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Hello! New member here.. Master Forge charcoal grill questions

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

Hello everyone, 

I've been reading posts around this forum for a little while now, and really appreciate all of the information I have come across. So thanks for that! Here's my question... I'm getting a FREE Master Forge "Dually" (I think, the on with the door on the front, square box charcoal grill). Like the one in the picture, but a little dirtier.... I plan on smoking on the unit, and know I need to do the high temp gasket around the lid and front door. The 2 questions are:

1. Should I do something with the stock chimney? Extend it lower into the unit? Does it need any work with the high temp gasket? 

2. How can I get it really clean again? Its been sitting around for at least a year unused, and possibly longer. I have the option of pressure washing it, but what should I do from there? 


for my smoking adventures, I plan on making a firebox out of expanded metal, placing the basket on the right side of the unit, and the meat on the left side (under the chimney)... for the indirect method. I guess another question; should I put some sort of metal "wall" in the unit to make it have its own "smoke box", or will the indirect method be good enough?


Glad to be here, ready to learn a lot!


Thanks all, 


Edited by Rhaugle - 4/10/15 at 2:10pm
post #2 of 11
Thread Starter 


post #3 of 11
With this exact grill you have vents on both sides so your going to need to monitor the temp inside with a thermometer little closer than the hood therm. Nice that you can raise and lower the charcoal basket but that not really needed for smoking. I would say if you play it all the way down and run a minion like row of coals that would give nice smoke time.

As for cleaning it...where has it been? Dump? Junk yard? Who used it before? Are you changing the grates also? Was it heavily used?
post #4 of 11
Thread Starter 
I do have a thermometer set up already, so that's taken care of! As for its location... it has been in a garage for a year and before that I would assume outside... it's mostly covered with residue from poor cleanings over its use... my play was pressure wash the whole thing, then I don't know what to do.. Wipe it down with oil and get it going real hot?
post #5 of 11
Sounds like a good plan.
post #6 of 11

I have been reading and following threads about the different mods people have been doing to their Master Forge Dual Charcoal Grill, and realized that no one had really posted a thorough set of instructions as to what they've done and how it can be used to mod other similar grills.


After doing a lot of research, i have finally made the mods that many here are suggesting as well as some extra stuff I've done to make this project more complete.


Materials used:

- Imperial 1/2" fiberglass stove gasket

- http://www.imperialgroup.ca/product/SF_Maintenance_Gaskets_FiberglassGasketRopeKit_White_medium.jpg

- on my first attempt, i used the cement glue that came with the kit. First test run the next day it rained and the rope/gasket fell right off.

- second attempt to stick the gasket to the lid: i sanded down the paint on the edge of the lid where the rope would go, just enough to allow the cement glue to stick. The rope stuck successfully.

- results: filled half of the charcoal tray with lump charcoal and lit it up with a half a chimney full of lit coals. all vents closed it ran at 300 steady for about an hour. then I opened up the vents (pedal to the metal), and it went up to 425 to 450, ran steady for about 3 hours, with no need to add charcoal.


I am still not satisfied with the seal, as I can still see smoke leaking. So I went back to the drawing board of trying to find a sealer/adhesive that would handle high temp, stick the fiberglass rope to metal, and be food safe. People on this form were suggesting RTV red high temp sealant/gasket maker - something used in cars, I didn't really want close to my food. So after a while of searching, i found high temp sealant/adhesive for wood burning stoves/ovens that comes in a tube. made by the same manufacturer.

Stove & Gasket Cement (black)


Next on my list:

- remove the gasket rope (again)

- apply the new glue (above) and re-install the gasket

- use the sealant to seal any holes/openings

- use the sealant to create a proper seal around the side vents that don't properly close thus allowing air to get in and make your temp control more difficult.


I am expecting that once i've done sealing this beast, I will have proper and predictable temp control... will post results once finished (after the test run) :)

post #7 of 11
Welcome to SMF😎. I'm right across the pond in Rochester. Here is a link to some mods I have done to my MF propane.
post #8 of 11


- removed the fiberglass rope i had installed with the cement

- scraped and sanded the lip of the lid where the rope goes

- re-glued the gasket rope back with the new glue

- sealed any holes/leaky areas around the lid, weld lines, and around the ash tray

- sealed the left vent shut, kept the right vent loose for air control. I figured you'd only need one proper vent to get some oxygen into the charcoal tray from the right so that the smoke circulates and exits out the chimney. The chimney is positioned to the left, in a smoking configuration, charcoal would go on the right, food on the left for indirect heat, vent on the right side bringing air in, chimney on the left side exhausts smoke out the top. will need to test this for full high heat (pedal to the metal!)- whether one vent is sufficient for the charcoal to get at the highest temp possible...


next to do:

- fire it up, check for leaks

- monitor and test temp with different vent configurations

- clean glue/rust/dirt and paint with heat resistant fireplace/grill paint

- smoke briskets!!!

post #9 of 11

post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 


Thanks for all of the info! We recently found out we're having a baby and that has put my grill projects on the back burner for now. But I will be trying out what you have talked about and shown here. Did closing up the left vent work out well? I'm worried without doing that, there is too much air getting it!

post #11 of 11

Congratulations about the baby Rhaugle!!


closing the left vent actually made a lot of difference in terms of preventing heat and smoke loss. however it still wasn't enough: some air was still flowing into the chamber from around the ash tray at the bottom of the bbq. I just bought more fiberglass rope and will be sticking it around the ash tray (somehow) hopefully this will reduce the draft. the right vent i left as is but it leaks air when fully closed and you can't really get an air-tight seal - so my band-aid solution was to cover the vent with a cardboard piece to prevent air from going in.


With all the seals and cardboard piece covering the vent the minimum temperature I was able to acheive was 250-300F with a quarter filled charcoal tray.


Vent open: around 450F.


This just goes to show that you only need one vent to be open, but you gotta make sure that the vent/damper prevents air from going in when its fully closed.


In order to maintain temperatures i also had to modify the exhaust:

- the stock exhaust has a stopper piece bent out of the metal hinge holding the open/close valve. solution: bend the lip back so that the exhaust handle can close all the way. this will not close the exhaust completely and if you're trying to smoke some meat in windy conditions (as it mostly is where i live) it creates too much draft and your temps would go high. a piece of tin foil to completely cover the top of the exhaust (leaving a small hole for the smoke to escape) was able to help maintain lower temp - doesn't look pretty but the food will, after it's been there for hours ;).


after all these mods I was able to get this thing to maintain steady temps for 8 hours with no issues - adding a few charcoals (literally a few) every hour or so after the 3rd hour.


Will post my most recent hickory apple smoked ribs soon :)

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