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Rust - Rust - Rust

Discussion in 'Fridge/Freezer Builds' started by lamc-smoker, Oct 23, 2013.

  1. I have an old Westinghouse Refrigerator.

    As you can see if has some rust. I read the MSDS sheets for Rustoleum and found out it states not to apply iheir products on surfaces that would exceed 200 degrees. Has anyone had any experience with using Rustoleum products on the inside smoke chamber? I was thinking of applying a few coats of high temperature paint as the finish on the inside.

    Any thought?
  2. daveomak

    daveomak Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Apply flax seed oil to the inside... bake it in when you condition the smoker...   clean off what rust you can before doing the oil thing.....  

  3. Dave, How hot should I heat it to and for how long? Thanks. I got rid of most of the rust on the inside.
  4. dward51

    dward51 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

  5. daveomak

    daveomak Epic Pitmaster OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Dave has you covered.......

  6. Thanks guys, I have more questions. The insulation in my refrigerator appears to be of sawdust. See Photo

    Wood ignites at 451 degrees.

    Since I can't remove the insulation and the process requires me to crank up the heat as high as I can, should I be concerned about the high heat needed to cure the box?

    What is the lowest temperature requirement for curing?

    Do you think it can be cured if I keep it below the 400 degrees for longer periods of time?

  7. scootermagoo

    scootermagoo Smoking Fanatic

    Why can't the insulation be removed?  If it is removable, I would remove it and replace it with Rockwool.  That is guaranteed not flammable.  What is your heat source, propane?
  8. The heat source is a heating element or a hot plate. It can not be removed because it is sealed, and inaccessible, except around the door. See photo

    I plan on sealing the joint with some stainless steel, strips replacing the plastic.

    The only way to access it is to remove the top of the compartment. 

    As shown above. I don't know if the screws will come out or not.
  9. scootermagoo

    scootermagoo Smoking Fanatic

    OK.  That's a bummer.  I, personally think you might be OK.  If you use a hot plate, I don't think the temps produced are all that high.  I could be wrong, though.
    lamc-smoker likes this.
  10. Hello LAMC.  I am with Scooter in that I doubt you will get temps high enough.  Here is my opinion for what it is worth.  Others may have different advice.  This is only my opinion.  If you are like me this insulation problem will continue to bother you.  I know it will add more work to the build but I would grind the screw heads off and get that insulation outta there.  Grind off the old screws, fill the old holes with high temp silicone and drill new holes to mount the interior.  You are already worried about it and you haven't gotten past the sanding stage.  This is hopefully going to be a smoker that will last you;  20+ years?  Take your time and do the best job you can the first time and maybe you won't be re-doing it next year.  As stated, this is only my opinion.  LOVE the old fridge BTW.  I think if you do 'er right you will have something to REALLY be proud of.  Good luck.  Keep Smokin!

  11. Danny, thanks for the encouraging word.

    Truth is established in the mouth of 2 or 3 witnesses.

    You have just confirmed what I was thinking.

    I think I will try this.

    This is a great forum. 
  12. Well, that is a little paraphrased and I would have not thought to use it when talking about a smoker build but I guess it gets the point across.  Good luck and don't forget to post the picts of your build.  Keep Smokin!

  13. Danny here is fruit of my labor.
    This is the insulation. After removing it, the bottom is pretty rusty. So that's my next step. Larry
  14. Hello Larry.  WOW!  That insulation was pretty bad, but the problem now is the rust.  You just GOTTA save that fridge.  Gonna make a GREAT lookin smoker.  Wire brush that dude within an inch of it's life, use some off the shelf rust treatment, spray with high temp paint just to be extremely safe ( the paint should seal any rust treatment product used in this application ), line with rockwool , slide the interior back in and you are rockin and rollin.  I have a 1955 fridge I plan to convert.  I have had it for months but been really busy.  If I may offer a suggestion.  I know many folks paint their own smokers and have done a great job.  My problem is that I have no place to store my fridge smoker.  I checked with my car guy and if I do all the prep-work I can get a professional paint job with quality car paint for around 80.00.  I know that may seem a lot but with the work you are investing and you want that smoker to last for years; worth thinking about.  Just ideas to mull over.  Good luck and keep the picts coming.  Keep Smokin!

