Wood Chunks in a MES???

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by swinging meat, Apr 3, 2009.

  1. Hey all,

    I have only posted once on here and that was when I joined. I was in the process of bulding a homade offset smoker. Well that project is done and it works good, but it is not very efficent. It sure does go through wood or charcoal. Anyways I just got a 30" MES for my birthday and I am seasoning it now. I was wondering if it would be ok to burn wood chunks in the unit instead of chips? I have a ton of chunks I use in the offset they range from 2 in. to 8 in. in length and 1/2 in. to 3 in. in diameter. I know the big ones will not work but what about the smaller ones? Also do you guys soak them or just throw them in dry? Thanks for the help.
     
  2. pineywoods

    pineywoods Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead SMF Premier Member

    I know several of our members cut chunks down and use them in there MES. I'm sure they will tell ya about it shortly
     
  3. mgwerks

    mgwerks Smoking Fanatic

    I cut chunks into smalller chunks for use in my MES. I would never soak wood going into a smoker - propane, electric or charcoal. It's netter to learn to control the combustion process.
     
  4. pitrow

    pitrow Smoking Fanatic

    I don't use "chunks" in mine but I tend to use limb cuttings that are up to about 1.5" wide and usually about as long as my thumb, so they could be called small chunks I guess. Works great for me. Much more consistant and longer smoke than with chips or dust. I never soak them either.
     
  5. cruizer

    cruizer Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    I use limb cutting from fruit and mesquite. Also use some chunks. I always soak my wood pieces first seem to get a longer smoke that way. Kind of hard to control the combustion process in a mes. [​IMG]
     
  6. Thanks for all the advice I was in a hurry so I put some of the smaller Mesquite chunks in, I can smell the mesquite and the temp is at 275* but there is no smoke to speak of. Is this common or could it be that my chunks are just too big?
     
  7. cruizer

    cruizer Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    You may have to wait for the mes to cycle back on again to get the chunks going. If it's up to temp the element is not hot enough to get the wood going.[​IMG]
     
  8. I had the chunks in for about one hour and no smoke was produced, however it had a really good mesquite smell. I just now shut the smoker off and took the chunks out to check them, they were really hot however no singe marks, so you can clearly see they were not burning or smoldering. I am guessing the problem is just that they were too big. I hope to have time this weekend to do some ribs or a boston butt. I guess I will try smaller chunks or go to chips. Thanks for the help and if you have any more advice please keep it coming.
     
  9. scubadoo97

    scubadoo97 Smoking Fanatic

    I have used hickory chunks and split them down. They work well and produce a lot of smoke that last longer than chips.
     
  10. ronp

    ronp Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I always use chunks, don't soak just you are just prolonging the process.

    If you were able to see them I am thinking they didn't drop to the heat source. Did you rotate the chip loader till they fell down to the heating element?
    Maybe that is the problem.
     

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