Author Topic: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3  (Read 550 times)

Lonzinomaker

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Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« on: February 13, 2018, 12:48:45 PM »
Making my first batch of jerky in my #3. Going on a trip this weekend and need some snacks.
Bought a 4 in duct fan https://www.homedepot.com/p/Suncourt-Inductor-4-in-Corded-In-Line-Duct-Fan-DB204C/206584727 from home depot to use as a dryer fan. It shows as being 65cfm free air, might be too much air movement for drying but as it only cost $30, won't break the bank.
Bought some Hi Country dry cures  as there have been a few posts recommending them (I usually prefer to make my own rubs and marinades). I got the Original, Sweet and Spicy, and Sweet Teriyaki to try. Round roast was on sale at grocery store so I bought 2 3# roasts and 2# of extra lean ground to try ground jerky. The roast was cheaper than the extra lean by almost a dollar so I will be doing sliced most likely in the future.
Sliced the roast up by hand yesterday because I didn't wait for them to be frozen and use my electric slicer. Followed package directions for seasoning and cure amounts, mixed with meat in a glass bowl and transferred to zip lock bag. Did the same with the 2# ground beef. Turned the sliced beef about every hour until I went to bed at midnight. Got up at 5 and started turning again. At 9am took meat out, added about 1/2 cup water to each bag and drained liquid (from samples cooked up yesterday it was too salty). There is still a lot of mix and protein on the meat strips.
Got all the sliced jerky on my leftover 4 MES grates and the ground on 1 SI grate. Added about 1 1/2 oz hickory chips (on chip screen) and set smoker temp to just under 140 deg to get smoke for 2 hours and then when smoke has stopped, will turn temp down to 120 and put the fan over exhaust. Will check about every hour so I can make sure they don't get to dry.
Will follow up with times and taste results later.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2018, 12:55:15 PM by Lonzinomaker »
Dave
Smokin-It #3 main smoker. MES 30 w/mailbox mod is backup.
Green Mountain Davy Crockett Pellet Grill/Smoker
Spokane, WA

Grampy

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #1 on: February 13, 2018, 02:06:53 PM »
Dave, thanks for posting this. I am interested in seeing how the 4" duct fan will work out. I was thinking that would be a good/cheaper alternative to use as well.
Jimmy from Arkadelphia, AR
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NDKoze

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #2 on: February 13, 2018, 02:49:39 PM »
I am looking forward to seeing your final results. :)
Gregg - Fargo, ND
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DivotMaker

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #3 on: February 13, 2018, 07:26:25 PM »
Great solution!  Can't wait to see the results!
Tony from NW Arkansas
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Lonzinomaker

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #4 on: February 13, 2018, 10:10:39 PM »
Well the jerky is dried.  Taste test is done.
Next time I'll mix the ground more to make the texture better and roll it thinner than I did this time-too much like hamburger. I'll also plan ahead and get the roasts partially frozen so I can use my meat slicer for better uniformity in slice thickness.
My favorite flavor is the sweet teriyaki, the original is pretty good, the sweet and spicy is too warm for my taste. I think mixing the original with the sweet and spicy in a 50/50 blend would be pretty good. If you like buffalo wings, then sweet and spicy would be fine for you as is.
As for the fan, it works well, but the CFM is too high. I had to increase the heat to 180 to even keep it at 80 (34 deg outside today). After 4 hours I set up the fan so there wasn't a complete seal to the SI. (about a 1/8 in gap around 1/3 of the fan). Then the heat finally got up to where I wanted it. I don't know if a speed controller would work on this fan or not. I would think so since it is 120v AC. But that is another $15-20. Putting a rain cap on the pipe won't be hard either. Don't see a need for a filter. I did put some 1/2 in heat resistant foam pad between the SI and fan as the fan vibration resonates with the SI.
I was prepared to throw this batch of jerky away if this was not successful, but immediate disposal isn't required.  All in all, I think this was a good learning experience and with some tweaking the fan will work well for future jerky drying. I might try Biltong or Thai flavor next.  I now have snacks for my trip this weekend.
« Last Edit: February 13, 2018, 10:16:34 PM by Lonzinomaker »
Dave
Smokin-It #3 main smoker. MES 30 w/mailbox mod is backup.
Green Mountain Davy Crockett Pellet Grill/Smoker
Spokane, WA

