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My First Build - 250 gallon RF

10
10
Joined Nov 8, 2012
hello everybody, in the next few months I hope to have finished my first RF smoker. I have already gotten the tank, 250 gallon 7 1/2 ft propane shell, and a trailer to build it on. I am new to the whole process but I have been looking at many of the great builds on here for inspiration. Below is a picture of the tank and trailer. If anyone has any advice for my size build, I would really appreciate the help. I know I'm taking on a lot for my first build but I am excited for the challenge. Any help would be much appreciated and if anyone wants to discuss their builds  please send me a message. Thanks for all the help and wish me luck!
 

lendecatural

Smoking Fanatic
688
49
Joined May 4, 2013
Good luck and welcome aboard!

Make sure you run all your numbers through the calculator and read up on as much as you can here in the forum. The search feature works very well and everyone here is fantastic about providing experience and help, just ask away. Are you going to set it up to do a whole hog Carolina style?

Len
 

buda q

Smoke Blower
88
11
Joined Oct 9, 2013
Howdy. Looking forward to watching your build. Good luck, read a lot, and ask a lot of questions...Some pretty smart folks here will help you build the pit of your dreams.

Keith
 

dockman

Smoking Fanatic
593
26
Joined Jun 14, 2013
I too want to build a RF 250 smoker but am having a very hard time finding the tank. Hope you don't mind me asking a question on your thread my fire box is going to be L30" x W30" x D24"! The Feldon calculator says opening from fb to cc should be 20.98 half moon which means nothing to me. How high up and how deep in do I cut the tank to fit fb? I was thinking about 9" - 10" up and about 8" in from end.
 

ribwizzard

Master of the Pit
2,183
83
Joined May 10, 2012
Looks like you found a really nice tank. 250 is such a great size, everything really lays out nice on that size tank.
 
10
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Joined Nov 8, 2012
hey to be honest, Im not too sure yet on all my dimensions. I still have a lot of research to do but would really appreciate it if you find out some good measurements for a 250 gallon tank. Thanks. Hope your building goes well.
 

lendecatural

Smoking Fanatic
688
49
Joined May 4, 2013
http://feldoncentral.com/bbqcalculator.html

This is the link to the calculator with a sketch of a reverse flow pit. Just start by plugging in the 250 gallon tank size, then start with fire box dimensions to satisfy the requirements. Bigger is better for the firebox and you would want taller if you are going to add an ash clean out.

Len
 
10
10
Joined Nov 8, 2012
Hey all, sorry i havent posted in a while. I'm starting cutting tonight. Me and a buddy decided to cut both ends of the tank off in order to make welding easier, we are just going to follow the seam and cut along that. This will make the tank about 5 ft. I'm also not sure what I should use as a firebox or just make one. Please let me know what yall think about the decision to cut both round ends off and the firebox. 
 

dockman

Smoking Fanatic
593
26
Joined Jun 14, 2013
Your build but I can not figure out why you are cutting off both ends? Opposite end of FB needs nothing done to it.
 

ribwizzard

Master of the Pit
2,183
83
Joined May 10, 2012
I wouldn't cut either end off! And I wouldn't cut the tank until the firebox is fabricated, then notch the tank to fit the firebox .
 
10
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Joined Nov 8, 2012
The reason we cut the sides because we want to fit the tank sideways on the trailer. Also it will make welding the rf plate easier. My only concern is I'm not sure what size to make my FB now because Im losing about two ft off the whole tank. Thanks for the help guys
 

WaterinHoleBrew

Legendary Pitmaster
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
9,525
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Joined Jun 18, 2013
Nice project, lookin forward to seeing what ya do with it .... WHB
 
10
10
Joined Nov 8, 2012
Sorry for how slow progress has been. Im in school and working and my buddy helping me also works full time so we dont get a lot of time to work on this. So far we cut off one side of the tank for where we will attach the firebox, decided to leave the other side intact. As for my firebox, I decided to go with 30x30x24 and 1/4 inch steel. I do have a few questions if anyone can help. I want to go ahead and get the steel for the rf plate but Im not really sure how long I should make it or how much of an opening there should be on the opposite end of the fb. Also any ideas how high up off the base the rf plate should be? Thanks for all the help and I will post pictures soon.
 

lendecatural

Smoking Fanatic
688
49
Joined May 4, 2013
 Sorry for how slow progress has been. Im in school and working and my buddy helping me also works full time so we dont get a lot of time to work on this. So far we cut off one side of the tank for where we will attach the firebox, decided to leave the other side intact. As for my firebox, I decided to go with 30x30x24 and 1/4 inch steel. I do have a few questions if anyone can help. I want to go ahead and get the steel for the rf plate but Im not really sure how long I should make it or how much of an opening there should be on the opposite end of the fb. Also any ideas how high up off the base the rf plate should be? Thanks for all the help and I will post pictures soon.
What is the diameter of your tank?

This will be your calculator values, with a firebox of about 100% of requirement. You will make the firebox any size you want but the width will need to match the width of cut in the cook chamber that corresponds to the height of the RF plate but I need the radius of the tank to get that number.

http://feldoncentral.com/bbqcalcula....68&fi=6,3,0,58.80,3.27&fc=14.13,19.98,156.80
 
10
10
Joined Nov 8, 2012
Len, thanks for the help. The diameter of the tank is 29 3/8 inch. 

We've started welding the box together and I will post some pictures either tonight or tomorrow. Thanks for all of the help everyone. I also decided to get a new trailer, found one on craigs list 4x8 with much better towing capacity, so I'm very excited about this. Also ended up making a little money because it was cheaper and my buddy wants to buy my old trailer. 
 

lendecatural

Smoking Fanatic
688
49
Joined May 4, 2013
The height of the cut above the bottom of the tank needs to be 11" and that would be the RF plate height across the cook chamber and you need 234 sq-in of opening where the RF plate ends in the cook chamber and the smoke turns up to the grates. The chord will be 29" wide so your minimum firebox width needs to be the 29" to match up to the cutout. I grew up on the Isle of Palms, so good luck in the SEC this year! I'm surrounded by Alabama fans and you guys have owned us for the past several years.....

Len

BSME Clemson '79
 

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