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How To Fab a Charcoal Basket For Your SnP

post #1 of 40
Thread Starter 
I had posted this same thread a few months ago but it got lost in the crash, so I'll try to repost it from memory, which can be a little sketchy PDT_Armataz_01_15.gif .

First thing I did was fab a template out of cardboard and fit it in the fire box. I roughly measured the inside diam and figured I'd add 3" for the sides, and ended up with something like this.

Then tape up the sides and see how well it fits, you can use the mounting brackets in the firebox that were for the grill racks.

After you find a good fitting template, carefully take it apart and lay it on your sheet of expanded metal.

Then trace out your pattern and use whatever you have that can make clean cuts. I used a 4" die grinder with a diamond blade that worked very well. Don't forget the ear and eye protection!!

Then if you're lucky enough to have access to a Press Brake, bend the sides up on your lines. If you're like the rest of us you'll have to use some muscle and a bit of backyard engineering. I used a couple pieces of plywood and a gloved hand to bend the sides.

You'll have to work at it a while because ¾" expanded metal is really tough to bend, if you don't bend it right on your "line" you'll end up with a bowl instead of a basket.

Once you get the sides bent, use "L" brackets and nuts, bolts and washers to fasten the sides, Once the sides are secure I flipped the basket upside down and tweaked the bottom by lightly pushing on it with my foot. Then test fit.

Should look similar to this when you're done.

IMPORTANT WORD TO THE WISE!! Make sure you run a couple batches of charcoal through your basket to burn off the machine oils and such before you add any food to your smoker. It'll smell the first 30 minutes or so then go away.
post #2 of 40
Excellent post ..... POINTS !!!!
post #3 of 40
Thanks for the post, solar. Good info. Points for you
post #4 of 40


PDT_Armataz_01_37.gifPoints! PDT_Armataz_01_34.gif
post #5 of 40
Thanks Solar. Mine is a little different and my SnP is a little different as well. I'll take some pics and add them to this post.
post #6 of 40


That was great!icon_exclaim.gif
post #7 of 40
Thread Starter 
How is yours different? Is your SnP a newer one? I think mine was built in the late 90's.
post #8 of 40
Wow, thanks for the info.
post #9 of 40
Glad ya reposted this.....Nice job Brian!!!
post #10 of 40
Yeah mine is the newer one. Looks like the top firebox door is larger on yours. I had to make my basket a little smaller because the door is smaller. Still no pics. I'll get some tomorrow. I'm smoking a butt and a loin.
post #11 of 40
Ok I finally remembered this thread. lol I have a brake so I bent mine in the brake then folded "ears" to let the whole thing hang from the lip in the FB. Tack welded the corners.

Also took some 16 ga. flat steel and folded up a chip/chunk box.

FB with basket and box before the burn in.

Working great so far. :)
post #12 of 40
Pretty freaking cool there Smoking gun...

I like that...
post #13 of 40
Still new at smoking so maybe this sounds dumb but, whats the basket for? Does it hold the charcoal? I just lay mine on top on the supplied grate & the ashes fall through. Is the basket better?
post #14 of 40
The basket helps in keeping the charcoal contained.
post #15 of 40


Gonna build one!
post #16 of 40
I'm wondering if I could use one of those stainless steal grill pans for this You know one of the ones with holes in it.

Sort of like one of these....

post #17 of 40
You sure can...that's the one I used. Think I got the idea from someone on here. it slides right in, or if you prefer, you can get whatever length bolts and put them in the corners securing with hex nuts.
post #18 of 40

sorry but i have a stupid question.

does the finish basket (top of the basket) need to be level with the bottom of heat intake to the smoker? 

post #19 of 40

It doesn't have to be level with the intake but thats the way mine turned out. It's actually a bit below and the chunk box kinda fills the gap.

post #20 of 40

Dumb beginner question here. Why do you have a separate basket for the wood? I have been throwing mine right on my coals.

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