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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Location
    Canton, Texas USA
    Posts
    538

    Default What's the best smoker fuel?

    What is the best smoker fuel for a really good price?...Do they vary that much in effectiveness?...An oldtimer I helped work hives with 45 years ago just busted well-dried cowpatties up into chunks---anybody still doing that? Any friendly input would be appreciated.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Lyons, CO
    Posts
    3,030

    Default

    Once it's going with kindling, I use woodstove pellets. CHEAP, a bag lasts forever, and a couple handsful will give a long burn.

    You'll get a lot of answers on this, all of them correct .
    Bees, brews and fun
    in Lyons, CO

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Greensboro, N.C.
    Posts
    5,080

    Default

    Pine needles, burlap, and the old style hemp bailing twine. All free, and all good.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Location
    Morganton, NC
    Posts
    83

    Default

    I'm still working on an old bag of cedar shavings (dog bedding). Very pleased with it! Will buy more if I ever finish the bag I have!

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Seattle, WA
    Posts
    225

    Default

    Wood stove pellets here as well. $5.00 for a 40# bag. A coulpe of handfuls in the smoker, start it with the propane torch....lasts for hours.

    JT

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2007
    Location
    Terrell, Texas, USA
    Posts
    281

    Default Cow Pies

    I use well dried cow patties. My neighbor has lots of cows, therefore a free source. Also use "horse Apples" (not Bois D' Arc). The winter kind are the best when the horses have been on hay. Summer grass horse apples are a little to moist for me.

    Tom

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Aug 2007
    Location
    Tip of the Thumb, Michigan
    Posts
    678

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by LtlWilli View Post
    What is the best smoker fuel for a really good price?

    How's about a wad of paper (like a ripped up fast food bag from the floor of the truck), a handful of dried sticks, some larger sticks (hard wood) broken up and then a sumac bob (one of those red berry clusters)?

    Net price = FREE, which is ALMOST the best price, isn't it?

    DS

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Evansville, IN, USA
    Posts
    39

    Default

    The guy I bought my nucs from also recommends sumac bobs. I seen them in action and they seem to work very well! I'll grab some this winter. I currently use pellet stove fuel but don't fire the smoker up very often.
    -Chris
    Top Bar Hive Blog: http://chris.norrick.com/bees

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Location
    Kennebunk, Maine
    Posts
    200

    Default

    I cut cardboard boxes in to 5 inch wide strips and roll it up until it fits snugly in to the smoker. I bought some of those wood pellets a while back but always have trouble getting them lit so I went back to the cardboard.

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Hays, Kansas, USA
    Posts
    1,095

    Default

    Luke- if you need a real long burn, put some pellets on top of the cardboard. I roll cardboard up, rub it in some slum gum and it lights very easily. A roll of cardboard is good for a few hives, but when you need a good long supply of smoke - pellets are hard to beat.

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