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Beginning a big RF! - Page 2

post #21 of 32
Thread Starter 

Len and Dave- I suspect the door did spring a little when it was cut out- we had to use the torch instead of the saw to cut the door because the tank is 3/8" thick. So it got a little warm.  We do have some toggle clamps on the bottom corners of the door, but still have at least an 1/8' gap between the tank and the flat steel flange on the ouside of the door when closed/ clamped down.  The largest gap is pretty even across the bottom and extends about half way up tthe door on each side.  I doubt we can bend the door back into perfect shape due to  having it mounted and the flat on. Could be due to the hinge too- we used tube and a piece of round bar across the top of the door and made a piano type hinge.


I'll get some pictures - smoking a few turkeys Wednesday for Thanks giving.


post #22 of 32
Thread Starter 

Dave, Pictures as requested, a few better ones to follow.  Some of the smoke is paint burning off. Door clamped shut in btm pic.

post #23 of 32
From the pictures....... When you welded the hinge, FULL length hinge, the metal shrunk....

I would grind the hinge loose from the tank, then the door, and put on a different hinge....

... ....
post #24 of 32
Thread Starter 

Cooked a couple of butts and a chicken to learn how the smoker reacts. Settles in at 275 degrees after an hour, firing it with the propane weed burner torch to light oak spilts.

1) cooked the chicken whole, not spilt for 3 hours. at 250 degrees, 2-2 1/2 hours would have been plenty. The breast was a little dry, dark meat couldn't have been better.  no mopping or basting, just Lowry's Perfect Poultry seasoning as a rub.

2) Butts came out perfect after 7.5 hours, a little eastern NC Sauce (Charlie Mills recipe) splashed on top every hour or so. Yield about 66%, started with 18 lbs, ended up with 12 lbs give or take after bone and fat cap.


Might install  a 3/4" angle inside the door as a drip ledge during warm up and some rock wool gasket along the bottom after seeing the where the smoke likes to travel during the cook.  The majority of the smoke and heat flow is out the stack.    I can live with the hinge for now.  Happy New Year to all!! May we all prosper. Happy smoking!;)

post #25 of 32

Chicken looked great  Nice color



post #26 of 32
Thread Starter 

Cooked some Ribs, Butts and Chickens today. very pleased.


post #27 of 32

Nice !   Looks like some great eats



post #28 of 32
Thread Starter 

Reworked the hinge and counter weight, but still have a gap at the bottom.  And real pleased with the balance of the lid As far as the gap at the bottom of the lid- I think the metal shrunk when we welded in the baffle plate. Coulda been the piano hinge at the top to start with, but we cut the lid braces on CNC burn table for the rework the same radius as the tank. After cutting it loose, the lid was maybe a 1/16" out, so we pressed it in and welded it. Still got a gap at the bottom. Only explanation I have is the tank pulled at the baffle. But I'm optimistic- I'm thinking heat rises, right?  So without more fab work, we're gonna have to install a gasket with some RTV after the paint dries to seal the lid. Cooking 1100 pounds of butts among 4 cookers starting Thursday for the Scouts.Happy Smoking. Cheers

Edited by Fudd - 10/28/15 at 5:51pm
post #29 of 32
If you get a chance, try a straightening tool like this.... You may have to heat the tank with a weed burner or something......

post #30 of 32
Thread Starter 

Might just do that, I changed out the bolts on my toggle clamps, and got a lot tighter seal, not air tight, but after looking at it, no fiberglass rope needed, maybe a little RTV, but happier with the fitment after that small modification.

post #31 of 32
Thread Starter 

All painted up and ready for the annual Scout BBQ, cooking 120 butts.

post #32 of 32
Thread Starter 

Rear view with counter weight and hinges.

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