Soak wood or not??

Discussion in 'Woods for Smoking' started by bigboy, May 20, 2010.

  1. I have some split logs of hickory, maple and oak that I use with my Brinkmann smoke n pit. I made a charcoal basket and now I don't have to put the wood right on the coals. Now these logs at roughly 12-16 inches long and about 2-3 inches thick. When I don't soak them they seem to burn up faster for some reason. I thought I read somewhere that you shouldn't soak them. Is this true? Does anyone else soak them?

    Thanks!
     
  2. ronp

    ronp Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

     
  3. ak1

    ak1 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Nope! I don't bother.
     
  4. hookup

    hookup Smoke Blower

    VA
    Chips - soak

    Chunks - no soak
     
  5. dick foster

    dick foster Smoking Fanatic

    Hear hear. That is unless your goal is to produce creosote and too much smoke.
     
  6. ak1

    ak1 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    About the only time I use chips, is if I'm smoking on the gasser, or doing a cold smoke. Even then, I don't find much difference between soaking & not soaking.
     
  7. bman62526

    bman62526 Smoking Fanatic

    I love this quote I stole from another site:

    "There is a reason why quality boats are made with wood...it doesn't absorb water!"

    If you soak bigger size wood chips for 24 hours or more, and then cut through one to get a cross section view, you'll see the water doesn't really penetrate much at all.

    Plus, you throw wet chips on hot coals...you get a little steam (not the same as smoke) and you in effect are cooling the coals just a tiny bit...

    Seems counter-productive to me.

    I suppose someone on this site could give an example why it might be better to soak...but personally I've always used dry wood.
     
  8. ak1

    ak1 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    The idea for soaking wood, is that it will tend to smoulder & produce smoke, rather than burn up quickly.

    A good idea in theory, but the reality is that wood doesn't absorb that much water in the short period of time that we tend to soak it. What little it does absorb, steams off in no time once it's put on the heat.
     
  9. Sold! Thank you sir, I appreciate it!
     
  10. travcoman45

    travcoman45 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Nope dry wood only.

    In the GOSM gasser I put my wood in a pan an cover with foil an poke bout 5 er so holes in the foil. Don't get the flare ups thata way.

    Chips er chuncks, all dry fer me.
     
  11. memphisbud

    memphisbud Smoke Blower

    What he said.
     
  12. smokenovice

    smokenovice Newbie

    Thank you. This video said it all.
     
  13. smokenovice

    smokenovice Newbie

    Thank you. This video said it all.
     
  14. jaxgatorz

    jaxgatorz Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    what they said ^^^^
     

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