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Trash can build - HELP!!

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

I build a trash can smoker cause its cheap, or I thought. I build it to be an electric smoker but I couldnt hold temp, so I went charcoal. The problem I am having is it will not hold temp as soon as I put the top on. The smoker goes from about 250 to 125-150. I have 3 holes in the bottom of the smoker and I set it up on boards for the air, I also have 2 holes on the top. I also have a door on the side for checking coals and chips. I have a elevated grate on the bottom and a water holder in the center. sorry for spelling




post #2 of 11

Galvanized metal is not a good thing to use for a smoker from a safety standpoint. With that being said its and airflow problem the fire is getting choked out likely need bigger or better intakes but could be not enough exhaust so its not drawing the air in properly

post #3 of 11

I have seen alot of people use those and I never thought it was a good idea....I would go with a UDS ..I am looking for a good barrel myself to build me one. I think that they are cool looking and I am tired of using electric...Gona do tha man thang !!!!!!!!!! lol....

post #4 of 11

The man thing lol thats a good one, electric is for sissys haha

post #5 of 11

I built one of these, but strictly for cold-smoking (under 130˚), because I understand hot smoking in a galvanized can is a NO-NO.

Then I got the A-MAZE-N-SMOKER that I can use in my MES, so I put my trash can smoker in storage. Maybe I'll sell it one day---It has a Big Kahuna, that I don't like, attached to it. All it does is take up room in my garage.




post #6 of 11

Thats what I said gona do that man thang with a UDS....

post #7 of 11

Looks like you have enough parts for a UDS already.     There is much contraversy about galvanize and smoking.  IMHO its so not to use it why do it? 


It is obvious you want to do more than cold smoking so I would use the parts that you already have gathered and build something else.

post #8 of 11
Thread Starter 

I added more holes to the top and bottom, solved the temp issue. I have checked into the issued with galvanized steel and it emits gas at 395. I am smoking at 225-250 ish so no worries. I am working on a 4 drawer filling cabinet smoker on wheels for my next project. I wanted to prefect this one before jumping to something else. Thanks for all of the help and input!

post #9 of 11

Temp drop after closing lid means not enough air / ventilation, very simple.

I can't tell what the intakes look like, but it seems you need bigger vents on the top for sure.

Model your dimensions on the UDS plans available everywhere.


Consider using the combination electric + charcoal + wood chunks.  works great for me


I've gone in in depth into the whole galvanized thing too many times to want to start that again, you can do a search here for galvanized to read up some discussions and decide for yourself.  I assume at least your charcoal basket is non-galvanized.

post #10 of 11
Thread Starter 

How does an 8gal aluminum keg work for making into a smoker? Looks like I will scrap the trash can smoker :(

post #11 of 11

8 gal seems a tad small,   I was thinking about a mini UDS out of a half barrell that is 15.5 gal   but turned it into a brat boiling pot instead.


post a picture,   What part of the county are you in.    Seems liek you are not afraid of work,   visit some local scrap yards I find alot of parts for my projects at them

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