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A couple of questions on a new build... - Page 2

post #21 of 26
Mine is right in the middle on the a back just above drip pans! long shafted commercial Aquarium pump motor!
post #22 of 26

couple suggestions:  That's about a 1500W element so you'll be drawing almost 15A from your wall plug with it...hope you have some headroom there. Keep extension cords as short as possible and make sure they're made up out of at least 12AWG ("12 guage") wire.  Also, note what your PID controller can switch.  If not well over 20A, I'd give it a break and get one of these $4 relays to do the heavy switching: 



If you have 240V handy, stovetop filaments work great, will give you twice the power, and are cheaper than the Brinkmann.  But I assume your controller is 120V?. 


Now the specific heat of water or meat is 1 cal/g/K = 4J/g/K and that of steel is .5 J/g/K.  Now if you have 50# = 22kg of just thawed meat loaded up you'll need to change its temp by ~80K (or 150degF) so you'll need 4*22*80 =7000 kJ = 2kW-hour of heat.  Your Brinkmann 1.5kW running constant with no other losses will do the trick in just over an hour.  Since I assume you'll want longer smoking times than that for culinary reasons, your Brinkmann should be able to get the job done as long as you don't have a lot or losses, like too much air passing from intake through exhaust.  


Now you may have 100# of interior steel in that Crosley that you need to heat from room temp to a 220deg smoking temperature.  That's also a temp change of  150F or 80K so your 100# = 45kg of steel needs .5*45*80 = 2000kJ = .5kW-hour of heat.  Your Brinkmann (without other losses) can get that part of the job done  in under a half hour.  But why not just get it all heated up before you put in the meat?  Close off your intake "damper" so you're not wasting energy or time passing hot air through the unit.  (Just make sure the exhaust is open, especially with that locking door otherwise you're heating a sealed container, the recipe for a bomb.)  Then load in your meat and amaze'in smoke generator and let the controller take over.  Slowly open up the intake damper until you get nice smoke flow up the exhaust stack.  I wouldn't exceed a 1" exhaust for fear you'll lose too much heat and you don't have enough brinkmann power to keep things hot.  (But I suppose you could use a bigger exhaust and install a damper/flapper on the exhaust as well so you have flexibility.)


My opinion on fans is that they might help smoke flow faster over your meat and give you more smoke flavor.  But that's only if they're mounted INSIDE the smoker and both intake and exhaust of the fan is the hot smoky interior...so they work like the fan in a convection oven.  If you're just blowing in cold air from the outside with an aquarium pump you might as well just open your normal intake that much more so you pass that cold air over the amaze-in apparatus and MAKE smoke with it.  


What I suggest instead, since you have lots of room and are using rectangular shelves, is to take some thin sheet stock, the depth of the interior but cut a couple inches narrower than the inside width, and hang them an inch or two off each rack in your fridge in an alternating left-right fashion so you form a smoke labyrinth inside your smoker.  The smoke will spend more time in the smoker and it will be moving faster as it passes over each rack of meat.  And this is an easy experiment to try both ways, with and without.  I'm kind of surprised a guy like Greg Blonder hasn't tried it already.  

post #23 of 26
Thread Starter 

bill1, it is Friday and you are making my brain work hard with all of those calculations!  


I am running 120V and I have run the PID/Brinkmann on the circuits I will be using before...so I am pretty sure I am good.  Like I said in an earlier post, I have gotten my 48" Lang up to about 160ish with the PID/Brinkmann so I don't think I will have an issue with the fridge.  Especially with all the insulation in it.  I just finished sealing up all of the interior holes with high temp food grade silicone.


Today, my plan is screw the inner shell back in, cut the holes for the air intake and exhaust, and start on the metal trim that goes b/w the outer and inner shell.


I decided to go with 2 1" air intakes on the bottom (one on each side).  I am going to put a water knob/valve on the outside to control how much air is let in.  Does anyone think going with 2 1" air intakes is too much?  Could I get away with only 1?  For the exhaust, I am going with 1 2" exhaust using 2" pipe and a tear drop damper - http://www.bbqsmokersupply.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=6&products_id=100.


I will be sure to get a new post started with pictures this weekend. 

post #24 of 26

i have 2" outlet with a ball valve  and 1.5" intake, no valve just a straight open pipe, and then I have a smoke daddy on it with a 1" pipe, so in total I have 2" in and a 2" exhaust with a ball valve. It works awesome. You don't need 2 intakes, only 1 will be fine.


you can control the air flow through the exhaust alone, you don't need to worry about the in and out control.

post #25 of 26

Sounds like a great design, mschwartz.  The exhaust has an adjustable damper so you have the best of all worlds there.  Teardrop--what a poetic word for a smoking forum!  


Maybe I have to admit my desire for smaller pipe was driven less by physics than my love for preserving that Crosley work of art with minimal cutting!  (And the price for that custom welded 2" pipe part sure looks good to me based on the price of pipe now-a-days!)  


As far as the inlets go, I should probably again confess that I'm just not as worried about the deleterious artistic costs in cutting down low.  But if you're going with 1" inlets, I'd think you'd want at least 2?!?!  Remember flow goes as the area and a 2" pipe (your exhaust) is 4x the flow of a 1" pipe, since area goes as the square of the radius or diameter.  But you have a damper on the exhaust so everything is cool I guess.  


Personally I like my throttle plates in the carburetor instead of the tailpipe but there's nothing fundamentally wrong with it the other way.


Just promise you'll be extra careful with that Crosley  trim.  That will make all the difference.   And if you post pictures elsewhere, come back here with a link so I don't miss them.  

post #26 of 26
Thread Starter 

Starting up a new thread with the build...

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