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Dakotah water stuffer


Smoke Blower
Joined Sep 22, 2017
Anyone that runs a Dakotah or similar style homemade version water stuffer have any tips and tricks for loading the cylinder? I put my new 10 lb version to work yesterday on 68 lbs of venison sausage and I found it difficult to get it packed tightly so ended up with quite a bit of air coming through. I didnt anticipate being up to my shoulder blades in that thing trying to get the meat packed nice and tight. Once I got it loaded I enjoyed how it ran but kind of a pain to load meat. Any ideas out there to make that job a bit easier?


Epic Pitmaster
Staff member
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Group Lead
Joined Dec 25, 2010
I had a Dakotah and another type water stuffer.
Dont pack the meat in the tube, let the piston do the compacting as it pushes.


Smoking Guru
OTBS Member
Joined Apr 27, 2017
Make large meat balls just smaller than the diameter of the stuffer hopper, then throw the meat balls into the hopper with two hands. The force will compact the meat enough to force most of the air out.

I don't have a Dakotah and have never used one, but this works with most stuffers for getting the meat packed into the hopper.


Smoking Fanatic
OTBS Member
Joined Aug 11, 2015
Because of the small diameter, I suggest you use a tamper to punch down the center and then fold the edges to the center and punch center down again. Repeat as neccessary.
I use a similar method (using my fist) loading a much larger stuffer at work, where air pockets will have far messier consequences. I usually have very good results.

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