or Connect
SmokingMeatForums.com › Forums › Smoking Supplies & Equipment › Smoker Builds › Reverse Flow › RF Build: A Story in Pictures
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

RF Build: A Story in Pictures

post #1 of 36
Thread Starter 

I started work on my smoker.  Mostly prep work and cutting; in this case, prep work includes "getting 4300 lb of steel off the trailer."  (Not all of it will be used for this smoker; I'm figuring roughly 1500 lb when I'm done.)


First step: get steel.  3/8" plate:


Lots of 3/8" plate:



Note the top plate--it's 8' wide, wide enough that I found I'd need to cut it down before I could move it off of the trailer.  So cut I did...briefly:


Hrm.  Why did my cut suddenly go to crap, and where'd all that soot come from?  Oh, that's why:


Guess I'll make a quick unscheduled trip up to


Back to work.  I took about 3' off of that panel:


Still, they're awfully big and heavy.  Fortunately, I have a solution:


That's about half-a-ton of plate right there.  First time I've really used the bucket hooks; I'm glad my welds held.


As seen from the driver's seat.  Right now, I'm bulletproof on the south side.


Ahh, all unloaded.  Time for a


More next week when I start on the firebox; I need to get about 25' of 1" square tubing to frame out my firebox, as detailed at http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/126978/firebox-design-review-and-critique.

Edited by OkieDave - 9/24/12 at 9:44am
post #2 of 36

Looking good.

post #3 of 36

Nice choice in Beer.   Tried the "summer shandy"?

post #4 of 36

Look's like you got yourself a project.

Keep the picture coming.

I'll be off work in another month and I'll be ready to start my project.

post #5 of 36
Love it. Can't wait for more.
post #6 of 36
How are things progressing?
post #7 of 36
Thread Starter 

Stalled.  I started working on the firebox frame, but finals are coming up soon, and I also have a paper to finish.

post #8 of 36

Hey OkieDave,


Hope finals went well. I knew you said you were about to start back up on this thing and was going to see if you had? Subscribed and ready to watch. I have just started on mine as you already know but I have had some slow days with that tornado that came through and hit our neighbors to the north.

post #9 of 36

Looking good !

post #10 of 36
Thread Starter 

I got sidetracked by life, and haven't done anything more.  I was just about to start back up this week, but the weather kept me from it; the past couple days have been nice, but I've been helping with the cleanup following the tornado.


Bad, bad stuff up there.  I watched it go by from two miles away.


I did finally finish my welding table, so I won't have to lay on the concrete to work.  That alone will be a big improvement, and I'll be able to move inside and go to gas (GMAW/MIG) welding instead of flux-core, so I won't burn through the tubing walls like I was with FC.

post #11 of 36
Thread Starter 

There's nothing like a little public shame to get things moving again. When last we left, I had built one side of the firebox frame. I was using .035 flux core wire, and blowing holes in the square tubing I was using for the frame; I just couldn't turn it down low enough.  I had also been working on the ground, which was decidedly suboptimal.  I (finally!) finished my welding table this afternoon, so I took a stab at the firebox frame again.  The square on the right is the old one; the one on the left is today's work:


Let's have a closer look at those welds, shall we?



In comparison:




Yes, I know; calling the FCAW welds bird-poop is an insult to birds everywhere.  I'm pretty happy with the gas-shielded welds, though.


Now, the downside: the gas-shielded frame is about half-an-inch out of flat across its 20" run.  I tried to support the low corners and step on the high corners, but even with my not-insubstantial weight, it didn't budge (a nicer way of looking at that is that even with my fat self stomping the daylights out of it, my welds held just fine!).  I haven't decided what I'm going to do about it.  When I tie the two squares together (building a cube), I may just tack it up as close as I can, then use a BFH and some heavy clamps to forcibly tie the high corners to the remaining frame, weld it in place, and call it good.



post #12 of 36

Yep, I cheated on mine and welded the pieces of tubing to the plate and then each side together, including the tubing.  My plate was squarer than I could ever get tubing to stick to being square.  Clamps and welds.

post #13 of 36
Thread Starter 

Back in action!


When last we left, I had managed to tack up a couple of squares to be used as the firebox frame.  Since then, I've accomplished this:



It's been a long five years, but I finally escaped from law school.  The bar exam is over, so last night, I went out and did a little metalworking.  First up: cutting end plates for the cook chamber:



Second: burn out the pipe segment (55" x 24" x 3/8") I'm going to use for the cook chamber.  It looks to be a section of gas pipe, given that it's coated in that horrible green epoxy.  No matter; fire cures everything!




You can see the epoxy paint begin to pull and distort in the heat.  Next, it starts to smoke:



...then suddenly catches fire, falling off in big flaming sheets:



More pictures this evening, when the light is better.

post #14 of 36

congratulation_graphics_2.gif on the bar.

Glad to see your back on track with the build.


Happy smoken.


post #15 of 36

I'm in . . . :popcorn

post #16 of 36
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by themule69 View Post

congratulation_graphics_2.gif on the bar.

Glad to see your back on track with the build.


Happy smoken.


Well...almost.  I graduated, but I missed the bar by four points (260 scaled score, with 264 being passing).  I'll be savoring that experience again come February.




I appreciate the thought, though.

post #17 of 36
Good to see you back at it and congrats on graduating
post #18 of 36
Love it. Keep it up.
post #19 of 36
Thread Starter 

Post-Christmas update:


Following a successful burnout, I finally found a set of hinges I like for the CC door at Northern Tool, and got them ordered:



Next, I marked off the cut line for the top of the CC door (just the top cut; I'll cut the other three after the hinges are welded on).  A spirit level and soapstone gave me a nice line:



A couple of hours with a grinder and a 1mm cutoff wheel (okay, five 1mm cutoff wheels), and we have a reasonably clean, straight cut:




No pictures, because it didn't go well, but I also tried drilling holes in the hinges so that I could plug-weld them.  I'm going to have to pierce them with the cutting torch instead.  More on that later, after the new wheels for the cart come in.  There was an...incident...with a compressor and a cheap Chicom tire.

post #20 of 36
Was that gas pipe 3/8 wall. And you said it burn off pretty easy. Light sanding and good enough to paint?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Reverse Flow
SmokingMeatForums.com › Forums › Smoking Supplies & Equipment › Smoker Builds › Reverse Flow › RF Build: A Story in Pictures