Cold smoker from old recycled beehive

Air dried cured Meat Techniques

Cold smoker from old recycled beehive

Postby Swing Swang » Sat Aug 15, 2015 10:08 am

Just in case this hasn't been thought of before.

I'm using old beehive boxes as a cold smoker.

These seem ideally suited to smoking. For those not familiar with beehives each 'section' (usually called a brood chamber or a super) is essentially just a hollow stackable rectangular box with rebates on the inside where the 'frames' (which support the honeycomb are hung).

It is then just a simple matter of stacking them on top of your cold smoke generator, adding horizontal supports by placing them on the rebates, and hanging meat as required.

Now buying prime cedar boxes (or even 'cheap' pine ones) just for this is going to be pricey, but occasionally beekeepers have to discard boxes because they have become rotten in places, or have become too damaged by use/vermin/woodpeckers/bears(!) for economical repair.

The nice thing about recycling these boxes is that because they've previously been used for food production you know that there aren't any nasty chemicals lurking around.

If you know any beekeepers/clubs you could put out some feelers. If you get them from this source then ask for any old/broken frames too as the top bar has already been cut to fit.

Just one warning - not all beehives have the same 'footprint' so if adding boxes from different sources do check out that they'll stack .

I've got some bacon smoking in an old hive now so maybe some pictures later.

Philip
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Re: Cold smoker from old recycled beehive

Postby Swing Swang » Sat Aug 15, 2015 10:52 am

Pictures:

The beehive smoker,
Starting from the bottom - vermin-proofed bottom board, 1st box, 2nd box, bottom board used as a vermin proofed top, another half box with a bit of hessian attached (technically this is known as a 'quilt' and is usually filled with wood shavings).
Image

Looking down into the smoke house through the vermin proofed top (screened with stainless steel mesh)
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Bacon
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Two sides of bacon and cold smoke generator on stainless steel screened base.
Image

Screened entrance - stainless steel mesh bent to fit - note as there are two of theses - one at the top and one at the bottom and as there is ventilation from underneath this provides sufficient draft to keep the smoker going.
Image
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Re: Cold smoker from old recycled beehive

Postby NCPaul » Sat Aug 15, 2015 11:04 am

Very nice work. :D
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Re: Cold smoker from old recycled beehive

Postby wheels » Sat Aug 15, 2015 12:55 pm

Ingenious

Phil
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Re: Cold smoker from old recycled beehive

Postby Swing Swang » Sat Aug 15, 2015 3:07 pm

Thanks - just finished the first smoke - will give them another one overnight and see how that turns out.

First attempt with the CSG
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Re: Cold smoker from old recycled beehive

Postby Swing Swang » Sat Aug 15, 2015 3:10 pm

Should also add that the second batch of wood chippings was the stuff that I got from kil2k - when I was drying it out in the microwave it smelt much 'sweeter' than the stuff that came with the CSG - I'm hoping for a good outcome.
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Re: Cold smoker from old recycled beehive

Postby kil2k » Sun Aug 16, 2015 6:12 am

Wow, that looks like an awesome idea. Great job!
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Re: Cold smoker from old recycled beehive

Postby BriCan » Sun Aug 23, 2015 11:00 pm

Thats a sweet idea :)
But what do I know
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