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Hummve 03-02-2013 04:33 PM

Starting an 80 gallon smoker build...
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I am starting smoker build hoping some here with experience can help with some technical questions that may come up.

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First question involves the smoke/fire box ratio the tank is 80 gallons and the firebox I have is 20 which is only a 25% rather than the recommended 30% just wondering if this could give me issues if I will have to load the firebox more often or if it should be fine?

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It is going to be a reverse flow design and when I'm done I'm going to mount it onto a small trailer. Thanks for looking and fit your feedback.

LW Hiway 03-02-2013 05:44 PM

This is so typical of me looking at a thread. For the life of me I cannot get any farther into the thread that just looking at the compressor and motor.:rolleyes::p

To be honest, I know nothing about smokers past the info I get from a book on the subject and that is for larger structures.

BUT, there are some good folk here that will chime in directly on your thread.

milomilo 03-02-2013 05:54 PM

A friend of mine back in WA had a 100 gallon smoker and only had a 15 gallon smoke box. It worked fine for him. I made some fine jerky in his smoker.

allessence 03-02-2013 07:32 PM

I can't add anything either..

But I do really like smoked Salmon..

Hummve 03-02-2013 07:47 PM


Originally Posted by milomilo (Post 536794)
A friend of mine back in WA had a 100 gallon smoker and only had a 15 gallon smoke box. It worked fine for him. I made some fine jerky in his smoker.

Ok good well I will go with it. Unless the inside is of the 20 tank is to rusted, there is some stuff rattling around inside :-/. I got lucky on the 80 gallon compressor the pump is actually in working order but the motor is shot. Picked it up at the metal recycling place for 100 buck$

Gadgeteer 03-03-2013 12:28 AM


Originally Posted by Hummve (Post 536818)
Ok good well I will go with it. Unless the inside is of the 20 tank is to rusted, there is some stuff rattling around inside :-/. I got lucky on the 80 gallon compressor the pump is actually in working order but the motor is shot. Picked it up at the metal recycling place for 100 buck$

What is a "metal recycling place"?

getatorch 03-03-2013 12:50 AM

Go to "The" They have a calculator that is very neat. It works well I know. Actually I went a little larger on firebox and air flow areas because wtih adjustable air inlets etc. I can now cut down flow if need easier than getting out the torch after the fact to make something bigger.

getatorch 03-03-2013 01:00 AM

Here ya' go. Don't go too small with a fire box or you will never be able to build enough heat to bake out stuff after you smoke it. The reverse flow method is well worth The while. Mine works great.

1-800miner 03-03-2013 08:41 AM

When the cavemen invented meat smoking,they had a strict formula of 70/30.
If it varies you might be changing all of history as we know it.:eek:

Bender 03-03-2013 11:17 AM

Cool Hummve, I love a smoker build thread!
I'm thinking the 20 gallon tank will be to thin to use as a smoker box though?

FabberMcGee 03-03-2013 12:49 PM

Looks like a fun project.

What's the diameter is the small tank? Can you get a good fire in it, or would you be better off with a larger diameter and shorter one? I don't think rust will matter, even if it's rusted through in a little. I would want a little grate in the bottom anyway to get air under the wood and that would keep the heat off the bottom where it could further erode the steel.

P.S..... don't forget, Jen really likes smoked salmon. lol, who doesn't?

Hummve 03-03-2013 04:15 PM

I did use the calculator as mentioned. Fire box tank is 14x30 and it is a little older one fairly heavy and thick I think it should handle the heat ok. I do have a question about the stack how far should the stack penetrate the smoke chamber? I have built a smoker out of a 250 gallon propane tank knowing nothing about smokers for the most part and little guidance from the customer. I will dig up some photos and throw them up soon.
But on that one he had me float the stacks about 2" above the main rack which was positioned almost center of tank. Also the calculator shows an 18 inch stack I assume that is the exposed portion.

Floptop 03-03-2013 08:21 PM

I have no idea on these smokers with the fire box on the side, but they obviously work well. Interesting stuff.

Hummve 03-03-2013 11:52 PM


Originally Posted by Gadgeteer (Post 536875)

What is a "metal recycling place"?

You know where you take metal (steel, aluminum, copper) and get paid for it. Well I just happened to see it sitting off to the side of there pile of stuff for a while and asked about it. After a few weeks they decided to let it go. I guess they had plans off fixing it at one point.
They also have an area with usable remnants this is where I am getting most if the material at only 22 cents a pound much much cheaper than new most the time and they really only put stuff in there that is in good shape anyways.

Hummve 03-05-2013 12:49 AM

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Pictures of the first and only smoker I built like I said I really didn't know anything about smokers at the time. Not that I know much more now. Still never used one :)
The design for the most part was all left up to me the drawing of what he had in mind consisted basically of an oval with two stacks on it and a couple lines representing the shelves scribbled on a piece of paper (should have gotten a picture of that).

