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After 14 years, it was finally time to get a new smoker...

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    After 14 years, it was finally time to get a new smoker...

    When I retired from the Navy in 2007, the family got me a Traeger. It served me faithfully for the past 14 years and made me a believer in pellet grills. Now I've reached the point where I wanted a more capable pellet grill. So I passed the Traeger on to a close family friend who's now a pellet head convert and after an agonizing 10-week wait, I'm now the proud owner of a MAK 2-Star General. It's taken a while until I've had the chance to put together a post, so I have a mini-pictorial of starting the journey with my new MAK.

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    A happy man with his new toy.

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    Unboxing. Definitely liked MAK's protective packaging. There were no issues resulting from shipping the 350lbs beast.

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    Final product after a smooth assembly. Very impressed with the build quality and ease of assembly.

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    After the initial burn in, a few fatties went on to help start the break-in. For the first few cooks I used the MAK probes and cross-checked them with my Fireboard to establish a baseline on how the MAK probes preformed.

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    Next were a couple of Boston Butts to speed along the break-in. I separated out the money muscles to have some snacks while we were waiting on BBs to finish. The MAK probes were within a couple of degrees of my Fireboard probes.

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    Great bark and smoky flavor on the pulled pork. The family was extremely happy.

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    The last of the porky trifecta to initiate the MAK were pork belly burnt ends.

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    First time I've ever tried pork belly burnt ends and they tasted as good as they looked and were super easy to make.

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    Now that the MAK was broken in, time to switch gears and try some beef jerky and smoked cream cheese.

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    Another home run. Jerky was a great texture and smokiness. There will be many more batches in the future. First time to try the smoked cream cheese. Dead simple to make. Garlic olive oil on the exterior as a binder and BBQ rub.

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    We finish up the journey with my first attempt at a boneless leg of lamb that we got at Costco.

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    The lamb turned out perfect. Even my wife who isn't a big lamb fan liked it.

    I have nothing but great things to say about my new MAK. It definitely has much more smoke than my ancient Traeger. No need for a supplemental smoking tube on the MAK. The ability to program a cook and have the smoker automatically change temperatures based on time or temperature is awesome. That in conjunction with controllability and access via the web has been one of my favorite features. The couple of times I called MAK with questions, they were very helpful and provided great support. After a month of running the MAK through the paces I'm very happy with my choice and glad I got one of the last ones off the production line for 2021.

    Nice write up T-bone ! Glad you like your new MAK. I've had mine for over a year and it's a great grill IMO. Great looking cooks BTW!


      Wow! Congrats on the new smoker. Those MAKs are sweet rigs man. it sounds like it was well worth the wait.

      We appreciate you sharing the pics and your thoughts, it is always great to have a first-hand account of a product.

      Thank you for your service.


      • T-bone
        T-bone commented
        Editing a comment
        Thank you Sir and it's an honor to serve this country.

      Great write-up. Thanks for sharing. Good lookin' cooks too.


        Welcome to the MAK family! Great write up too.


          Congrats on the cooker and man, great break in!


            Those are some gorgeous looking cooks. Nice work. Congrats on the new cooker. Hoping you have many years of good cooking with it.


              Great looking food! Congrats on the new rig!!


                Great looking cooker and even better cooks. Enjoy your new toy cause it is a nice one.


                  Great post. Like the Pictures.
                  Long live Pellet grilling.


                    Awesome! May you get waaay more than 14 years outta that!


                      Fantastic Job, Shipmate!

                      From an ol Air Det Seabee !!!!

                      Many Thanks fer yer Service, Amigo!!!

                      Last edited by Mr. Bones; September 6, 2021, 12:52 PM.


                      • T-bone
                        T-bone commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Thank you, Shipmate. Mr. Bones It was great to have Seabees on det with you. If you needed something fixed or built, it could be arranged with a few cases of beer or a couple of bottles of hooch. Always enjoyed working with Seabees.

                        Thank you for your service as well.
                        Last edited by T-bone; September 6, 2021, 01:02 PM.

                      • Mr. Bones
                        Mr. Bones commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Bein a Seabee, I never even, in 8 yrs US Navy Service once trod upon th deck of a USS; we were delivered by Air Det, ie:Herky Birds, Shithooks, Hueys, when things was tight...later on, some Blackhawks, too..., "First To Go, Last To Know "
                        Last edited by Mr. Bones; September 6, 2021, 01:48 PM.



                        Excellent write up. Congratulations!


                          You are one happy guy! Excellent write up, excellent pics! Congrats! 🕶



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