how big is too big?

Discussion in 'Smoke Houses' started by omahasmoker, Apr 11, 2010.

  1. omahasmoker

    omahasmoker Smoke Blower

    i have been looking at other peoples smokehouse builds and i have been impressed. i have a GOSM big block and i love it but i rapidly run out of room when doing event smoking.

    i am wondering if my current plans for a smokehouse with 24x30 inch racks might be a bit too much. has anybody built one that big?

    i was thinking with 8 or so racks that size i could do 120 pieces of chicken and some pans of beans at the same time. with heat convection being what it is, i may be pushing the limit unless i want to go to forced air circulation with either internal fans or external ducts.
  2. pops6927

    pops6927 Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Mine is 6' tall and 3' x 3' outside dimensions, approx ½" less inside. It can get up to 285° easily. See my smokehouse thread at the bottom of my post (2nd thread, 1st is ham thread).
  3. bmudd14474

    bmudd14474 Smoking Guru Staff Member Administrator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Its only too big if you can't fill it. The bigger the smoker the bigger the crowd you can feed. IF YOU BUILD IT THEY WILL COME [​IMG]
  4. omahasmoker

    omahasmoker Smoke Blower

    OK. but i wonder how well my temps will hold at the bottom of the smoker vs the top. i have seen how much it can vary in my GOSM big block and i worry about underdone chicken near the bottom because this will be a much larger and taller space to heat.
  5. mgnorcal

    mgnorcal Meat Mopper SMF Premier Member

    No direct experience, but I agree air-flow and even-ness of cooking would be a problem.
    Rotating your grates is one way to even things out, but it would be nice to not need to.
    A small circulating fan would do wonders. I've been looking for something like that. So far I've not been able to find anything suitable that will work cooking temps.
  6. omahasmoker

    omahasmoker Smoke Blower

    i am looking at all-weather sealed motors with 8 inch shafts. the motor would be mounted outside on the top of the smoker. i would run the shaft through the "roof" and mount a 6 inch fan blade on the end of the shaft. there would be a run of duct that ran down the inside of the smoker itself a ways and then let the air out at a lower level. maybe i could poke holes in it and let it out at multiple spots. you could always shorten or lengthen the duct or add a damper to it to adjust the airflow.

    you would probably need to take it apart and clean it yearly. but i think it would keep the internal temps more even. in my GOSM big block, the temp is all over the place all the time.
  7. walle

    walle Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Well said, bmudd. My smoker is 4' high, 3' wide, 2' deep, giving me 12sq feet of cooking on two racks. NEVER did I think I would over load this baby... well I DID with approximately 120 chicken thighs... I'll be adding at least another rack this summer as I have plenty of room.

    omaha, yep - lots of smokers out there that are that big or bigger.
  8. rstr hunter

    rstr hunter Smoking Fanatic

    Anything over 2000 sq ft is just showing off [​IMG]

    I'm sure it's like anyother kind of thing build a little bigger than you think you'll ever use and you'll still find you built too small.
  9. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Like Brian says if you smoke it they will come. And come they will out of the wood works too. Now your smoker only need to be alittle bigger then the biggest smoke that you think you will do then make it alittle bigger for the future of smoking habits change and then you can smoke more and more.[​IMG] I would have to say if you can walk into it and turn around and close the door thats probably to big.
  10. gpannther

    gpannther Newbie

    i built my smoke house my self and it is 6' tall 30" wide and 22" deep. built out of cedar 1"x6" slats.

    currently i am only using four racks that i have put in it and one as a water pan rack..

    my heat source comes from a turkey burner propane burner kit that i bought. i modified it by cutting

    6 inches off each leg to lower it from my water pans. wood chip kettle is a 9" cast iron dutch oven

    modified and drilled.

    i love my smoke house and could not be happier. takes a little longer to heat up but works great.

    the only thing i am thinking of doing is cutting the door into two pieces so i do not have to open the entire

    door and loose all my heat and smoke. thinking right at the bottom of the water pans.

    hope it helps

  11. bowtieracin

    bowtieracin Smoke Blower

    I have an old commercial s.s fridge that i can step in turn around and i'm 6'2'' 350lbs use it all the time for deer sausage and everything else.

    Sorry i guess it's to big. my bad! thats ok i have 3 others of smaller sizes to choose from when needed.

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