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Built a new smokehouse and firebox need some help

mike w

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I was talking to my neighbor about it and he gave me a contact to a mobile welder he knows. Basically a similar plan is what we came up with. Weld a steel plate to the top and bottom of the 8x8 door with holes drilled in them.

We couldn’t figure out a method to cover the holes though.

Do you mean something that would look like this?



I used a 55 gallon stove door I was able to find laying about. I'd get a cheaper wire feed welder and make you something up. What Dave showed you can be made with simple cold rolled steel or what ever you can scrounge.

Don't go too cheap on a welder, because, once you make one thing the ideas are going to flow for other projects. You buy that welder, you might as well buy an angle grinder. They go hand in hand with metal working.

How about closing your opening with another brick and using the 8x8 door. Drill a hole and larger plate with a hole that can cover it and a lock washer to bolt it on under tension. A handle on the plate and slide it to adjust the holes ability to draft air.
 

mike w

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Will do. I took a bunch of photos along the way and will make a post with all the steps once it’s done and working well.

Report back, good or bad, and save the experiemce for future dumb Arses like us. :emoji_laughing: No sense everyone learning by banging their head on the wall, as we do.
 

mike w

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I’m running another test this morning with brisket and just noticed the top cracked.

The wireless thermometer I’ve had for the last couple years is wildly off and showing 154 box temp. Compared to 334 with a IR thermometer. Firebox temps on the pipe was 700 ☹ And the outside bricks were 400. Way too hot in there with that oak. I’ll be waiting to conduct another heat test until I can get the door and dampers installed rather than using blocks to cover up the opening

So back to the drawing board on the top.

That top was leftover mortar mix from the brick work.

I’m thinking of making a new mold and setting fire brick in the bottom and then pouring high temp mortar that I have left from setting the fire bricks in the box, once that sets I could pour mortar and rebar on top of that again.

Thoughts?
 

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daveomak

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Mortar crack would be normal.. It shouldn't hurt the smoking capability of the smoker...
 

mike w

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Good to know, I have to the make it anyways, I noticed one of the fire bricks that are the chimney is loose, don’t want them falling into the fire.

How thick of a lid would be sufficient?

This one is about 2 inches thick at the edges up to 6 or so around the chimney.

I’m going to add some rebar into it also to give it some more support

Mortar crack would be normal.. It shouldn't hurt the smoking capability of the smoker...
 

daveomak

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Use that "square hole" wire... The light stuff you can get to make animal cages..
 

daveomak

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If you can get it, find "fire clay".. it makes fire brick... Add a bunch of fiberglass strands to it for strength.. I think some places call it "gorilla hair".. or something like that..
 

mike w

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F1369AE5-433D-4723-81F4-699682D95B59.jpeg I haven’t gotten the door fabricated yet but I did try some cold smoking today. Really pleased with how it’s turning out. I made a small fire this morning to warm up the box and just set the amazn tray over the chimney to dry out the pellets.

It’s been going strong for about 7 hours now and I didn’t have to light another fire.
 
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