First post and a ?

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Original poster
Dec 18, 2013
Hello Everyone,

First post on SMF but have been lingering a while. Love seeing all of the different recipes here. Seems like there is a wealth of knowledge here on sausage making.

I am an avid deer hunter in MI and have been making my own snack sticks, summer sausages and brats for just over a year now. Mostly use the Hi Mountain kits and have had decent success using them. 

The summer sausage and brats seem to come out a lot better than my snack sticks. Texture of the meat seems to be about right, have a couple of different meat thermometers that I use to make sure that the IT doesn't get too hot. 2 diff thermometers in the smoker to make sure that the smoker itself isn't getting too hot either. Using a Masterbuilt 30 gas/charcoal smoker. 

The issue that I am having is with the casings. Been using 19 and 21MM collagen from a local butcher supply store. It seems that no matter how tight I pack them, the casings never bind with the meat. I purchased some soy protein to add to my next batch, hoping that might help a little bit. Does anyone else have issues with the collagen casings and snack sticks? I have been letting them bloom at room temp overnight and it still seems to have no effect. Like I said, taste is good, but getting sick of the casings on the snack sticks. 

Any help is much appreciated!
Are you letting them hang and come to room temp and air dry before putting in the smoker?
Search for posts from Nepas he has very detailed steps, great instructions, awesome recipes, and a lot of qview.
I followed his sausage process/recipes and have great success.
Turn on smoker to preheat at 130
While preheating, pull sausage from fridge and allow to hang and dry to get to room temp. After about 1hr my smoker is ready and sausage goes in at 130 for 1 to 2 hours checking for a dry outer casing. Then bump 10 degrees and roll smoke ever hour for the next 4. Stop raising smoker temp at 170 and wait till meat temp is 152. Pull and bloom hanging at room temp for two hours then in the fridge.
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I haven't been hanging them at room temp, but have been letting them come to room temp before throwing them on the smoker at around 100* for 1-1.5 hours to dry the casings off. Will have to get something set up to hang them. 

As far as the ice bath, I haven't done that with the sticks yet. The last batch I did, it was single digit temps out, so I decided to let them sit in the garage (probably 22-26*) for a few hours before letting them sit out over night. 

What I am hoping to achieve with the sticks, is to have the casing constrict with the meat. I haven't been able to get that part right yet. 
Eljen plowboy has you covered.

Maybe try a different brand of casings there are a few sponsors here on the forum you can get them from.

The sausage maker, or or try your local sporting goods store I just did the Hi mtn casings the other day and no problem.

I have done a lot of sticks and never had a problem,

this is how I do Mine

If you stuff the night before let hang in room temp for 1hr

If you mix, stuff and smoke all in one day no need for room temp

Preheat smoker to 110 - 120

Put sticks in smoker for 1 - 2hrs till dry (No Smoke this Step)

bump to 130 and add smoke now.

increase temp 10* each hr to 170 you can do smoke the whole time if you would like or for the first 3 or so hrs.

keep at 170 till sticks IT gets to 152 pull from smoker to house,

let bloom for 1hr or so

place in brown paper bag and put in fridge for 24hrs and then vac pac or package is reader supported and as an Amazon Associate, we may earn commissions from qualifying purchases.