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1940 General Motors Build

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

Good Morning!

New to the forum and new to the concept of a fridge smoker. After seeing all the wonderful/cool builds here I had to try it.

She served me well for many years as my man cave beer fridge but sacrificed her life to be re-born as a smoker.

All old insulation and tar was removed.


This is before a thorough cleaning. Aluminum shelf racks, 1250 watt element.

 3" ss stack and drip pan.  Cabinet rtd and thermo couple for meat temp.


 Two 1" fresh air intakes.


  Aluminum flashing around the tub and to cover the inside of the door.

 Here she is!! I found a fellow that does wraps on the side and had him do the door. I built the PID out of scrounged pieces and parts. Test fired just for heating last night, took an hour to get to 250, I've got some tweaking to do to get there quicker. Going to throw some smoke to it tonight and check for leaks. Thanks to all for the inspiration and ideas!




post #2 of 10

Mike, that is an awesome build.


Congratulations & welcome to SMF!


Your going to fit in real well around here!


Point to you for a fantastic build!



post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the kind words and points!



post #4 of 10
That looks amazing! Where did you get your exhaust stack and what kind of heating element are you using? That is a great idea with the drip pan to prevent the condensation from dripping. Great build!
post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the kind words Scout!


A buddy of mine scrounged the pipe for the stack out of a junk pile where he works and welded the flange on it for me.


The element is a 1250 watt replacement for an Old Smokey grill.


I got all the ideas for the build after looking at all of the AMAZING builds on here.





post #6 of 10

Great looking build Mike!


What do you have on the inside holding your 2 balls valves?


Did you seal the hole for your thermo couple?


What are you going to use for a smoke source and what's the highest temp you can reach with the 1250 watt element. My fridge looks roughly the same size and debating over the 1250 watt element or 1500 watt fin strip heater...




- MeatSweats

post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks MeatSweats!

I'm pretty happy with the way she turned out. You wouldn't believe how many smaller cans it took to build itcheers.gif


I used electrical conduit lock washers on both sides.


I haven't sealed it yet, needed to order a different t/c, the one I have won't work with my readout.


I made my own smoke tube out of ss screen capped at both ends. Works pretty good. I've had it up to 350 so far, haven't tried any higher.




post #8 of 10

Thanks for the info Mike!


One more question regarding your heating element. You said you used the Old Smokey heating element and have it hooked up to your PID. Is this what you used below?


Do you know if I use this cord/thermostat and keep it set on high with the Old Smokey Element and plug directly into the PID controller, will I still be able to control the temp from the PID or will the thermostat on the cord prevent this? Does that make sense????


If the thermostat on the cord prevents the PID from controlling the temp, can I remove the thermostat and just wire it directly?





post #9 of 10
Thread Starter 



That's exactly what I have and exactly the way I use it.


I also thought about by passing the thermostat but I thought I'd try this first. If it doesn't work then I will just unplug it from the back of the smoker and un-wire it, it's pretty straight forward.


Great minds think alike!


Have you posted what you're building yet? If not let's see it!



post #10 of 10



See the below thread for my build. Just pictures of my fridge as of right now. Between an anniversary trip to Duluth, MN 2 weeks ago, trip to Upper Michigan last week, having a 4 month old and a recent death in the family, I've barely had time to wipe my own A$$. Picked up a case of beer for the weekend and told the wifey i'll be in the garage building shit  if she needs me. Hopefully I can get it all ripped apart this weekend and see what I'm working with.


I also told her I could build this from scrap parts found on craigslist without spending any money and I have determined that was a lie!! I think my build list is going to be over $600 including PID, Element, AMNPS, Roxul, sheet metal for door, racks and paint. I'll probably be back with more questions!







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