Pellet trouble

Discussion in 'Info and Practices' started by jeffro510, Dec 20, 2014.

  1. I recently got the amazenproducts pellet tray. I'm following the directions as read, but the pellets won't stay smoldering. I have the tray in the bottom of a barrel pit, resting on expanded metal, with a light amount of airflow. I've cold smoked with it three times now and all three times they've stopped smoking after just a couple of inches or maybe three hours max. Any ideas?
  2. timberjet

    timberjet Master of the Pit

    I have heard the tube works better in a UDS if that is what you have. What are you smoking? Is anything dripping on it? How cold is it etc.... I see this is your first post. It helps us to know more information so we can help you better to figure out the problem and get a solution for you. You should also stop by roll call and introduce yourself. If you add a location to your profile we can help you out better too. Happy smoking. timber.
    jeffro510 likes this.
  3. Sorry I didn't do that prior to this thread, but it's done now. I'm on the central gulf coast in south Texas. The temps here have been pretty mild. I'd say upper fifties to mid sixties all three times, fairly humid though. I'm just cold smoking nuts and cheeses, so nothing is dripping. I was using one of those cheapo horizontal barrel pits, but I have a master built electric on the way. I store the pellets in zip lock bags inside the house & they are amazen brand. A buddy suggested drying the pellets in the oven for about thirty minutes prior to using them. Any thought on that?
  4. I should also add that I have the damper cracked open about four inches and the smoke stack is open also.
  5. cueinco

    cueinco Smoke Blower

    Some folks on the forum have mentioned "drying" the pellets in a microwave before lighting. We don't have humidity to speak of in this neck of the woods, so I've never done it. 
  6. I always put mine in the microwave for 1 min. Then I stir them and wait 5 min fallowed by 1 more min in the microwave. Then I look at the clock and spend 15 Min getting it going before I put it in. As soon as I skit the 15 min I get reminded by it going out that I am not taking enough time.

    Happy smoken.

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  7. bear55

    bear55 Master of the Pit

    Ditto on what David said.  You also need a decent air flow so stack should be open and perhaps other vents open as well.
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  8. timberjet

    timberjet Master of the Pit

    Those boys got you covered. Happy smokin
  9. ibbones

    ibbones Meat Mopper

    Jeffro, I am also in the Gulf Coast and deal with the humidity.  I am hit and miss for keeping the pellets lit.  Sometimes they work really well and today, I had to take the tray out two different times to relight.  I lite the pellets and let them burn for 15-30 minutes before I put them in the smoker.    But I would not go without my AMNPS because it just makes good smoke.

    Don't give up.
    jeffro510 likes this.
  10. I really appreciate all the help, fellas. I think I might try the tube and dust if drying the pellets doesn't work. I see you're in Victoria, ibbones. I am too. Been pretty soupy here tonight, & I think that might be a big part of the problem, don't you?
  11. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Dry the pellets in the oven at 275 for 1-2 hours first, then they will light and stay burning.... Light them, let them burn for 2-3 minutes, then blow on them through a straw....... Place pellets in the AMNPS, then dry... That's what I do....


    Last edited: Dec 21, 2014
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  12. ibbones

    ibbones Meat Mopper

    Jeffro...yes the weather plays a big part.  even though the pellets are inside the smoker, It's hot and should be dry, I still have a hard time keeping them lit sometimes.  Keep trying cause it's worth it.

    Victoria...yes.  All my life.

    I'm hoping it gets cool enough to cold smoke some cheese soon.  Never done it.
    jeffro510 likes this.
  13. Cold smoking some medium cheddar, mixed nuts, sea salt and hard boiled eggs tonight myself. As long as the temp in the smoker stays under 90, I have found its successful. Although, some cooler temps would make it better and easier. I tried the microwaving the pellet truck. It didn't seem to make a difference. But I did mix my cherry with oak. It produced more smoke, but didn't seem to make a difference with keeping it lit.
  14. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

  15. cmayna

    cmayna Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Agree with Dave, Is this a vertical barrel smoker?  If so, what type of vents are there at the bottom?
  16. It's just a horizontal cheapie pit acting as a cold smokehouse of sorts. In the photos it's smoking, but it's probably the fourth time I've had to light it. This time I opened the damper up as far as it'll go, hoping it'll make a difference. I'm frustrated as hell with the AMNPS right now!!![​IMG]
  17. I just checked the weather and it shows 96% relative humidity. I'm assuming that's the issue.
  18. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Dry the pellets in the oven at 275 for 1-2 hours first, then they will light and stay burning.
  19. cmayna

    cmayna Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I assume no intake vents on the floor of the smoker?  Before I light the pellets, I quickly run my torch up and down each row of the AMNPS or AMNTS 2-3 times without letter the flames ignite the pellets to help dry them out.  Then I quickly light one end. 
  20. Right, no vents on floor.

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