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The three month build

post #1 of 41
Thread Starter 
Well, at least I thought it would take three months. THIRTEEN months ago! This was my first RF build so I had no idea how much work it takes to build one. Here are some pics of the build so far.

I started by cutting the air compressor tank in half and burning it out.

Then I busted out the circular saw and got to cutting up two sheets of 1/4" plate.

Welded up a firebox and stuck it onto the cook chamber.

Next came the warmer box and RF plate.

Going to need a door or two.

Time to make it mobile.

Can't smoke meat without racks.

Yup, it'll smoke the tires!

Put a chimney and door latches on it and sent it to media blast.

That's where i am now. Hopefully I didn't screw something up yet. I'll post more pics as progress continues. Like I said before, this is my first RF build, so any tips and pointers are apreciated.
post #2 of 41
Looks reat and i cant wait to see the finished unit.
post #3 of 41
Thread Starter 
Not much progress. Got the thermometers mounted, warmer box intake made, and warmer box racks made.

The thermometers are on the outside of the cooking rack, will that be okay?

post #4 of 41

Looking good. Your speed sounds about like me on some of my projectsThumbs Up

Ronnie G.

post #5 of 41
Thread Starter 
Found a couple hours to work this week. Again, didn't get a whole lot done, but progress is progress I guess. The cook chamber door seal is done and the upper cook grate and slides are done.

Thought I lost my thumb this week too. 4 1/2" cut off wheel exploded in half and sent my grinder flying. Like an idiot I grabbed for it while it was still on and in the air. Tore up my glove and welding jacket. Be sure to wear your safety gear!

Has anyone tried spraying Rustoleum BBQ paint with an automotive paint gun? If so, did it work okay? I think it would give a more even coat vs using a bunch of rattle cans.

Thanks and happy thanksgiving.
post #6 of 41
I've sprayed regular Rustoleum on a boat trailer, thinned with mineral spirits... worked very well... took awhile to dry....

post #7 of 41
Thread Starter 
Thanks Dave. I'd hate to have sprayed it just to find out that it wouldn't dry after being thinned.

Didn't get anything done this week, do to a sick wife and kid. I was hoping to have it done enough to do a test burn this weekend. Oh well. Hopefully I'll have more progress and pics to report next week.
post #8 of 41

If I remember correctly, They don't recommend thinning the Rustoleum High Temp Paint



post #9 of 41
Originally Posted by gary s View Post

If I remember correctly, They don't recommend thinning the Rustoleum High Temp Paint


Morning Gary...... They don't recommend thinning regular rustoleum either.... It wouldn't go through the spray gun.... sooooo.... Did what I had to do.... thinned until it went through the gun, very light coats continuously..... watched for runs...... Ended up with a beautiful paint job on my newly built boat trailer..... and it lasted 5 years + until I sold it.... The nice thing about mineral spirits.... it dries fairly slow... fairly forgiving... It was a warm summer day when I sprayed it.... I may have gotten VERY lucky.... I like getting lucky...... biggrin.gif
post #10 of 41

We may have thinned ours, don't remember, son did the painting and I didn't pay attention when he was getting it ready. I do remember it being thick.



post #11 of 41
Heat it up a bit to thin it, if you still have problems and absolutely have to thin it, only use acetone
post #12 of 41
Thread Starter 
It's hard to believe that it's been a month, but I found myself in the garage again finally. The cook chamber door was way too heavy and opened too far so I made a counter weight setup for it. I was hoping that the weight would hold the door open, but it's not quite heavy enough. I filled the pipe with dry cement mix. Anyone have any suggestions for something heavier I can fill it with? I was thinking about filling it with lead bars, capping it, drilling a vent hole, then heating up the pipe so the lead will melt and spread out evenly.
post #13 of 41

Nice looking build ya got going on there...........Every thing takes longer then we expect it too.

post #14 of 41
GBM nice looking smoker. I did notice ur pneumatic tires right next to the fire box. My suggestion if u hvnt already would be to protect them tires from the heat with some kind of deflector plate. If not, tht heat will eat those tires up for breakfast, just a thought.
post #15 of 41
Thread Starter 
Thanks guys. Bullypitbbq, I thought the same thing about the heat shield. I'm going to keep an eye on the tire temp when I get around to doing a test burn. The tires are about a foot away from the fire box, so I'm hoping that there will be enough space between them to keep the tires cool.
post #16 of 41


post #17 of 41

Hey there... Go by the local tire shops and offer them $5 for the bucket of used tire weights. be sure to take a spare bucket to give them. Up here those buckets of weights are like gold.

post #18 of 41
Down here, you can't even get close to any tire weights anymore. They have tightened up on lead big time. If I need a little, I have to resort to busting some battery terminals off.

Problem your going to have, once you get that counterweight heavy enough , it going to start working against you. It's better to start with the counterweight right above, or even in front of the pivot point of the hinge. That way, it will hold the door down, then after about an inch of travel, it will open the door for you. It will also allow you to make it shorter as we'll.
post #19 of 41

Next best thing if you and your buddies have a scrap box of old nuts and bolts load it up with that and then fill with sand until full.

post #20 of 41
Thread Starter 
Ribwizzard, I found the same problem with getting wheel weights. I guess there is good money in selling them to electronic manufacturers. I will try to reposition the counter weight like you suggested. Thanks.

I rolled the smoker outside today and started a fire in it so I could see what needed changing. I noticed right away that the fire drafted better if it was positioned toward the back of the firebox. It took about 40 minutes to get up to temp in 25 degree weather. Once up to temp I checked the temp gauges and found a 50 degree difference from end to end. I raised the front to see if that would help, but there was no change. Would a baffle under the RF plate on the firebox end help with the temp difference? Other then the temp difference, everything went well. There are a couple air leaks here and there, but nothing big.

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