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Wood Smoker Guidance

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

I'm hoping a few of you can be a great help and point me in the right direction. I'm starting to research my next smoker and I'm trying to decide between charcoal (looking at one of the Good One Smokers, currently using one on my competition team) vs. a stick burner (looking at one of the Rotisserie stick burners from BBQ Bonanza in KC). I'm trying to find some decent resources on basics of stick burners, pros / cons, FAQ's, etc. Any help, guidance, links etc. would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks everyone.
post #2 of 12
Post could use some responses .
Hope a bump will help.
post #3 of 12
Surely someone will come along and give some info here. I've just purchased my first stick burner... charcoal burner. I figured I could use it either way. If I have the wood available I'll use wood, if not.... charcoal with wood for smoke. I'm new to the stick burner and am at this very minute seasoning mine. I found a good deal on a used Oklahoma Joe Longhorn and I figure I can use it either way. I may stand corrected on that. It is 3/16ths metal which I think is thick enough to handle the wood fire. Maybe someone with more experience will jump in here. I've been smoking with Gas and Electric so I'll be watching the thread with you.
post #4 of 12
..trying to avoid a political debate here

My suggestion would be to go with the stick burner.
As previously stated, you can always use charcoal in a stick burner (a lot of it), but using sticks in a charcoal burner is somewhat more troublesome.
It can be done, but you have to be careful.

Stick burners off more flexibility with regard to fuel....whatever type of wood you can find....tough to find cherry charcoal

I'll take it one controversial step further....and this is based completely on my opinion..
You get a little more depth to your smoke flavor when burning sticks as fuel rather than adding smoke. I believe the smoke flavor penetrates better when the smoke is the heat source.
post #5 of 12
go with a stick burner and don't look back, you won't be sorry
post #6 of 12
My vote is for the Stick burner also. Having been though a few of each. I can get a little more sleep with a stick burner than I could on the same cooker with charcoal.
post #7 of 12

I too vote for stick burnin...look at the one I got, that can be used with coal/lump/briquettes OR wood only. Helluva deal, super-thick metal - and on my 2nd cook, I found the secret to sucess as far as maintaining the right size fire, and good temps. I will outline this method in another thread soon...if you click on my user name link, you can see threads I've posted, or in the "wood smoker" category, just scroll down to my post on "Bell Fab Smoker".

The point is, my smoker is a 24 x 36" pipe with a 20" pipe firebox. In my opinion, this was a good size for burning either wood or coal, which is one of the main reasons I bought it.

Personally, I do - and will continue to do for a while - both! Meaning, I smoke with hardwood lump AND wood sticks, every time.
I've come up with a method that will let me cook for 9 hours, using about 10 lbs of Royal Oak (barely more than one $6 bag) plus 12 - 16 apple wood sticks that are 3" in diameter and 8" long.

Now, if I were to upgrade to a trailer model some day, then I'd of course use wood only. However, in my smoker now I can cook a shoulder, two chickens and 6 slabs of ribs easy using the amount of fuel I mentioned above, so for now - I will continue to use wood and lump coal. I hope that helps a little...
post #8 of 12
If wood is readily available I favor it now.
post #9 of 12
I did my first all wood smoke this past weekend, well I start it with charcoal, but that was it. I was quite surprised on how mellow the smoke taste was compared to the usd.
post #10 of 12
I have an offset smoker. Backyard type. It is a Charbroil brand. I have friends with charcoal burners,BGE and Webers that they swear by.I love to tend the fire and with an offset, you will tend for sure. I think it does a good job for me.
post #11 of 12

What about the Brinkman Smoke 'n Pits?? Both charcoal and stick??

Are the Brinkman Smoke n Pit's considered to be both charcoal and or stick?? Currently I am using charcoal and adding wood chunks, but would not mind at all using wood the entire time.
post #12 of 12
I have a Chargriller Smoking pro that I love and you can use either wood or charcoal in it and I prefer the wood by far. I think it taste better and I also think it gies a more traditional style smoke taste. Dont get me wrong The Charcoal is good but the wood is better. I just bought my first big stick burner but will not get it for a few weeks still. Go with the stick burner, My 3 cents
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