Discuss, share information, ask questions, and show off your expertise on Yoder Pellet Cookers.

Click the links below to go directly to available resources:
**Pellet cookers** - YS480, YS640
**Competition Pellet cookers** - YS480 Comp, YS640 Comp, YS1500 Comp
August 22nd, 2017, 11:02 am
* Abilene ** Abilene *
User avatar
  • Joined: August 22nd, 2017, 9:48 am
  • Posts: 5

I just upgraded from a Traeger to a YS640. First a little background - I have been smoking for nearly 7 years. I have used a UDS (Ugly Drum Smoker) in the past, then the Traeger, now the Yoder

I purchased the Yoder used but in fantastic shape. I absolutely loved my Traeger and used it for two years with no problems at all. Having said that, I noticed an immediate difference in quality between the Traeger and the Yoder.

I did my first smoke last night and smoked some bratwurst and chicken thighs. I smoked them pretty high (350 for most of the cook). They looked fantastic. I smoked the brats on the left side - closed to the firepot. The chicken covered the rest of the grill space. I had the damper set about 5 inches from the furthest left that it can go. I believe the owner's manual said this should keep the temps fairly even across the grill space.

The brats were fantastic, juicy and some smoke flavor. The chicken was a different story. I pulled the chicken at 165 and the skin was tough and the meat had virtually no smoke flavor. Using this same method with my Traeger produced plenty of smoke flavor. Not sure how to correct this? Was this a problem with the damper? If so, how can I adjust it to improve?

August 22nd, 2017, 6:34 pm
* Abilene ** Abilene *
  • Joined: May 18th, 2015, 9:25 pm
  • Posts: 48

Welcome! I have several cookers and won't cook chicken on anything but my Yoder. It makes the best chicken I've ever had in my life! So, let's get this figured out. First, I think that you're running a little hot. The lower the heat, the better the smoke. If running lower heat still doesn't give you the results you want, you could add a tube smoker. I've had mixed results with it. Sometimes, I feel like it adds too much bitterness. Anyway, I think that running the unit at 285 yields the best results for chicken. All other meats I run anywhere from 235-275. If you have a grate thermometer, place it near your meat for an accurate read. If you cook much less than 285, the skin tends to be rubbery. Also, I like to rub the skin with some oil before seasoning. I feel like it also helps crisp up the skin. Since thighs are dark meat, I would cook them to 180-185.

I hope this helps.

August 22nd, 2017, 8:34 pm
Site AdminSite Admin
User avatar
  • Joined: April 18th, 2014, 3:12 pm
  • Posts: 2036

Return to Pellet