Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by mulepackin, Jan 8, 2008.

  1. mulepackin

    mulepackin OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Have any of you that have built your own electrics installed a circulation fan? I would like to install one on my freezer conversion to circulate both air and smoke to help eliminate temp zone differences and dead spots. I have a 4 in. computer fan, its a little fast, but it will tolerate a rheostat, to slow it down. My question is where to install it. I was thinking of trying it at the bottom of the smoker, held away from the back wall about an inch or so. I'm worried it may blow smoke back into the generation box. I am also considering placing it in the smoke generator somewhere too. I know pics of my smoker would help and I'll try to get some. Any thoughts are appreciated.
  2. morkdach

    morkdach OTBS Member

    lets see some pics that would help with ideas
  3. mulepackin

    mulepackin OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Heres pics of my smoker.
    This might help convey what it is I'm thinking of doing:
  4. mulepackin

    mulepackin OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I'm leaning toward mounting it on the outside of the smoke generator on the side opposite of the duct. I still need to throttle it down and baffle it some I think.
  5. mulepackin

    mulepackin OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I think I have finally settled on a plan for my blower, at least to try. I intend to remove the 3" elbow duct from the top of my smoke generator, and replace it with a 3" duct T (I have to make the T as I can't find one in any hardware store or home center). The end near the smoker will attach just like before. I will mount the fan on the opposite end. I hope this will draw smoke and push it into the smoker, and allow enough air movement within the smoker to eliminate the dead spots. I think this will not blow air out of the cracks of the smoke generator, or stir up any ash. It will also keep the fan away from the heat more, to prolong its life. I will post some pics when I get it done.
  6. mulepackin

    mulepackin OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Well I got my blower project finished. I still need to test it with smoke, but I think it will work. I had hoped the air flow would blow straight across the top of the T and pull smoke from the smoke box, sort of a venturi effect. However since all duct was the same the smoke blew down the T as much as across, which wouldn't have worked. I installed a bit of a diverter into the T, to narrow the passage a bit and create some lift. This seems to have made all the difference. The fan is a 4 in. computer fan, its installed in a project box from radio shack, I cut out a piece of furnace filter from a disposable and there is just enough room in the box for the fan and the filter. I am using a regular light switch dimmer for my rheostat, but between the filter, and reduction to 3 inches, I think the flow will be about right with the fan at full throttle.
  7. That looks real good.

    Please let us know how it handles.
  8. Will that be blowing in outside air? Seems like it would be hard to maintain your temperature.

    I saw a circulating blower out of an old microwave once that looked like it might work also. I would think a fan would be really useful if you had the whole smoker full of jerky.
  9. longshot

    longshot OTBS Member

    let us know how it works. Looking at it I would imagine while moving the air you would cool the smoke thereby making it not circulate inside the smoker as it would be heavier and denser than the air in the smoker. The particulate in the smoke would then settle into the bottom of the chamber and reduce the efficiency of the smoker overall. Just an idea but wouldn't it be better to induct into the generator?
    Hope I'm wrong, let me know.

  10. mulepackin

    mulepackin OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I am worried about cool, outside air being a problem. I will have to see. I may just use it intermittently, just to gently move the air around some. I may have to try to find some type of intermittent, on-off switch.

    Longshot, I don't think pushing the smoke from the smoke generator to the smoker will cool it. When it traveled passively, it didn't cool, now it will move more quickly, and should get stirred around inside the smoker along with warm air current, draft, and now fan movement. I'm not totally sure what you mean by inducting into the generator. Two things I want to avoid are 1)smoke moving past the fan itself. I'm sure the fan will get gunked up quickly with smoke, moisture, etc. and 2) I didn't want the fan exposed to the heat within the smoker itself. It may hold up, but didn't want to chance this. This is definitely a work in progress, and may not work at all. I will keep you posted.
  11. Mulepackin

    Good looking smoker there! I don't have one like that, but I can always dream can't I? At any rate I wonder if you could create turbulence inside that box by using say a baffle/diverter plate over the heating element that would kind of direct the heat up along the back wall. And then along the back wall install deflectors at various ramdom, predetermined or even adjustable points, that would throw the rising heat and smoke into the chamber as desired. Inside of an air flow a small airfoil would seem to create great turbulence. I would also think that stack placement, dampering and size can vary internal convections.

    If I were to add a fan I would also shoot for the venturi effect to keep the fan out of the heat and smoke stream, but maybe consider the exaust stack as the placed to install? I would be careful not to draw too much air across the smoking wood by use of dampers and maybe increase the airflow more to the general area of the heating element, again with well placed dampers.

    It would seem that ducting (Including maybe even multiple smoke ports), baffles, dampers and general passive design elements should be able to do the trick as far as helping to even out temps and smoke concetrations in the chamber, but almost every smoker is gonna have its sweet spot.

    Great pics, now we need to see that baby slam packed full of meat!
  12. I'm with Zap on this one. A baffle plate in that first tray position. Sheetmetal with 2 rounds of 00 buck 12Ga at 25 yards oughta work mighty fine ;{)
  13. Just a thought if this one doesn't work for you. I seen I think on allied kenco's website, they had a fan setup that went on the exhaust stack of the cookshack smokers. It was from cookshack. So I am guessing it is something that cookshack has done with their smokers. I am guessing that it is designed to handle the smoke. Just my 2 cents.


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