refrigerator smokehouse?

Discussion in 'Pigs' started by thequeensblessing, Oct 30, 2006.

  1. thequeensblessing

    thequeensblessing Well-Known Member

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    How many of you have one or have use one in the past?
    Our permanant smokehouse had to be replaced this year, but we simply ran out of time to rebuild it. So, we built a temporary one.
    We picked up a large, old freezer, and a junked boxwood stove that was all rusted, and put them together with about 10 feet of stove pipe and a butterfly damper in the top of the freezer, and voila! Instant smokehouse. (Of course we had to strip all the plastic parts and motor/compressor out of the freezer first.)
    It has taken some tinkering to get to know how to set the fire to keep the smoke box from getting too warm, but we did a dry run for 24 hours to get us used to it. (It's a little touchier than our old wooden smokehouse) We now have all our bacon hanging in it, enveloped in rich hickory smoke.
    Wondering how those of you who have built this type of smokehouse like it?
     
  2. Rockin'B

    Rockin'B Well-Known Member

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    I built one out of an old fridge. Stripped out all the guts and put a hot plate in the bottom. Yours is a cold smoker and I would have much rather had one like you describe.

    Mine worked fine for normal smoking of fish etc. that would then be frozen, but I really want a cold smoker setup. I have a hillside that I'm eventually going to build one. I'll pipe the smoke uphill and into the wood smoke house.

    You're making me hungy thinking of that bacon in the smoker!!!
     

  3. patarini

    patarini Well-Known Member

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    got pics? want to build a cold smoker like that, and have a spare stove to do it! LOL
     
  4. farmergirl

    farmergirl Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I know nothing (yet) about home smokers. Tell me more! I think I'd want an old-fashioned type set-up, like a cabin-ish building. Is that feasible? I'll have lots of bacon and hams to smoke soon!
     
  5. thequeensblessing

    thequeensblessing Well-Known Member

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    I'll post pics today or tomorrow. :) It was so easy to build. We just ripped the motor/compressor out of the unit, cut a hole in the top and put a stove pipe cap on it, with a butterfly damper in it so we could adjust the draw. We but a second hole in the bottom of the unit for the stovepipe entry. We took all the plastic fittings out of the interior. We then put 4 eyehooks in the ceiling of the unit to hang our meats from. You could use shelves as well, but we prefer to hang all our meats. Take 10 feet of stovepipe, connect the stove to the old fridge, and voila! Smokehouse. :) We took the closing mechanism off our unit so the grandkids can't ever get stuck inside it, and we put a hook and eye on the outside of it to keep the door closed when it's in use.
    Of course you'll want to keep a smouldering fire, not a high fire in the stove to effect a good smoke. They recommend the temp be kept between 90 and 110 degrees, but no cooler than 80 and no higher than 120 degrees. (120 is where pork fat just barely starts to melt)
    Like I said, I'll post pics as soon as possible. We've already tasted the bacon from the smokehouse, and it's heavenly! We use primarily hickory, but you can use any decent hardwood. (I don't think you'd want to use black walnut or anything like that though. Might give the meat a blackwalnuty flavor.)
    Good luck!
     
  6. thequeensblessing

    thequeensblessing Well-Known Member

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    If you have the materials, a shed-style smokehouse is excellent. That's what we had prior to rigging this one up. We'll eventually go back to that kind, but I'm very impressed with this temporary one.
    Our shed style was shape like two outhouses sitting side by side. In one side was the stove (a barrel stove) and in the other side were the meats. The smoke was piped from one side into the other. Just be sure you get ample drafts built in.
    Let us know how your smoking adventures go. :)
     
  7. Rockin'B

    Rockin'B Well-Known Member

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    Just as an aside, years ago I lived in the Pacific Northwest and we used to take day trips up to a town on the West slope of the Cascades. There was an older gentleman from the "old country" tha had the most awesome smoker set up I've ever seen.
    Atop a small hill he built a small building that was about 10 X 10 interior size. He built the floor and walls out of stone and put a cedar roof on it with a controllable vent.
    Just down the hill about 15 feet, he built a small fire "house" out of the same stone. He'd mix dry and green alder to produce the smoke and it would flow up through a small tunnel made of stone.
    He made the best sausages and had a very nice set up. I'd love to have access to enough stone to make one like it.