New Smoking Box

New Smoking Box

Postby Richierich » Tue Dec 15, 2009 10:44 am

Finally decided that the brinkmann was no good to use as a cold smoker, I was forever scrabbling around on t he floor so I built me a new box for the CSG recently purchased from Macsbbq.

ImageImage

The larger chamber is for the food the smaller one (right hand pic) is for the CSG. There is a hole between the 2 bits and holes in the bottom left and top right of the left and right box respectively.

I am beginning to think the vents I have (holes) are not sufficient, I have drilled around 40, 3mm holes on the left to feed air in and around 20 on the right to let smoke out. I posted elsewhere regarding the CSG going out, I am thinking this might be due to lack of air. I removed the door this morning for a test run and things seem to be going okay, over an hour later.

How big are the vents in any of the units you guys have made. The reason I went for multiple small holes was to keep creatures out, I think I may have to rethink and perhaps buy some gauze. Across the top of the main chamber is a piece of plastic to keep the weather out, fortunately due to the woodworking skills I have there is a nice gap at the top to let the smoke out, if I tighten up the nuts too much this starves the flow and seems to cause me issues, it is now loosely fitted, but hopefully still weather resistant.

Do you think I should drill some larger holes in the smaller door, I might even enlarge the hole between left and right side too.
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Postby saucisson » Tue Dec 15, 2009 12:04 pm

It maybe airflow Rich, the first lane as it were is exposed to the air in your smoke chamber and as it turns the corner it's going inside where it may be getting stifled. Can you try it in the bottom of the food box with the door cracked open half an inch?

Dave
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Postby Richierich » Tue Dec 15, 2009 12:21 pm

Removed the ash, replaced the wood. It had gone out, around 1 1/2 - 2 hours, made it to the first bend. Funny how it only burnt down the middle once round the corner.

Also, the dust on the top was a different colour to that below when I stirred it up a little, more yellowy, is that dampness or just taking on the smoke colour,

Need to get this thing sorted, got 2 sides of salmon in the fridge and 3kg of bacon.


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Postby saucisson » Tue Dec 15, 2009 12:33 pm

I think it's yellow from the smoke, so maybe try more air. This may be an optical illusion but the second lane looks as if it is narrower/narrowing? All lanes should be an inch wide give or take...

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Postby probbq » Tue Dec 15, 2009 6:08 pm

Not sure about the air flow being an issue... when I did the Salmon in the cardboard box, there was only a hole at the top, about the size of a 10p in it.
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Postby saucisson » Tue Dec 15, 2009 7:15 pm

I think it's most likely the dust Ian... Hopefully all will be well soon...

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Postby Richierich » Wed Dec 16, 2009 5:33 pm

I hope so, took forever to drill all those holes at an angle to stop the rain from getting in.....shame to have to make a slot in the side!!
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Postby welsh wizard » Mon Dec 21, 2009 10:26 am

Hi Rich

Sorry to come into this thread late, but I had exactly the same problem. I used it in my Bradley the first time with only the top vent open and no problems occured. However the next time I used it it kept on going out which when you leave it for a 10 hour smoke, to come back in nine hours and see it has not really started, is frustrating to say the least.

What I did was empty the tray of wood dust and turned it upside down and tapped it. A lot of very fine dust came away, and it then worked perfectly again. From this I can only assume that fine dust clogs up the holes after use which then dosent allow air under the dust tray on the next smoking unless tapped out. Trying again today ........

Cheers WW
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Postby Paul Kribs » Mon Dec 21, 2009 11:12 am

A soft/medium bannister brush does the trick, cleans it up well, and a quick upside-down knock and ready for next time.

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Postby Richierich » Mon Dec 21, 2009 12:02 pm

Having put the right stuff in the CSG I was able to close both chambers fully and rely on the holes drilled in the sop and bottom, it did not go out! I guess the only issue is whether the smoke was getting stale or not, but it was coming out at a reasonable rate.

Having taken a closer look at the mesh it was surprising just how clogged up it was.

Salmon is defrosting and will be cured overnight and then smoked Wednesday.

Thanks to everyone for their input!!
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Postby welsh wizard » Wed Dec 23, 2009 6:05 pm

Hi, I have now smoked using the aforementioned gizmo once yesterday, last night and again this morning. Each time I tapped the tray out as previously described and each time the smoker worked A1 in the Bradley with the door closed and the inlet hole taped up.

Therfore I can conclued that tapping out the fine dust or as Paul recommends, tapping and brushing is the way forward............

This I think should be put in the destructions :D

Cheers WW
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Re: New Smoking Box

Postby GUS » Fri May 31, 2013 6:33 pm

I MIGHT be talking out of my "Richard Harris" here, (especially as i've yet to light my own ProQ csg), however as a woodburning stove owner for eons, it's not just a case of letting the smoke out you need to concentrate on but "draw" to create fire continuity (a good burn) & flush the smoke through for better combustion top to bottom.
therefore a grate (or in this case the mesh) is not only there to keep the ash / dust in but to allow airflow & so it's vital that this is allowed to do it's stuff (ie a regular cleaning out), as |I guess in this case a lazy draw would technically stifle throughflow of smoke & therefore contribute somewhat to bitterness within your foodstuffs possibly, & why some folk suggest a small fan to keep things ticking over.

Consider outside influences such as siting, if there is a boiler exhaust that'll affect things in terms of dampness & air moisture near the unit, & the way fuel takes, (or go's out).

a lot of folk in older buildings "warm the chimney" ...so it's not too sluggish (the basis of kindling getting a stove fire to take" & accelerate the draw, so in some weather instances (ie funky weather) a few seconds getting the trickle going up the chimney froma blowtorch might work.

Weather is a major influence, wind is an asset as well as a disturbance as is the height & diameter of a chimney, so not having seen the set up & surroundings there may be a factor at play (or not) but first & foremost keep those wire mesh holes clear!

wind turbulence from surrounding buildings does a lot for a home stove, (thus chimneys are always meant to go "x" beyond the roofline in order to negate the worst & keep a solid draw... thankfully for a smoker this sort of thing is easy to alter without major internal workings or roof balancing acts.

Take a look around & see if there are outside influences (just in case) if scrubbing mesh doesn't work every time.
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Re: New Smoking Box

Postby wheels » Fri May 31, 2013 8:29 pm

I've used the csg in a cardboard box smoker with no specific air intake at the bottom. It worked fine:

http://www.localfoodheroes.co.uk/?e=583

The only air intake at the bottom would be through the very small gaps where the cardboard lines up.

Not relevant, but of interest is that a mate of mine is still using the Eco-smoker, featured in that link, some 3 years and numerous sides of salmon later!

HTH

Phil
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Re: New Smoking Box

Postby GUS » Sat Jun 01, 2013 11:04 am

Yup, I realize it's a dead(old) thread, but still look at anything to do with combustion along the lines of a WBS which is obviously a combustion chamber, fuel & a chimney performing in the same manner.
That includes outside influences that folk don't necessarily see (i'm still learning at times it seems with our own WBS).
So i'd apply the same sort of scenarios to a smoker outdoors in my limited experience, avoiding tree overhang, vortices, roofline interference in relation to siting & chimney length to overcome any potential air pressure problems, & next door neighbours vent for their heating system throws out a mass of moisture, all of which would affect my set up.

We live on the edge of a field & the lay of the land affects our stove performance massively, (ok we are talking flame not smoulder but the end result is the same in essence)..namely you want the thing to stay alight & do it's job for the duration.
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