Pine needle smoker fuel

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yesbut

Staff member
11,755
6,853
Nelson
Experience
Hobbyist
Collected pine needles instead. Hate, hate trying to light smokers with crummy needles. All was not lost!
I seem to have totally lost the smoker knack lately.....sacking goes out, needles go out....what's the secret with pine needles please ?
 
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Otto

Gold
74
164
Dunedin
Experience
Semi Commercial
Put a bunch of dry needles in the smoker then get a fire going. Gently pump air through it to encourage a decent fire. Add some more needles while still pumping air through. Once you have a good fire with some needle embers put in a big clump of needles and really jam them in tight. Keep pumping air through for 10-15 seconds. Should produce plenty of smoke. It is easiest to start when you have some semi burnt needles in there from previous use. Using slightly damp needles to pack in once started works well too.
 

Bee2beeNZ

Gold
7
23
Auckland
Experience
Hobbyist
I Modified my smoker so I could light the material from the bottom using a small blow torch. Drill a 10 mm hole just above the fire grate. Make a small metal flap to cover hole using a beer can. (drink beer first) and fix with a self tapping screw. Lighting is very easy and cool smoke as it is filtered through the material especially if small amout of green grass is placed to top. Easy to relight one handed if it goes out. Priceless!
 

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218
311
Bay of Plenty
Experience
Commercial
I Modified my smoker so I could light the material from the bottom using a small blow torch. Drill a 10 mm hole just above the fire grate. Make a small metal flap to cover hole using a beer can. (drink beer first) and fix with a self tapping screw. Lighting is very easy and cool smoke as it is filtered through the material especially if small amout of green grass is placed to top. Easy to relight one handed if it goes out. Priceless!
Just like GOVT, solutions to problems that don't exist.
 
3,395
6,307
Hawkes Bay
Experience
Commercial
There are smokers and there are smokers. If a smoker doesn't have an inlet valve then don't buy it. Personally I prefer the stainless steel Daydant.
Bic barbecue lighters are brilliant and can be worked while wearing gloves.
Dry pine needles for starting it like Otto says. I have used just about anything you could use in a smoker over the years but radiata pine needles are by far and away my favourite. If you need a lot of smoke then it pays to have a bag of damp needles as well.
Never use Maritime Pine needles unless you want a screaming headache.
Never put a string of firecrackers or a dead mouse in your mates smoker as it may be funny at the time but the retaliation is not always pretty.
Some smokes can taint honey with macrocarpa being particularly bad.
If you must put a dead mouse in someone smoker make sure you're working downwind from them.
 

yesbut

Staff member
11,755
6,853
Nelson
Experience
Hobbyist
My lockdown shopping...100mm vs the 75mm I've struggled with for years....should have done it before......Beequip. And I just got rung up by our local AP2 advising of AFB inspection.....
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