Oklahoma Joe Tahoma 900 (Pics, Assembly, burn-in)

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chesapeakesmoke

Fire Starter
Original poster
Jan 4, 2014
42
37
Indialantic, FL
I purchased the Oklahoma Joe Tahoma 900 ($699) and since there is not much info out there on these units, I figured I would share. I am not much for reviews, but I will try to share some of what I see and may follow up in another thread with first cook. Having not cooked on this yet I will hold back on my overall thoughts for now.

Gravity Feed Smoker & Grill 225F-600F

IMG498- The OKJ 900 box showing a total weight of 240lbs.
IMG501- The wheels were heavy steel, but the two vertical panels seemed a bit flimsy (once it was all assembled did not seem to be an issue)
IMG502/3- Shoot and burner section was a thicker gauge then most of the other metal parts. (I need to find my calipers to measure metal thickness)
IMG504/5- Instead of slides this has a damper that flips down to choke off the air when shutting down.
IMG506/7/8- Main cooking chamber, the metal is thinner than I would like (need my calipers to measure) and not a fan of the spot welds on the seams.
IMG509- Heat diverter over the burn area (Damper closed)
IMG510- Grease collection area funnels to removable tray. Built in temp sensor area.
IMG511/12- Charcoal/wood chute, air intake dampers and fan unit.
IMG513- Fan wire chase
IMG514- Ash drawer/burner grate
IMG515- Controller, comes with 2 meat probes but has 4 probe ports.
IMG516/17- Main chamber grease diverter. Sends to front and back then to the grease trap on the left end.
IMG521- Second shelf with 2 positions for mounting (currently in lower position)
IMG522- Hopper lid, seal & chute. The handle on the hopper lid could be more sturdy, good enough to move around on flat surfaces but cannot lift without it breaking off. Door switch on hopper and ash drawer are easily accessible not sure what quality they are.
IMG525/26- Seasoning/Burn-in It was very easy to light and get the smoker going. Seemed to get to temp fairly quick and was able to maintain for the burn-in

Will follow up in another post after I get some cooking time. If you have some questions let me know I will do my best but not online everyday.
 

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Last edited:
Thanks for the pics. Any idea if the area where the charcoal would be burning is insulated? I guess that would be the bottom of the hopper? On my Masterbuilt the steel burned away and exposed hard firebrick type material. Supposedly it was normal.
 
Excellent pictures. Thank you for sharing! It appears that they incorporated bends in the damper to help avoid any warping from the high temps. Clearly they thought this out.

A few questions:
  • It's hard to tell from the pictures, but does it look like you can place a wood chunk under where the embers and ash will drop down into the ash pan?
  • Also, when you did the burn-in, did you happen to test if the firebox assembly is airtight where you can fully close the damper and the fire will go out? I know that with some of the Masterbuilt gravity smokers, you can try to close it all down, but any remaining fuel will still smolder all night long into the next day.
  • Last, how is the overall draft? Does the fan have to run continuously to keep the fire going at a higher temp or is there a strong enough draft that the fan only has to run part of the time?
Thanks!
 
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Reactions: JLeonard
Thanks for the pics. Any idea if the area where the charcoal would be burning is insulated? I guess that would be the bottom of the hopper? On my Masterbuilt the steel burned away and exposed hard firebrick type material. Supposedly it was normal.
Hi Ross,
Yes, there is some insulation for the burn area.
IMG505A- The front and rear panels are insulated panels as well as the bottom panel under the burn area.
IMG502A- Parts 1&2 are insulated and serve as a support. #3 you can see a thin insulation layer for the side area. #4 I did not take that apart, but I believe that it is insulated, and it wraps around the right side and on to the back side.
IMG514A- The ash drawer is insulated on the front of the panel.
IMG530- There was also a fire brick/tile I had to place in that area that can be seen in this instruction.

I will add the BILT app for assembly was great. You can zoom and spin everything as a whole 360 or just an individual part 360 to see what it looks like from all angles.
 

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Excellent pictures. Thank you for sharing! It appears that they incorporated bends in the damper to help avoid any warping from the high temps. Clearly they thought this out.

