Fridge Smoker Conversion.

Discussion in 'Fridge/Freezer Builds' started by tonyshotlickbbq, Dec 1, 2014.

  1.  OK, being that I'm pit poor and can't buy a Cookshack, I decided to build my own smoker. I have this Stainless Steel Cooler. I am going to use the Smoke Daddy Pellet Hopper asssembly. Here's a quick question. Where should I put the smoke stack? The inside dimensions are 27" deep and 23" wide. More than enough space for racks.I was thinking of cutting a hole on the back of the fridge, about 4" dead in the middle, then use the louvre plate i still have as a baffling system. Thoughts?  
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2014
  2. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    is that a hot holding cabinet or a cooler? Should see a fan if its a cooler.

    That's a pretty sweet cabinet to re-purpose.

    If you use electric heat with a digital dual temp controller from Auberin's and either an amps or smoke daddy for smoke source you'll never regret it.

    That type of set up will allow you to do anything, hot or cold.

    The pellet hopper is only going to let you hot smoke. and for the cost of the pellet hopper you can get an electric 1500w element, duel temp controller, amps or smoke daddy,.

    Personly I would go with a 3" vent out of the smoker, 4" is more than you need.

    I agree with gouin out the back rather than the top. Never any tar or moisture running down the exhaust to worry about when you go out the back, just put a 'T' attached to the vent out the back to go up, then all the tar and drippings can collect in the bottom of the 'T' connector.

    can send a pic of my set up like this if needed.

    I also removed the pre-built controller out if its original case and mounted it in a control box with some other switches for controlling a few different options I added.
     
  3. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    is that a hot holding cabinet or a cooler? Should see a fan if its a cooler.

    That's a pretty sweet cabinet to re-purpose either way.

    IMO. If you use electric heat with a digital dual temp controller from Auberin's and either an amps or smoke daddy for smoke source you'll never regret it.

    That type of set up will allow you to do anything, hot or cold with amazing accuracy and control.

    The pellet hopper is only going to let you hot smoke. and for the cost of the pellet hopper you can get an electric 1500w element, duel temp controller, amps or smoke daddy,.

    Personally I would go with a 3" vent out of the smoker, 4" is more than you need.

    I agree with going out the back rather than the top. Never any tar or moisture running down the exhaust and dripping on to the food to worry about when you go out the back, just put a 'T' attached to the vent out the back to go up, then all the tar and drippings can collect in the bottom of the 'T' connector.

    can send a pic of my set up like this if needed.

    I also removed the pre-built controller out if its original case and mounted it in a control box with some other switches for controlling a few different options I added.
     
  4. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    is that a hot holding cabinet or a cooler? Should see a fan if its a cooler.

    That's a pretty sweet cabinet to re-purpose either way.

    IMO. If you use electric heat with a digital dual temp controller from Auberin's and either an amps or smoke daddy for smoke source you'll never regret it.

    That type of set up will allow you to do anything, hot or cold with amazing accuracy and control.

    The pellet hopper is only going to let you hot smoke. and for the cost of the pellet hopper you can get an electric 1500w element, duel temp controller, amps or smoke daddy,.

    Personally I would go with a 3" vent out of the smoker, 4" is more than you need.

    I agree with going out the back rather than the top. Never any tar or moisture running down the exhaust and dripping on to the food to worry about when you go out the back, just put a 'T' attached to the vent out the back to go up, then all the tar and drippings can collect in the bottom of the 'T' connector.

    can send a pic of my set up like this if needed.

    I also removed the pre-built controller out if its original case and mounted it in a control box with some other switches for controlling a few different options I added.
     
  5. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    is that a hot holding cabinet or a cooler? Should see a fan if its a cooler.

    That's a pretty sweet cabinet to re-purpose either way.

    IMO. If you use electric heat with a digital dual temp controller from Auberin's and either an amps or smoke daddy for smoke source you'll never regret it.

    That type of set up will allow you to do anything, hot or cold with amazing accuracy and control.

    The pellet hopper is only going to let you hot smoke. and for the cost of the pellet hopper you can get an electric 1500w element, duel temp controller, amps or smoke daddy,.

