Nobody showed me when I started beekeeping how painless it was to light a smoker if done properly. This is how we do it in no time with our dadant smoker.
Is that some kind of dried grass you're using ?
excellent video tb.
pretty much what we do here using crumpled up free newspaper that comes in the mail to start with and then pet bedding cedar chips available at walmart (huge bag for about $8).
'no wise man has the power to reason away what a fool believes' - the doobies
I use straw. That is dried grass, right? Mine cost too much, I might have to try yours.
I too like the pine shaving animal bedding. Here you can get a huge bag for $3-4 at the farm supply stores. Starts very easily, can pack it pretty tight in the smoker and if you feel like it is burning too hot or fast you can add a handful of green grass on top.
All true but it is easy to come by cause of gardening and chickens and so I pack it as tight as I can and then carry a chunk to the hives and every two or three hives, shove another ball into the smoker. It lights so easy with no paper though. Not bad for a lazy guy but I am going to try yours cause straw is not cheap and you use more then you would think.Straw is similar and produces a fine smoke. What I don't like about straw is two things.
1. It is springy and hard to pack tight.
2. It is porous in the stem so there is not much to it.
It works ok but doesn't last long at all in my experience.
I use oak wood stove pellets with a piece of burlap stuffed ontop once lit by benzomatic. A 40lb bag lasts about 2 years.
Next time you have corn on the cob, save the cobs, let dry and snap into pieces, pine needles packed with them, bernzomatic to start, then pack in more.
Excellent video Tennessee's Bees
What I especially liked is it took you 1.17 minutes to explain a 1.17 minute idea. I get weary of youtube videos where you have to watch 2 minutes of off topic drivel before they get to the subject, and then it takes another 10 or 15 minutes to express a 1 minute idea, which can get so tedious I flick forward a bit and end up missing the vital point.
I watched your video because it was 1.17 minutes, and I'm impressed how much smoke you got out of that thing! If I see any more of your video's, I'll watch them.
"Every viewpoint, is a view from a point." - Solomon Parker
There's an even faster way. I stuff it with fuel, stick my self igniting torch down in there to the bottom, and pull the trigger for two to three seconds. Viola, lit smoker, zero futzing around with it, and it is already fully fueled when lit.
I grab a handful of green grass or alfalfa, wad it up and stuff it in the nozzle as insurance to cool the smoke, close it up, and it will last for hours.
That's an impressive amount of smoke, I'll have to give your fuel a try. I cut cardboard boxes into 1-1/2 inch strips on my band saw and make rolls the diameter of my smoker ahead of time. I put one of those on the bottom and then stuff it with pine straw, planer shavings, or last years quilt box shavings. But grass clippings from a lawn that is long overdue is something I've always got plenty off. The torch tip gets pressed through the top fuel down into the cardboard core. With torch ignition I can go ahead and stuff the smoker ahead of time and then light it when I'm ready.
Last edited by JConnolly; 06-09-2018 at 10:57 PM.
yeah... boring youtube videos ten times too long....Beesource has our share of those.
Seeing as how every "Don't smoke" thread seems to get hi-jacked by the smokers, I'll add that I use absolutely NOTHING in my smoker, most of the time...
After 40 years of beekeeping, I've come to realize that the bees can fix most of my mistakes.
I have tons of free pinestraw in my yard; when needed, I light several crushed-together clumps of that and voila! As a rule -- if I did it correctly -- the smoke lasts as long as I need it for my 5 hives ......
My number one mistake my first 2 years of lighting my smoker was packing down the smoker too early. Like Tennessee does in his video, I now wait until my paper starter has flames coming out the top before I add my fuel, and I wait until my first wad of fuel is burning very well before I add more. Then I can pack it really full and tight, and it's good to go for an hour.
Painted Peacock Manor, Palos Verdes, CA