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Low temp hot smoking

Peter Stafford

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Hi there , new to this forum.

What are people's opinions on which is the best very controllable low temp hot smoker out there?, is it a case a getting a balk standard Bradley type thing or is it better to go with something that you can add a pid controller to say a pro Q (which I have), and by the way I have no idea how that works so my next question would be, do you know of any threads that could explain how my pro Q can be adapted as I am a little technically challenged!!, my intention is to make polish sausage which requires low temp smoking before other processes come into play.


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First of all Peter' welcome to the forum.

I would not go with a Bradley Smoker, as you wil find it very difficult to cold smoke with it.

If you are looking to  cold smoke with out any heat, then a simple Cardboard Box set up will work.


You can also use the Sieve Smoke Generator in your Pro Q.

If you need some heat, then your Pro Q, with a PID controller would work well, or look at something like the Thuros Cabinet, @David H


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Hi Peter, are you looking to start smoking your sausage at a low temp then gradually ramp up the heat so that it is finally cooked as well as smoked - as you would with a summer sausage ?  I've been after an electric smoker with this capability for a while but kicked back against the Bradley's as midday want to go down the bisquette route.  I've just bought a char broil deluxe electric smoker for less or about the same as a Bradley and although I'm just getting used to it, it's great.  It'll cook from 40 to 135 celcius, can be dialled up in 1 degree increments and has a built in temp probe with a cook to internal temp so it will cut out once your predetermined internal temp is met.  It's got all the functionality I want and more.  Not as much fun as cooking with fire, but more convenient when you don't have the time or inclination.

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Thanks for the replys yous two

Smokin M, I already have a cold smoker but thanks for the link,no my question is more to do with low hot, this is important when smoking polish sausage as fat will render out of the sausage if it is too hot, you therefore have to try and keep temp at between 154f-160f for optimum quality so temp control is pretty critical, I therefore need something that can maintain low temp and doesn't have sudden peaks. The Char broil looks possible Wet Spaniel but looks a little small? and unavailable at the moment by the looks of it?, nonetheless if it can hold a temp well it certainly could be in contention thanks.

Anyone else have experience of any other smokers which cook low temp?

Many thanks

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I wouldn't say it's that small, I could hang som summer sausage in it, but may me mine are a bit on the small side !!  They are in stock at several places from £315.00 

i have an American friend who cold smokes at much higher temps than I would for the same reason as you, all his bacon is done this way and as long as he doesn't render the fat he's happy with the process and the results are outstanding.  I'll measure the internal dimensions later and post.  It may not be right for you size wise but I'm very impressed with the control and functionality 

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Hi Peter and welcome to the forum

At 150-160F you are technically hot smoking and it is perfectly possible to maintain these lower temperatures in your ProQ without using a PID controller - although a PID controller would help to automate the temperature management. You are not looking a long smoke here though and so manual temperature management will be fine.

The best way of achieving this is to use a charcoal snake in the fire box. Below is a picture of this in a Weber Kettle however is works the same way in the ProQ fire basket. Below you can see pellets being used to create the smoke but you can use sawdust or small wood chunks just as well.


Use the water pan in the ProQ containing hot water - as this will help maintain an even heat and will help buffer any heat spikes.

Keep the top vent fully open and also fully open the bottom vent that is underneath the snake  (keep the others closed). Monitor the temperature at the cooking grate and as it begins rise and approach the desired temperature (~65-70C) gradually close the bottom vent until the temperature stabilises. You will find that once it is stable at the desired temperature it will remain there for several hours without much manual intervention.

If you need more information on creating the snake then please let me know.

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12 minutes ago, Peter Stafford said:

Am not a fan of briquettes so will be using straight charcoal.

Most supermarket briquettes need to be avoided however good quality briquettes (e.g. Heat Beads, Weber Premium, Nature and most of the restaurant quality briquettes) are very good. The reason I use briquettes is for the consistency and length of burn in the longer cooks. 

I agree though, most off the shelf briquettes should be avoided like the plague !!

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