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Akorn auto kamado?


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22 hours ago, Ogopogo said:

https://www.chargriller.com/products/auto-kamado

 

Strongly considering this. Wondering if anyone can attest to temp controller accuracy.

I think my concern would not be the accuracy of the controller - it would be the longevity.  Electronics can have a limited life span outside, and controllers and probes are likely not going to last as long as the grill.  You might see what folks say about those components' longevity on that manufacturer's pellet grills or other products that use similar technology, that have been on the market longer.

 

I like the idea, though.  

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I think unless someone has a materials lab there won't be any data on reliability for about a year. I wound up getting an auber for about 150 so the total price is about the same, but when the main body on my akorn fails I'm still interested in the auto as a replacement. 

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This looks interesting. I have an Akorn, Akorn Jr and the 980 Gravity Feed, my impression of all of them so far is pretty good. The controller looks like the same as on the 980. Maybe the fan too but I doubt the Akorn would need as much CFM as the 980. I have a BBQube temp control for the Akorns. I only use the BBQube for low and slow, and most of my cooks are more hot and fast (325-450, chicken, fish, steak, burgers etc.). It would be more convenient to have the integrated controller.

However, I wonder if you could use the Auto Akorn in a manual mode? If the power is out or the electronics fail, can you still use the grill and control it like the original Akorn? I don't see a bottom vent. I have had power outages, and one time the fan failed on the 980 (CG customer service was great and promptly replaced under warranty), and I've just pulled out the Akorns and grilled on...

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This gadget may be the greatest thing since sliced bread, but my experience with my un-adorned Akorn, Jr. is that I can bring the grill up to the desired temperature and keep it there for hours with almost no intervention at all.  With the two vents very slightly open, the temperature simply "stays there" for hours if necessary.  I glance at the remote every now and then to see if I need to make any adjustments, and the answer is almost always "no." I really don't know how it does it, but it does.

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I’m not a fan of “built in” things because if the feature breaks or you don’t like it then it’s tougher to fix/replace. Also it looks like the Auto Akorn doesn’t have a bottom vent so it might be limited to using the controller all the time? If so that would require constant power. 
 

IMHO the better way to go would be for the standard cheaper Akorn then add whatever controller you want, then you have the best of all worlds. I use Billows with mine but there’s plenty others. 
 

that also allows you to fold the shelves down, which doesn’t look like an option with this one. 

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9 minutes ago, RoodyPooBBQ said:

Also it looks like the Auto Akorn doesn’t have a bottom vent so it might be limited to using the controller all the time?

 

Not sure but I've seen a few posts elsewhere asking about swapping the bottom section out for manual vent mode which makes me think it's hard to manually control the intake. I actually did buy a replacement bottom section from Char-Griller since that seems to be rusting out first and it was around $50.

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1 hour ago, MikeRobinson said:

This gadget may be the greatest thing since sliced bread, but my experience with my un-adorned Akorn, Jr. is that I can bring the grill up to the desired temperature and keep it there for hours with almost no intervention at all.  With the two vents very slightly open, the temperature simply "stays there" for hours if necessary.  I glance at the remote every now and then to see if I need to make any adjustments, and the answer is almost always "no." I really don't know how it does it, but it does.

 

I have the same experience although it does creep up or down and require some fiddling once in a while. My concern is overnight cooks; I've had the Akorn spike overnight causing some panicky fixes when I woke up, and once I had it hold 208 overnight which is cool but meant none of the water was evaporating. I do enough overnight cooks to want a controller I think.

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15 hours ago, Ogopogo said:

I wound up getting an auber for about 150 so the total price is about the same

I was looking at that controller.  I've be interested in your experience with the setup and any issues.  The only complaint I've seen regularly is that it don't push notifications to your phone, if the app and phone aren't active.  Seems like if you know that, it's easy enough to just look at the phone regularly....

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FYI, I completely avoid rusting and other such problems by removing the bottom and placing it upside-down beneath the grill, vent slightly open, propped up by a small piece of wood.  A pet-food pan sits loosely over the slightly-open top vent, so that moisture isn't trapped beneath it.  The idea is that air can circulate freely everywhere, but water can't get in, and it will evaporate if it does.

 

After each cook, next morning I clean and wash the grates using a soft wire brush, remove and store the charcoal that is always left over, discard the ash (removing it from the crevices with a small stick because charcoal and ash will trap moisture), and wipe everything down with a damp cloth.  The entire ritual takes about five minutes, and years later the grill still looks "good as new."

 

When I bought it, I seasoned the cast-iron grates exactly as I do with my cast-iron skillets.  Nothing sticks to properly seasoned cast iron.  (My highest cooking temperature is about 400ºF, so I've never had to re-season.)

 

I don't cover the grill because my experience has been that moisture becomes trapped beneath the cover.  (When I found mold under there, I got rid of the cover.)

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On 5/24/2022 at 2:19 PM, Boater said:

I was looking at that controller.  I've be interested in your experience with the setup and any issues.  The only complaint I've seen regularly is that it don't push notifications to your phone, if the app and phone aren't active.  Seems like if you know that, it's easy enough to just look at the phone regularly....

Doing a test burn now. Seems pretty stable. I haven't played much with notifications but there are other apps that will keep your phone alive depending on what app is in the foreground. Picked up a small brisket I'll try to overnight with it this weekend if my test burns go all right.

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22 hours ago, MikeRobinson said:

FYI, I completely avoid rusting and other such problems by removing the bottom and placing it upside-down beneath the grill, vent slightly open, propped up by a small piece of wood.  A pet-food pan sits loosely over the slightly-open top vent, so that moisture isn't trapped beneath it.  The idea is that air can circulate freely everywhere, but water can't get in, and it will evaporate if it does.

 

After each cook, next morning I clean and wash the grates using a soft wire brush, remove and store the charcoal that is always left over, discard the ash (removing it from the crevices with a small stick because charcoal and ash will trap moisture), and wipe everything down with a damp cloth.  The entire ritual takes about five minutes, and years later the grill still looks "good as new."

 

When I bought it, I seasoned the cast-iron grates exactly as I do with my cast-iron skillets.  Nothing sticks to properly seasoned cast iron.  (My highest cooking temperature is about 400ºF, so I've never had to re-season.)

 

I don't cover the grill because my experience has been that moisture becomes trapped beneath the cover.  (When I found mold under there, I got rid of the cover.)

This is great advice, I will start using this process.  Wouldn't be a bad sticky in the acorn section :)

 

Thanks!

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On 5/24/2022 at 2:19 PM, Boater said:

I was looking at that controller.  I've be interested in your experience with the setup and any issues.  The only complaint I've seen regularly is that it don't push notifications to your phone, if the app and phone aren't active.  Seems like if you know that, it's easy enough to just look at the phone regularly....

The upgraded model apparently supports push notifications. It's briefly on sale (just looked). Might have considered this one if the sale was on when I ordered but I'm okay with the 2615 for now.

 

https://www.auberins.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=14_100_123&products_id=962

 

Getting a little off track here, still interested in the performance of the Akorn Auto.

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