Guests - If You want access to member only forums on HSO. You will gain access only when you sign-in or Sign-Up on HotSpotOutdoors.

It's easy - LOOK UPPER right menu.

Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
erikwells

Smoker

10 posts in this topic

I'm looking into getting a smoker. I have never smoked anything but I want to start smoking some catfish. I also would like to smoke a goose or two or make jerky. Do I want wood, charcoal, propane or electric? As a kid a friend of mine used to smoke bullheads in a salty brine in a converted old refridgerator made into a smoker. They were the best. So salty that you would wake up in the middle of the night dying of thirst. At any rate I am hoping to get some suggestions on getting a smoker for a a novice. The refridgerator idea will only happen over my wife's dead body so no bother to suggest that one. Also if someone is looking to upgrade I would be willing to buy a used one as well. Thanks.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i personaly like my electic smoker. i also have one that uses propane but that is a big one. i don't use very offen. but my electic on i use all the time. it's really easy to smoke something and all you have to do is experiment on different ways of preparing what you are going to smoke and the different types of wood that you will use in the smoker. as for recipies you can get alot of them off the internet or just ask your friends or family. good luck smoking.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Don't use a refrdge. to much plastic and other toxins in them. I have used a charcoal and an electric. Once you get used to either one-no problems

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I got an electric Bradley last year and will buy another one if it ever stops working. It is an easy way to learn how to smoke.

Sit back and enjoy the results.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I would have to agree with Stretch. I have an electric Charbroil and love it, I have other buddies who have other electrics and swear by them. I have done a lot in this from summer sausage, snack sticks, turkeys, hams, jerky you name it. The key to smoking is the temp. I have tried propane and wood smokers and have had the best success with my electric because of the ease at setting the temp. Good luck with whatever you choose its hard to beat any smoked meat if its done right.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have had an electric Masterbuilt.Works great.Easy to set temp.Very well insulated so it holds the temp well.Plus you can use any wood you want.Don't have to use pucks like the Bradley.

I've made my own sausages,ribs,fish,butts,and poulrty in it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've got 2 old refridge smokers, they have to be from the 60's or earlier because they need to have a metal inside, not plastic. I have smoked lots and lots of sausage with them. However I can't smoke anything in the winter because they are hard to maintain temp because they are electric. So if you wanted to do stuff in the winter, then get propane and I would get the tallest model possible because sausage sticks can be tall and you won't have enough room (height wise) to smoke them. The knock on a propane smoker smoking in summer is that it can be hard to hold temps lower which you need. So there is the good and bad of both.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have an electric with an insulated blanket that works nice in the winter but my favorite is my new TRAEGER grill! This thing rocks. You can grill, slow cook and smoke! the unit uses wood pellets so it will keep augering them in at a rate for what you are cooking so no more going out and adding more wood.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Propane and electric are the easiest to control heat. If you use the water pan, a charcoal smoker will somewhat control the heat but you'll be adjusting and adding more charcoal. Then you have a wood smoker with fire box and smoking chamber. While they do a very good job, you'll be watching that one closely. If this was a remote location it might be your only choice.

When you get into stuff like jerky, sausages, salami, or smoked brats, temp control is very important. I'd pick electric for no other reason, better temp control and that I won't run out like I could with propane.

Not just any electric smoker though. While the Little Chief type aluminum electrics can and do a good job they won't get up to temp in the cold(save the box for winter use) nor can you regulate the heat.

It'll need to be insulated.

Must have a thermostat and be able to control and get to temps from 100-220 degrees year round.

Stainless Steel construction.

That isn't the economy type smoker though, unless you make your own.

Old refrigerators with enamel interior work fine(ugly)but you can't use the racks unless they are stainless steel. You'll need to add dampers that and can be opened and closed.

A heat source, propane and a thermometer you can view from the outside would be the easiest way to go there.

Electric IMO is better though. You'd need a heating element, relay, and thermostat. If you look around a supply store that carries smokers and parts you' find them.

Not many wives appreciate an big old refrigerator hanging around. An apartment size fridge, gutted out might go ever better.

