Newbie to Traeger - Silverton 620 first thoughts

sbcrockett

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Hello everyone! Just put the 620 together yesterday and wanted to give my first impressions. I was going to make my first post with the title "Made in China?!" but I didn't want to sound too judgemental before I even gave the Traeger a chance.

First off, got the grill home from the Costco. Very heavy! Make sure you move the box to the location the grill is going to live before opening it up. I thought I'd start unpacking things to make moving it around more manageable, but the main grill portion comes almost completely assembled. I had already removed the legs, base and lower pieces before I realized this, so my son and I had to carefully move the heavy top portion from the garage to the outside deck where I finished putting it together. The units are shipped upside down when packaged and in my case, ours was on bottom on the pallet so it had another 620 sitting on top of it for a while. This caused the lid to bow on one side and not sit right when closed. I was mostly able to bend it back to shape but it still doesn't quite sit square on the base.

Assembly was straightforward although some larger diagrams in the instructions would be helpful. The drip tray was covered in quite a bit of oil and since I always wash the grill grates in hot soapy water, I went ahead and washed the tray as well. I later read that someone here had been told by Traeger that the oil was food based, was part of the seasoning process and was also there to prevent warping? Not sure why that would be the case, but it definitely did NOT smell like food oil... more like industrial manufacturing lubricant meant to inhibit rust or oxidation.

In any case, the seasoning went fine. No problems or warping to speak of. My wife was in the backyard and could smell the wood smoke as the firebox heated up. Very pleasant aroma. I was impressed at how automated the controller was. Very user friendly.

Wifire was only slightly tricky. It wouldn't connect at first but a combination of retries and entering the grill information manually instead of using the QR code got the grill connected. The update started and apparently finished, although the display turned off after the download so I wasn't sure it had completed until I turned it back on.

I thought I would just heat up some precooked brats, just to play with the app and learn how the grill behaved. Set the temp to 225 and started a timer. Everything went smoothly and I appreciated the layout and simplicity of the app. Pulled the brats after about 45 minutes and cranked temp up to 450 for some burgers. Ten minutes later, put the patties on for 7 minutes a side (they were still slightly frozen in the middle). Pretty even temps and a nice sear around the edges when I pulled them. Got them to not quite 160 when I pulled them off and let them rest a few minutes. Much more moist than when cooked on propane. Probably the juiciest sirloin burger I've cooked. Not too much smoke but the flavor was there. I bought the only pellets they had at the Costco...a blend of maple, hickory and cherry. Didn't really like the maple part of it and I could definitely taste it, although my wife said she hardly noticed any smoke. Maybe it was all the smoke and aromas in my head after hanging around the grill, but I plan on getting just apple pellets for todays chicken.

Never having worked with pellets, it'll be a few cooks before I have any useful insights about operation of the Traeger. I definitely appreciate the ease of use and convenience of temp adjustment. It seems well built and will hopefully give us years of good eating. I think maintenance is going to be key for reliable operation. On my radar is to try and assess how fast I'll go through pellets (real world numbers, not the estimate printed inside the hopper). An additional cost will be drip tray liners but I'm sure I'll try to use heavy duty foil at some point.

So far, I do think it's a well built and quality unit (even if it IS made in China) and for $699, a very competitive choice for a smoker. I priced some gas grills and they weren't far off in price. I've smoked dozens of rib racks and many pork shoulders in my Weber Smokey Mountain with great results but I suspect using the Traeger is probably going to be a lot easier, more consistent and less cleanup. The only downside i can think of right now is that my wife won't be cozying up to me as much to smell that woodsmoke in my clothes that I would get when tending the water smoker. The Traeger definitely offers a more refined and convenient cooking experience. The outdoorsman in me wonders if that's a good thing but the urban side is looking forward to more great tasting smoked meat and versatility.

Thanks for reading. I look forward to being a part of this forum!

-Steve
 
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sbcrockett

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excellent. thanks for the suggestion. as the 620 doesn't have Super Smoke, this may come in real handy when doing pork shoulder :)

Another observation over the weekend...I had some wifire issues after unplugging the unit. When I went to connect the next day, it was like I had to "Add a grill" all over again on the app. Then I had to forget the network and basically start all over again. Is this what you all have noticed with wifire?
 

NuggsFan

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My 575 does not have super smoke either... I may have to get one of these!
 

PPitBoss

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Have you tried the technique of buying wood chips, soaking for a long time, wrapping in tin foil with holes poked in to place on grill? I get fantastic smoke rings on my 575 PRO and this trick.
 

Jimofatl

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I get very good results with the tube smoker and would easier to use. FWIW....
 
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