Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby Headbutchersouthwest » Thu Nov 07, 2013 8:26 pm

Hi I'm new to this forum and would like to ask the pro's out there what am I doing wrong :oops:

I light my oak/beech sawdust and it smoulders ok to start with then really gets going once it reaches the sawdust that is directly above the heating element in my beelonia smoke box then once it's smouldered past the heating element section is smoulders out and doesn't quite burn all the dust?? I'm i being totally stupid or is it an easy fix :roll:

Any help would be greatly received


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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby DanMcG » Thu Nov 07, 2013 8:32 pm

I'm far from a pro and not familiar with your unit but it usually boils down to 2 things
To much moisture in the dust or lack of air to help it burn.
You can dry the dust in the oven or I prefer to microwave it. And is there a good supply of air in your smoker at the unit to aid in combustion?
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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby Headbutchersouthwest » Thu Nov 07, 2013 8:40 pm

This is similar to my smoker , as you can see the out side cold smoke box is on the left hand side with air vents at the front for air flow!

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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby wheels » Thu Nov 07, 2013 9:01 pm

Hi, with something of that nature, and no doubt expense, I'd be going straight back to the manufacturer for advice/support.

Phil
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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby Headbutchersouthwest » Thu Nov 07, 2013 9:16 pm

Phil my biggest problem is they are in Germany & they are really hard to get hold of!

After reading many posts on this forum , I've come to the conclusion that it's either air flow due to small vents at the front of my outside smoke box or possibly because of the distance from the top of my smoker to the end of the flue approx 2-3 metres tho there seems to be a good flow of smoke coming threw the smoker!

It can't be the sawdust as the oak and beech that I have is medium grain and from reputable supply!
Something is stopping the sawdust from smouldering without the aid of the heating element :?: :twisted:

My flap/ air shutter is 25% open at the top of my smoker and 75% open on top on my outside smoke box so is this reasonable ?
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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby wheels » Thu Nov 07, 2013 9:44 pm

I have no great experience of smokers, but as far as I'm aware, systems usually work on either, lighting the sawdust, or, having a heat source underneath the sawdust. I've not seen one before that uses both methods combined. Do the smoker instructions say to do this and to use a 'trail' of sawdust? If not, I'm wondering whether you're just meant to just fill the tray with sawdust and let the element burn it?

Hopefully, someone with experience of this type of smoker will be along soon.
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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby DanMcG » Thu Nov 07, 2013 10:35 pm

After studying the pic's again I think Wheels is right, unless it says to make a trail of dust I would think with that heating element you would want a pile of dust over the element and set it for a controlled burn.
And as far as the dust goes, I wasn't questioning the quality of the product or supplier but saying it will pick up moisture from the humidity in the air. Drop a handful on a plate and microwave it, you'll be surprised how much steam comes out.
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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby Headbutchersouthwest » Fri Nov 08, 2013 8:10 pm

Wheels , the manual does say to trail the sawdust in a maze style loop and use the heating element to help start off the smouldering tho I do also use a blowtorch , but I found over time that once I turn the heating element off it then smoulders out , but if I leave it on it smoulders better...??
I'm totally green on whats occurring hence I need help :evil:
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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby Headbutchersouthwest » Fri Nov 08, 2013 8:13 pm

Dan I will try to microwave the sawdust sometime next week , is it possible to microwave a dish full of sawdust in one go approx 2 inch deep? I have a tub which holds just the right amount of sawdust to make my trail length & if I microwave it in one go then it will be consistent

How long should I microwave the dust for?
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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby DanMcG » Fri Nov 08, 2013 9:05 pm

You might want to go for a minute, then take it out and stir it, and go another minute...I'd keep an eye on it though, I doubt it could flame up but you never know.
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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby RodinBangkok » Sat Nov 09, 2013 12:41 am

It looks to me like your trail of dust is too dense, not getting enough oxygen to burn in the areas away from the burner. Looks like it is burning in the center, then goes out, and under the burner its probably burning way too fast. You may want to try one of the perforated maze type trays instead of directly on the pan. Or to test this make a crude maze from al foil and punch some holes in the bottom. I'd isolate it or space it up away from the burner element, so the dust smolders due to ignition from the end, not from the burner. This will give you a longer smoke time. Also is there a reason you can't hot smoke using the external smoke box? It should work also for hot smoking.
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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby Headbutchersouthwest » Sat Nov 09, 2013 8:03 am

I have thought about having a maze type box made up that fits inside of my current tray , but I would need help on design , I did think about replicating the proQ maze but double the size
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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby crustyo44 » Sat Nov 09, 2013 8:45 am

Hi,
Your smoker should work 110%. and to go to further expense is ridiculous. You paid a lot of money for it and expect it to operate flawlessly.
What is the make of the smoke oven you have, as a cousin of mine in Rotterdam has lots of butcher machinery connections and no doubt would know the maker as these also would be sold in the Netherlands.
my email. janooms@bigpond.com
Good Luck,
Jan.
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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby Headbutchersouthwest » Sat Nov 09, 2013 12:50 pm

Jan

The smoker is a Beelonia F5 smoker with outside cold smoke box fitted with 800w heating element for aiding the start of the smouldering , yes it cost a few ££££'s and I can't get hold of anyone at Beelonia to help all I have is a paper back manual which is not really that helpful...! :shock:
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Re: Smoker problem or sawdust problem

Postby wheels » Sat Nov 09, 2013 1:09 pm

Did you buy it direct, or from a UK supplier?

Phil
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