    Personally I would go with a 3" vent out of the smoker, 4" is more than you need.

    I agree with going out the back rather than the top. Never any tar or moisture running down the exhaust and dripping on to the food to worry about when you go out the back, just put a 'T' attached to the vent out the back to go up, then all the tar and drippings can collect in the bottom of the 'T' connector.

    can send a pic of my set up like this if needed.

    I also removed the pre-built controller out if its original case and mounted it in a control box with some other switches for controlling a few different options I added.
     
  6. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    is that a hot holding cabinet or a cooler? Should see a fan if its a cooler.

    That's a pretty sweet cabinet to re-purpose either way.

    IMO. If you use electric heat with a digital dual temp controller from Auberin's and either an amps or smoke daddy for smoke source you'll never regret it.

    That type of set up will allow you to do anything, hot or cold with amazing accuracy and control.

    The pellet hopper is only going to let you hot smoke. and for the cost of the pellet hopper you can get an electric 1500w element, duel temp controller, amps or smoke daddy,.

    Personally I would go with a 3" vent out of the smoker, 4" is more than you need.

    I agree with going out the back rather than the top. Never any tar or moisture running down the exhaust and dripping on to the food to worry about when you go out the back, just put a 'T' attached to the vent out the back to go up, then all the tar and drippings can collect in the bottom of the 'T' connector.

    can send a pic of my set up like this if needed.

    I also removed the pre-built controller out if its original case and mounted it in a control box with some other switches for controlling a few different options I added.
     
  7. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    is that a hot holding cabinet or a cooler? Should see a fan if its a cooler.

    That's a pretty sweet cabinet to re-purpose either way.

    IMO. If you use electric heat with a digital dual temp controller from Auberin's and either an amps or smoke daddy for smoke source you'll never regret it.

    That type of set up will allow you to do anything, hot or cold with amazing accuracy and control.

    The pellet hopper is only going to let you hot smoke. and for the cost of the pellet hopper you can get an electric 1500w element, duel temp controller, amps or smoke daddy,.

    Personally I would go with a 3" vent out of the smoker, 4" is more than you need.

    I agree with going out the back rather than the top. Never any tar or moisture running down the exhaust and dripping on to the food to worry about when you go out the back, just put a 'T' attached to the vent out the back to go up, then all the tar and drippings can collect in the bottom of the 'T' connector.

    can send a pic of my set up like this if needed.

    I also removed the pre-built controller out if its original case and mounted it in a control box with some other switches for controlling a few different options I added.
     
  8. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    is that a hot holding cabinet or a cooler? Should see a fan if its a cooler.

    That's a pretty sweet cabinet to re-purpose either way.

    IMO. If you use electric heat with a digital dual temp controller from Auberin's and either an amps or smoke daddy for smoke source you'll never regret it.

    That type of set up will allow you to do anything, hot or cold with amazing accuracy and control.

    The pellet hopper is only going to let you hot smoke. and for the cost of the pellet hopper you can get an electric 1500w element, duel temp controller, amps or smoke daddy,.

    Personally I would go with a 3" vent out of the smoker, 4" is more than you need.

    I agree with going out the back rather than the top. Never any tar or moisture running down the exhaust and dripping on to the food to worry about when you go out the back, just put a 'T' attached to the vent out the back to go up, then all the tar and drippings can collect in the bottom of the 'T' connector.

    can send a pic of my set up like this if needed.

    I also removed the pre-built controller out if its original case and mounted it in a control box with some other switches for controlling a few different options I added.
     
  9. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    is that a hot holding cabinet or a cooler? Should see a fan if its a cooler.

    That's a pretty sweet cabinet to re-purpose either way.

    IMO. If you use electric heat with a digital dual temp controller from Auberin's and either an amps or smoke daddy for smoke source you'll never regret it.

    That type of set up will allow you to do anything, hot or cold with amazing accuracy and control.

    The pellet hopper is only going to let you hot smoke. and for the cost of the pellet hopper you can get an electric 1500w element, duel temp controller, amps or smoke daddy,.

