I took a retired stainless steel commercial fridge and converted it to be used as our sausage smoker about 5 years ago. It propane powered, thermostatically controlled and has an electronic auto ignition pilot light that takes care of it if the flame is blown out. The pilot light is 12 volt which I added a trnsformer so I could plug it into 110. This set up works very well for me and it hold steady temps from 100º to 250º.
This last fall my wife's uncle got a hold of a commercial sliding door cooler and took out the doors and added a homemade, insulated hinged door and used my parts list to heat his and it is working very well for him also.
I used a burner from a Holland grill on mine, my wife's uncle used a larger BTU square style burner since the interior of his smoker is larger than mine.
I found and my wife's uncle had the same experience that a 20 lb. tank does not put out enough pressure, both him and I have to use 100 lb. tanks to make our set ups operate properly.
I do have to say in warning, we are playing with propane here and it can be very dangerous. Make sure you know what your doing and use common sense. I don't want anyone hurting themselves.
Here is a list of the major components I used -
Brackets – used to hold the burner off the floor – ordered them online later seen them in the local hardware store cheaper.
Thermometers for the door – wanted something low enough to show 90°, purchased Cooper thermometer 2” dial with 5” stem our range was -40° to 180°. We bought these locally from a restaurant supply company in town.
Holland Grill propane burner from a BBQ grill
Had an extra laying around from parts to a grill
user manual from the part
- this is the site we bought ours from but I don’t see our model # there anymore. Maybe call and see what would be a replacement.
Product # - 141-0521