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I love BBQ! I've got some tools! I kinda have to build one, don't I ?

post #1 of 196
Thread Starter 

A short time ago a friend of mine who recently had purchased a Bubba Smoker and started a weekend BBQ and Catering business, suggested that I modify my little Char-Griller into a reverse flow smoker. During my research I discovered this web site and learned tons watching several builds. So after having gone ahead and changing my little grill into a reverse flow, and being very happy with the results, it was now time to get serious. I found a 250 gallon propane tank and got busy. I also acquired a 4’ by 8’ sheet of half inch thick steel. I haven’t seen anyone use half inch yet but have seen comments saying the thicker the better. I welcome any feedback anyone cares to offer as I proceed. This will be fairly slow progress as the weekends are the only time I have available to work on it. I started two weeks ago, here’s what I’ve done so far.


post #2 of 196
Thread Starter 


I cut 29.5” out of the length. Not building for competition or to make money. My wife and I are raising 5 grandchildren and my little Char-Griller just isn’t big enough sometimes.


This is where I stopped for the first weekend. I ran out of argon, so I couldn’t finish my hinges. I scored 100% of the door cut-out and cut all the way thru in 6 different places adding up to about 50% of the total. I figured I’d stop there so I could weld my hinges in place and to try to prevent warping.


This last weekend I cut the door thru one edge at a time, attaching my flange as I went.


And hinges.

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And Handle.

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My dividing plate. ½” thick and heavy!

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I started cutting out for the firebox. I gotta tell ya, when I got down to just a little paper thin bit of steel left and that thing popped open (and by pop, I mean BANG!), I peed a little.

So far I'm grinning a lot.


post #3 of 196

Looking good! Keep us posted with plenty of pictures.

post #4 of 196

Yep, everyone with a little ability and a few tools has to try at least one.

After seeing the quality of what you have done so far, I have a feeling you will turn out a fine smoker.

By the way welcome to the forum, glad to have you with us.

post #5 of 196

Looks-Great.gifI live 60 miles nw of memphis.

post #6 of 196
Thread Starter 

Thank you very much. I've been reading here for a good while and learned a bunch. I also promise to try and incorporate a couple things I haven't seen yet in true Biker fashion, I have to be different.

post #7 of 196

This is going to be a beauty!

post #8 of 196

Going to be a beauty for sure.

post #9 of 196

Absolutely try new ideas.

Like a said in another post, If everyone does what has already been tried, everyone's smokers would look the same.

post #10 of 196
Thread Starter 


Slow progress yesterday. I'm still out of acetylene, payday is Monday. I cleaned a bunch of rust out of the tank. My wife said I looked like her dad did when he got home from the cole mines every day in Virginia. I scored the under side of my dividing plate where I want to bend it after a trip to Airgas. Today I plan to finish cutting out the peices of the fire box and maybe start welding it together. Goes a lot slower with a cut-off wheel.







post #11 of 196

very nice build, i too like to try something new

post #12 of 196

Looks like you have a plan and it's coming together great.

post #13 of 196

 Great looking project. Workmanship looks superb. I know it's going to be a fine machine, but that much

steel is going to take many BTUs to warm it up. Once it gets there it should hold it well.

 Looking forward to the finished product.




post #14 of 196

Looking good so far, and also some nice work done there.


This ought to be one mean machine when it is done.


post #15 of 196

Boy you sure have a nice workshop!

post #16 of 196
Thread Starter 

Thank you for all the kind words. I don't feel like I got that much done this weekend. I had to make a trip to Memphis to buy more cut-off wheels and that took a big bite out of my time.


I did finally get the pieces cut for the firebox. I have some very tolerant neighbors.  Once again they failed to organize themselves together in order to go buy me a plasma cutter.


This is my practice smoker. I named her after my first marital experience, whom I often refer to as my practice wife. She also was unpredictable and hard to control.


Got the job done alright. Until next weekend my friends. Maybe I can keep from running out of anything for once. 


post #17 of 196


post #18 of 196
Thread Starter 

Thanks, my wife is sure that a 12 step program must exist to address my tool problem. Hope she never finds one and organizes an intervention!

post #19 of 196
Thread Starter 

OK, Saturday update.


It was 35 degrees out so I took the tank around back for a good burn.

My two year old grandson got that same mesmerized look in his eyes watching the flames that I get. Cool!


Got my dividing plate tweeked into shape. That's 1/4" drop for every foot of length.

You were so right Stovebolt, This plate put a hurt on two freshly filled oxygen/acetylene bottles! BTU hungry!


Got my firebox tacked together. Then it was time to take a break.

My oldest grandson made honor roll, so he and I went to a movie.

I didn't even know they had honor roll in the second grade!

Well, I better go get busy and see what I can get done today.


I gues the first thing I need to do is unload my trailer. These were a freebie I got on my lunch break Friday.

A company next to mine was replacing some rail. I inquired and was told to help myself. I love freebies!

post #20 of 196
Thread Starter 

Sunday went pretty good. I finished welding the fire box and started test fitting everything.





















Getting there slow but sure. Still grinning!

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