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Beef Jerkey in a RFS

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

I have a large 250 gallon fuel tank smoker.  I've been looking at different ways of smoking jerkey but they all seem to be over direct heat.  Does anyone have any advice on how to make jerkey in a RFS?  I would like a decent start before I ruin a bunch of meat.

post #2 of 10
Get the RF idling along at 160 deg F.... have the jerky on cooling racks and put them on the food racks... rotate racks.... does your jerky recipe have cure #1 in it.... does your firebox have upper air inlets like the picture to adjust the temp in the cook chamber..... they are really handy to cool down a cook chamber and adjust the temperature....

post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 

I'm at work but I will try to post pictures of my smoker later.  It's ancient and was not built by anyone who knew what they were doing.  The tank is basically cut in half with a wall in the middle.  Half is my food chamber the entire other half is fire box.  It's what I learned to smoke on.  Only controls I have as far as heat go is leaving wood box door open, opening cook chamber door slightly, and a 6 inch vent I can screw in and out at the bottom of fire box.  It's actually quite impressive the stuff I manage to cook after seeing some of the awesome smokers on here.

post #4 of 10
Sounds like a somewhat "Jambo" design...... They work well..... Some pics and we can help you get it smoking first class...

Check out smoking-aces build... He is very happy with it's performance..

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

Took a couple days but here's my 30 year old little smoker that could.


The foil to block the rust hole.


cooking chamber


bottom of cooking chamber


hard to see but top of cooking chamber where the smoke goes over


door that I shove a tin strip in the top of to help control air flow




Fire box


warming rack

post #6 of 10
Looks as if the smoker has seen a good life... maybe time to retire it.... There could be lots of salvageable parts from it to reuse... Some of the steel may be rusted to the point, there's not much left to weld to... You have a tough call to make here... what to save, what to reuse....
If you are just wanting to make jerky, look at other smoker builds in the smoker section... many can be made pretty easy for darn near nothing but used stuff... Pallets for wooden smoke houses... 55 gallon barrels for Ugly Drum Smokers...

post #7 of 10

I make jerky on my RF, Like Dave said looks like it has seen better days, you got your money's worth 30 years



post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 

It's definitely a battle every time I cook.  That huge FB that takes up half the smoker and holes in it make it a constant battle to maintain 225 and it takes a bunch of wood every time.  At the risk of damage to my man card I will say my wife just graduated from welding school and I have 2 more tanks like that.  She's going to build one once we get her a mig welder (her tool of choice I know nothing about welding) and a better torch.  

post #9 of 10

That's Cool   Congrats to her  "and you ---  new smoker"   My #2 son and I build a new smoker or two every year, his wife will do some of the weld out.



post #10 of 10
PLASMA torch is the only way to go.... I've got a Hypertherm plasma... it's sweet, fast and very inexpensive to operate.... I also have Ox/Acetylene for heating and bending stuff...
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