Holy smokes guys,
Sorry for the mega post there, I guess I got carried away, and then I didnt even check my spelling.
Cool im an electrician here, well laid off at the moment but i want to try to go for a job at Florida Power or something like that instead of a small company and waste more years for nothing, I was at my last company nine years and now i have to start all over again so that sucks but i hope i end up with a better job.
Had a little time to work tonight. Thought I had a piece of steel for the reverse plate but sadly I did not have one whole piece. Had to make it from 3 separate plates which wasn't all bad, I would have had to make it from 2 anyways. I set the plate nearest the fire and welded it to the firebox wall. Then took a bottle jack and a piece of angle iron to give the plate a little fall. Punched a hole in the bottom of the tank for the drain then marked the whole thru the rf plate. I was a little off but nothing the mig couldn't handle. The second plate only bows to the center and the last piece falls to the drain.
BTW If theres anyone nearby and when ever you decide you want it to rain just let me know. I will drag the welder outside and its near a sure thing
With any luck I will bring home either a 4 or 6 in pipe drop tomorrow from work.
I had planned to use 3/16 for the rf plate to try and sink a little more heat, but when I went for the steel all I could find was 1/8 and didnt even really have enough of that. I ended up making it work with 3 pieces.
The piece nearest the firebox, I set in the cooker and made level from front to back when standing in front of the open door. Then welded all the way across the firebox end. The little bottle jack is only, I think a 4 ton if even that. This plate I didnt even have to use the handle, just grabbed the jack where the handle fits into and pumped it. Once I got it to a point that I liked the way it looked I welded back and forth between the front and back.
I cut the drain pipe in and then cut the second piece to fit over the drain. It took a bit more to bend this one but still no handle in the jack. Made it look good and welded the joint on the right side. Then moved the angle iron die to the end near the drain and tried to match my last bend, and welded up the front and back the same as the first. I got to admit, I pulled the mig out for this part, which is not all good. The pipe has a fare amount of rust which caused a little porosity in my welds but this is not a tank for jet fuel so I figure that a pin hole or two isn't gonna kill me.
The third plate got an angle iron welded to the left side to help keep a straight edge. Lined it up and tacked the angle iron to the inside of the cooker. Then i just had to move my jack and die to the edge nearest the drain. This took quite a bit of pressure to bend since it was only 5 3/4" then welded it up.
The plate actually looks like a really shallow bowl with the low spot at the drain.
So in short, with the bottle jack and angle iron, along with the tank being 3/8"....... Yes it was easy to bend. With a thinner wall tank it would be hard to use the jack with out bending the hinge area all out of shape.
I have concern now. I made a major miscalculation, I found the area of my firebox opening and used that for the open size of the rf plate opening at the end of the cook chamber. Intent was to make the opening the same as the area under the plate and have an adjustable damper if I wanted to close it down to the size of the fire opening.
firebox opening size is 42 sq in
under rf plate size is 84 sq in
my opening at the end of the rf plate is 45 sq in.
Now I have to decide if I am going to cut out another 2 inchs off the end of the plate or if I should just go with it.
i've found that the sizing calculations allow for the smoker to get up to high temps, so for average 225* smokes they are big enough to account for that. i will say this, with my big smoker i've been building i had it fired up over 4th of july and used my adjustable plate damper and found that it performed best halfway to slightly more closed. the minimum opening in the plate is the size of the square inches of the ID of the stack which on a 4" stack is 12-1/2"square. my smoker is 26" diameter so 26" long x 1/2" wide gap is minimum. on the other hand my maximum is like Tom said, equal to the size of the area under my RF plate. I will be doing more testing of my plate adjustment and will post some data on my 160 gallon RF thread as i make more progress.
i think you will be fine Tom.
Not sure if you noticed in my pic or not, there is a piece of angle at the end of the plate which I have drill two holes in. I like your idea about being adjustable but I didn't want to have the hole cut in the end of the pit. I figured I would make a plate with slotted holes in it and use a couple bolts and wing nuts to lock it in place. But now that I had a sna-foo, I may not need the plate on this one. We will see soon, I hope. I have my stack which I plan to cut 3 pie shaped wedges out of with out cutting the pipe in half, and bending at each point and welding back. With any luck this will make a much better transition at the 90 and let it flow better.
