Just added some firebrick to the bottom of my Traeger Junior. I know it has been done before, but here is my take on adding them. The bricks help take up space, will hopefully decrease pellet use, and should help keep temps from sagging during the long winter coming up. Took a few pictures, see what you guys think!
Here I am scoring all the way around the firebrick by gently hammering a chisel line across the brick. Then I scrape the chisel along the line to make the score line a little deeper. After scoring all the way around the brick, I placed the chisel back into the score marks of the longer sides, and hit it harder with the hammer. After a few smacks (back and forth along the longer brick sides) and moving the chisel down the score line on both of the long sides, the bricks will break quite nicely, producing a cut brick that needs a little bit of grinding on to clean up.
To clean up the cuts, I used a grinder with a 50 grit coarse sanding disc. I imagine a flap disc of similar grit will also clean up the bricks nicely.
Next, I started arranging the bricks in the bottom of the grill. One cut brick on either side of the flame pot, 3 full bricks in the bottom, and a cut brick on the sides/partial cut brick on the ends. In this pic, I had two more bricks to cut to fill in the gaps on the right of the picture.
Here it is after all the pieces are in and I am running the temp up in the smoker to test it out.
The bricks do not block air/heat flow that I can see, just decreases open space in the bottom of the grill. Bricks are close enough in proximity to decrease cleaning woes also. Should be able to suck the ash right off the top of the bricks and out of the hot pot without having to move any bricks around.
Hope that this helps this fall/winter when the temps start to drop, and hope it decreases pellet use. Guess we will see. If not, I am only out a few bucks. Will report back in the next few weeks when I get another chance to use it!
Edited by mccumath - 8/22/13 at 4:26pm