Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby SmokeTuffBBQ » Thu Oct 20, 2016 12:05 pm

I also pulled the trigger on Yoders smoker back in July. I purchased the Kingman and honestly can say that I have not run into any of the problems that you have had with airflow...I find my kingman to extremely easy to manage my temp and consistently producing high quality product. ImageImageImage

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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby SmokeTuffBBQ » Thu Oct 20, 2016 12:12 pm

After reading this post I am surprised at the problems that slam keys is having with his Yoder...I smoke almost every weekend on a Yoder Kingman and find that once I have an established fire that I only need to add fuel every hour to hour and half. I keep my chimney vent wide open at all times and the butterfly vent open roughly 1/8 of an inch. I keep a 225° to 250° meat chamber and recently ran the smoker for 33hrs straight and she performed flawless.ImageImage

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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby slamkeys » Tue Oct 25, 2016 2:27 am

I completed phase 3 of my door redesign over the weekend with better than expected results. I found a cheap cookie sheet set at Walmart for under 10 bucks with enough sheet metal to fabricate a more accurate vent opening to test. The foil pan used for the previous test worked great, but now I need to verify that a real adjustable butterfly vent will also supply adequate air flow.

The larger of the two sheets in the set fits perfectly between the hinges and the latch bracket, so I drilled some holes for 4 mounting screws, and cut out the vent opening at the bottom:
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I made a vent template out of cardboard to make sure it fit right:
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The finished vent viewed from inside the firebox. The door is fastened with butterfly fasteners to prevent any permanent modification to the cooker.
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Vent wide open:
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Plenty of air flow gets the fire burning with no need to open the door. In fact, since the door was bolted on I couldn't open it if I wanted. There's hardly any coals in the firebox when this photo was taken, the wood just burns by itself. I never had any smoke come out of this vent - ever. It was drawing in fresh air effortlessly all day.
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I hit cooking temperature in record time. There seemed to be more pressure coming from the smoke stack than before.
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I've never seen this cooker burn this clean. Sometimes I couldn't even see smoke coming from the smokestack at all.
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This is after I had been cooking for several hours, and you can see I didn't have to have a huge coal bed to keep the logs burning. The logs just burn clean because they are getting enough air.
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Overall I was very pleased with the results. My wife was probably getting tired of hearing me gloat about how awesome the smoker was working all day. Now I need to get a permanent 1/4" door with this type of vent. If Yoder doesn't make me one, I can always hire one of the local fabricators to do it. I hope to be the first Loaded Wichita owner with a properly vented fire door.
Last edited by slamkeys on Mon Jul 10, 2017 2:42 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby slamkeys » Tue Oct 25, 2016 3:17 am

I'm not surprised the Kingman works better. The two units are similar looking, but a comparison of the firebox ends reveals a huge difference in the elevation of the components. The Kingman vent is much larger and closer to the ground than the Wichita vent, and the Kingman also has a much larger smoke stack. I almost bought the Kingman but it really is more pit than I needed here. The Wichita is the perfect size for my family.

Notice that the bottom of the Kingman vent lines up with the bottom of the Wichita firebox even though the tops of both fireboxes are at the same level. By moving my vent to the very bottom of the Wichita firebox door I am almost matching the height of the Kingman's lower vent.
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Last edited by slamkeys on Mon Jul 10, 2017 2:43 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby a075923 » Tue Oct 25, 2016 1:30 pm

I've been wanting to go out and look at Yoder's, couple hour drive. Think I'll wait and see how this works out for you.

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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby txsmkmstr » Tue Oct 25, 2016 2:10 pm

slamkeys wrote:I'm not surprised the Kingman works better. The two units are similar looking, but a comparison of the firebox ends reveals a huge difference in the elevation of the components. The Kingman vent is much larger and closer to the ground than the Wichita vent, and the Kingman also has a much larger smoke stack.


Not piling on but that's the first thing I noticed too.... I've been following this thread mainly because you've been so thorough about documenting the issues, working through them - all without unnecessary flaming (groan, couldn't resist). Fine tune it, have a few fabbed up and start looking for customers. :mrgreen:
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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby Txdragon » Wed Oct 26, 2016 11:07 am

The attention to detail you've displayed here along with logic, reasoning, engineering is amazing. That being said, all the while i'm like, "I can count to 20 without using my toes!!" Fantastic work coming to such a simple fix to a problem what so many people would completely go ballistic over. I salute you, sir!! :salut:
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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby RWBTEX » Wed Oct 26, 2016 11:38 am

Txdragon wrote:The attention to detail you've displayed here along with logic, reasoning, engineering is amazing. That being said, all the while i'm like, "I can count to 20 without using my toes!!" Fantastic work coming to such a simple fix to a problem what so many people would completely go ballistic over. I salute you, sir!! :salut:


Totally agree, very nice and ingenious work. Think it may wind up being much cheaper to get a local shop to do the work for you.
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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby ubeclown » Wed Oct 26, 2016 11:55 am

Wow. Slamkeys. Excellent work. This is a fantastic write up and a much better solution than..."turn the smoker to the wind" solution that Yoder has come up with.

