Is there a preferred location for the exhaust stack or stacks on a home built large smoker? On the end walls or on the top? Past experience smoking fish is if you exhaust out the top the high humidity seems to condense there and tend to drip back down on the fish, causing discoloration and or flavor problems.
Exhaust stack location
SmokingMeatForums.com Top Picks
Ive always used side vents on my mullet smoker cabinets, no exhaust stack, just a pie vent on each side about 6 inches from the top for the exact reason about the condensation ( liquid smoke taste) .... but on my BBQ cookers, running at higher temps for pork and beef I dont have the same problem ( 275-300 for pork/beef vs 200- 225 for the mullet) but either way id try to keep the stack from being directly over the food.
Thanks for the reassurance, I think I'll do the end wall idea. I will be using this smoker with meat as well, I just wont use the same racks, dedicate a few for meat only. Therefor no fish taste transfer, I hope....
Mostly mullet, I can smoke about 100 pounds of whole fish at a time, takes all day basically. I use red bay wood with the leaf branches also. I'm working on a at least double that capacity smoker right now. If you ever head over to New Smyrna Beach on the weekend you can stop by, I'm on Hwy. 44 in Samsula.
On the east coast near the beach it's called red bay, inland it's white bay, swamp bay is a laurel bay. The old timers swore by this wood and leaves for it's robust and unique flavor. You have to remove the bark to prevent tannic acid depositing into the meat, which is true for any type of excellent BQQ results. Too bad there's an ambrosia beetle attacking them as we speak, you can Google about it.