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need ideas for smoker build

post #1 of 45
Thread Starter 

I've been using a UDS and recently got a fire-rated cabinet from work that i wanted to build a smoker out of. 

What would be the best design for this cabinet...side box...rear box...something inside it.

It has a "smoke stack" at the center rear of cabinet. Any ideas appreciated. Thanks.

post #2 of 45
Thread Starter 

Measurements might help.


height = 48"

width = 39"

depth = 20"

post #3 of 45

Pretty Cool, couple of questions   Do you know what it is insulated with? and I assume its painted on the inside. Probably need to remove the inside paint for sure.



post #4 of 45
Thread Starter 

I think it just has double walls with about an inch between the double walls. I can't see any insulation

I was thinking maybe i could use foam to fill the walls but maybe that's not a good idea???

Yes, painted on the inside and outside. I plan on sandblasting it, season the inside and repaint the outside.


I thought about a side mounted box for the fuel, maybe rear mounted. 

Or...1 or 2 burners for propane and use an A-MAZE-N-SMOKER for the smoke.

I have no idea which method would most likely be the best.


I will try to post better pics and some inside pics later.

post #5 of 45

Hello.  Welcome.  I see this is your first thread.  Please take some time and swing over to Roll Call and introduce yourself so that we may give you a proper "Hello".  All info you can provide us with such as smoker type, location and so on will help us answer any questions you may have.  As for your question:  Here is my opinion for what it is worth.  Others may have different advice.  This is only my opinion:  I say NO NO NO to foam insulation.  I know that makes the build more complex but foam has limitations as far as temp and I am dubious about the safety of it if the limitations are exceeded, unless someone has found a product that I don't know about.  With what you have to start with, as far as design I would put the heat source below it like a fridge build.  Has the same characteristics as a fridge build and it would also help by raising it above the ground.  You could go charcoal, propane or electric for heat source.  Each have their own benefits and drawbacks.  Depends on how, when, where used.  Hope this helps.  Keep Smokin!


post #6 of 45
Put on cinder blocks build fire box below , that way heat and smoke goes up and out
post #7 of 45
Thread Starter 

I introduced myself in "roll call":icon_wink:


I think i will do the propane burner route on this one. Not adding foam and i will check to see if it has any existing foam to deal with.


Here are some more pics.






post #8 of 45

Mighty nice gizmo. The double walls are fair insulation in themselves so dont think I would try to insulate it any more. I would mount the bottom half of an electric brinkmann gourmet in the bottom. Propane in a tight environment dont usually work very well and the stuff is way too expensive to clown around with. Keep us posted on it. Thanks.

post #9 of 45

I think that would make a great electric smoker



post #10 of 45
Thread Starter 

I like the electric Brinkman idea. 

I'd go the coal route but i already have my UDS for that and would like something i could turn on and let go without having to babysit.

You guys got me thinking and yes i will post updates of what and how i do.

post #11 of 45

Might have spoken to soon, how thick is the metal?

post #12 of 45
Thread Starter 

Maybe 16 or 20 gauge? About as thick as a road sign would be my guess. 

I can have a better answer tomorrow when i look at it again. It is really heavy!

post #13 of 45
Another great "SCORE" ... If you decide to go with electric... don't look at anything under 220 v... My belief is that it saves money in the long run .... a 110 V system will have to work very close to 100% of it's potential ... where as 220 V will run closer to 50% of it's potential.... thus giving you a high heat (350`+) option... if you like to do chicken (or any other meat for that matter ) hotter .... Look into a PID system if your thinking electric...

That will make an awesome smokehouse.... I see sausage and snack sticks hanging in it already ...
post #14 of 45
Think 110 be more than sufficient. Be sure and drill a few nice narrow gauge holes twixt the outside walls and the great outdoors. Otherwise that air in the middle can get heated up and cause it to rapidly disassemble itself or prob make it warp so it was not pretty anymore.
post #15 of 45
110 for sure, my dad has the pid on is smoker and thing works like a champ
post #16 of 45
It's kinda like the " ISHOULDAALLOVERMYSELF" (said as fast as possible) saying .... "I should have done this and I should of done that" .... I thought 110 would be good enough for my smokehouae (3x3x6) as well... it struggled (1.5 hrs) just to get to 170` when empty... let alone 125` max when filled with cold meat ...

If you want to go 110V.. I have a brand new (still in box) Brinkman 1500W ,110V , heating element (with stainless bolts for legs) .. PM me if interested ....
post #17 of 45

Well hate to be a parade rainer here but if you are needing to break 170 it actually aint a smoke house. That call that a bbq pit. Do your smoke house have double walls? All the factoids need to be plugged into these type equations. Hey JD...meant to also say..having recently turned the big pit into a jerky factory..the brinkmann element  does not do well in the absence of its accompanying parts. I like to went crazy trying to use the element alone..it just scorched the wood and did not make much smoke..so I assembled it just like it was on the bottom of the electric gourmet..lava rocks..innner and outter pan etc. Its now a smoking mofo so so to speak. I aint a temp gauge watcher so I dont really care what it says on the dial. Hot plates dont work well either. Zapped a high dollar model used for making apple pie sometimes. Anyway hook it up right and report back. Spring for the entire bottom half and see what happens.I bet you might be blessed by a muracle.

Edited by bigwheel - 3/15/14 at 1:12am
post #18 of 45

Hello.  Not that anyone asked but I gotta agree with JD here.  I'm a build it once kinda person.  By using maybe a mailbox mod for smoke and careful pre-planning I see no reason that box couldn't be used for cold smoking right up to the 350+ range.  Keep Smokin!


post #19 of 45
Originally Posted by KC5TPY View Post

Hello.  Not that anyone asked but I gotta agree with JD here.  I'm a build it once kinda person.  By using maybe a mailbox mod for smoke and careful pre-planning I see no reason that box couldn't be used for cold smoking right up to the 350+ range.  Keep Smokin!

That's what I was shooting for with my build.... "ALL IN ONE" kinda smokehouse
post #20 of 45
Thread Starter 

I've been researching "pid" and plan to go that route. Would this be a recommended pid setup? http://www.auberins.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=8&products_id=110

I'd make one but am mechanically inclined...not electrically inclined.

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