Or make one out of wood. You'll have your box and its enough insulating qualities to get up to temp in the cold. Old oven racks work well there.

Got a big propane grill with two or more burners and a warming shelf? Use that.

Because your using indirect heat you'll have your meat on the opposite end of the heat source. Wrap up you wood in tinfoil and place over the heat. If that is directly over flame use the lid of a can there to shield the tinfoil and keep it from burning out. Throttle the propane to temp.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You folks are great. Lot's of great info for me to think about. I'll let you know what I end up going with and how my first batch of catfish turn out. Thanks again for the information.

Erik

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0



  • Posts

    • You be lucky if there isn't a nest in the seat, and pee all over the carpet....
    • If one were measuring the debt in constant dollars instead of nominal dollars, 5% inflation reduces it by 5% of the $20 Trillion.  That is a trillion dollars.    Is that hard to understand?   Debt is only significant in relation to GDP and ability to pay.   Consider a thought experiment.   You own a thousand dollar 30 year treasuries paying 3% which is the current going rate.   So the government owes you 30 dollars a year, and a thousand dollars in 2046.   If inflation were to increase to 5%, the value of your thousand dollars goes down by 50 dollars per year.   In 2046 you get 1000 dollars which is equivalent to $215 today.   Which is a bigger problem to pay, the $1000 that you are complaining about or the $215 that actually gets paid?      Inflation has its problems but it also fixes debt concerns.  
    • So the Pence thing wasn't at a local level?   That what you were saying?     And the difference between subsidizing out of state folks and in state folks is?  Johnson subsidized the california folks coming to new mexico for a few weeks, and pence is subsidizing, by a factor of 7 less, local people keeping their jobs.     Got any numbers as to how many jobs for how long created by the Johnson hand out to Hollywood? 
    • Some other small detail items before I get to the finished pics of the entire house.   Each bench has a built in UV jig glow light.  You never have to worry about finding your keychain light (or the dead battery they always seem to have) again!   The normal bench cushion back always seems to be falling down.   I had each cushion sewn with a tab, and then installed a grommet and a hook on the wall.       On the back side of each wheel well is a rod storage compartment for 4 rods, an ice scoop, a forceps, and a few small hooks for miscellaneous stuff.   I mentioned the under cabinet and under bunk lighting in another post, but here it is in action.   And another view of my charging cabinet, with rattle reel storage.   That's all for now.  Finished pics soon!
    • I've had others, but I am a Bushnell fan.
    • Version #1 of the lift bed was a marvelous failure.  Everything looked great while building and installing it.  It was probably the most precise piece I've ever built.  The trouble was multi dimensional binding, as was pointed out in an earlier post.     Version #2 works well.  The strut channel and trolley works great, and doesn't allow any binding. You still want to lift or lower evenly, but it is really forgiving.     This is set up with 4 locking positions.  2 storage, and 2 sleeping.  I expect this to become the most frequently used bed in the house, rather than dropping the table down all the time.    The extra head room with this in its highest position is wonderful!  It isn't a direct replacement for pushing a button on the Happi Jac, but at about $1900 less, it'll work very well.  
    • This will be a bit long winded, but by far the most frequent question I get is how to wire these.  I'll try to detail as best I can.     Starting from the outside of the house I have a regular 30amp RV plug, similar to this:   From this plug I have a heavy duty 10/2 wire running to my converter, which is a Progressive Dynamics PD4045.  The nitty gritty details can be found with a search, but to summarize, it powers all your AC components, and converts AC to DC power, and charges any batteries.     My only AC components are outlets, the heating element for the electric part of my water heater, and a future expansion for a roof mount air conditioner.  Everything else is DC, and I don't use inverters (which would be used to convert 12v battery power to AC).  My reasoning is that the inverters are generally inefficient, and I have a Yamaha generator that will run over 14 hours on a gallon of gas.  That equates to about $6 per weekend with the amount I use it.             AC wires from the power panel include 10/2 to both the future air conditioner, and the water heater.  All outlets are 12/2.   