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Got my New Braunfels Bandera! Here is my test run.

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 

So i havent been around on the forums much lately as I have been busy and still never quite got used to the new forum design. I miss the old forum :o(


Anyhow i finally picked up a New Braunfels Bandera! It only took me 4-5 years to finally find one in the Atlanta area after searching 2-3 times a week! She is in pretty good condition and only lacks the badge on the front door. I am running a test smoke right now and will get a few sessions in before the new year and then she gets overhauled. After the new year i will completely disassemble her, sand her down, repaint her and put her back together. Ill be adding oven gasket around the door on the smoke chamber and the firebox, Ill be adding fire bricks in the firebox and bottom of the smoke chamber, ill be putting 2 new thermometers in the door, having a nice custom badge made to replace the missing one.


Ill also be adding additional support with some square steel tubing where the firebox and smoke chamber meet both in the front and back. Ive noticed these things start to sag a little over time so i want to add some support. Im debating completely enclosing the bottom with nice wood or something for storage and to look good.


There is already a baffle in place but i will be modifying it slightly. Ill also be building a charcoal basket. I am doing my first test run with all wood but have a feeling i will be going about half wood half lump charcoal in the long run.


If anyone else has advice or something i have forgotten that i should do to her let me know. I have of course read everything on the Bandera over the years but may have missed something. Once i refurb her ill certainly create a thread for that!


Here are a few pics!







This first test run has a 9lb butt, a whole chicken, 1 slab of baby backs, 15 chicken legs, about 30 wings, and a bacon wrapped pork sirloin tip roast.


Oh, id also like to get ahold of 3 more shelves, preferably the same as whats in there. I wonder if i call Charbroil if they will at least have the original shelves?



post #2 of 12
Now i like that smoker... you can also use the fire box as a grill ?? gonna have to look for one... or maybe give me dimensions and build one myself... Let us know how she works... how air tight it is.. how it responds to air adjustments.. and so on
post #3 of 12

Bet it will be a great rebuild. pepsi.gif110.gif the results

post #4 of 12

Beautiful load of smoke meat you got there.  Congrats on the rebuild,  looks like you did a pretty good job.

post #5 of 12

Very nice somked meat you have there...

post #6 of 12

Nothing like a full smoker! I love it!

post #7 of 12

Great smoker and a great meal to be

post #8 of 12


Congrats on the smoker and it is really nice to see a FULL smoker to.

post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 

She is fairly airtight. Some oven gasket when i do the rebuild will completely seal her up. The rebuild hasnt been done yet. Im looking at maybe Feb/March to do that. These are tough to find but you could have one built. I know there are plenty places online that show the dimensions in detail. You could use the firebox to grill over but ill save grilling duty to my grill. I knew the baffle that was installed by the previous owner had a minor flaw in which it makes the left side of the smoker hotter. Ill be modifying it by drilling holes ranging from 1/4inch to 1inch in the baffle to evenly disperse heat. All in all everything came out great! Once i get around to the rebuild im going to make this baby sing and ill certainly post pics!

post #10 of 12

That's a lot of meat! Yummy

post #11 of 12

I have one of these!  I got it from a man down the street from where I live.  It was sitting on the side of the road and I asked him what was wrong with it.  He said that nothing was wrong with it, he just didn't want it anymore so I asked if I could have it and he said that I could just as long as I hauled it off myself.  I have no idea how to use it at all.  Ideas please!!!!!!!!!!!

post #12 of 12

Good, heavy smoker. Took several attempts to get it right. Smokes baby backs and pork loin that you can eat right off the pit. Spare ribs and brisket needs to go in the oven for several hours after it leaves the smoker. After a few years, the lid didn't seal good, so now I put a concrete block on top of the fire pit to seal. I've had this smoker now for 23 years and still love it. It takes a big fire, but you can cook a lot of meat. I also smoke cheese and nuts with it. Grills good with wood or charcoal for steaks, chops, burgers, etc. over the fire. I get my replacement water bowls at Bass Pro Shops pretty cheap. I plan to still be using my bandera for another 20 years.

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