You will not be surprised to know that lighting a smoker is easy but how about keeping it alight? You waste time collecting bits of dried out wood or cutting and rolling cardboard then wonder why your smoker always goes out or that your bees are stroppy.
Well let’s think about it for a moment: Firstly unreliable material - when you collect those odd bits of dried out wood you have no idea of the calorific value of it, it could burn for 3 minutes or 30.
The first step to giving yourself a fighting chance is to use a reliable material with a known value: Wood Pellet Smoker Fuel
Next let’s look at the rolled up cardboard - try this first: Light your smoker then fill it with corrugated cardboard and light it. Next puff some smoke so you can smell and taste it – does that smell or taste pleasant?
Of course not!
Corrugated card board is glued by using either a synthetic glue or one derived from such things as whale blubber! It does not burn, it smolders and gives off the acrid smell and taste you have just experienced.
Now tell me how you think the bees will react to it!
Assuming your smoker is ready to use, crunch up the newspaper not too tight and light it, place this in the smoker and push it down gently give the bellows a couple of squeezes then add the egg box in sections to the smoker. Push it down a little harder, then squeeze the bellows until you hear the change in sound and the flames roar.
Using your hive tool push the now lit material down some more then add wood pellets (just a handful), this should last you about an hour, and if you add more pellets it will last longer.
You may need to practice this a couple of times to get the mix of material right for your particular needs.