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My New Smoker & Modifications

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Got this a couple weeks ago off of craigslist for $40. It is a New Braunfels El Dorado (prior to Char-Broils buyout).

It was in pretty decent shape. A little rust here & there, but I hit with the wire brush and a little high temp paint and she is almost like new.

I have made a couple of modifications so far:

The factory thermometer was about 100 degrees off. It read 300+ in a boiling pot of water. So, for now, I drilled out the stem to make way for a digital thermometer that I have, until I get get a decent replacement.

Originally this came with a charcoal grate with legs that sat in the ash pan. I found an older thread here about a mod where someone had put four bolts in for the charcoal grate to sit on so they could pull the ash pan out to empty during long smokes. I took that one step further, and used some angle metal to make some rails.

For my first smoke on this, I did a brisket. The firebox mounted below the smoke chamber was a bit awkward to access to build & replenish the fire.

So, with some help from my mechanic at work, we fabricated a charcoal basket. This is 14.5" x 14.5" x 6", and should easily hold 10-12 lbs of charcoal for a minion method smoke:

Here is the interior. The smoke comes up on the far end underneath the drip pan. The drip pan is elevated on the far end. The grates are adjustable to four different levels.

And it vents through two baffles on the far end of the smoker:

Does anyone have any other modification suggestions that might improve this?

Thanks, Gordo
post #2 of 13
looks to me like you are ready to start smokin
post #3 of 13
Great score on a nice smoker congrats
post #4 of 13
looks pretty nice.
post #5 of 13
Looks pretty sweet. How do you think that handle on the basket will hold up? Just curious.
post #6 of 13
that is a heck of a nice looking smoker...not to mention a even better deal... congrats, and get it fired up!!
post #7 of 13
Thread Starter 
Not sure, but I am doing a turkey today, so we will find out I guess.
post #8 of 13
very nice score!! looks like your ready too fire it up.i've seen these in different ads,one thing you might be watching is the heat on the side over the firebox,seems like it would run hotter to me,unless it's diffused someway.
post #9 of 13
Fine looking project gordo, hope the maiden voyage of the turkey does ya well!
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 

Thank You people

Hello, this is Kayla. Dave's(Gordo's) step-daughter.redface.gif

I just wanted to thank all you guys on this thing. biggrin.gif Dave has made so many wonderful and good things.PDT_Armataz_01_37.gif Also I hope you can teach him how to make a better, juicier beef briscut. icon_exclaim.gif
Once again, Thank you (and that comes from the heart, and stomach)PDT_Armataz_01_37.gifcool.gif Love Kayla
PDT_Armataz_01_39.gifPDT_Armataz_01_40.giffrown.gif team work worksicon_exclaim.gif
post #11 of 13
Dave, looks like a great job on the refurbish, and I think that smoker will do a great job. I like the continuous baffle in the smoke chamber. Its a good concept. Nice of your step daughter to thank the folks here and write us a nice little note.

Get that thin smokin now! Let us see how she does!wink.gif
post #12 of 13

Better brisket

Gordo, awesome score on that smoker! Looks like a well built unit with a lot of cool features. For a great brisket what I do is the night before is Rub,Wrap and refrigerate. Pull it out of fridge about and hour before putting it in the smoker. Once in the smoker I smoke it for an hour untouched and then I mop with apple juice and turn. Do this every hour until internal temp is about 140*, mop again and double wrap in foil and put back in smoker till internal temp is 200-205*. Pull out of smoker and put in cooler wrapped in towels and let it rest about an hour before unwrapping it. You will be amazed at the results! I do my briskets and shoulders this way and it works well for both. Do a little reading and get the 5day ecourse. It was very helpful and informative and FREE. Can never have to much info. Good luck.
post #13 of 13

Saw your smoker, I have one like it that I am in the process of making a few modifications.  I'm moving the burn box to the side and will add a smoke stack.  I've noticed that most, if not all, newer smokers are configured this way.  Just thought I would try it.  Just experimenting.  I liked your charcoal basket and will try to make a similar one for mine.

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