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About to attempt my first cook

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

Name is Jerry Borque, live in Athens, Texas. I worked in the meat business for 50 years as a meat cutter in supermarkets and in the meat packing business for 27 years (never worked in smoked or processed meats). I retired 5 years ago after some heart trouble but that seems to be behind me now. Like a lot of you I wish I was back at work.


Just about completed converting a 1958 GE refrigerator to a smoker with a 1500 watt hot plate as a heat source/smoke generator. I will post pics tonight when the wife comes home to take them. My hand-me-down camera doesn't take good pics. Please feel free to advise on any changes you recommend when you see the pics. The primary use will be to smoke venison/pork sausage and summer sausage for my grand son and his buddies.


I tested the thing yesterday and I'm going to need some advise on smoke generation and temperature control.

I fired it up with both burners turned on and the temp went to 240 right away. I want to start at about 100-110 and slowly increase by 10 degrees or so until I hit 160 for a few minutes. Am I on the right track? Do any of you have any suggestions on heat? I know I can get to the top end but I need to know how to start out slow and increase the temperature slowly.


I plan on using a 10" cast iron to hold dry wood chips as my smoke source. I know a whisper of blue smoke is desirable, but that's about all I know. I need help from start to finish. Seemed to work pretty good yesterday. Used Oak chips and chunks and got a good wisp of light blue smoke. 


Everything I've read and seen on this site tells me its the best place to seek advise. I would sincerely appreciate any help you would and could give me. 



post #2 of 5

Welcome Jborque!!


I don't know if this will help you much, but here is an Index of all of my "Step by Steps" done with my Electric Smoker. They're all easy to follow:


Just click on "Bear's Step by Steps".




post #3 of 5

Welcome to the board, Jerry! Many people here have made refrigerator builds, use the Search here to find information.


Funny, when that fridge came off the assembly line in 58, nobody thought it would become a smoker.

post #4 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thanks Bear

post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 

You know Blue I thought the exact same thing when I was tearing the freezer out of that thing.

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