BurningStick wrote:Thanks for the reply, they are wanting over $300 for the Guru I was recommended so I'd hate to make that mistake.
T-Roy ordered a guru port for his Loaded Wichita but later said it was a mistake and he never uses it. He says to leave the door cracked so the wood burns cleanly, and I believe most of the "happy" Yoder offset owners have been OK with using the door for venting too. Either that, or remove the heat management plate for better flow and more of a top down cook (except the smokestack should really be at grate level for that). If you spend any amount of time reading responses from the Yoder employees (Yoder_Herb, Yoder_Joe, etc.) on the Yoder Community Forum, they constantly remind owners that all Yoders are designed to cook from the bottom up. However, it's that heat management plate that provides the radiant bottom heat, so removing it basically eliminates their "signature" cooking behavior.
If I was a brand new Wichita owner I'd be contacting Yoder and asking about their upcoming damper modification. They have been tight-lipped about it online when asked for specifics, but they have mentioned it at least twice recently. They might be more open about it in a private conversation. I'm curious myself, because I can't see how they could fix their damper issues without a major door change or lowering the firebox, and that will require cutting and welding, or a total smoker replacement. I guess we'll soon find out. Whatever they do, I envision a host of existing owners crying foul and demanding some kind of recall, but I doubt that will ever happen.
I have been entertaining the idea of selling my Wichita and buying one of Aaron Franklin's new smokers whenever they become available, but there still aren't any details about them, and I'll need to see some reviews first. I have a feeling there's a huge difference between cooking 60 briskets in one of Aaron's 1000 gallon propane tank smokers and cooking one brisket in a similar backyard smoker, so Aaron is going to have to prove his 1000 gallon design translates to a small backyard-sized smoker with comparable results first. Ironically, Aaron's smokers don't even have input dampers! He strictly uses his doors for venting.