Smoke House question

Discussion in 'The Great Outdoors' started by cowgirlone, Jan 3, 2007.

  1. cowgirlone

    cowgirlone Well-Known Member

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    If you were building a portable smoke house, what materials would you use.....besides a fridge or freezer?

    Also, what features would you like to have?

    Thanks for any ideas! :)

    By portable, I mean I want to be able to move it anyplace on the farm if needed. I would also like it to be large enough to cold smoke hams and bacon from 2 hogs at a time.
     
  2. moonwolf

    moonwolf Well-Known Member

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    The inside of a hot water tank can make a decent portable smoker.
     

  3. cowgirlone

    cowgirlone Well-Known Member

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    That might work moonwolf, but would it be big enough to do 2 hogs at one time?

    I don't know how big hot water heaters are! :eek:
     
  4. TNHermit

    TNHermit Well-Known Member Supporter

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    GO to a place that builds propane tanks. We buy 250 gal tanks for 40.00. Put some legs,a door,some hang rods and a hole in the bottom for a 6" pipe and a hole in the top for chimney. You can build a fire underneath and funnel the smoke into it. Or build a fire away from it and funnel cold smoke in it.
     
  5. moonwolf

    moonwolf Well-Known Member

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    no, not big enough for 2 hogs. I'm thinking of those 60 gallon tanks inside a hot water heater. They might hold about a good part of a hog, but maybe you could get 2 of them on the go or something like that? It's a good way to recycle. I've used the tanks also cut in half to use as a scalder for large turkeys when picking their feathers off.
     
  6. moonwolf

    moonwolf Well-Known Member

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    I just thought of something. A 200 gal oil tank might be fashioned into a usable smoker if you can get ahold of one. One with a stand you could probably put some metal wheels (locking) on to make it portable? just an idea.
     
  7. tinknal

    tinknal Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Cowgirl, Mine is made out of an old van and a woodstove. It's a cold smoker. PM me if you want details. I regularily smoke 2 hogs worth of hams and bacons.
     
  8. cowgirlone

    cowgirlone Well-Known Member

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    Thanks for the ideas!
    I know there are a lot of propane tanks and oil tanks around here, maybe I could find a good one and put it on wheels.

    Tinknal, your van sounds great, I bet it has lots of room. Do you have any pictures I could check out?



    I have a hot smoker, that will do an 80 lb pig...if I remove the head and feet.
    It will cold smoke my bacon, but there isn't enough room to cold smoke my hams.
    We usually butcher 2 at a time and I have to use a barrel/trench set up for the hams.

    I'd just like to do them all together. :)
     
  9. Could you build like a 4 X 8 old time wooden smoke house on skids? Use a tractor to drag whereever you need it?
     
  10. tinknal

    tinknal Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I don't have any pics handy, but pretty simple to describe. It's an old full size van with double doors on the back. I stripped it down to steel and glass behind the front seats and then built a wall behind the seats. The stove sits behind the van, and the stovepipe goes into a hole in the door. I use the other door for access. I shot some holes in the roof for ventilation and ran a couple of pieces of re-rod side to side to hang the meat on.
     
  11. cowgirlone

    cowgirlone Well-Known Member

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    Ha! That sounds great tinknal! I like the way you shot holes into the roof for ventilation. :)
    What type of stove pipe did you use?


    r.h., the wooden one on a skid sounds do-able..........what kind of wood would you recommend? I have some untreated framing lumber for starters. Any ideas for the sides and top?


    Thank you folks for the ideas, I appreciate the help! :)
     
  12. Cowgirl, the only smoke house I am familiar with is my grandma and grandpa's old smoke house. It was made with just rough cut native lumber. 2 X 4 frames with 1" planks surrounding it. Plank roof decking with roll roofing on top. It was about 6 X 10 building that just set a few feet from the backdoor. I can't really remember it having a smoke stack as there was plenty of ventilation between the wall planks. I do remember a shelf in the corner by the door attached to the wall. This was to lay the meat on to salt down before hanging. Under the shelf they kept the barrel of curing salt.

    It seem to me like grandpa would build a fire in a bucket and let it burn down to hot coals, then place wood chunks that have been soaking in water into the hot coals. Place a loose lid on the bucket so it will smolder and then place the bucket inside the door. Don't know if he done that once a day or twice. But I do remember following grandma inside and watching her cut slices off a half pig hanging on the rafters. She would cut a few slices off, enough for the meal she was prepareing, and then she would rub more salt back on the fresh cut pig.

    Maybe if you could build something similar on a smaller scale and on skids, it might work for you. Let us know which ever way you go and tell us how it's doing. R.H.
     
  13. TNHermit

    TNHermit Well-Known Member Supporter

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    IT was about 8 ft sq and you could build a fire in it and still do a cold smoke since the meat was hung so high and you could keep a cool fire



    [​IMG]
     
  14. cowgirlone

    cowgirlone Well-Known Member

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    TNHermit, that's a NICE one! :)

    r.h. your grandma and grandpa's smoke house sounds like just what I need.
    I have been thinking about a separate fire/smoke box outside..........you and TNHermit have a point, something that big I should be able to make the smoke right inside and still keep it cool.
    THANKS!! :)
     
  15. GREENCOUNTYPETE

    GREENCOUNTYPETE Moderator Staff Member

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    most of the pig roasters around here are 230 gallon fuel oil tanks
    with a tray on each side for charcoil and a spit that rotates.

    my dad has a smoker that is a large barrel with a smaller barrel for the fire mounted low on the one end there is an ajustable vent to controll how much air the fire getts and a chiminy on the other end that has a damper on it to keep help regulate it.
    this horizontal smoker is much better than the vertical ones he used to have
    because heat rises it was hard to keep temp low when the food was above it
    but with the fire to the side it works much better

    how about a fule oil tank layed on its side with a hatch cut and hinged
    so that it opens to ends as 2 smaller doors then a hole cut at one end and a fire box welded up to it and a chimny at the other set the hole thing on an old trailer and pull it where ever you like
     
  16. tinknal

    tinknal Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Just the regular sheet metal type stovepipe.
     
  17. sleeps723

    sleeps723 Well-Known Member

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    i have seen an old milk and ice cream truck turned into a smoker, it had the fire box on the outside.
     
  18. insanity

    insanity Well-Known Member

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    When i get where im going. Im going to build a simple tin sided building with a fire in the middle of the floor for hot smoke. And use an old wood stove piped in for cold smoking.

    Ive used pressure treated landscaping timbers for skids on shed and such that i may want to move later. They last a long time.
     
  19. Clifford

    Clifford Love it, or leave it...

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    Made mine out of an old 275 gallon fuel oil tank. It is on metal pipe legs. When I want to move it I strap a tow strap around it and pick it up with the tractor loader. It's quite portable.

    I cut the door into the large front and had a pice of 1/8" sheetmetal cut and welded it on hinges. Put in racks and slots for rods/dowels (for hanging sausage). The door is large enough to accept hams, bacon and turkeys.
     
  20. Cowgirl, you got me interested in building one now. I'm just not sure if it stays cold enough to use one anymore. Seems we have such mild winters here in Oklahoma anymore. But I would love to walk inside and veiw the hams and bacon curing.