heating oil tank

Discussion in 'Wood Smokers' started by bmarley5780, Sep 1, 2009.

  1. bmarley5780

    bmarley5780 Newbie

    I got a home heating oil tank (3' dia X 5') this weekend for a build. I plan to start rinsing today with 2 bottles of dawn today till Wed. drain and repeat till Sat. Drain and then.....

    I want to have 2-4 good hot fires in it before doing a final pressure wash in the tank.

    -Should I cut and weld the hinges and doors on then have a fire?
    -Cut one of the ends off, kind like a burn barrel and do the fires like that. Reweld the end on, and start the door/hinges...?

  2. tsywake

    tsywake Fire Starter

    If you have the soapy solution in the tank, then I would go ahead and say cut the hinges/door in. I shortened my old kerosene drum by 2ft, and getting the end to match back up snugly was a royal pain.

    One option that I did, I bought for $30 at Lowes a propane torch. It hooks up to a propane tank, and it will heat it up enough to burn the oil out, but not mess up the metal. Worked very well and very efficiently.
  3. bmarley5780

    bmarley5780 Newbie

    No, the soap and water won't be in till 5 ish....

    I have one of these torches.... Ehh seems kinda small for the job tho?

    You think that a fire in the tank would warp the tank/doors?
  4. mballi3011

    mballi3011 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    First off please stop in to Roll Call and introduce yourself properly please. I like your nickname I'm one the biggest Bob Marley fans and have even being to his house and grave in Jamacia. Ya Mon. Your smoker delimma. The first thing you do is get the old oil out of that tank. I don't know much about building a smoker but there are a few tings you just know. So good luck on your build and we will see you around the site.
  5. meat hunter

    meat hunter Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Hi there, and welcome to the site. Make sure you stop by roll call and say hi and tell everyone about yourself and any smoking exp you have and any other bits of info you think we may find interesting. With that said, on to your smoker, or oil tank. If I were you, I would clean it out first like you said, but I would then go and start to build it the way you want it before you get it hot and burn all the gunk out of it with a really hot fire. Reason being, is that once you start to cut that tank apart, and I have cut several of them, not for smokers but for farm use, the tank will lose its shape because it is under stress when it was formed/made, if that makes sense. By welding a frame around the door which I assume you will do and and maybe a framework of some sort around the opening to the cook chamber, you are going to give it some reinforcement. And I take it that your tank is around 14guage? That would warp fairly easy with a good fire set to it. I recently made a reverse flow, and when I cut the door out, it almost flattened itself out from the stress it was under. Just an idea for you. Make sure you take some photos for us and we would all love to see your build. Good luck and once again, welcome aboard.
  6. bbq engineer

    bbq engineer Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    What Meat Hunter said...He is a pro at this stuff.

    Welcome aboard.
  7. meat hunter

    meat hunter Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    A pro? Well I don't know about that[​IMG]. But thanks for the compliment BBQ. Actually, BBQ Engineer is a very accomplished fabricator himself. Check out his latest build, something I will be basing my next smoker on.
  8. bmarley5780

    bmarley5780 Newbie

    I would say the tank is probably 3/16.

    Planning on havin some pullout racks in it, but am unsure of what to use as far as thickness.

    1/8 angle or 3/16th?
  9. tsywake

    tsywake Fire Starter

    I used 1/8th square tubing for my pull out racks, and 1/8 angle iron for the tracks they slide on. This isnt the best picture, but it will give you a good idea.

  10. bmarley5780

    bmarley5780 Newbie


    Hey thanks for the pic! And description.

    Question about your cooker... Do you like the single door or is that something you would change (2 door) if you could.

    Crap- Doing the smoker calculator one 55 gallon barrel comes to 13,114.41 cubic inches. The tank is 20,347 ! DAMN!
  11. tsywake

    tsywake Fire Starter

    I occasionally like doing whole hogs in mine (30" diameter x 5'6" long) so I do like having one door. Its just my person opinion, but the single door is easier to seal off than a double door. The biggest downside is the weight of the door. With the door plus the 4" by 1/8" overhang, its a pretty heavy door to lift. It's good because it keeps the average joe from taking a peek at my meat, but it is a little cumbersome. One of my next mods will be adding a counterweight/backstop to make lifting easier.
  12. meat hunter

    meat hunter Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    You know what, I believe I was thinking of a different style tank. The kind that allot of the old farm houses here use, those elongated oval like home fuel oil tanks. If yours is 3/16, thats better yet, but I would still make up the doors first prior to doing a burnout of it. As far as your racks go, 1/8 wall thickness on your angel should be fine.
  13. bmarley5780

    bmarley5780 Newbie

    Ya this is a example of what it looks like...

    -What happens if the fire box is smaller then the 1/3 rule?

    Thanks guys for helpin.
  14. tsywake

    tsywake Fire Starter

    If the firebox is smaller, you may have trouble sustaining adequate temps. If you increased your air intake and exhaust to compensate, you'll probably have to keep adding fuel often.

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