I want to build a plywood smoker to do keilbasa and jerky!

Discussion in 'Other Builds' started by jalan43, Mar 26, 2012.

  1. jalan43

    jalan43 Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    OK,I need a bigger smoker to do keilbasa and jerky. The UDS is great for 25 lbs but at the rate I'm going I am going to do an average of 50 lbs at a time. Just in the planning stages now. I have an extra Cabelas 1500 watt element and would like to use that. I'm not sure how big of a cabinet it will heat. The highest I would ever need to get the cabinet to is roughly 180 degrees. Rough height will be six feet. I plan on making the outside of cabinet with plywood, then blue foam insulation board, and the interior will be covered with aluminum sheeting. I guess the real question is will the 1500 watts be enough for a cabinet 6 ft tall, 30 inches wide and 30 inches deep. I will never use this smoker for anything else but keilbasa and jerky. I'll fire up the UDS for everything else. I will also be using my Auberins controller to control the temps. If anyone has any input or advise,please speak up. There are no bad ideas! Thanks, Jeff.
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2012
  2. gersus

    gersus Smoking Fanatic

    My smokehouse is 33x 30 but just a little over 4' tall (inside dimensions). It's made with 2x4's so it's insulated pretty well. I use a 1500w element and it has worked great, even down to 30F outside. I don't run the temp any higher than 170 typically, but I could.
    So you may be able to use the electric heat source, as long as its insulated. Also it will take longer to get up to temp and regain temp if you open the door.

    Personally, I'd buy one of the northern tool burners. I've used one of those too and it works great! Gets up to temp in just a couple minutes! Difficult to keep the temps down though (130ish), especially if it's warm out so I switched. It's a great, inexpensive unit. Then you wouldn't have to insulate.

    Good luck!
  3. jalan43

    jalan43 Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    Thanks Gersus! I'm going to check out Northern tool to see what they have.
  4. Here's what i did...

    I built a tiny un-insulated smokehouse the size I wanted, 24x24x84, mostly for good sized cold smoked batches.
    But I can also smoke at the temperatures you want with a similar element by putting a stop (a 24X24 piece of metal with some small holes) inside the smokehouse to make the chamber smaller for warmer smokes, even in cold weather.
    Works like a charm!
  5. jalan43

    jalan43 Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    I like the idea of a stop. I was looking at other builds and someone had done that for smaller batches. I think I will be building a removable stop in mine too! Thanks Digging Dog Farm, Jeff
  6. It would be easy to insulate the area below the stop (and even the stop), without much trouble, if need be.
  7. jalan43

    jalan43 Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    Good idea!
  8. jckdanls 07

    jckdanls 07 Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    If your gonna go to the trouble and insulate half of it.. might as well do the whole thing...
  9. jalan43

    jalan43 Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    I planned on insulating the whole thing. Do you think the blue board is enough?

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