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Catering, Vending and Cooking For The Masses. this forum is OnTopic. A resource to help with catering, vending and just cooking for large parties. Topics to include Getting Started, Ethics, Marketing, Catering resources, Formulas and recipes for cooking for large groups.


View Poll Results: which smoker?
2 Ole Hickory CTO 8 23.53%
2 FEC 120 8 23.53%
1 southern pride electric 9 26.47%
other 9 26.47%
Voters: 34. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-14-2014, 08:02 PM   #1
cpw
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Default Which smoker for a restaurant?

Awhile back, I asked people's opinions on what kind of smoker to buy for a potential restaurant. The restaurant is finally starting to come together, and my involvement is to help with a menu and choose a smoker. So, based on the following limitations:
-Historic Building with no outside smoker space
-Existing kitchen with not much room
-No large doors to load smoker through
-existing hood is VERY low to the ground (like 5'6)

I've been looking at a few options:
-2 Ole Hickory CTO gas fired
-2 FEC 120's pellet fed
-1 used southern pride electric http://www.gatorchef.com/USED-Southe...05-sc600sm.htm (which has a huge capacity)
-other electric

So, any help and suggestions are greatly appreciated. I've attached a couple pics of the kitchen, the plan is to move the 3 bay sink on the far wall and put the smoker(s) there because there's through the wall access to the outside. There's probably 8-10' of wall space along that wall, with the main panels on the left hand side.
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Old 01-14-2014, 09:45 PM   #2
C Rocke
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cpw View Post
Awhile back, I asked people's opinions on what kind of smoker to buy for a potential restaurant. The restaurant is finally starting to come together, and my involvement is to help with a menu and choose a smoker. So, based on the following limitations:
-Historic Building with no outside smoker space
-Existing kitchen with not much room
-No large doors to load smoker through
-existing hood is VERY low to the ground (like 5'6)

I've been looking at a few options:
-2 Ole Hickory CTO gas fired
-2 FEC 120's pellet fed
-1 used southern pride electric http://www.gatorchef.com/USED-Southe...05-sc600sm.htm (which has a huge capacity)
-other electric

So, any help and suggestions are greatly appreciated. I've attached a couple pics of the kitchen, the plan is to move the 3 bay sink on the far wall and put the smoker(s) there because there's through the wall access to the outside. There's probably 8-10' of wall space along that wall, with the main panels on the left hand side.
Pellet fed adds cost over and above your electricity, and pellets aren't cheap either for a production environment... Are you not going to vent the smoker thru the hood? The 600 is about 35 inches wide an should fit thru your door with a little persuasion, that's the way I'd go. Here in CA, if the unit is electric, it does not have to be placed under the hood, just the smoke vented thru the hood - May solve the problem. I would (Insert groan here) contact your HD and see what they say. Keep us posted on the progress!
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Old 01-14-2014, 10:23 PM   #3
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Electric will solve many problems in terms of being in an old building and having access.
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Old 01-15-2014, 06:44 AM   #4
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Definitely need to talk to the health department to see what we can do.
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Old 01-15-2014, 08:02 AM   #5
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I would go with the fed-120.
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Old 01-15-2014, 08:57 AM   #6
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i'm no restaurantuer by any stretch, but from what i've read just being around the oyler pit is THE go to commercial pit.

i don't know why or how, just what i've read. clearly that model wouldn't fit in your kitchen, but JR MFG also makes a little red smokehouse. maybe similar in quality?

something to look at if you hadn't already.
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Old 01-15-2014, 09:24 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boogiesnap View Post
i'm no restaurantuer by any stretch, but from what i've read just being around the oyler pit is THE go to commercial pit.

i don't know why or how, just what i've read. clearly that model wouldn't fit in your kitchen, but JR MFG also makes a little red smokehouse. maybe similar in quality?

something to look at if you hadn't already.
Forgot about that one. I'll check into it, have to see if it's in the budget.
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Old 01-15-2014, 09:34 AM   #8
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there's also AN bewley. the pits on their site look quite large, but they may have smaller.

bewley and oyler worked together back when they building the original oylers. oyler was killed by a train and the design was sold to jr mfg. a few years later bewley opened his own fab shop.
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Old 01-15-2014, 12:55 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by boogiesnap View Post
i'm no restaurantuer by any stretch, but from what i've read just being around the oyler pit is THE go to commercial pit.

i don't know why or how, just what i've read. clearly that model wouldn't fit in your kitchen, but JR MFG also makes a little red smokehouse. maybe similar in quality?

something to look at if you hadn't already.
Checked out the Little Red Smokehouse, it would definitely work. The price may be a little out of budget though, at $22k.
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Old 01-15-2014, 01:36 PM   #10
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oylers don't have to be mounted under an exhaust hood, they can be solely vented thru a 6 inch class A stack. However, they do leak smoke, so some sort of evac fan would be handy. we're in the process of getting 2 smokemaster 250rfs for our bbq restaurant. Someone local on long island has a bunch and he's getting rid of them for the right price. Figured 2 is better than one for our space, and we'll never run out of cooking capacity
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Old 01-15-2014, 02:57 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by early mornin' smokin' View Post
oylers don't have to be mounted under an exhaust hood, they can be solely vented thru a 6 inch class A stack. However, they do leak smoke, so some sort of evac fan would be handy. we're in the process of getting 2 smokemaster 250rfs for our bbq restaurant. Someone local on long island has a bunch and he's getting rid of them for the right price. Figured 2 is better than one for our space, and we'll never run out of cooking capacity
Unfortunately, that 250rfs is a little big for the space. Otherwise I'd ask you for contact info.
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Old 01-27-2014, 09:54 AM   #12
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Quick update...we spoke to the HD, and the general rule is that unless the smoker has it's own UL listed smoke evacuation system, it has to be under a hood. Which now means we have to put in a new hood because the existing one is way too low to fit a smoker under. We have a mechanical engineer looking into tying into the existing exhaust duct/vent so we don't have to run a whole new exhaust vent up 3 stories to the roof.
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Old 01-27-2014, 10:47 AM   #13
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I did not think the health dept has jurisdication, it is the building code enforcement in my county, and some places they have a fire marshall,.But my SP had it, the only thing the code enforcement made me do was to be hard wire in with conduit. They looked at the ul tags and the installation book....made them look importan=t..
chec ebay, one is in your area..
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Old 01-27-2014, 11:06 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by BigBellyBBQ View Post
I did not think the health dept has jurisdication, it is the building code enforcement in my county, and some places they have a fire marshall,.But my SP had it, the only thing the code enforcement made me do was to be hard wire in with conduit. They looked at the ul tags and the installation book....made them look importan=t..
chec ebay, one is in your area..
It may have been code enforcement that the engineer spoke to. I'll take a look on ebay to see what's available. Thanks!
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Old 01-27-2014, 02:27 PM   #15
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well, the 250rfs's sold out from underneath me, turns out they're also too large for my place. We just put the order in with cookshack, 2 fec-120's. Spoke with Dave and he said that they do not produce grease laden smoke so they can be placed under a hood without grease filters, your local ordinances may vary
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