I hope to get a little time in on it this afternoon after I go mow. Yesterday was a loss for working on the smoker, I had to work on the walk-behind so I can make money to play with my smokers.
that sounds like a great way to do it, should look better too.
Well I choose to sit on my butt when I got home tonight, I wanted to work on it but tired is catchin up with me.
This is so not smoker related but I got a new toy last wed, 2002 or 2003 48" walk-behind mower and since mowing makes the money for my pits I figure I should share. Its in pretty fair shape, got a little wear here and there but for the most part is mows great and starts with one pull. Yesterday I made a sled for it, well more for my laziness to ride on. I didnt want wheels on it like the trailer looking ride on stuff thats out there. What I made gives the smoothest ride you could ever imagine. The small yards and hills I still walk for better control but on the flat I jump on and surf away.
Tom thanks very much for the detail pictures. You are correct about the forum type, but trust me I am sure that the ones that spend as much time on this site weld and build ours too. It’s a pleasure when people like you share their knowledge and skills with others.Can't wait to see the completed project!
I have two 3/8"x30"x54" pieces and will be starting build it sometime in October. Will start the trailer for it in Sept if the good lord is willing.
RandyA from Florida
Had a little change of plan after the mishap trying to cut my pattern for marking the wedge. Instead I choose to move the fence on my band-saw, which I might add, I hate to do. Then just cut the pipe on angle at about 79 degrees. Two cuts like this yields my goal of about 22.5 degree wedge. The 4x7 band-saw wont quite make the full cut on 4" shc40, so I had to finish my cuts with the metabo and a cut off wheel. Took alittle time to grind the galv off and tack them together. It was decent looking so I moved on and welded them up solid. Note, I will drag out the flux core machine for the next one, it burns the little bits of galv off way better then the mig. I didnt get to grind it down tonight, the neighbors get all cranky when I make to much noise after dark.
Poormans way of keeping the pipe true since I had to rotate it everytime to make the next cut. My saw only miters one way.
I think when its ground down it will almost look like a factory elbow. I can bend large dia pipe but its not near this tight of a bend.
Well here is what I ended up with. It turned out pretty good but not so sure I will do this again. It took alot of time, between setting up the saw, getting the angle finder set right, cleaning the galv of the weld area, grinding, and filling the porosity defects caused by the galv from the inside getting into the weld. I am probably looking at something like 2 1/2 to 3 hours. Not cool, and defiantly not very productive. I think the next one may get a 4" short 90 and then a short piece of exhaust pipe if the price isn't to high.
Got a few things done today along with cleanin up the driveway.
Made the fire grate, this one should last a day or two.
Installed a counter weight for the door but not sure if I like it or not. It does its job but its butt-ugly.
Made a coal basket, just cause I could and I wanted to try it in a RF.
Welded in the shelf supports and cut the cook grate. Its really tough to get a 42" shelf thru a 38" hole. This was a challenge.
I almost forgot to cut out the stack hole thru the end-plate of the cook chamber, LOL, it was welded on with no hole cut.
My mind went in to a total Stall trying to figure out a cool handle, any ideas are welcome.
Lit the fire and tried to kick the tires but oh-ya there not made yet.
Filled the basket level full, (10'x12"x6"tall) it brought the temps to an even 200 in 40 minutes and stalled, so I added one log and jumped to 250.
About 2 1/2 hours later it finally started to drop so I added another log. That was at 8:00 and at 10:00 it was down to 150. Temps held about a 10 degree difference across the grate. The stack end being just a little hotter.
Then I made a basket for my next drum since everything was already out. And now here's a bunch of pics.
Now here's what happens when you build yourself a 8' long weld table.
And here is what you get to weld on when for-mentioned table gets full.
Tom, that build looks great. That is real close to what I want to build. Did you say you found the pipe laying around your work? One of the things holding me up is trying to find the steel to build with.
Can't wait to see it finished.