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Cheap Smoker


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Hello Raiders, was perusing my NZ fishing site when I came across this easy to make smoker.

I've been thinking about one for awhile now and this is one that even I can build :1prop:

This info is courtesy of "Joker" ...I'm sure he wont mind me sharing this with you.

He went down to Super Cheap and bought a toolbox (the kind for the back of the Ute) for 72 bucks.......probably cheaper over there in OZ

cut a hole for the gas ring at the bottom and bought a few baking trays which he attached. And he bought a stainless wood chip bowl

You could hang the fish if you preferred.......and by lower the heat and placing them high.......for longer , you could get the cold smoke effect.

Anyhow , hope this a5t6 least gives you some ideas :thumbup:


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Interesting design that. I've been thinking about getting a smoker for the odd tailor or two that I get, but I reckon that one might be a bit large for my needs.

Let us know how you go with it clutch. :biggrin2:


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What a great idea for large quantities of fish or conversely, large cuts of fish - even cuts of meat! I have seen them do big chunks of marlin & other game fish. The Kiwis are always coming up with $ saving ideas! By hanging the fish, they virtually self baste & cook slower as they are further away from the heat. An old 'stand up' clothes dryer would do the same job! I had one for that reason many years ago, but biffed it before I got heavily into fishing again. Bummer!

If you only want to do small quantities of fish, here's a few ideas:

For a smaller/cheap smoker, you can use an old electric frypan or any old baking dish that has a lid (Sallies & Vinnies are good to find one for about $2 if the missus won't let you pinch hers). You can even use 2 stainless steel bowls of slightly different sizes (just line the bigger one with alfoil & use a round cake rack & use the smaller one as the lid!) Easy as that.

I put alfoil on the bottom of my smoker (just wrap up the burnt chips & run-off from the fillets & throw it away) & use hickory chips (any BBQ place or camping shops have them.) They work better than sawdust. Soak about 2 - 3 tablespoons of chips in some water for 5 mins (more if you have a large quantity of fish.) Then pour it off & put the chips in the middle of your 'smoker' so it is spread out a little bit on the alfoil. Whilst it is soaking, take your fish fillets (trout, tailor, mullet, blackfish, fillets from small australian salmon) and rub a bit of brown sugar on the flesh then sprinkle with a bit of salt (not too much) on the exposed flesh. Make sure you leave the skin & scales on the fillets. I find they smoke better when they are at least 24hrs old - they can curl up if cooked whilst very fresh. I store them in the fridge overnight, with kitchen paper separating the fillets so they don't sit in their own fluid before preparing with the sugar & salt.

Place a cake rack over the chips & arrange the fillets flesh side up, but try not to 'cover' the chips with fish. If you put the fillets directly over the chips they don't smoke as well as the juice from the fish can almost put it out. If you find a cake rack with long legs, you can cook 2 layers of fish at once. Put the bigger fillets on the bottom. you should be able to do at least 4-6 fillets on each layer. Just experiment.

Any direct heat will get the smoke going - i use a Gas master single burner stove with disposable bottles (about $20 from most camping/variety shops.) Instant heat & you can use the little suitcase it comes in to protect the flames from any breeze. Just don't put it too close! I have never used electricity with my frypan (cut all the bits off to take camping for easier packing - also just use the camp fire!) But there is no reason why you cant - just make sure any smoking is done outdoors or all your smoke alarms will go off & it'll take

a year to get rid of the smell!

15 - 20 mins later (less if there are less fillets) you can start eating it! Use the oven timer to check - very easy to forget to look & it is overcooked. Great with mashed potato & salad. Check the thickest part of the fillets with a skewer to make sure it is cooked thru. Don't over cook it - it can dry out easily.


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I lived on those little Islands for a while :( .........and i reckon all that space is for hanging and smokin dirty big eels :puke:

They love em over there.

Na Hooked my good man , its for hanging these


makes me wonder where you were hanging out......

I posted this thinking it was a great bit of ingenuity that would be easy to build but I guess our fishing catches vary a great deal


Edited by clutch
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