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Grates For Sfb Grills-experiments.

post #1 of 12
Thread Starter 
This could be an interesting study if it gets enough feedback. I've been playing around with different grates for the fire boxes and thought I should post the results. Unfortunatly I lost the other pictures so this is a new start. This picture shows the grate I've been using for over a year and the ashes (or lack of) that were left from an eleven hour smoke using nothing butt pecan and cherry wood. These finely burned ashes filled a 36 ounce cup. The grate is actually a cast iron cooking grate from a gas grill of the past. The expanded grate that came with my smoker has been retired as it had 4 times the amount of coals. I think the grate has a lot to do with how the fuel burns and should be a great help with especially home builds.

post #2 of 12
This could be a fantastic study. I use a perforated piece of cast iron that seems to work well enough. I shovel out ashes about every 4-5 hours. Don't know if it's necessary -- I just like to make sure things move along without interruptions.

Been thinking about a coal basket, maybe with baffles for the minion method that I've seen on this site. Things are working fine for now, though.
post #3 of 12
Thread Starter 
Hello James, looks like yours is not original butt effective. What was it? Raising it about 2 inches may keep you from empting it so often. OH, how did your original work?
post #4 of 12
I really like bar grating for building custom sized firebox racks, there are about 10 different styles, most are meant to be walked on so they are very heavy duty and will probably last a lifetime. I have helped 2 buddies build (ok mock and cut) them after seeing the one that came in the bellfab, they are both really happy with the results, here we got a metal fab company with scrap pieces, $25 for a 2 x 2 chunk which had to be cut down. One guy plans to put it on the bottom of his bbq trailer for a floor instead of just using expanded.
post #5 of 12
Don't know how the original worked; I picked this up used without grates. Had that funny looking thing sitting in the garage with some regular plate steel -- don't even know where it came from or what it was originally for.

I'll try your idea and raise it a couple of inches to see how she performs. Thanks Graybeard!
post #6 of 12
I like this idea, JDT. Might have to fab one up soon and try it out!
post #7 of 12
this is what i was going to use:

but i went with this:

post #8 of 12
Thread Starter 
Hello chefrob,why not try both just to see the difference. I'm curious about the amount of ash and the over all burn. It wood be a pain in the butt to try to estimate the amount of fuel butt that's the direction I'm headed.

post #9 of 12
Thread Starter 
James, start with one inch first and see how it works. Two inches may be too much butt still worth a try. Also pay attention to the amount of burning coals under the grate. With those small holes I doubt you will have very much hot coals. With my expaned grate I had a lot of burning coals butt I'm not sure that a good thing.

post #10 of 12
beard, the reason i went with the expanded basket i i think i would get better airflow all around and it would be easier to clean out. i also have found that if push the hot coals to the air intake side and i put the wood chunks to the smoker side i get a good heat/smoke balance with out flare ups. then i just roll the log into the coal side and replace with a new chunk. i did a 4 hr smoke on some ribs this last week end and used 1.5 chimini's worth of lump and about 5 chunks of pecan that were 4-5" diameter and about 4" long.
post #11 of 12
im just curious how the basket would work if you're doing a 10-12 hour smoke. i like the idea as far as the easiness of cleaning it out when you're done with it. it just seems to me that the fire would suffocate.
post #12 of 12
Thanks! I'll give that a try first.
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