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250 Gallon Reverse Flow Smoker Build ?'s

post #1 of 3
Thread Starter 

Hello to everyone.  I've been researching this forum and have received a lot of great info from reading previous posts.  I've got a few questions I can't find answers too.  I was wondering if folks could weigh in on these for me.  I have a 250 gallon propane tank (apx. 30" in diameter by 87" in length) on a custom trailer.  The tank has two doors.  I am building a reverse flow model. I am about 2/3 the way through the build, waiting on finding a deal on some steel to build my firebox. Here are some of my questions.

 

1.   Does the "cooking chamber size" listed on many calculators (Feldon's http://www.feldoncentral.com/bbqcalculator.html) refer to just the cooking space above the baffle plate or the whole size of the tank itself (e.g. 250 gallons).  The calculations are giving me an awfully big firebox (about 19,250 cubic inches in volume).  

 

2.   Firebox plan. - Insulated with 1.5" fire insulation between an inner and outer box of 1/4" steel.  The front and back plates will be 1/2 steel since there will be no insulation on those ends.  Is this Bad/Okay/Good/Great?

 

3.   My baffle plate is also a reservoir for the oil/grease to be removed without affecting the rest of the unit.  Baffle plates are angled inward toward a center piece of of angle iron, which is angle angled to drain slightly to a steel pipe which exits the bottom of the tank and capped off with a valve.  The picture link below is not mine, but mine is of a similar design.

 

http://i1041.photobucket.com/albums/b414/lefty592/Picture035.jpg 

 

Is this Bad/Okay/Good/Great?

 

4.  Do I need to paint the baffle plates areas on the smoker beneath them (with High Heat paint if done of course) since that part of the smoker will be inaccessible once assembled?

 

5.  What about the top of the baffle plates? Is high heat paint to protect the metal from rusting a no-no that close to the cooking surface.

 

6.  Bottom of meat will be 4-5 inches from the baffle plate.  Is this Bad/Okay/Good/Great?

 

7.  How far inside  the tank should the smoke stack chimney be.  Some say running it down to the cooking grate area to help with draft.

 

ANY feedback would be greatly appreciated.

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 3

I'm sure Dave and a few others will be along shortly to set you straight on the ins and outs of your build, but I'll answer the questions to the best of my ability being a vet of a RF cooker build.

 

1.   Does the "cooking chamber size" listed on many calculators (Feldon's @ http://www.feldoncentral.com/bbqcalculator.html) refer to just the cooking space above the baffle plate or the whole size of the tank itself (e.g. 250 gallons).  The calculations are giving me an awfully big firebox (about 19,250 cubic inches in volume).   That's a big tank, without looking at the calc, I would probably say it's right.  Gonna need a big FB to heat it up.

 

2.   Firebox plan. - Insulated with 1.5" fire insulation between an inner and outer box of 1/4" steel.  The front and back plates will be 1/2 steel since there will be no insulation on those ends.  Is this Bad/Okay/Good/Great?   Insulate as much as you can, or go with all 1/2 steel.  As far as if that idea is good or bad, sometimes we have to use what resources we have.  I don't think it's either good or bad.

 

3.   My baffle plate is also a reservoir for the oil/grease to be removed without affecting the rest of the unit.  Baffle plates are angled inward toward a center piece of of angle iron, which is angle angled to drain slightly to a steel pipe which exits the bottom of the tank and capped off with a valve.  The picture link below is not mine, but mine is of a similar design.  Your plan here is spot on.  That's the way I built mine.   

 

http://i1041.photobucket.com/albums/b414/lefty592/Picture035.jpg 

 

Is this Bad/Okay/Good/Great?

 

4.  Do I need to paint the baffle plates areas on the smoker beneath them (with High Heat paint if done of course) since that part of the smoker will be inaccessible once assembled?    No interior paint...

 

5.  What about the top of the baffle plates? Is high heat paint to protect the metal from rusting a no-no that close to the cooking surface.   No interior paint....

 

6.  Bottom of meat will be 4-5 inches from the baffle plate.  Is this Bad/Okay/Good/Great?   Once again right on the $....

 

7.  How far inside  the tank should the smoke stack chimney be.  Some say running it down to the cooking grate area to help with draft.    Mine just enters into the tank upper right hand corner above the top grate.  This is one of the things I would do differently if I build another RF cooker, put the exhaust coming out at lower grate level.  Now mine has no drafting or fire temp issues, I just don't get as much smoke on my meat sometimes that I would like to.  I do get a nice smoke ring and a light smoke flavor though.

 

 

post #3 of 3
Thread Starter 

Thanks for your feedback bruno994!  Love your 150 gallon RF setup too!

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