open.
- The temp climbed to just under 200 and stayed there for 20 or so minutes.
- I then closed the smokes stack half way and the Firebox Access Door (leaving the vent wide open) and the temp climbed to 225. I kept the temp around 200 - 225 until the end of the 2nd hour of 'seasoning' and was slowly adding wood to the Charcoal.
- At the end of the 2nd hour the temp was starting to drop as most of the charcoal was burned off, and I opened the Firebox Access Door and added a decent amount of wood to raise the temp and try and get a nice hot temp to help finish curing the exterior finish and burn off the rest of the manufacturing chemicals.
- I got the temp up to 300 with a nice wood fire in the Firebox and once it reached this temp I could smell something with a 'chemical' odor, so I new the higher temp was helping to burn off the last of the oils, etc that were left on the inside.
- I kept it at 280 - 310 for about an hour with a nice fire going in the Firebox to make sure it was nice and broken in and properly 'seasoned'.
- At the end of the third hour I went out to open the doors and start to let the fire die off and let everything start to cool, and noticed the coating on the Hot Box Cover had peeled off.
I contacted OK Joe Customer Service as this should not have happened, and asked for a replacement top.
The OK Joe instructions for breaking in the smoker are very vague and don't talk about temp or duration at all. Now I know the Thermometer is on the opposite side of the smoker from the Fire Box, so it was 300 at the thermometer, it must have been VERY hot in the Firebox.
Has anyone seen something like this before?
Did I do something wrong?
Any helpful comments or suggestions are greatly appreciated!