    Personally I would go with a 3" vent out of the smoker, 4" is more than you need.

    I agree with going out the back rather than the top. Never any tar or moisture running down the exhaust and dripping on to the food to worry about when you go out the back, just put a 'T' attached to the vent out the back to go up, then all the tar and drippings can collect in the bottom of the 'T' connector.

    can send a pic of my set up like this if needed.

    I also removed the pre-built controller out if its original case and mounted it in a control box with some other switches for controlling a few different options I added.
     
  10. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    is that a hot holding cabinet or a cooler? Should see a fan if its a cooler.

    That's a pretty sweet cabinet to re-purpose either way.

    IMO. If you use electric heat with a digital dual temp controller from Auberin's and either an amps or smoke daddy for smoke source you'll never regret it.

    That type of set up will allow you to do anything, hot or cold with amazing accuracy and control.

    The pellet hopper is only going to let you hot smoke. and for the cost of the pellet hopper you can get an electric 1500w element, duel temp controller, amps or smoke daddy,.

    Personally I would go with a 3" vent out of the smoker, 4" is more than you need.

    I agree with going out the back rather than the top. Never any tar or moisture running down the exhaust and dripping on to the food to worry about when you go out the back, just put a 'T' attached to the vent out the back to go up, then all the tar and drippings can collect in the bottom of the 'T' connector.

    can send a pic of my set up like this if needed.

    I also removed the pre-built controller out if its original case and mounted it in a control box with some other switches for controlling a few different options I added.
     
  11. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    is that a hot holding cabinet or a cooler? Should see a fan if its a cooler.

    That's a pretty sweet cabinet to re-purpose either way.

    IMO. If you use electric heat with a digital dual temp controller from Auberin's and either an amps or smoke daddy for smoke source you'll never regret it.

    That type of set up will allow you to do anything, hot or cold with amazing accuracy and control.

    The pellet hopper is only going to let you hot smoke. and for the cost of the pellet hopper you can get an electric 1500w element, duel temp controller, amps or smoke daddy,.

    Personally I would go with a 3" vent out of the smoker, 4" is more than you need.

    I agree with going out the back rather than the top. Never any tar or moisture running down the exhaust and dripping on to the food to worry about when you go out the back, just put a 'T' attached to the vent out the back to go up, then all the tar and drippings can collect in the bottom of the 'T' connector.

    can send a pic of my set up like this if needed.

    I also removed the pre-built controller out if its original case and mounted it in a control box with some other switches for controlling a few different options I added.
     
  12. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    is that a hot holding cabinet or a cooler? Should see a fan if its a cooler.

    That's a pretty sweet cabinet to re-purpose either way.

    IMO. If you use electric heat with a digital dual temp controller from Auberin's and either an amps or smoke daddy for smoke source you'll never regret it.

    That type of set up will allow you to do anything, hot or cold with amazing accuracy and control.

    The pellet hopper is only going to let you hot smoke. and for the cost of the pellet hopper you can get an electric 1500w element, duel temp controller, amps or smoke daddy,.

    Personally I would go with a 3" vent out of the smoker, 4" is more than you need.

    I agree with going out the back rather than the top. Never any tar or moisture running down the exhaust and dripping on to the food to worry about when you go out the back, just put a 'T' attached to the vent out the back to go up, then all the tar and drippings can collect in the bottom of the 'T' connector.

    can send a pic of my set up like this if needed.

    I also removed the pre-built controller out if its original case and mounted it in a control box with some other switches for controlling a few different options I added.
     
  13. It was a cooler. I removed the refrigeration components from up top. I'm going to re purpose the stainless and insulation pieces from the top to cover the vent in the ceiling of the unit. I have another unit for cold smoking so this will be a hot box for BBQ and competition. I thought of the 4" basically because I was going to by parts for an FEC100 from the Cookshack people. They use a mushroom cap stack that works great. I can always install a flue to regulate the flow. Good idea on the Tee for the stack. I'm still going to install a drip tray inside the unit above the fire on an angle that would feed down a tube to a pan underneath the fridge. The Smoke Daddy Pellet hopper is a pretty good price for what it does IMHO. Makes life easy too. I'm still not convinced on the heating element/ external smoke feed method. I have more depth than width so I am willing to sacrifice some depth to install that louvre plate in front of the stack opening to help baffle the outward flow of smoke and give me a little more roll inside the cook chamber. What do you think? Would love to see your pics though.
     