I also have 10 gauge wire running from the panel to my (2) 6 volt GC2 (Sam's Club) golf cart batteries.  These are connected in series with a very heavy duty 0 gauge cable to make 12 volts.     The DC side is a bit more complicated to explain.  I have it set up in 2 categories.  (1) would be frequently used or higher draw components powered directly by the converter, each on their own fuse in the power panel.  This includes furnace, interior lights, exterior lights, ceiling fan, hydronic pump, sink pump, water heater ignition, stereo, and hole lights.  These all have a + wire from the converter to wherever the switch is located, and then continuing on from the switch to wherever the main power wire is for each component (more on this later).           Behind the converter I have a simple metal grounding bar to make all the - connections, and I have one main - wire running back to the batteries, and also grounded to the frame.         Category (2) are less frequently used, or very low power draw, or items with their own switch.  I have classified these as "always on".  This includes my two front exterior lights (so I can flip them on from the outside of the house), tv antenna, roof vents, rear bunk overhead lights, under cabinet lighting, range hood, etc.  These are all powered from the converter on a single fuse (20 amp).   So that brings me to the bathroom wall.  Knowing that the connections are by far the most likely failure point, I want to minimize the number of hidden connections buried by the spray foam.  Each light or fixture has its own separate wire to either the power panel, or my connection point in the wall.  This was taken before I got everything tidied up for spray foam, but you can see the plywood panel in the bathroom wall.         The other side of it now looks like this:    All the wires are brought down from the ceiling through the bathroom wall, with the connections made here.  You can see each has a + and - terminal bar, and then there is one other main grounding bar at the bottom, with a heavy 10 gauge - wire that runs back to the batteries and is also grounded to the frame.   So that's wiring in a nutshell!        
    • Looks like the rust belt should of went with a better rustproofing package.........     Donald Trump may have positioned himself as the champion of American workers but Republicans on the Hill are already embracing his “do as I say, not as I do” modus operandi. Under the backing of Paul Ryan, the GOP leadership stripped a provision from a water bill Monday that would have required American-made iron and steel products to be used in infrastructure projects in Flint and elsewhere funded by the Safe Drinking Water State Revolving Fund (DWSRF). Democratic Ohio Sen. Sherrod Brown blasted Republicans, who removed the “Buy America” provision (which passed the Senate with strong bipartisan support) while the House and Senate were reconciling the bills. In other words, GOP leadership scrapped it behind closed doors. “By stripping meaningful Buy America rules from the water infrastructure bill, Washington leadership is choosing China and Russia over Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin,” said Brown. “This was the first major test of whether Washington establishment Republicans would live up to President-elect Trump’s promises to put American products and American workers first – they failed, and American iron and steel workers will pay the price.” Now, Brown is teaming up with Democratic Sens. Tammy Baldwin of Wisconsin and Bob Casey of Pennsylvania to insert the provision back in the bill. They want to reattach the provision to a nearly $12 billion Water Resource Development Act (WRDA), which authorizes dozens of infrastructure projects around the country and is on track to pass the House this week. “I’m not giving up on this fight,” Baldwin said in a telephone interview Tuesday. “Why would we pass a bill that only benefits Russian and Chinese steel corporations when we could be providing certainty to American manufacturers of steel and iron?” That sentiment was shared by some steel worker groups earlier this week: “From our end it’s a little baffling,” said Roy Houseman, a legislative representative for the United Steelworkers. “It’s been a program that’s been really successful, and it has bipartisan support. We’re just very confused by the Speaker, who’s not listening to the rest of his caucus.” In essence, “Buy America” sounds as nice to Republicans as it did to Trump, but in practice they would rather preserve the "Buy Chinese" option that Trump uses to build his skyscrapers.
    • If there are any twins fans left, I wonder if these new young bucks running the club have asked mauer if he would lift his no trade clause?  I think we know the answer.  I find it interesting to watch these winter meetings trades etc but we are never involved.  It seems like we are missing something as fans.
  • Our Sponsors