starting a 500 gal RF smoker

Discussion in 'Reverse Flow' started by kevinevans, Apr 23, 2013.

  1. My tank is a 500 gallon proprane that is 104" long and 41" in diameter. Thinking of cutting only one door...any input?
  2. bkleinsmid

    bkleinsmid Smoking Fanatic

    Mine is only a 250 gal butane tank. I did one door in case I wanted to do a whole hog. The shelves will be very heavy and so the door. On the other can cook for one hell of a big party........[​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

  3. i would do more than one door. reason being. you loose a lot of heat every time you open a door. the bigger the door the more you loose. you can't work the whole grill at one time. so why have it all open at once?

    just my

    remember to post lots of pics. ask any questions you may have. their is a lot of knowledge in this group.

    happy smoken.

  4. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Kevin, morning and welcome to the forum......

    Please take a moment and stop into " /Roll Call/   " and introduce yourself and get a proper welcome from our members.... Also, if you would note your location in your profile, it will help in the future when answering questions about smokin'...   elevation, humidity etc....    

    We're glad you stopped in and joined our group...    Enjoy the long smokey ride....     Dave
  5. Hey Kevin- Your tank looks to see about the same age as mine was and it ended up being 3/8" steel. I have two doors on it and they are just shy of 80 lbs each.

    If you want to do one door I would recommend a pully system assisted by counter weights. Otherwise look into a electric self contained hydraulic ram but the only problem is either you need DC batteries or be hooked up to an electrical system. If your looking at the ease of putting a pig in and out don't worry. With that length your doors will still be 27-28 inches in width and really you could make the center column hinged.
  6. Thanks a lot for the input. Do you have any pics that I could look at on your smoker. I like seeing new ideas I'm new at this.
  7. I did a pizza oven  style door on #19, worked out o/k, just looks different.


  8. I always liked the way Meadow Creek puts doors on both sides of the cooker.  Might want to think about something like that with this size diameter.  Maybe two doors on one side , then one big door on the back side when wanting to do a large hog or something.  I plan on doing a 250 like that when I come across a good tank.
  9. An someone please tell me what them clamps on some of the smokers door. And do they work and how do you put them on. Thanks for all the help :)
  10. I like one door, but with a tank like yours Ribwizzard's got a good point. With the massive amount of steel your smoker will recover the heat fairly quickly even with one big door. The clamps on the door are toggle clamps. Hardware venders sell them but look on eBay and you can get them more cheaply. I used clamps rated at 500#. They help close the door tightly so there's no smoke seepage. I welded mine on but they can be bolted.
  11. Thanks a lot I'm gonna get some they look like they work good. I have five more competitions this summer then its time to get to work on the smoker
  12. Kevin,

    Welcome!  You can check my build out and rob ideas away.  The toggle clamps that Dragons Breath has on his tank can be bought direct from the maunfacturer for about $5.50 each.  The website is called "The Toggle Store".  I started this with a whim not knowing I would end up loving this and having one heck of a sense of fulfillment as I went along.  If you ever are stuck just ask and people here will help you, me included.

    Your door dilemma is just that.  I like the dual doors on opposite sides for your size tank.  I figured out how to make one of my tanks with a removable rib and rails so it will accept a whole hog.  I am partial to my 3 doors because of heat loss.

    Good luck and I will be deffinately be watching your build.


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