Questions about wood ????

Discussion in 'Woods for Smoking' started by shoneyboy, Feb 14, 2012.

  1. shoneyboy

    shoneyboy Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Ok, I have a guy down the road that is sells wood, mainly oak for fire place wood. I rarely use oak for my smoking, so I may buy a hand full of wood from him a year (maybe 5 sticks worth). So, today I see a sign that he has some hickory and I love to use hickory for my BBB. I usually buy it at WallyWorld and it cost me about $6.00 for a bag of chucks and I go through about 1/2 of a bag per smoke. He has stacks about 16” X 16” x 48” for $20.00 which by my estimate is at least 10x as much wood. I know that this may sound like stupid questions, but I don’t know ANYTHING about wood, other that go to WW and get what I want. So, what I was thinking about doing is buy a large amount from him and storing it in my shop were it will be out of the weather, but it does get really hot during the summer and I feel that it will dry out really fast. Other than burning faster, will that hurt anything?  How long will it last? Will it loose it taste/flavor ability, if that makes sense? I don’t really know much more about the wood other than what I buy from WW and if I can save a few bucks, well I could make a few more pounds of something else….LOL Thanks ShoneyBoy
  2. big andy a

    big andy a Smoking Fanatic

    First, my main wood for smoking is oak which I have lots of on my property.  I gather branches that have fallen, cut them into slices about 3" long then split them with a hatchet.  I keep the chunks in a plastic bag in a trash can next to the smoker.

    Second, the hickory sounds like a good deal.  I think you can keep the wood in the garage and it will be fine.  Go for it.

  3. sprky

    sprky Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Sounds like 1 heck of a good deal there. I'd jump on it
  4. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    If my figuring is right, the price will equal about $360 per cord,which is high IMHO, but better than you are paying at WalMart.

    I'd go and do a little dickering and see if you can't get a better deal on a bulk buy.
  5. shoneyboy

    shoneyboy Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    What would be a good price for a cord of Hickory ??? He said to make him a offer for the entire pile of it....which is about a cord.... any ideals ???? How long will it last in storage ?
  6. Quote:
    Originally Posted by Shoneyboy View Post

    What would be a good price for a cord of Hickory ??? He said to make him a offer for the entire pile of it....which is about a cord.... any ideals ???? How long will it last in storage ?

    How much smoking are you going to be doing?

    A full cord of good seasoned hickory 4'X4'X8' (128 cubic feet) weighs about 3,800 lbs.

    I would offer him $120 to be fair, but $200 isn't unreasonable. Not around here anyway.

    It'll be usable for a very long time if seasoned well and kept dry.

    Measure it, don't buy a 'pile'.

    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 10, 2012
  7. sprky

    sprky Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I can get hickory, or oak here for 45 - 55 bucks a rick. There are 3 ricks in a cord, so 135 - 165 a cord. 
  8. Hey Shoneyboy, I agree with the others with respect to the price of that hickory compared to a full or face cord of firewood being a bit high... BUT, for smoking wood, that's a good price when you compare it to the bags of chunks at Home Depot or Lowes or even WW.  I love to haggle a deal so I would also suggest doing a little negotiating with him for the whole stack.  It's getting near spring time and he probably wants to get rid of it.

    I noticed you mentioned you might be storing it 'in your shop'....not sure if that's a great idea.  Not so much for the wood's sake but for your shop's sake.  If your shop is wood frame you might have all kind of non-welcomed visitors come out of that wood, including carpenter ants and termites....I store my wood racked outside on something to keep it off the ground and then use a tarp to keep rain water off the top.  Air flowing through the sides of the rack is actually good for the curing process and a little relative humidity keeps it from getting too dry....

  9. alblancher

    alblancher Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    If you feel like earning your smoke you can have some of the pecan tree laying down at the farm.  It's getting old and there is enough for both of us.
  10. Al, if I lived closer I would grab my chain saw and come help you out in a flash.... Pecan is one of my favorites for smoking just about anything.  I get it locally here as well since pecan grows very well in these parts.  Have you ever tried using pecan shells for smoking?  If not you might want to give it a try some day....

  11. alblancher

    alblancher Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Before I bought the farm (that sounds strange when said by an old man!) and didn't have access to the trees I could visit a pecan wholesaler in MS and pick up the shells and floaters for free.  I haven't been by there in years so I don't even know if they are still around.

    But yes I have used the shells especially in the ECB and the Okie Joe where I was using them just for flavor.  I worry that they may be just a bit more stringent then pecan wood but when used in small amounts they work great and I loved the price!
  12. You're right about a little going a long way, Al... but they do work well and actually have a different taste/smell than pecan wood itself...I think that's due to the higher oil content in the shells....I kind of figured you had tried it or knew about it...just wanted to pass it along....

    And, still chuckling about your 'bought the farm' comment....

  13. alblancher

    alblancher Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Good info for the forum Salt   Pecan Shells good in smaller amounts!  Not sure is the same holds for the other nut shells?
  14. I've read that some folks use hickory shells as well as hazelnut shells... I haven't had the opportunity to try either but would welcome any info from those who may have used them.

  15. shoneyboy

    shoneyboy Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    GrayStratCat, Thanks for the advice, but my shop is all metal, kind of what you expect when you do Sheet Metal work for a living.... LOL No offense to anyone, but I really dislike wood….for anything other than smoking…ROFLOL Today I took your advice and went by to haggle with the wood guy with a little cash in-hand. I brought 2 55 gallon drums that I had left over from a project, that I cut the top out of. What I bought was both of them filed neatly with wood to the top, filled them myself, for $30.00. I feel I got a good deal, with the pieces as big as they are I don’t think I will need more than 1 maybe 2 pieces per smoke, so buying wood from WW had been costing me $3.00 per smoke. I feel I got my cost down to  around .25 per smoke now……I’m going to put them in the shop with metal lids on them to keep trash from falling into the drum…and get this new smoker ready for its first smoke with me…hopefully by next weekend.......
  16. Hey Shoneyboy, nice score on the wood for sure!  I love to haggle...guess it's just me.

    One more thought from me and then I promise I'll shut up!  LOL  You mention keeping the wood in steel drums with the lids on.  If that wood isn't perfectly dry... and I'm sure the humidity gets as bad in LA as it does on the coast of NC... you might have a problem with that wood molding on you.  Especially since there's not going to be much air movement in those drums with the lids on....just something to consider....OK, I'm done, I promise!

    Last edited: Feb 17, 2012
  17. I get about 30 logs of hickory this size for 10 bucks.

  18. shoneyboy

    shoneyboy Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    GrayStratCat, What I have are food grade PVC drums, I was kind of thinking about doing is cutting several holes around the sides of the drums too, make it look like a basket strainer...…just for ventilation.…..the lid is really not sitting on it very well, it’s just kind of sitting on top, I just wanted it to use it to try to keep the shop trash (grinding dust, welding dust and bird poop) off of it……The wood guy recommended to stack it(kind of in a log cabin style , he said that it was the best way to keep it. Thanks for the advice ……ShoneyBoy
  19. shoneyboy

    shoneyboy Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Aleover, what I counted was about 125-150 pieces, they are not all uniform in size, but I think on average they are pretty equal......Thanks for the information ShoneyBoy

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