Prep work for wood

Discussion in 'Woods for Smoking' started by bame, May 6, 2009.

  1. bame

    bame Newbie

    i just got some timber from a guy i found on craigslist. I test burned a couple chips and its mostly hickory. I'm doing a big smoke on friday and wanted to know what prep work if any i need to do to the logs (if any). I assume that i need to take off the bark and get them into small enough logs to fit my smoke box (i have a char-griller smokin pro). Any help would be great since this if my first time going "natural" opposed buying chunks from a store.
  2. blzafour

    blzafour Smoke Blower

    It wont hurt a thing to leave the bark on . I never take the bark off of hickory and I have had no problems.
  3. sumosmoke

    sumosmoke Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Do you happen to know how recently the wood has been cut? Or, how long it's been sitting out, or seasoning? If it's just been cut it's green wood and won't provide the true smoke flavor you're looking for. If it's been sitting out for some time and is really dry, then smokes away!
  4. slanted88

    slanted88 Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Exactly what Sister said!......
  5. richoso1

    richoso1 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    What she said.
  6. rio_grande

    rio_grande Smoking Fanatic

    Can wood be too dry??

    i have access to a bunch of oak,, but it has been stored in the building for 15 years..
  7. rickw

    rickw Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    If not rotten I can't see why you couldn't use it.
  8. smokewood

    smokewood Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    It depends where and how the wood has been kept.  Wood is hydroscopic so it will either loose or gain moisture depending on the environment it is stored or kept in. If you live somewhere hot & dry it will dry out. 
  9. joe black

    joe black Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Yeah....move some outside for a couple of weeks and check the moisture content if you can. If not, just start a small fire with several slits of it and see how it does.

    For Bame, I'd make sure that my splits were pretty small until you have a good handle on how it's gonna work. If it has a lot of minus true still in it, the smaller splits will dry much faster.
  10. phatbac

    phatbac Master of the Pit

    If you are looking for flavoring chunks try 4-6" long half to whole coke can thickness. If i was using splits i would go whole coke can thickness or so with 10-12" long. I would make sure it has been dried (kiln) or seasoned for a year minimum.

    Happy smoking,
    phatbac (Aaron)

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