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weather conditions

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

how much does the cold and wind effect the smoking process here in MN?

post #2 of 19

Welcome aboard!


Ambients such as temp and wind can drive you crazy in the BBQ or Smoking thing.


Let us know more about your equipment, your smoking environment, and there are lots of experts here waiting to help you!


Good luck and good smoking.

post #3 of 19

Welcome to the SMF Family...There are lots of MN guys hanging out here, Help should arrive soon...JJ

post #4 of 19

welcome1.gif   Glad to have you with us!

post #5 of 19


This site has tons of info.

I suggest you spend some time reading all the different forums and the WIKIs.

Ask questions and use the handy dandy search tool for specific interests!!

Take the awesome free E-Course!!!

Have a great day!!!

      Make bacon the easy way!!


post #6 of 19
Thread Starter 

I have a homemade smoker. A plywood box with vents on each side, one side down low, the other side up high. The front side lifts up in two parts. the lower 5 inches first to access the heat controls and the the whole front opens to access the smoking chamber. I use 2 electric hot plates for heat. On one I put a cast iron pan for wood chips and on the other I put a 2 qt pan filled with small rocks, wrapped in foil and a 8 in foil pan on top of that for my water.

Right now I have it in my garage with the door partly open for ventilation.I'd like to move it outside, but with winter in MN moving in I don't know that I would be able to keep the temps up where they need to be.

post #7 of 19

 welcome1.gif to SMF


I live in FL so I don't have any issues with the cold, but it sounds like you'll have a hard time keeping temps with that type of smoker and heat source.


post #8 of 19

I'm thinking some good sized wheels on that puppy?  Out for summer and in for winter?


Good luck and good smoking.

post #9 of 19

Smoke in Mn, Have you tried to make a wind block yet(of Plywood)?  Does a good job of detering the wind factor and helps keep the wind from blowing the heat away as fast. You could gain some heat retention this way.


What kind of Smoker do you have, If you could get some insulation(wrapped),you could wrap the smoker to increase the cooking temps.


Just thinking............


Have fun and..........

post #10 of 19

I am from MN and live just across the river in Fargo now and I smoke all winter long. I actually smoke more in the winter then in the summer because I am not as busy running every weekend like in the summer. It's not as enjoyable in the winter but you learn to adapt. I have two propane rigs and one UDS charcoal burner and I am able to use all three of them without any issues. If you have an electric unit you may run into issues if you don't have a large enough watt burner in the smoker. Also as was mentioned above wind can play a factor but that is all year around. I would definitely invest in building a wind break or if you are like me I am able to get my smoker in the back yard behind the garage and house and it is pretty well protected. I have also started smoking in my garage which is really nice then I don't have any wind at all. I open the back door and the window and then crack the garage door so that I get some air flow and the smoke gets sucked outside. I think that is how I am going to be doing most of my smoking this winter. Best of luck to you.

post #11 of 19

I hear you about the temps up in ND, I worked there for a while.


Good idea about smoking in the garage.  Unfortunately, I don't have the room available.  Since I live in Texas, the temperature is not my biggest headache.  I agree about the wind break, even plywood works, but it blew over and I damaged one of the home boss's plants. wife.gif


NOW I just use a couple of tarps and some tarp clips, my buddy uses sheets of foam insulation, but tarps were easier to use for me.   Either way WELCOME and take advantage of all the people and resources available on SMF.

post #12 of 19

In MN, I would think getting your frozen fingers to work is the first problem!!!


Just kidding.


I would definitely try to rig up some sort of wind break.

Our MES smokers are insulated well, but the wind can really play the devil with the draft.

Your's isn't insulated, so you really need some sort of wind break, and maybe a welding blanket too, but don't block your vents.




post #13 of 19
Thread Starter 

Thanks everyone. I do have my smoker int the garage, but need to keep the door open about 6 to 12 inches, so the cold still comes in. I've been thinking about doing some kind of insulation. The foam insulation sounds like t might work the best or else the welding blanket. Where would I get one of those?



post #14 of 19

Welcome to Smf glad that you joined us...I am in Louisiana but if I had that problem I would leave it in my garage if possible and rig me a pipe on my stack that would exhust to the outside of the garage kinda like Nepas used to have when he lived in Pa. Maybe he has some pics that he can post up when he shows up on here....

post #15 of 19

Welcome to SMF glad you can join us.  We are big on Pics and love to help everyone out.  Remember the only question that is dumb is one not asked.  You will not find a friendlier place to talk Que on the web.

post #16 of 19

Welcome To SMF!

Insulation can be found cheapest at Menards, and the cheapest place to find a welding blanket is Harbor Freight.  Not sure why you need a welding blanket, cuz your box temps won;t get that high.  Why not try a couple moving blankets?


Your biggest enemy is the wind.  It will suck all the available heat away from your smoker.

You may find that the (2) hot plates do not put out enough btu's for winter.

I know Ross uses a propane burner, and Pops posted a burner for his outdoor plywood smoker.  You should be able to find on at Northern Tool


Good Luck and keep us posted!




No Creosote! A-Maze-N Smokers

post #17 of 19

Hey Smoke in MN2, did you get your problems sorted out?

post #18 of 19
Thread Starter 

Okay! Seems the low temp problems are more from the fact that the cheap hot plates I have in my smoker are wimping out on me already!

After hours of research both on the WWW and here, I have decided to get a Master Forge Double Door Propane Smoker. Got it home and assembled but haven't fired it up yet. Got a fridge full of turkey right now! Can't justify smoking anything else right now!

post #19 of 19


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