I really want to pull the trigger on a Yoder Wichita. If you get a custom door fabricated can you please list how much it cost?
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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby Txdragon » Wed Oct 26, 2016 2:20 pm

ubeclown wrote: This is a fantastic write up and a much better solution than..."turn the smoker to the wind" solution that Yoder has come up with.



Man, if this isn't the understatement of the century! For a company to say some junk like that is like Microsoft just telling you to reboot your computer when you get whatever error. Sure, it may solution to the issue you're having, but it is not a fix to the problem causing it.
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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby slamkeys » Thu Oct 27, 2016 8:28 pm

I was thinking something like this would be practical as a replacement door because it wouldn't require any welding if you could get the hinge pins to line up properly. By pointing both pins downward the door would drop right on. You would have to cut one of the hinges off the original door to get it off though.

It wouldn't be that easy to get the pins right without having access to the cooker, so Yoder would probably balk at that idea. In this design I made the butterfly wheel so large I think the door latch would interfere with its travel. You could flush-weld a stud in the existing hole and then fasten the latch with a nut to get around that problem.

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I'm also working on another idea that involves a snorkel box mounted to the inside of the factory door. The only drawback I foresee (even if it works) is it would interfere with the massive charcoal basket that takes up the entire length of the firebox, so that's certainly a concern. Stay tuned.
Last edited by slamkeys on Mon Jul 10, 2017 2:45 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby slamkeys » Thu Oct 27, 2016 11:21 pm

SmokeTuffBBQ wrote:After reading this post I am surprised at the problems that slam keys is having with his Yoder...I smoke almost every weekend on a Yoder Kingman and find that once I have an established fire that I only need to add fuel every hour to hour and half. I keep my chimney vent wide open at all times and the butterfly vent open roughly 1/8 of an inch. I keep a 225° to 250° meat chamber and recently ran the smoker for 33hrs straight and she performed flawless.

That is some mighty fine looking bovine there SmokeTuff. Not only that, if that rig is setup in your backyard it looks like a national park back there! What a fantastic place for hanging out by the smoker. :salut:

I have to say I'm shocked that you can keep your Kingman cooking with the damper open 1/8". If I had that kind of performance from the Wichita I would be on here singing its praises without abandon. That is my goal now, to be able to run this smoker like I do my Big Green Egg, which was a pleasure to use from the first time I lit the lump. I routinely use the BGE with the damper open a mere 1/8" for low and slow, but I didn't even think it was possible with these big pipe smokers.

There's never a flow issue with a kettle cooker. All the heat goes straight up!
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Last edited by slamkeys on Mon Jul 10, 2017 2:46 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby ubeclown » Fri Oct 28, 2016 1:37 pm

Well. When you find a solid solution and possibly someone to produce it you should let everyone on the forums know. You may be able to place a bulk order of doors at a discount to everyone.
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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby FireWood » Sun Oct 30, 2016 7:26 pm

I was suppose to get shipping notice Friday the 28th on a loaded Wichita I ordered back on September 1, never happened. I'll call tomorrow and I'm wondering , how receptive Yoder might be to incorporating this mod,at my expense of course. For 10 months I've been looking,reading viewing videos about the yoder Loaded Wichita before placing my order. The number one question I remember that was asked, was fire management. I just figured that most of these folks had never built or maintained a fire in an offset before so, fair enough they asked a question. One of the well known on line videos T-roy ( and he cooks responsibly) demonstrates fire management on his Loaded by keeping the door open trying to get air flow into his chamber. I really never thought much about it until I started reading this thread. Slamsky thanks for sharing,I have a strange suspicion Yoder might show a very arrogant and smug response to any modification to the firebox.

Strange company never got any yoder, initiated emails during the two months I've been waiting. I did call one month after the initial order for an expected ship date and again last thursday the 27th just too confirm they were going to ship. I've got a YS480 was sold on the pellet cooker, hope the stick burner lives up to the hype.
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Re: Just Bought A Yoder Loaded Wichita

Postby FireWood » Thu Nov 10, 2016 9:27 pm

My Wichita finally arrived 11/3. Pretty nice seeing the FedEx truck rolling up.
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Got her unloaded sat for a day before I had time to unwrap it and fire it up.
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Currently in the back yard, seasoned and ready to go.
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Image2016-11-08_08-31-45 by texbaz2011, on Flickr

Cooked a few favorites,Yum.
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So far its been pretty nice, had both gauges replaced. One was fogged up, the other very erratic up and down. Received those yesterday good customer service from Yoder.
called atbbq on the HD reinforced fire box grate their asking some pretty steep change for what it does $130.00 think Ill pass maybe make my own.
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Great information on this board and this thread. FYI, Veterans Day is coming up. Maybe take a moment to reflect. We are so fortunate to have such brave woman and men who have sacrificed so much for all.
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