Walt

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #5 on: February 13, 2018, 10:19:59 PM »
I am glad to hear that worked for you.
Walt from South East Louisiana
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DivotMaker

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #6 on: February 16, 2018, 07:20:19 PM »
Looks good, Dave!  It's all a learning process, and you'll soon perfect your technique!!
Tony from NW Arkansas
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Lonzinomaker

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #7 on: February 22, 2018, 05:45:49 PM »
I got a router/fan speed control from Harbor Freight. The fan doesn't like the controller. There is virtually no speed control and when there is, the fan doesn't like it because the voltage  (I think) is dropped to low for it to run.
Next I'm going to drill some 3/8 in holes in line around the bottom until I get to the airflow I want. Will check with my anemometer until I get around 25-30 cfm when checking draft at the top vent.
Dave
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EFGM

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #8 on: February 22, 2018, 08:47:02 PM »
Next I'm going to drill some 3/8 in holes in line around the bottom until I get to the airflow I want. Will check with my anemometer until I get around 25-30 cfm when checking draft at the top vent.

Dave, I'm not a jerky maker so I can't help with that but, but I would recommend you hold off on drilling holes in your  smoker (assuming I am understanding your correctly) and search the forum and ask questions as there is so much knowledge here you can draw on first. Take a quick poll and I think most here would agree with this advice. If I am mistaken and drilling holes in the bottom of your smoker for airflow is not what you meant, then I humbly apologize for butting in.

Attached are some pictures of a fan I sometimes use while cold smoking cheese if I feel there is not enough airflow. Cheap portable (D Cell) fan that run's for hours.

« Last Edit: February 22, 2018, 08:56:28 PM by EFGM »
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Lonzinomaker

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #9 on: February 22, 2018, 10:16:36 PM »
NOT going to drill holes in smoker. Will try on the duct fan, it is a 4 inch pipe.
Dave
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Lonzinomaker

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #10 on: February 27, 2018, 01:00:50 PM »
Wasn't happy with the duct fan.
Searched on Amazon and found a 80mmX38mm AC fan with listed airflow of 23cfm. Bonus is it has 2 grills and prewired with detachable power cord. Checked the manufacture's web site and it showed operating temps up to 230 deg F. So figured it would be ok for jerky drying.
Got a 4 in PVC pipe cap, drilled a 3" hole with a hole saw. Bolted fan on top, sealed with a little silicone caulk. Also got a 4" to 3" reducer to make a stable surface for cap to sit on smoker. The pipe pieces are left as a friction fit and will let me put in a filter between the 2 pieces if I feel like a need one.
This fan is very quiet and vibration free. Much happier with it over the duct fan. Will be giving it a trial run with another 3# batch of jerky tomorrow.
Fan (AC Infinity #8038) is about $17, pipe cap was $7.50 and reducer $3.80 at Home Depot.
« Last Edit: February 27, 2018, 01:03:17 PM by Lonzinomaker »
Dave
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Green Mountain Davy Crockett Pellet Grill/Smoker
Spokane, WA

DivotMaker

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #11 on: February 27, 2018, 07:12:08 PM »
The SI jerky dryer uses a computer case fan, so this solution is much more in line with the SI air flow.  Bet you'll like it better, also.
Tony from NW Arkansas
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Lonzinomaker

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #12 on: March 01, 2018, 10:26:27 AM »
Did a 180 deg smoke for 2 hours to get the meat up to 140, dropped temp to 120 on rheostat and put the new fan on. Temp held well and about 2.5 hours later rotated shelves and every rack was done at 4 hours with the dryer on. Jerky turned out well.
« Last Edit: March 01, 2018, 11:43:14 AM by Lonzinomaker »
Dave
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NVW-SSV

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #13 on: May 11, 2018, 06:37:01 PM »
I'm not too good in the Home Depot PVC aisle.  Do you have part #s for the Home Depot items?  I'd like to make one of these.  Thanks
Jody from NC

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Lonzinomaker

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Re: Making jerky for the first time in SI #3
« Reply #14 on: May 11, 2018, 08:12:45 PM »
don't have the part numbers, but they are both stocked, standard fittings.
Ask the clerk for a 4" to 3" reducer and a 4" cap. Should find them right away.
Dave
Smokin-It #3 main smoker. MES 30 w/mailbox mod is backup.
Green Mountain Davy Crockett Pellet Grill/Smoker
Spokane, WA