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hokihigh

Brand new Akorn from Lowes, any advice?

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I just got one myself. Tried burgers first using the cowboy lump I got at lowes. They were cooked well but so overwhelmingly charcoal tasting, we were burping smoke up all night. I bought some high quality lump and cooked some pork loins tonite. What a difference the charcoal made.... Would have never believed it.

My advice, get quality charcoal... Totally different experience. Temperature,smoke, and taste.

I have had the same experience . hate cowboy love royal oak vince

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I would season the grate before cooking. The reasoning behind seasoning the grate is so the food doesn't stick.

Agreed. Give it a good coat of soybean oil (forms a stronger film), and don't spare the heat.

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I would season the grate before cooking. The reasoning behind seasoning the grate is so the food doesn't stick.

Agreed. Give it a good coat of soybean oil (forms a stronger film), and don't spare the heat.

Yeah I for got that one. It is the first thing the manual says to do and was my first fire. After doing a good Crisco season--- the grates have never rusted on me---even after cooking and going to 600 until the vent is clear of burn off and shutting it down. The manual does say to wash then first and I did-- don't know if it was needed.

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I would say don't get too wrapped up in some of the tips involving air leaks, sealing, changing gaskets, etc.

The Locktite tip is an excellent one, just make sure as you use your grill - you keep the gaskets and their mating surfaces clean and free of debris, oil, dust, etc. If you do that, the gaskets will live a long time.

I also store my unit with the lid up and the bottom pan's locks released, that way the gaskets get some time to relax.

Enjoy your new grill!

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Hi Folks,

Just wanted to say hey, been reading since I got home from Lowes, the Akorn is still the box, I'll put it together tomorrow :D Anything I need to do as I put it together?? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks

Hoki

IMG_3035.jpg

put it in a table!!

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Hi Folks,

Just wanted to say hey, been reading since I got home from Lowes, the Akorn is still the box, I'll put it together tomorrow :D Anything I need to do as I put it together?? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks

Hoki

IMG_3035.jpg

put it in a table!!

Very Nice. :mrgreen:

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Hi Folks,

Just wanted to say hey, been reading since I got home from Lowes, the Akorn is still the box, I'll put it together tomorrow :D Anything I need to do as I put it together?? Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated.

Thanks

Hoki

IMG_3035.jpg

put it in a table!!

CDN that came out great! Sure would be great to have a work table like that!

Ray

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Welcome, hoki and congratulations on your new purchase. I'm a fairly new owner also, and agree with others that you should use it as is for a while. I got pretty good at maintaining temps before I ordered my Auber, with which I used for the first time yesterday. Even though I was maintaining temps well, I wouldn't feel confident walking away from the smoker for any length of time. What can be a slow 1 degree rise every few minutes can become a runaway temp in an hour. I know this from experience. Also I found that a temp that is holding steady at the first part of your cook can rise steadily as whatever you have under the lid starts to get hotter the longer it cooks. And depending on how you arrange your charcoal, the temp can get hotter as it burns nearer the bottom vent I have discovered.

I haven't found the need to do any mods to my AKORN yet, and while a see a little smoke in places other than the top vent occassionally, it is tight enough to shut down and stop the burn when I'm ready. Although this may go against the suggestions of some very learned and experienced cookers here, on my cooker I have found that unless you have some sort of air being forced into the unit (read temp controller) or it is a very windy day, and your cooker is exposed, there aren't enough leaks to worry about. But that is on MY smoker and I'm sure the tolerences in manufacturing are not that close. If I can shut it down and extenguish the coals, it is tight enough for me.

None of this is absolute, and I'm sure there are differing opinions, all the more reason for you to "get to know" your CGK before doing too many changes.

EDIT: Almost forgot one of the most important hints at least for me. If you are going low and slow, start small. In other words, barely get your charcoal lit and let it rise slowly to your target temp. Not being used to a kamado, I let the charcoal get going pretty good like I would on a regular grill, and like to have never got the temp down.

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Welcome, hoki and congratulations on your new purchase. I'm a fairly new owner also, and agree with others that you should use it as is for a while. I got pretty good at maintaining temps before I ordered my Auber, with which I used for the first time yesterday. Even though I was maintaining temps well, I wouldn't feel confident walking away from the smoker for any length of time. What can be a slow 1 degree rise every few minutes can become a runaway temp in an hour. I know this from experience. Also I found that a temp that is holding steady at the first part of your cook can rise steadily as whatever you have under the lid starts to get hotter the longer it cooks. And depending on how you arrange your charcoal, the temp can get hotter as it burns nearer the bottom vent I have discovered.

I haven't found the need to do any mods to my AKORN yet, and while a see a little smoke in places other than the top vent occassionally, it is tight enough to shut down and stop the burn when I'm ready. Although this may go against the suggestions of some very learned and experienced cookers here, on my cooker I have found that unless you have some sort of air being forced into the unit (read temp controller) or it is a very windy day, and your cooker is exposed, there aren't enough leaks to worry about. But that is on MY smoker and I'm sure the tolerences in manufacturing are not that close. If I can shut it down and extenguish the coals, it is tight enough for me.

None of this is absolute, and I'm sure there are differing opinions, all the more reason for you to "get to know" your CGK before doing too many changes.

EDIT: Almost forgot one of the most important hints at least for me. If you are going low and slow, start small. In other words, barely get your charcoal lit and let it rise slowly to your target temp. Not being used to a kamado, I let the charcoal get going pretty good like I would on a regular grill, and like to have never got the temp down.

In my experience that slow temp rise that you describe is the signature of a leaky bottom. Sealing would help. The clean shut down that you describe is IMO because the dome vent is air tight---if only the bottom was as good.

The Auber will compensate for the leaks and if that is what you use then sealing likely becomes optional. The question is if you had sealed the bottom would you feel the need for the Auber

BTW i just bought an Auber my self and my bottom is well sealed---just do not want to make adjustments in the cold until it stabilizes.

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Thanks, Marty. Advice from those more experienced with the equipment here is great and very appreciated.

I didn't see any smoke coming from bottom when the Auber kicked in, but did see smoke from the middle between the top and bottom. I saw a post where someone had bent the connecting hinges a little bit and that took up enought slack to tighten the ash pan and stopped his leaks. I might try that plus use that technique on the hinge for the top. Eventually I'm sure I'll get some felt and seal the areas between the sections.

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