Hummve 03-05-2013 12:53 AM

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More pictures

TEK 03-05-2013 12:59 AM

Man, that thing looks it can smoke up some meat--

oh,by the way, did you know Jen likes smoked salmon?....:)

DrBob 03-05-2013 05:36 PM

Nice Smoker!
Wow! I really like the slide out shelves! Great work. Remember, Jenn's a vegan and therefore all the smoked salmon should go to me. ;)


Hummve 03-05-2013 11:57 PM

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Thanks guys. It was a very fun build, if you look at the top shelf you will notice that they pull out and then the center support pieces of channel come out to allow you to put something very large across the whole bottom.
Made some progress on the build tonight cut out the doors on both tanks. Also rough cut out the baffle plate. Hopefully I will get some time this weekend to work on it.
I plan on putting two burners in it so it can be used as a regular grill as well. Here is a picture of the specs I am planing on will most likely change a little though.

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Hummve 03-09-2013 12:19 AM

As I'm sitting around this evening I just had an epiphany(maybe). So my original plans where to use a piece of six inch pipe for the baffle but decided to go with a plate due to the lose of space in the cook chamber trying to keep off the bottom for cleaning and also keep distance from the cooking surface.
But now I am thinking of cutting a slit say 5"-6" wide length wise in bottom of the tank. Thus allowing the piece of 6 inch pipe to rest about half way out the bottom. Thoughts?

getatorch 03-09-2013 12:33 AM

Thanks for the pics. Looks like you're on the right track with it. Now we need to se cooked food!:)

FabberMcGee 03-09-2013 04:25 AM

6 inch pipe sounds good to me. You might consider running it all the way to the opposite end and cutting about a 4 inch hole every 6 or 8 inches to let the smoke/heat out. Then you can roll some pieces of tin to fit the outside of the pipe to block off or at least partially close some of the holes. That way you can control what part of the cooking chamber gets the smoke directly and what doesn't. Easier to reach a poker in under the grate and slide some tin around than move the meat all over the place to get the temperature and smoke level you want. You could tack a washer on edge to fit the poker into.

Just an idea to mull over.

allessence 03-09-2013 07:01 AM

Looks like things are moving along.. Humvee I like the looks of that monster.. Is I permanently mounted on that trailer?

Is that a seat I see on the far side or is that a shelf?

Did I mention I really like smoked Salmon..

Dr Bob, I'm not a vegan.. and since the shot gun rule applies you just gotta get in line.. What ever happened to Ladies before Gentlemen..

Oh, yeah.. I'm gonna role out that card. .And heck I'll even through a skirt on and some heels if I gotta.. Not that it takes much. :D

Hummve 03-09-2013 09:42 AM

I like the idea of holes along the pipe for tuning. Now you have the wheels turning in my head to pull that off. I've got an idea now too possibly control the openings from the outside of the smoker. Hard to explain maybe I will draft it up real fast.

The large smoker is bolted to some channel running across the side rails that are reinforced from the frame of the trailer.

Hummve 03-16-2013 05:34 PM

Progress! I've gotten a lot done in the last few weeks just been slow about posting. I decided to go with the 6 inch pipe for the baffle. I am still curious about the distance the stack should be above the cooking surface any input would be much appreciated.

Hummve 03-16-2013 05:53 PM

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Put some temporary legs to get it off the ground and level.

Hummve 03-17-2013 07:49 PM

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A little more done today.

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Hummve 03-31-2013 10:14 PM

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Haven't had much time lately to get much done but here are some action shots building the burners.

SmokinDodge 03-31-2013 10:37 PM

Holy BTU's Batman!

That is some serious azz burner.

Sent from my iPhone using SFT

allessence 04-01-2013 06:23 AM

I have to confess I'm ignorant when it comes to burners and such..

How long will the pipe burner last if the flame is under it?

How much gas you having to run?

Bender 04-01-2013 08:27 AM

Is that 4" copper pipe!?

Hummve 04-01-2013 08:42 PM

Yes lots of BTU's should be around 80,000 with both burners running. They are running on about 3 psi and the orifice is around a number 60ish bit. Which should be around 40k btu.

That's a little more than the recommended 70k for my cooking area. It can be turned down fairly low.

As far as it burning the pipe out I would think it will take a long time it's sch 40 gas pipe 1".

Originally Posted by Bender (Post 542404)
Is that 4" copper pipe!?

Yes that's mostly 4" copper and a little 6" on the bottom I think, pricey stuff and that's just what couldn't fit on the shelf. :-0

Hummve 04-02-2013 10:06 PM

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Got a little done tonight cut out and installed the drains and cut holes for burners.

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