  15. scootermagoo

    scootermagoo Smoking Fanatic

    That looks just like the same crap that was in my fridge build.  It's like a cellulose, fibrous crap.  It sticks to everything.  I also ran into rust on the bottom of my fridge as well.  This stuff must have an awesome ability to hold moisture that builds up during humid weather and condensates on the inner shell and then weeps down to the bottom of the shell.  I ended up bending a piece of sheet metal just to line the bottom of the outer shell, wish I had a picture for you.
    The Rockwool is an excellent suggestion.  That is what I insulated mine with and it holds heat like a mother.  When I do an all night smoke, the exterior is still cold to the touch after 12 hours.  It's unreal.  It's also considerably heavy, so, if you are putting castors on your fridge, be sure to have a sturdy frame on it to hold it up.  Also, 80 bucks is a reasonable deal for automotive paint if it includes clear coat.  If I were to charge for a paint job like I did on mine, plan on dropping $250.00 and that would still be a good deal.  Here is a link to my build: http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/132907/pellet-smoker-fridge-conversion

    I personally think you are going down the right path by doing what you are.  Stripping all that old shit out of there is a good thing.  Good luck, I'll be watching.
  16. What a great job! Love the end product. How did you get your exhaust stacks ? Did you make them? What is the diameter? Do you have air intakes?
  17. scootermagoo

    scootermagoo Smoking Fanatic

    Thanks, Larry.  The exhaust stack is 3" diameter duct tubing from Fleet Farm or Menards.  There is a 3" to 4" transition at the top of the stack. There is one exit point located mid point in the smoker and one up high.  They both have gates on them so I can control the exhaust flow inside the smoker but they both end up being wide open all the time.  Heat distribution inside the smoker is not a problem.  The stack material, I believe, is galvanized steel.  I painted it heat resistant flat black.  Being the galvanized is on the exhaust, it doesn't create a hazard for the food.  And besides, the inside of the pipe is glazed over with seasoning AND never really gets that hot.  It's pretty thin and dissipates heat very quickly.  You can usually place your hand on the pipe while it's running and it is not too hot at all.  The only problem the galvanized presents is paint adhesion issues.  Paint does not like to stick to it.

    Because the unit is fired by a pellet burner, there are no intakes.  It is a forced draft unit and creates it's own draft using it's combustion blower.

    I have been using it all summer and it is well seasoned.  I am blown away at how the seasoning affects the final product.  The food just gets better and better each time.

  18. Thanks again Scooter. The inside of my refer is 14" dp x 21" w x 30" h. Is there any rule of thumb as to how many air changes should occur to keep the smoke fresh? How is the best way to drill through the porcelain finish of the refer? I hope I'm not asking too many questions. Larry
  19. scootermagoo

    scootermagoo Smoking Fanatic

    Heck no, Larry.  These are all good questions.

    I can't help you out with the air change question, hopefully somebody can chirp up about that.  As far as drilling through the porcelain, though, I took a spring loaded center punch and struck the hole center location with that prior to drilling.  Usually, the porcelain will spall out in that area exposing the metal beneath it.  If not, hit it again.  It will dull the point of the center punch, though.  That stuff is hard.  Keeping the point sharp will help a ton when doing this.  AND, be sure to wear eye protection, those porcelain chips fly out at a pretty good velocity.  For the 3" exhaust holes, I struck the center of the hole with the center punch and used a 3.125" hole saw and plenty of lube to cut through the shell from the back side.  It seems the porcelain is a little thinner and of a different type on the back.  Before cutting the 3" holes though, I reassembled the interior shell into the fridge body and drilled a small hole in the location of the exhausts through both shells so the holes would line up.  Does that make sense?

  20. Yes that helps a great deal. It will be a few weeks before I get to this point, but I thought it would be good to consider it at this time to help plan for it. I have a couple of friends that are handy in this area, so I'm sure they'll help. (for a bit of smoked meat).

    Thanks again. Now time to clean and assemble it. LAMC-Smoker