Wood Chunks vs. Chips

Discussion in 'Woods for Smoking' started by ikebbq, Dec 4, 2007.

  1. ikebbq

    ikebbq Fire Starter

    Having some trouble finding wood chunks for my smoker. Most stores I have been to only sell wood chips which seem to burn up a whole lot faster and not give off as much smoke. Any tips on how to get the most smoke out of the chips? I've soaked them, put them in foil, but they just seem to burn up real quick. Also if anyone can recommend a site that sells good wood chunks for smoking that would really be appreciated.
  2. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    OK, right herean' now let me nip this in the bud. Yer not after smoke rolling outta the smoker! Actually, SEEING smoke is usually not a good thing... well, unless it's "thin and blue". Rolling white clouds are a BAD thing! If you can SMELL smoke, yer smoking.

    See above. Some had stated, and I believe correctly - that store-bought wood is usually too dry. soaking is not the best thing either. Maybe a soak a day before? I dunno..it's a can-o-worms with me, but I only use naturally harvested wood. Whatever that means. I cut my own, or I get it from folks who cut it. And it's aged, meaning seasoned. Consequently, I burn chunks or splits. Where ya live? Gotta be some wood you can use!

    Sorry, again, see above.
  3. fatback joe

    fatback joe Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Try calling some tree cutting places in your area. You might have to cut it down from just split wood to chunks, but they should be able to hook you up.

    I know that some will even trade would for ribs if you talk to them about it. BBQ as barter.

    Good luck.
  4. kew_el_steve

    kew_el_steve Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Try here:


    I usually use Hickory chunks, not chips, from Home Depot or Lowes. I think that Walmart sells them too. In my GOSM gasser I use them split in to pieces about the size of a golf ball. I soak them in water for an hour or so before using to avoid flare-ups. If I'm using local Oak or Pecan or Sweet Gum it's the same size and soaking. Don't use wood that's for or from furniture or use wood from pallets; chemicals have been sprayed on them.
  5. walking dude

    walking dude Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

  6. ikebbq

    ikebbq Fire Starter

    Thanks for the recommendations everyone. I would like to start finding some naturally harvested wood and store it at the house. I think i'll call a few tree cuttin places around here and see what they got.
  7. chris_harper

    chris_harper Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Try your local craigslist, also. You can look in your local classifieds for firewood too. Make sure you don't get any of the forbidden woods. See this thread for info on that.
  8. wavector

    wavector Smoking Fanatic

    The Academy here has splits/chunks (they call them BBQ mini-logs), 2 cubic foot bags for $9.99. Hickory, Mesquite or Pecan.


    Pleasanton, TX
  9. crewdawg52

    crewdawg52 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I still use chips at times, and with very good luck. First, dont soak them. Make a foil pack, double layer, with "heavy duty" foil. I make the packs about a foot long and 4'' wide (for use in the Weber Kettle and gas grill). Put no more than 3 to 4 small holes in the top of the pack (any more, and you'll have flames shooting out of them). Just place the pack on the coals, and there ya go.
  10. flash

    flash Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    You HAVE a Wal-Mart around you. I can always find Hickory or Mesquite there. I have 5 acres of oak trees, so I am set [​IMG]
  11. pescadero

    pescadero Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    You are getting some good advice here. Some look in Craiglist for wood being given away or sold. But another approach is to post a 'Wanted' Ad in Craiglist. Also, you just never know what someone has in their back yard. Spreading the 'word' around often helps. I did that and recently found a handyman who I was hiring to do some work. I mentioned smoking and found he had just cut down an entire cherry Tree for a guy. He gve me the guys number and there you go. I have an entire tree for the taking, in the spring. Tree trimming and Handyman services can pay off.

    Good Luck,

  12. ikebbq

    ikebbq Fire Starter

    Right after i posted this thread i posted an add on craigslist. So far a guy that owns a horse farm has a bunch of 8-10" oak and hickory that he was thinking of cutting down, so i'm gonna get in touch with him and see what i can get.

    I also had some guy email me saying that cherry wood becomes toxic after a year???? I dont believe him, but then again i'm still new to this.
  13. fatback joe

    fatback joe Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I think the thing with cherry wood is just for animals that might eat it. Fine to smoke with.......if unsure, feel free to send it to me. [​IMG]
  14. smokeys my pet

    smokeys my pet Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I was able to get some cherry from e-bay cheaper than I could local. The search I used was just smoker and it comes up with all kinds of things for your adventures!

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