Using wood as only heat source

Discussion in 'Wood Smokers' started by cripplecreek, Jul 21, 2010.

  1. I'm new to smoking. (seasoned the new offset smoker but have not yet put a peice of meat on it)  Is it common to use only wood (no charcoal)?  If so, how much wood at a  time and how seasoned should it be?  Any other additional info is welcome.
  2. garyt

    garyt Smoking Fanatic

    Depends on what  brand it is, put up a picture if you can, I use all wood on my Lang and a charcoal base on my New Braunfels. I feel it has to do with metal thickness but others may disagree.
  3. jirodriguez

    jirodriguez Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Yup.... what he said. If it is a thin walled model Lowes/Home Depot smoker you will want to use charcoal.... unless you like tending to it every 30 minutes. If it is a big 1/4" plate steel smoker then it will retain heat much better and could run on wood without the constant attention.
  4. Thanks guys.  Don't know the wall thickness. It's not 1/4" but its not cheap either.  So you're saying that charcoal in a thin walled smoker will create a longer constant heat than wood?
    Last edited: Jul 22, 2010
  5. garyt

    garyt Smoking Fanatic

  6. jdt

    jdt Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    It depends on how much you load it and if you want to play the intake game, I personally like to run the intake static and add wood as needed-25-55 minutes depending on wind and such, if I put in a hella load(six or seven splits) and close the intake down and slowly open it as needed I might get 2-3 hours on a load of wood so there are different styles to cooking which dictate how much and when you put wood in.
  7. Thanks JDT.  Do you use seasoned wood or green wood.  Does it matter?  Do you let the wood burn down to a certain pt or just until it gets to the desired temp to begin smoking? Yeah, yer dealin with a rookie. 
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2010
  8. jdt

    jdt Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    you only want to use seasoned wood. My pit has a pot warmer that I use to pre heat my wood except for the first couple splites, some people like to have a burn barrell and preburn each split prior to putting it in the smoker but I don't wanna mess with that, room, hastle or wasting wood/charcoal wise as you gotta keep the barrell burning. Some people think they get to much smoke flavor from burning purely wood, I think it depends alot on the smoker, the bellfabs draw really good thanks to a big thick steel exhaust pipe, I don't think I could oversmoke anything unless I closed the exhaust cap quit a bit.
  9. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

       All sorts of answers;try Lump charcoal. You will only need a bit in the chimney to start. You can then use chunks. Yes, it does take a little bit more effort,but that's half the fun and you will have no off smell or taste[​IMG]

       Get some reliable thermometers and watch the temps.,make sure you plug any holes that may leak smoke,then use only the intake to adjust,leave the exhaust wide open[​IMG]

       You're local goody store will have some good chunks close to the lump.[​IMG]

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