  14. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    If its cooler I would recommend ripping out all the insulation if its spray foam insulation.

    I was going to convert a older coke cooler and all the research and calls to made to manufacturers said remove it due to the fire rating of the insulation in coolers.

    Since they are not designed for heat the manufacturer can save on some cost with insulation that easily melts and is flammable, regardless of some of the info on the web, unlike a heating cabinet.

    Some guys have had success witht he hopper assembly, but its really not designed for a smokehouse style smoker.

    electric heat with the controller will allow for a far wider range of food items to be smoked and any heat at or above ambient.

    The AMNPS can easily be placed in the smoker by an air intake and works awesome. I made a few myself out of some scrap mesh steel sheets I found.

    you have a pretty large cabinet to heat with a pretty small source.

    I have a friend that owns a BBQ restaurant and his smoker has a pellet assembly, it cooks well in it , but his issues is when maintaining regular cooking temps, around 225, he finds that the pellet pooper just doesn't create as much smoke as he is looking for. Its not a slow smoldering burn like the other options for creating smoke. more smoke at lower temps, but its almost impossible to get the temps when using a pooper under 150f.

    I cold smoked butter and pork butts in my fridge smoker last night. Its fucking cold out too.(-35C or -22F).  With the electric element and controller I was able to maintain a temp of what ever I want to set it at. For cold smoking in it last night I set it at 55F for 2 hours, then after 2 hours I set the temp to drop to 40F overnight and hold that temp for 12 hours.  I turned it on and went to bed. Woke up this morning and took it out and put it in my fridge. Wasn't frozen and was all held at a food safe temp.

    to each their own, but if your  spending the $ and the time I say build it with the most versatility you can from the start.

    what I started with (door and top removed)


    finished




    Obviously smaller than what your building, but can easily put a 240v element in yours if you have access to a 240 plug. the Plug n play controller I used is rated for 120v or 240v, 1800w element.

    Also able to control the temp and monitor the internal temp of the food with this controller. Can set cook temp 1 at say 120F fo2 1hr to dry sausage. set cook temp 2 to ramp up to 160f until the internal temp of the sausage this 155, then set cook stage 3,4,5 or 6 temp at whatever you want and to end either by set time or internal temp. Or can set 1 temp and end either time or temp. Super super easy to use and perfect temp control everytime.

    heres a few Q-views from today and this past weekend.

    Pulled pork (14hrs at 225f)


    brisket


    venison smokies


    bacon on this morning cook at 135F to internal of 130F, then drop to 60F and smoke for a few days


    cold smoking cheese and butter

     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2014
    tonyshotlickbbq likes this.
  15. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    ill be using the smoker as a regular oven for xmas dinner this year too. Making main, sides and buns in my oven, but ill cooke and hold in the smoker when as I need my in house oven for differnet items at different times throughout the day. added bonus with the electric
     
  16. Nice pics and build. I like the sausage hangars. I don't know about your theory on pellet hoppers. The pellet hopper I'm going to use has a 36000 BTU rating. Same as the Cookshack F100, which gets great smoke and has run up to a temp of 385 degrees.  I've used hoppers extensively and get some great product from it at normal temps. Even won some serious cook-offs as well. Thanks for the tip on the insulation deal. That's a lot of work!! Wont be doing that. The pics below are from  pellet smoker. 




     
  17. madman mike

    madman mike Smoking Fanatic

    MMMMM. looks goooood.

    Hoppers def make some amazing food.

    Looking at the SD hopper specs, says it goes as low as 160, easy enough to just cold smoke cheese or anything else with an AMPS inside the smokehouse. Curious what the house temp would run at with the hopper set to smoke setting

    No matter what you choose it'll be a great smoker, look forward to watching you put it together!
     
    Last edited: Dec 1, 2014
  18. mneeley490

    mneeley490 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

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