Yes. And No.quote:Originally posted by slotshot:Had an odd incident yesterday evening when I went to season it. The unit ramped right up to 200, but when i went to check on the results after 4 hours, the wood was only very barely charred on the bottom. Is this to be expected?...
Out of the box, following the CS instructions this is not uncommon. At least it was for mine and a few others that have posted up their experiences. The good news is, I've never heard this from folks that have operated the equipment for a while - so with a little experience you will be on your way.
For seasoning the first time, I might suggest using a higher temp than my manual stated. Also, the element may need to be adjusted to contact the wood box a little better than installed from factory. If not comfortable doing this contact CS tech support - they will walk you thru this.
Ensure that the wood is placed in the foward section of wood box in proximity over the loops of the element. After using many times you should start to notice the particular hotspots in your box. Experiment with wood placement. Extra seasoning will not hurt as far as I know.
I no longer use the thick chunks wood as supplied. I split them down a bit as the thinner pieces burn better. Really long cooks with a nice cut of meat will work the element longer and larger pieces of wood will consume better.
Once you get dialed in, judge the smoker's performance by the smoke flavor of your product not by the remaining charred wood. Normal to have some solid pieces along with ashes left over after a cook.
Lastly, my smoker burns wood better today than it did the last time I adjusted the element (1 yr ago) I highly suspect the wood I use is better seasoned(dryer).
Trial and error. It aint no waffle iron. lol