general discussion??? 250 gal rf?

Discussion in 'Smoker Builds' started by bcurrin752, Jul 13, 2013.

  1. How's everyone doing? I didn't realize how many threads and how much info is on here. I registered recently because I picked up a couple of 250 gal tanks and thought it might be worthwhile. That was pretty much all I had in mind, but I ended up in the sauce recipes and just happened to have some thawed ribs so... Anyway, I have the two 250s and a smaller tank. I'm unsure of the size as far as gallons on the smaller one, but it's around 16-18" x 4 1/2 - 5'. ( will measure some other time). I'm going to try to start my build asap, but I wanted to get some ideas, suggestions, or maybe hear some hard learned lessons before I start to kinda get a plan together. I have a strong background in welding as I used to do it professionally (had kids and decided to get off the road) but I've never built a smoker so this is my starting point. Thanks!
  2. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

  3. Ok. Question... What are the pros/cons of sinking the smoke stack vs mounting it flush?
  4. I ask for a couple of reasons. 1) I've only seen flush mounts 2) seems like you would want to utilize the path of least resistance and mount flush so the heat and smoke would flow, but maybe not... I MIGHT have been wrong once :)
  5. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    It may give a bit more control on certain pits. Some say it keeps the heat and smoke path at grate level when extended, this may benefit a larger diameter or taller pit, others will say an extended stack causes stale smoke . I extended mine 1" from the top and used an adjustable mod, I never noticed a difference either way, but as I Said before certain pits may benefit from this and them folks seem happy with this idea as it has helped them with temp problems in certain pits..

    I suggest only going through the top about an inch or flush and make an adjustable insert.

  6. Yeah I could see helping hold the heat, but I would think stale smoke. I guess just personal preference is about what it comes down too. Is that a drilled out can?
  7. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Currin, morning...  My thoughts on extending the stack....   In a tall cooking area, with the stack at the top of the cooking chamber, the area near the grate has little or no air flow....  Now think about the design of a convection oven....  air flow.....  faster cooking at the same or lower temps....

  8. On #19 , my stacks come down to within a couple of inches of the top grate, ( usually only used after ribs or butts are wrapped and doing the crutch )...but on that recent chicken cook, I had to use all four racks in order to fit the 120 half's they wanted cooked at the same time. Since my only part was to cook the chicken, I paid very close attention to what was happening on each rack. and found that the top rack, even though it was not cooking any faster, was producing a darker, more smoky flavored chicken with a bit of that bitterness we try to avoid, while all three lower racks produced much better looking ( by color)and better tasting chicken. With all of the racks having fairly equal cooking times,(using the universal drumstick twist guage) I will have to conclude that temperature was fairly even. Either it was stale smoke, or excess condensation at the top of the cook chamber mixing with smoke and dripping down, but there was a huge difference between the top and other three racks.....

    So I'm going to go with the stale smoke theory. And is in part to do with why I decided an over sized and flush stack on my current build. It got me thinking about how food taste off of real open pits where the smoke is not trapped at all . 
  9. Makes sense to me (the smoke theory) so I've decided to go with a flush stack. Anyway, wonder how many racks I could comfortably put in a 250? Also debating on whether to build a square firebox or use a portion of another tank for it. Depending on how much of the other tank is left (if I go with tank or square fb) I wanna stand it at the other end for a warmer brings this question. Do you suggest a gas warmer or maybe just enough coals to the job
  10. You can do a lot more with a square firebox when it comes to vents. I have a 250 gallon build in the back of my mind and I always though of doing something like this with the firebox, I like extending the firebox under the chamber, but you need to try to keep the fire out from under it to help eliminate the hot spot. On #19, I added expanded metal to the fire grate to move the fire back ( 2nd pic)



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