A few questions:
  • It's hard to tell from the pictures, but does it look like you can place a wood chunk under where the embers and ash will drop down into the ash pan?
  • Also, when you did the burn-in, did you happen to test if the firebox assembly is airtight where you can fully close the damper and the fire will go out? I know that with some of the Masterbuilt gravity smokers, you can try to close it all down, but any remaining fuel will still smolder all night long into the next day.
  • Last, how is the overall draft? Does the fan have to run continuously to keep the fire going at a higher temp or is there a strong enough draft that the fan only has to run part of the time?
Thanks!
Hi Meniscus,

Yes, there is room to put large chunk of wood under where the embers/ash drop down. They also specifically state you can put wood chunks in the hopper with the charcoal and I did have a few in there for the burn-in no issue.

I will have to wait to answer your other 2 questions in detail until next cook. I did run it up to 500F and hear the fan speed drop down.
 
  • Like
Reactions: JLeonard
Hi Meniscus,

Yes, there is room to put large chunk of wood under where the embers/ash drop down. They also specifically state you can put wood chunks in the hopper with the charcoal and I did have a few in there for the burn-in no issue.

I will have to wait to answer your other 2 questions in detail until next cook. I did run it up to 500F and hear the fan speed drop down.
Any update on how this actually cooks? Considering grabbing one of these, coming from a WSM
 
Any update on how this actually cooks? Considering grabbing one of these, coming from a WSM
Hey, sorry I was out of town all last week and my son got married over the weekend. I did get to quickly grill some gochujang chicken on Sunday and check a few more things that may be helpful.

I filled the hopper to the top with charcoal brickettes and hickory wood chunks. Ran it to 500F (goes to 600F) when the fan was on full blast there was some smoke leakage from the hopper lid and ash drawer but as it came to temp and fan backed off the leakage stopped. Fan does not need to run full blast or anywhere near once it is to temp (note I am in FL 70F). This was done with the exhaust damper cap turned to full open/full draft. It is not direct flame but I was able to get nice grill marks with standard grates that came with and enjoyed the food. When finished I turned the power off closed the burn box damper and walked away. Came back next day the hopper is still almost full of charcoal and wood so it was able to self-extinguish. Also noted the chunk of wood I put in the ash drawer had also burned to ash.

I hope to smoke some food this weekend so I can provide more feedback and my overall opinion on the Tahoma 900.
 
Hey, sorry I was out of town all last week and my son got married over the weekend. I did get to quickly grill some gochujang chicken on Sunday and check a few more things that may be helpful.

I filled the hopper to the top with charcoal brickettes and hickory wood chunks. Ran it to 500F (goes to 600F) when the fan was on full blast there was some smoke leakage from the hopper lid and ash drawer but as it came to temp and fan backed off the leakage stopped. Fan does not need to run full blast or anywhere near once it is to temp (note I am in FL 70F). This was done with the exhaust damper cap turned to full open/full draft. It is not direct flame but I was able to get nice grill marks with standard grates that came with and enjoyed the food. When finished I turned the power off closed the burn box damper and walked away. Came back next day the hopper is still almost full of charcoal and wood so it was able to self-extinguish. Also noted the chunk of wood I put in the ash drawer had also burned to ash.

I hope to smoke some food this weekend so I can provide more feedback and my overall opinion on the Tahoma 900.
Awesome thank you for all the great info, and congrats on your son's wedding! I look forward to hearing about how the first smoke goes
 
I was able to smoke some baby back ribs 221 method no issues food came out great. Slightly less smoke flavor then my reverse flow stick burner but much more than my old pellet grill with tube and hood mods. I had some white smoke when I used wood chunk in the burn drawer, thin blue smoke when just using charcoal and wood mix in the hopper.

I did struggle getting the app and grill firmware to update up until today but that is now working as well. OKJ phone support was local USA people but they were all new to the Tahoma 900 as well. I will get another smoke session in soon using the app this time then give my final thoughts.
 
I know this is an old thread, but I was wondering how you find the ability to shut off the fire? Or do you just let it burn through the rest of the charcoal?
 
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