1950's Coldspot Fridge

Discussion in 'Smoker Builds' started by bob the noob, Jan 10, 2010.

  1. bob the noob

    bob the noob Smoke Blower

    Hey everybody,

    Long, long, long time no post... I thought I'd come back with something interesting.

    This is the 1950's Coldspot fridge that I got off of Craigslist for $45 a few days ago. [​IMG] My trusty MES is to the right and seems kinda small now. The previous owner had modified it by stripping off the cooling stuff, putting casters on the bottom, putting a 2 or 3 inch hole in the top with a flange and some other stuff. It came with two small cast iron pans and a single hotplate.

    I'm experimenting right now with temps. It was around 15 deg's or so here and the hotplate took a while to get it up to 150sh at 3/4 power so I lit half of a chimney starter and put it in also. From there it took an hour or so to top 300. I've since taken the charcoal out and cranked the hotplate to max.

    The probe I've got in there is in the middle of the smoker and I've got a small terra cotta plate over the top hole acting as a damper probly 3/4 or so closed. It's back up to 220sh now and dropping slowly so we'll see where it stays at.

    Improvements I'm thinking of: Drilling a series of holes in the bottom on the side and making a sliding damper to help airflow, getting a high wattage dimmer switch to control the hotplate and maybe putting a firebox on the side later.
  2. acemakr

    acemakr Smoking Fanatic

    Nothing can match good 'ol yankee ingenuity. Good luck with the 'Coldspot'.
  3. bob the noob

    bob the noob Smoke Blower

    Thanks... seems like low 220s is the best the single hot plate can do. I've put the chimney starter back in there but I'm trying the minion method of burning top down to see how that works.
  4. bob the noob

    bob the noob Smoke Blower

    Hmmm... okay, apparently leaving the lump charcoal in the chimney starter was not the right thing to do. I've now spready it out in what was the veggie drawer and it's back up to 300.

    I guess I should use briquettes for more even burning?
  5. beer-b-q

    beer-b-q Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    You could add a side firebox to it...
  6. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Man oh Man that a nice unit you have there. My other had a 1954 shelvidoor many years ago and she and a bar owner man into a Beer Stein for my Dad. I had it for years and it would freezer a keg of beer too. You want to see a grown man cry.
  7. crd26a

    crd26a Newbie

    I'd add a gravity feed to it on the side. You'd only have to weld it and cut one small hole, and get a ton of time ouf of it.
  8. mulepackin

    mulepackin Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Low 200's isn't bad for a hotplate. That style of setup is really isn't for what I call BBQ smoking, or true hot smoking, ribs, brisket etc. but more than adequate for sausage, bacon, cured products. I don't think you will find a dimmer of adequate wattage to control a hotplate. It will either burn up or create so much resistance as to limit your max output. You need a true thermo control such as Allied Kenco sells or a PID controller.

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