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Newest freezer build smoker! Need some pointers

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 

So here is the freezer I will be converting, it's a pretty big unit and I want to stay electric on this unit.
Which brings me to the first topic I need help with.

1. What electrical heating would you recommend? My previous build I have two burners in it. This one I considered putting three 8inch burners in there.

If you order a receptacle kit and burner coils are they pretty easy and universal to wire up? I can't find any old stoves on Craigslist. Didn't know if you could wire those universally or not

Once touch on this I will bring in the next topic thanks fellas!!
post #2 of 19

Are there two sides that are isolated or do the two doors open into a single large interior?


I'm thinking you will need to be running 220-230v elements due to the mass of air to heat (or more importantly, the mass of meat this thing will hold).  You can only go so high on a 115v system, even if you run multiple elements as the most you can get from an regular outlet is either going to be 15 amps or 20 amps depending on the house wiring.  220-230v opens up a whole other level of possibilities.  The main issue will be can you get a 220-230v outlet where you need it without incurring excessive expenses.


Also you might consider going with some sort of air circulation fan inside the cabinet due to the volume of air.  Otherwise I suspect the heating will be somewhat uneven.  Does not have to be a hard blowing air, just something to keep it moving around the cabinet more like a 'stir'.  Best design would be an intake at the top (hottest part of the cabinet) which then ducts it down to the bottom. You could pull from multiple inlets and multiple outputs to try and even it out.

post #3 of 19
Thread Starter 
Dward, hey buddy remember you from
Our pid information exchange. Def love having your help and input in the process buddy.

Yes I have a current 220 plug already ran and mounted in the garage. The fan idea sounds pretty good and if recall would that have to be a powered 220v fan? What elements would you recommend that a rookie would be able to wire and more likely in conjunction with a pid set up.
Pry run three burners I'm thinking depending what ideas for best heat pop up
post #4 of 19

btu's are another matter to search to get the heat you will need check with some repair shops for supplies as well as fans such as in convection ovens.

post #5 of 19
Thread Starter 
Def will look into that, just wanna make sure infer enough heat for the whole unit for temps for hot smoking, pork butts, ribs bacon et
post #6 of 19

Ok a standard oven element is 2700 watts. per what 4-5 cu.ft. Each side of that beast is double the size of an oven.

post #7 of 19
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by Four20 View Post

Ok a standard oven element is 2700 watts. per what 4-5 cu.ft. Each side of that beast is double the size of an oven.

Okay man, lol yeah I totally agree. Maybe go with at least something bigger then? Pry going to need one for each side I'm sure. Heard people talk about finned heaters but they say they burn out quick .
post #8 of 19

Not sure but I would say problem with fin elements would be dripping juices also to think about with any element.

post #9 of 19

This should be good. Watching... cheers.gif:popcorn

post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 
Hey fellas everyone list your heating source and control unit! If you could please and your build pictures! Love to get some more ideas got a few small single units to build first and need some more ideas
post #11 of 19



One of they guys dropped a oven and busted the door glass.


I'm using the oven control from it to regulate the cooking element. Its digital so i'm hoping the rain hasn't killed it.

post #12 of 19
Thread Starter 
Alright fellas I'm still gonna do another double door build however we have hit a detour to build a smaller one first lol, here it is it's about 44inches tall x 22 inches wide x 14 inches deep. Looking for some ideas on pid controller wiring with a 110v element that will heat that dimension to about 210-220 in temp for butts etc.
post #13 of 19
Thread Starter 
Looking for heating element suggestions and some
Help incorporating a wiring schematic in with that Element! I appreciate all your guys help look forward to the build and your guys expertise
post #14 of 19
Thread Starter 
Alright fellas !! Again I know!! Ha I conducted a little experiment because a light bulb went off and I was like duh I got an element ! I have a old rusted brinkman vertical smoker with the 1500 element. I will def have to consider some mounting variations that way the cord isn't exposed to heat but I set he burner in the newest fridge I received and plugged it in and let it run wide open. Empty of course and as the insulation and drive stands she got up to 220 fairly quick, open the door for a moment and shut it. The temp dropped about 10 degrees but recooperated fairly quickly. I know with meat there will be variations but k feel this element would powers that smoker!!

With that being said I am looking for help with a wiring schematic for a pid controller with that element!
Can anyone provide that? I will be getting the pid off eBay with a heat sink, ssr and the thermocouple.

Here's the one I'm thinking ?
Basically a chart to show wiring that burner directly.

post #15 of 19

look up the electrical schematic for a roundup ms255cv it is a steamer but the same concept. it uses a PID controlled solid state relay 3-32 volt input controlling a 240 v element. If using 120 v element you can look for a schematic similar model machine that uses a 120v element. Easy to find schematic

post #16 of 19
Thread Starter 
I'll be using a brinkman 1500 watt element in conjunction with a pid on 110v
post #17 of 19
Thread Starter 
Would you guys replace the insulation in the fridge for starters ? It appears to be an old glass base insulation. If doesn't need ripped out and changed I may leave it . Don't know the specs on its fire rating etc.
post #18 of 19

I would replace it personally. Hopefully its not gonna cause cancer working with it.


Air acts as a good insulator but the unit has to be sealed completely inside and out.


You breakin my heart. I like to repair these old fridges. They make great keg-gerators for 1/6 bbl kegs.

post #19 of 19
Thread Starter 
Lol yeah I'll pry rip out and use a fireproof insulation and seal it off with new inner metal.
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