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Everything posted by zachfeen

  1. I do periodically but even due to the tab placement the top vent doesn't sit flush on the grill opening. Not a huge deal, don't want to derail this man's thread too much!
  2. I have the red version. A few tips, Seal up the lower vent with RTV and it will hold rock solid temps. The ash drawer itself actually seals pretty well so I didn't have to mess with that mating surface. The Upper vent is frustrating because the prongs that hold the vent on lose their form as they heat up and the vent will fall off when the top is opened. I haven't figured out a fix to this issue yet. Happy with the grill so far for sure though, nice for the price
  3. Didn't turn out too bad. My temp probe went crazy in the middle and was reading 330 degrees in the smoker while the dome temp was reading 200. I thought I had lost control of the smoker and closed it all down. Then realized my temp probe was just jacked, grill was at 170 or so for a while until I realized the issue and brought the temp back up. Chicken is still plenty juicy
  4. Thanks everyone. Got some spur of the moment bacon wrapped chicken breasts in right now, smoker is humming right along at 275 without much issue. Very impressed for the price far, so much easier to control than my Akorn was
  5. Hey all, Been registered and lurking here for a few years but never posted. I started off with a Akorn about the time I registered and had fairly good luck with it but lately it has been very difficult to hold temp, so I upgraded to a Vision Classic from Sam's club. I bought one of the new Diamond Cut versions with removable ash drawer. I also built a simple table for about a hundred bucks. I got the kamado a few days ago and initial impressions were hot and cold. The grill looks fantastic and for the most part the build quality is acceptable for the price paid. The hinge is a bit flimsy and the dome moves from side to side a bit when lowering and raising but that is not a huge deal. The thing that had me worried is the multiple areas for possible air leakage, there is a flange where the frame for the ash drawer meets the grill (this mating is not great, there is a large gap that is closed by rope caulk), and where the drawer/vent assembly meets the drawer frame is another chance for leakage although there is a gasket installed here. I was certainly prepared to get out the RTV and start sealing. I've done a few cooks on it now, a steak for first night it came in, a spatchcock chicken and some burgers today. For the most part my worries about air leakage are quelled, I was able to keepo 250 for the spatchcock without much issue and I have a ROck's stoker on the way that should make it foolproof. Bottomline for 550 bucks, I am quite happy with the new classic from Vision. Without further ado here are some pictures of my setup
  6. I have a walmart Neighborhood store right down the street that I have never been to. I'll give that a shot before I drop the cash on a costco membership. I really don't wanna buy in bulk as I am a single guy and most of the time won't need 10+ pounds of meat at a time
  7. Some of you followed my post in the Akorn section, but my first cook was this weekend on my new Akorn was an (accidental) picnic shoulder which I bought not knowing there was a difference between it and a boston butt. It was a 9lber and I rubbed with mustard and stubbs pork rub before I smoked it for 13 hours on the Akorn with the skin still on the shoulder. Here are before and after photos Not the best pic of the pulling but IMO the pork came out pretty good, nice an juicy with a good smoke flavor And my favorite experiment yet, BBQ Burrito with Pork with a little Dave's spicy BBQ sauce, some home made slaw and roasted corn and topped with a little cheese.
  8. Thanks for all the kind words fellas. The pulled pork came out very delicious, the is an obvious center to right rear burn pattern but it didn't affect much. The pork got plenty of smoke. I've had a great time experimenting with the different things I can make with pulled pork. Really enjoying the Akorn so far
  9. Yep that is the Maverick/Ivation etc. I have the ivation branded one and no complaints so far
  10. Have heard a couple good things about using a water pan, better heat control although I presume the diffuser could alone accomplish that task. I did it mostly for that reason as I was worried I would have problems keeping the temp down low. As I had said previous, I am very new to this, so hopefully not doing anything wrong.
  11. Thanks! I had a drip pan underneath. It was a single small weber tray that I half filled with water and vinegar. It collected 90 percent of the fat drippings, next time I will have to use two pans. Here is the result, came out at 195, bone pulled right out. Foiled it up and Gonna let it settle for a few hours in the cooler, then take the skin off and pull away. I grabbed a small piece from the bone and it tastes wonderful, very happy for my first smoke. Excited for some pulled pork sandwiched for dinner tonight
  12. Good to hear guys, thanks for all the info. I'll try costco today and see what the selection is like. I am unsure what standard pricing is but anything must be better than that Albertson's pricing
  13. Hey all, I am brand new to this smoking craze and looking to find suggestions on where to get good meat. The local albertsons doesn't seem to have a great selection, have some smaller boston butts and some very expensive brisket at 9 dollars a pound So looking for suggestions on where to try next, I live in downtown San Deigo. Am considering trying a few local butchers or getting a costco membership and buying there. Any guidance would be greatly appreciated
  14. In my haste and due to my lack of knowledge, at first I didn't realize that this still had skin on the pork shoulder. Apparently picnic shoulder does not equal standard boston butt. Dumb me, so I am smoking this picnic shoulder with the skin still on which apparently isn't a bad thing. I'll separate the skin after it is done and go from there. Grill did a pretty good job of holding temp all night. Woke up at 4 and the acorn was at 235 and when I woke up it was in the high 240's. Did some tending and back down to 230. Pork is at 181, so getting there slowly but surely
  15. Here is my first victim. Probably could have used some more rub but this is my first time. Be gentle on me
  16. Thanks for all the info guys! I do have the Akorn diffuser and I did get the grill over 400 for a few hours. I just filled her to the brim and started her up for the maiden voyage. I might be starting a little too ambitious but hope it goes well, putting in a 9lb pork shoulder. I've got her coming up nice and slow in temp and so far it seems like a very controlled evolution. Hope it stays this easy all night
  17. No it certainly wasn't full. Maybe a 1/4 way full just for the seasoning burn. Temps were ok, I was able to keep it at about 240 without the PID, with the Auber PID temps would not get below 255, just convinced the air intake is leaking quite a bit around the edges so at the very least I need to seal that up. Thanks for the info, glad that the uneven burn is not an issue
  18. Hey there, I just picked up an Akorn Kamado and did my seasoning burn today. I arranged the lump charcoal and wood in a volcano type arrangement and lit with a weber lighter cube. Something I noticed after a few hours, is the pattern of burn, it spread from the center towards the back right of the chamber. It eventually burned out with 3/4 of the charcoal not being used. I lit the fire again more towards the bottom left of the chamber and after awhile it once again spread in a back right pattern. I leveled the grill out as the deck is a little angled, but I suppose the grill being at alight angle wouldn't cause this anyways. I have some nomex gasket type material that I will use to seal the ash tray and lid later on. And I will be sealing up the intake slide as there is obvious smoke leakage from the area when I close the top vent completely. Any insight to the issue would be great, thanks! Zach
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