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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 04-11-2011, 09:30 PM   #1
rabeb25
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Default Am I just not cut out for a stick burner?

So, I have had my fair share of smokers(most in my sig). I have had two stickburners, and I just don't like the taste that comes off of them. I have tried different woods (oak, hickory, cherry), and I had tried different rubs, and different temps (all the way from 220 to 320, all via a stoker). I just can not get a flavor out of them that I like. I did a side by side this weekend with my cookshack, and EVERYONE chose the FEC ribs hands down, as did I, other ribs were way to smokey.

Any words of advice, before I put this new one on craigslist?

Thanks
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Unread 04-11-2011, 09:45 PM   #2
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Make sure your fire is small and hot, if your having to shut your intake draft to keep the temp from going too high your fire is too big. Other than that try wrapping your ribs somewhat through the cooking. If those don't work use the CookShack
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Unread 04-11-2011, 10:07 PM   #3
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Since I've got both a stick burner and a Traeger I can say there's not a HUGE difference in smoke flavor (there is some), so I have to wonder if you've been seeing more white smoke then blue? But maybe the smoke is going to be too intense no matter what... :(
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Unread 04-11-2011, 10:15 PM   #4
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I think it's the fire. You shouldn't be able to see the smoke except for distortion through the fumes. I have had great BBQ with just a hint of smoke from stick burners. I have seen some guys cook with only clear smoke and some with the clear blue smoke. If you use foil and it is coming out with a goldish color, your fire burning isn't clean enough.
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Unread 04-11-2011, 10:24 PM   #5
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I'm guessing the lack of clean burning fire too, though stickburners can put out a more intense smoke flavor.

I'm not sure what Bates model you have, but I've thought those were decent quality pits...

The Midnight Smoker on the other hand appears to have a less than desirable design related to both air intake and exhaust. This is my opinion only based on the pics I've seen as I have never seen or cooked on one of these units.
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Unread 04-11-2011, 10:44 PM   #6
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Get the fire right. Oak and Hickory mix will give you a good taste . 225 is about right. 325 might as well but them in the oven. Hot coals small fire, Boshizzle summed it up right on the Smoke. Angry thick, heavy smoke dose not make good BBQ. Patience with your stick burner, it will talk to you ,if you listen
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Unread 04-11-2011, 10:48 PM   #7
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All of the Bates smokers that I've seen in action have been able to produce first rate BBQ. Fire management skill is of the utmost importance with a stick burner. With that comes properly split, seasoned, and stored wood splits for the fuel. A proper coal bed and a clean burning fire. Keep at it.
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Unread 04-11-2011, 11:23 PM   #8
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I love being a stick burner.

I bet if you clean up your fire you will see a difference.

There have been times where I have had a bitter flavor & know it was because I rushed things with a dirty fire.
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Unread 04-12-2011, 12:06 AM   #9
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Awwww.....MAN.....say it ain't so!!!!


I'm DEFINITELY no stick burner expert, but I absolutely LOVE mine.
I did a lot of askin around here and have to agree that everything those above me have said.

Smallest, hottest, cleanest fire possible.
It's all about the timing. For mine, at 225, that means 1 new PREHEATED log about every 20-25 minutes. Keep the white smoke down that way.


I LOVE MY STICKBURNER. It's my favorite by far.
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Unread 04-12-2011, 01:00 AM   #10
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As Wampus said, preheating is huge. Made my life a lot better, that's for sure. All the other stuff that's been said about fire size, clean burning, etc. is also key - but - it's all about doing what works best for you - if you get good results one way and it works for you, then there ya go!
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Unread 04-12-2011, 06:40 AM   #11
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Everything everybody above said - sounds like your fire ain't right.
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Unread 04-12-2011, 06:45 AM   #12
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I agree with everyone. But you might not like smoked meat. Some people don't like it. To some, the sauce and rub is what they like. Me............give me smoke.... I'm a meat man..... and you can keep the sauce.
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Unread 04-12-2011, 06:53 AM   #13
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I do love a stick burner and most are a little more hands on through out a cook. Fire is the key and I take the time at the start to get it the way I wanted before I loaded the pit. People are usually very surprised of how little smoke it takes to put an awesome flavor in your meats.

If you ever see smoke boiling out of my cooker there is one of two things going on. It's empty and I'm starting the fire or I didn't clean it and I got a grease fire going on.
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Unread 04-12-2011, 07:21 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by rabeb25 View Post
So, I have had my fair share of smokers(most in my sig). I have had two stickburners, and I just don't like the taste that comes off of them. I have tried different woods (oak, hickory, cherry), and I had tried different rubs, and different temps (all the way from 220 to 320, all via a stoker). I just can not get a flavor out of them that I like. I did a side by side this weekend with my cookshack, and EVERYONE chose the FEC ribs hands down, as did I, other ribs were way to smokey.

Any words of advice, before I put this new one on craigslist?

Thanks
You need to find the happy medium. Hmm whats the number to Backwoods Smokers??!!!
A competitor is your answer.
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Unread 04-12-2011, 07:26 AM   #15
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Burn your first fire down to the coal. Get a good bed of hot coals going then add wood as needed., Then again some people just don't like the wood taste such as my wife.
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