Questions about Fireboxes

Discussion in 'Side Fire Box' started by skunkworks101, Jun 30, 2013.

  1.  Hello all,,I have some simple questions that I'm sure most here can easily answer.I'm going to build a reverse flow smoker and talking with some heavy lovers of BBQ,may have stumbled into a new sideline job,since 3 of my friends also have been contemplating the idea of buying diffrent setups because their old styles-units are getting worn out. One of these guys uses a Traeger and another a Bradley Cabinet smoker.Third guy wants a larger direct cooking grill since he has some large parties several time each year.

     I was in a town yesterday that has a Lowes and they had about 20 models of Gas grills outside all on sale,must be because the 4th is just around the corner.I stopped and looked at all of them and a sales associate came out,asked if I needed help and I told him I was looking for stickburners with a sidebox,,(which they had none) I then told him I was really interested in Reverse Flows,which he had never heard of. I wasn't there to buy,just looking over features while wife and daughter were shopping.

     I realize to have selling appeal and lower costs to attract buyers,many models were made of very thin steel.One Char Grill model did offer a bolt on side box option and the cost of the box was over $65 and looked "stamped" to me.Exhaust stacks came out of the hood maybe 4" at tops.Everything was bolted on so I can imagine the leaking of smoke and heat.

     To build a great firebox I've considered lining it with firebrick and then wrapping it with 2" insulation and enclosing this with another box. So my questions are when figuring actual dimensions for the size of the firebox needed,if I add firebricks to line this with,I would use the calculated number of square inches needed inside the firebrick box? Bricks being 9"x4,5"x2" equals about 80 sq inches of space each. I do not count the steel sides as the outside measurement,,but the space inside the bricks?? Another question please,,how effecient will this firebox be at holding heat and not losing it? My only concern is making the draft holes going thru the brick,first steel wall,insulation,then the outside steel wall.I'm  no bricklayer and is concrete used to hold the firebrick to the walls and top? Or will vibrations from possibly travelling pulling this on a trailer,or mounted to a trailer cause the firebrick to eventually fall down? Or should I devise a steel cage and stack-secure the bricks around that way? I realize by just adding a layer of brick and 2" of insulation this will add an extra 4" outside circumference to the firebox,as well as some added weight.

     Thanks for any help
  2. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    You do not need fire brick in your fire box. Totally unneeded.
  3. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Skunkworks.....   Look at some builds that are on this site.... Lots of great info on some of the best RF smokers ever built.....

    Find a size you are looking to build....  draw up a plan and come back with specific question.....   The firebox is the second thing to design when building a smoker....   the Cook Chamber is first.....   I will be glad to assist you with specs.....     Dave

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