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Build choices

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

From what I've noticed here theres a ton of experience with not only building but designing and cooking with smokers. I would rather read as much as possible from others on their individual experiences before I start any new build, not in too big of a hurry as it's currently too cold to stand in my shop for very long. I have 2 options for a smoker build and I'm looking for opinions.  Option 1 is an old propane tank that measures 15" in diameter and 46" long, I also have an old air bubble 13" dia and 22" long that could be used as a fire box, I'm not sure of the wall thickness but it is somewhat heavy.  Option 2 is a diesel tank formally used as a day tank for a local Hospital back up generator, its dimensions are 43" tall, 24" deep and 25" wide.  I'm not looking to cook for 100's of people just a few so I was thinking of something fairly small and efficient.  Horizontal, vertical, reverse, offset?  Thanks

post #2 of 11

Good morning, several choices there, One option is on your 15" x 46" you could shorten it a bit if you don't feel you will be needing that much smoker, and cut your tank length-wise and add in 4, 5 or 6" plate making it elongated, I did that to mine and Ribwizzard did one that way also.

I did mine because at the time we used what we had laying around. Think about it, throw some of your ideas on what you are wanting out there, you will get lots of help .

 

 

Gary

post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 

I'm planning on using what I have around but thats not written in stone.  I'm thinking about leaving it the same length unless theres a reason not to i.e. too much temp difference.  Would it be necessary to elongate it?  A local bbq "judge" says I won't be happy with that size, but gave no reason why.  

post #4 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dogchaser View Post

I'm planning on using what I have around but thats not written in stone.  I'm thinking about leaving it the same length unless theres a reason not to i.e. too much temp difference.  Would it be necessary to elongate it?  A local bbq "judge" says I won't be happy with that size, but gave no reason why.  

Temp difference can be good for different meats and slowing or speeding up the cooking process......

The judge may be familiar with poorly designed smokers... poor air flow... inconsistent heat zones.. all can be overcome with a good design....
post #5 of 11

I only mentioned elongating, to gain a little more head/cooking room. You have to decide what is best for you, weather you want big or small 

 

Gary

post #6 of 11
First things first...

Describe exactly what and how much food you think you will be wanting to cook. Then we will know how much cooking room you will require.
post #7 of 11
Thread Starter 

I understand about the headroom as it seems a little confining to me as well, I don't want to stick a bunch of time and effort into something this small if others have done it and weren't happy.  I've never cooked for any more than about 20-30 people, 30 lbs. or so of pork butts turned into pulled pork started on a grill and finished in a large roaster in foil. I would cook beef as well. Most of the time It'd be just for me and the wife (She eats like a bird) I do like smoked meat of all kinds.

post #8 of 11
I don't think 15" x 46" would make too bad a smoker for you. Even if you cut it into two pieces, 32 " and 14" and used part for the firebox, depending on how round the ends are, could make a nice smoker

This one is 16" dia, 32" and 16" , just to get an ideal of size,



post #9 of 11

If you are going to be cooking mainly for you and your wife, that size would be ideal The one RW pictured will cook a bunch of meat, good looking smoker :drool 

post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 

I'd like to get a better look at that one, more pictures?  Is my old air bubble big enough for a firebox.  Both ends of the propane tank are rounded except for the stand welded to the bottom that would need to be removed.  

post #11 of 11
Thread Starter 

Would a 1/8" thick firebox be worth messing with for this build?  I have a box I built sometime ago 18x18x21  I know it's kinda thin.  

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