Hot box build, vertical or horizontal

Discussion in 'Fridge/Freezer Builds' started by renny, Feb 29, 2012.

  1. I picked up this three door hot box and decided to build a smoking trailer.  The box is 82" wide 63" tall and 31" deep.  I can't decide if i want to use the box with the openings vertical or horizontal.  If I use it vertical my racks, though many, will only be 22" x 31".  If I use horizontal my racks can be 58" x 31" but i will have to cut the box down from 3 door to 2 door since i don't have enough head room on the trailer for a 82" tall smoker.

    So here is my problem what would you do, horizontal or vertical?[​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]
  2. pops6927

    pops6927 Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I would go 3 verticals myself, you can still pile on at least a couple racks of ribs per shelf and can build in as many as you want, you won't need much space between them if all are used, or you can skip every other one for larger briskets, etc. Excited to see your progress!
  3. sprky

    sprky Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    If it was me I would use it vertical and make it into 3  smokers by putting dividers in. BY doing this you could smoke at 3 different temps for different meats.
  4. dewetha

    dewetha Smoking Fanatic

    i agree with this line of thought. i am trying to design something like this now. I want to be able to control the temps in each chamber so I could smoke ribs at 225 and chicken at 275-300 in the other and the the third for no smoke.warming or finishing chamber.

    maybe even two types of smoke??
  5. africanmeat

    africanmeat Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    i got the same Thoughts as  sprky it will give you 3 in 1 and that is a win.
  6. If it was me I would make 2 chambers the 2 right doors (Since they open toward each other) I would make into on singledouble wide chamber and the left chamber would be a stand alone chamber.  Both chambers would have input and output dampers allow me to set the temps independently.

    The 2 right doors:

          I would cut out the Door jam and weld it to one of the doors. that way I could have racks that go all the way across allowing me to do small whole pig.

    The single door on the left:

          Could be used for what ever I need it for Smoking, warming cabinet or leave it shut down completely because I only need the double wide chamber.

          A small group of Friends show up at the house only fire up the single chamber.

    This would allow a great deal more versatility.

    That triple door is a great find man.

    Keep the pics coming I love trailer builds.
  7. All,

    I see that everyone is thinking the same way I am, 3 verticals.  One if my buds put the idea in my head about horizontal and I needed a little group therapy to get it out of my system and assure myself that vertical is the way to go.

    QObssesion you bring up a point i thought of myself with the door jam removal idea, I just need to spend some time figuring out logistics of the dismemberment, but it's a real possibility.

    For the warming chamber idea, put it closest to the fire box or furthest.  

    So many options it make my head spin.

    Also this came from my local restaurant supply guy for $125, he had several 2 door commercial fridge's last I talked to him for the same price, as well as a single door.  If anyone is interested in one let me know and I will get you in touch with the guy.  He usually just brings them to the scrap yard and get about $100.00 bucks for them so he sells them to me for scrap rate.

    Anyway thanks to all for the recommendations and keep the ideas coming since I need to add a water supply and a open grill for burgers and dogs.  I almost forgot I need to add a boiling pot for crawfish, I do live in South Louisiana where this is a must.

    I should get a chance to work on the beast this week so stay tuned for updates with pic's.   

  8. Ok, the kids are out of school so I have begun to work on this thing again and have some updated pictures:  [​IMG]



    I decided to close in the back three doors since I would not be able to use them when the smoker is mounted on the trails, plus this made the smoker about 3" thinner so I have more room to work on the trailer.

    I used the outer skin of the door as an insert in each opening lining it up flush with the inside of the smoker.  Next I put mineral wool insulation into each opening and used the last of the door skin to close it in, nice and pretty like.


    After caulking the inside she will be nice and air tight.

    Should I caulk the out side panels as well?  The smoke will be under roof on the trailer, thoughts.

    Now I have to get the fire box on this thing.  I have an old welding rod over I plan to use as the fire box since it is insulated and will keep the heat in the smoker and off the trailer.

    I will be closing off one end section to use as a warming box and making the center post of the other two doors removable to allow for a pig to get in here.

    I'll post more as i get more done 

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