Yoder_Herb and the Birth of the Yoder Smokers Forum

The Yoder Smokers Community Forum is a great resource for learning about our cookers, both for new owners and those considering buying one. Forum discussion is driven by owners, not created by our staff, and features conversations about everything from competition tips to photo brags and troubleshooting. It’s overseen by Yoder_Herb who was, himself, a customer deciding between a Yoder YS640 and one of our competitors. (We just dug up the 2012 email to prove it!) He became a Yoder owner, and then one of our most dedicated fans until we unceremoniously pulled him out of retirement and put him to work – manning the forum he suggested we needed! Here is his story, as told to a recent customer.

Yoder Herb and his trusty trailer

Yoder Herb and his trusty trailer


I was also retired, and live in Arizona. I say “was,” because a passion for a product brought me out of retirement. I have been cooking on Yoder pellet grills since May of 2012. To date I have burned through almost 3 tons of pellets, all in Yoder pellet cookers.

I spent 32 years in Information Technology, so when I received my first Yoder pellet grill, I had 6 temperature probes in the cooker, attempting to map out every inch of it to see where it was hot, etc. Along with this, I spent hours documenting what the controller display was showing. I then spent time attempting to correlate the temperature probe data with the controller display data, in an attempt to understand why the cooker wasn’t working the way I had envisioned that it should. I spent hours talking to Don Cary, and even made a trip to Wichita to speak to him in person. I also sent Don a lot of email questions and I made statements about the product. All of this was my attempt at telling Don that the product was faulty, because it didn’t work the way I thought it should. I had bought it sight unseen, had it shipped to me and now, after all of this, I was concerned that I had made the wrong decision to purchase the Yoder product. There is much, much, more to this story that I won’t bore you with.

I want to share with you that during all of hours and hours and hours that I spent documenting, watching the controller display, etc., I was also cooking some of the best BBQ we had ever eaten. Unfortunately, I was focused on proving my point with Don, and ignoring the fact that the best BBQ ever was coming off the Yoder. Then friends and family started to ask me to cook for them. My daughter asked that I cook for her wedding reception. After that, I was being asked by people that I didn’t even know if I would cook for them. At one point, my wife and I took a 30 day trip through 14 states to visit family and, yes, I loaded up the Yoder in an enclosed trailer, and took it with us. I cooked for everyone along the way. They are all still begging for us to do it again.

Why am I babbling about all of this to you? Because I want you to focus on what really matters, which took me almost 6 months to realize. The Yoder cooker just plain works, and will cook you some of the best BBQ that restaurants can only wish they could be in the same league with. Yes, there are technical reasons that the cooker does what it does, but, if you follow the best practices from the link I sent you, use quality pellets (BBQr’s Delight are the best, hands down), and keep your cooker clean and maintained, I guarantee you will not be disappointed.

I invite you to learn more on the inner workings of the cooker by visiting the Support Forum and reviewing the manuals, best practices and experiences of other Yoder owners. The forum is the best place to share experiences, ask questions and to get information about Yoder products. Remember at the top of this email, where I told you about everything that I went through trying to understand my Yoder? The Support Forum is the direct result of the journey that I took, and provides the information to quickly get owners focusing on the end result, the food.

I am always available to answer questions or concerns. You have my email, you can send email to customerservice@yodersmokers.com, or you can post on the Support Forum. Yoder has an awesome support team, and we are all here to help you be successful using Yoder Smokers products.

Herb McBride
Yoder Smokers
Customer Service
Support Forum: http://community.yodersmokers.com

Yoder Herb manning the booth at the 2015 Fiery Foods and BBQ Show

Herb manning the booth at the Fiery Foods & BBQ Show

Herb and his lovely wife, Alice

Herb and his lovely wife, Alice

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