Finned Strip Heater

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by justpassingthru, Jan 28, 2010.

  1. justpassingthru

    justpassingthru Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    I would like to install a finned strip heater in my GOSM to smoke jerky, what I would like to know is what wattage should I buy?

    Here’s what’s available at Granger: 100, 250, 300, 450, 500, 750, 1000, 1250, or 1500

    Can someone that has an electric smoker and smokes jerky tell me what their wattage is?

    Thanks,

    Gene
     
  2. mulepackin

    mulepackin Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Lots of questions need answered first. What size is your smoker, material, insulation, type of thermo control are you planning?
     
  3. txbigred

    txbigred Meat Mopper

    My big Cabelas unit is 1600 watts, and it is insulated. what ever you decide on, try to rig up a fan to circulate the air, it will help with drying the meat evenly.

    Dave
     
  4. justpassingthru

    justpassingthru Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Mulepackin, it a Gosm Big Block, 36x24x16, no insulation, thermo control will all be bought here.

    Dave, Thanks and I'm planning on using a fan out of a computer.

    Gene
     
  5. mulepackin

    mulepackin Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I would think a 1000 watt would provide plenty of heat for your unit in your circumstances (if using it there, ambient temps shouldn't affect you as much as colder climes). However, the larger the heater, the less it will have to cycle to maintain temp, and the quicker your recovery, so if you can swing it go big. I'm anxious to see how you incorporate your fan. I used one on my freezer conversion. Set up as a pusher between my smoke generator and the freezer. Didn't work as I hoped. It's sitting in the shop right now, until I can figure out a better plan.
     
  6. phil brown

    phil brown Fire Starter

    For jerky you don't need a lot of heat, but you do need a lot of airflow. You want to dry the meat, but not cook it. I'm not really sure how to achieve that with a GOSM, maybe hook up an air tank to the gas line? In any case, a heating element will help to dry out the air; how much power you need will be directly proportionate to how much air is moving through the smoker.
     
  7. justpassingthru

    justpassingthru Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Mulepackin, thanks for the advice, I've been scratching my head on whether to install a 1250 watt on the back or two 750 watt strips, one on each side.

    Then fan will definitely need a control to regulate the speed, out of the computer they move too much air, I'm wondering where to place it, on the sides or maybe on top?

    Gene
     
  8. justpassingthru

    justpassingthru Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Phil Brown, care to explain what you know about airflow and where would be the most effective place for fan placement?

    Gene
     
  9. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I was thinking about your build?!?!?!?

    If you install (2) 750 watt heaters, you could install a switch to turn (1) or Both on. Essentially, you could have a "High" and "Low" setting.

    There are times where you may just want to keep a steady low heat and times where you want it Hot Fast.

    Good Luck!


    TJ
     
  10. smokingohiobutcher

    smokingohiobutcher Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I've been thinking about putting a fan in my smoker and was resaershing the idea of a convection oven fan. should be able to handle the heat and move just the right amount of air. I'm just not too sure how to wire it to plug it into the wall???
    http://www.appliancezone.com/ShowProduct.aspx?ID=15373
    SOB
     
  11. justpassingthru

    justpassingthru Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    TJohnson, That's what I was thinking, it's a propane GOSM, I'm trying to bring the temps below 150° for smoking jerky and cheese.

    SmokingOhioButcher, That would probably work better than a computer fan, where would you mount it, on the side or on top?

    There are websites that can show you how to wire it, try googling 'how to wire a fan.'

    Gene
     
  12. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

  13. mulepackin

    mulepackin Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    You pretty much have to set your fan up so that it "pushes" the air. You don't want smokey air circulating around the fan. It will eventually clog and cover it, and disable it. The other problem is introducing cool air which then needs more heat to maintain temps. Not so much of an issue with jerky or cold smokes, but anything hotter, it will be an issue.
     
  14. justpassingthru

    justpassingthru Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    TJohnson, I'm sure that would work, but I'm trying to save money and use what is on hand, ...a dead computer.

    mulepackin, yes I will definitely use it to 'push' air, I've pretty much decided to go with two 750 watts heaters mounted on the sides and mount the fan on the back.

    Thanks for the help,

    Gene
     
  15. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Gene,

    I just made a "Cold Smoker" for my MES, and installed a computer fan that I had laying around.

    This thing looked like a freeking diesel truck spewing smoke!!!

    Turns out that this little 4"x4" fan put out 40 cfm.

    You need to be around 10 cfm.

    Most computer fans run off 12v and you could hook it up to a 6v transformer and maybe cut the cfm, but not positive.

    I'm gonna try that with mine.


    Todd
     

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