Found these pictures on my computer, thought everyone might enjoy. This is the smoker I made back in college out of an old GE fridge. It was a LOT of trial and error. There was no chimney, the air escaped through the gap around the door. We could get this up to a sustained temp of over 400. Our fuel was oak logs. And we would smoke year round in Bemidji Minnesota every Sunday unless it was raining. I think the temperature outside when these pictures were taken was right around zero.
Used an old fan to increase the air flow. The refrigerator sat on top a steel frame a friend made for me. I got the fridge for free from work. The fire box was an old wood stove I got for $20 at a local scrap yard. Added the door off of an old wood stove to the back so we wouldn't have to open the main door for things like mopping and checking the temperature.
Would prop a pole against the door to close it tighter but still allowed air to flow out (never said it was fancy, plus it was built on a broke college students budget).
You can see the holes in the sides. We would stick .5" steel rods in to put oven racks on, could hold up to five racks, unfortunately this was never accomplished. Would also put some sheet metal ontop to block the door gap a little better.
This was the fire box after a morning snow. It's an old wood stove. We would burn oak and cherry logs. Luckily I had a roommate who was really into chopping wood.
The inside. Completely gutted and burned out. The bottom was fire bricks and the bottom of an old oven. The firebricks helped to control the temp (at least it seemed to) and the oven bottom kept the ash from blowing up into the smoker. You can see the water pan, frozen, because it was never taken out after the last smoke.
Close up of the fire bricks and oven bottom.
This is where I learned how to smoke, it was not perfect and looked terrible, but the food this baby produced was delicious. Smoke brisket, a whole turkey, chickens, ribs, venison and drank about 500 beers. Unfortunately after graduation I had to move to Michigan for an internship and had to leave this behind. A friend has it in his pole barn but the fire box if gone.