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  #11  
Old 05-04-2020, 04:57 PM
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JWS JWS is offline
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Way to go JB. Build it like you did my forge and his grandchildren will be using it if he cleans it out and takes care of it!
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  #12  
Old 05-06-2020, 05:59 PM
JBFab JBFab is offline
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Originally Posted by Shade Tree Welder View Post
Almost looks like you know what you're doing dere, eh?
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Originally Posted by milomilo View Post
Welds look very nice. No grinding needed there.
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Way to go JB. Build it like you did my forge and his grandchildren will be using it if he cleans it out and takes care of it!
Thank you for the kind words gentlemen. I spent plenty of time on the front end designing this thing and getting the CAD files accurate and the shop I use for cutting and forming is pretty good at what they do - makes for a fun project when everything just fits (of course you will see in a later post, not ALL has gone to plan).
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  #13  
Old 05-06-2020, 06:11 PM
JBFab JBFab is offline
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Monday evening I finished welding the horizontal seams on the cooking chamber. Then I met with the customer to get some feedback on a couple of items and to answer a couple of questions for him. He was very pleased with the progress so far.

My cousin stopped in with a couple of ramps off of his flat bed trailer. Both broken, bent, and mangled at the hinge. Also, one of them was destroyed by the previous owner and cobbled together in grand fashion - I'll start another thread for those I guess.

Tuesday I took my time leveling the cooking chamber on the welding table and brought the firebox to it with the engine hoist. To my delight they slid together without a problem and it was a perfect fit (almost). I was prepared to spend a bit of time getting the boxes true to each other. I wanted to ensure the boxes were both parallel to a common plane front to back as well as side to side. Hoping that by doing all of this the top of the firebox would be square to the side of the cooking chamber. I really need this because the cooking chamber welds to both of these, and that IS square. I set the firebox on the saw horses and used a digital level zeroed to the floor of the cook chamber. I then moved it to the firebox and had to raise it 2 tenths of a degree. After monkeying with shims I got it perfect (according to a $75 level ). Checked it with a framing square that I checked to be accurate and I was off about a 1/4" in 2 feet. I took the shims out and it was PERFECT. Checked again with the fancy level - PERFECT. I'm disappointed in the level but elated that it came together so easy.

On to the pictures:

Pic 1 - firebox married to the cooking chamber. That's a six foot level for scale. Also, you might be able to make out the black carpenters square.

Pic 2 - Junction between the firebox and the cooking chamber.

Pic 3 - Another view of it tacked together.

Pics 4 & 5 - Melt through it inside seams of cooking chamber. I made the joints corner to corner and welded them from the outside. Maybe I missed my calling as a pipe welder!
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Last edited by JBFab; 05-06-2020 at 06:21 PM.
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  #14  
Old 05-10-2020, 08:11 PM
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LW Hiway LW Hiway is offline
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Nice neat work.

The second pic looks like a big screen tv.
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  #15  
Old 05-11-2020, 09:16 PM
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Originally Posted by LW Hiway View Post
Nice neat work.

The second pic looks like a big screen tv.
Thanks Jef, appreciate the compliment!


A little progress over the weekend.

Pic 1 - set the warming box on top of the fire box to see if any trimming was necessary. Need to take about 1/4" off of it - not a big deal.

Pic 2 - Off the table and on the jack stands. This ranks right up there with some of the sketchiest shit I've picked up with an engine hoist. It would be much better if I put my hook higher so it wasn't so top heavy.

Pic 3 - moved it up a little higher, and started the trailer. Still need to add a little bracing to keep the axle from wanting to rotate should one tire meet a bunch of resistance (hard to find a pot hole in Wisconsin ).
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  #16  
Old 05-11-2020, 09:21 PM
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This is a really nice build. I am impressed at how you worked all the details out ahead of time. I am more of a fly by the seat of your pants kinda guy and make things up as I go, with just an idea in mind of the finished project. Kinda bites me in the ass when I sell something and somebody else comes along and wants me to make another one like it for them.
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  #17  
Old 05-11-2020, 09:35 PM
JBFab JBFab is offline
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Originally Posted by Matt Shade View Post
This is a really nice build. I am impressed at how you worked all the details out ahead of time. I am more of a fly by the seat of your pants kinda guy and make things up as I go, with just an idea in mind of the finished project. Kinda bites me in the ass when I sell something and somebody else comes along and wants me to make another one like it for them.
Thanks Matt. I work in CAD for a living nowadays, so it's second nature to work that way for me. I used to do exactly as you do, and of course for some things still do. I didn't have everything planned out, mostly just the sheet metal. I had an idea in mind, but for instance on the trailer it was mostly design on the fly with the occasional reference back to the CAD drawing to find the axle center line or other such reference.

It's funny you mention about someone wanting to make another. The odd thing is - I don't ever want to build THIS smoker again. I enjoy the challenge of designing for someones specific needs, and would get bored building the same thing over and over. Don't get me wrong, if someone wanted to pay me for a custom smoker and this one fit the bill, I'd certainly make another but the price isn't going down because I have this one "figured out" already.

That's not to say that I wouldn't like to build another with similar parts and pieces and stretch them out or completely change one aspect.

The attached pic is an early sketch that I proposed to this customer. I haven't been able to get it out of my mind since I drew it. I'm pretty sure I'll be building a much smaller version of this yet this year. I could see my self making 10 or so of these (small version) per year if there was interest. It would be set up to cook reverse flow, offset, rotisserie, or direct grill with the ability to cook through the doors as a cabinet style or a flip top lid.
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  #18  
Old 05-11-2020, 11:07 PM
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Originally Posted by JBFab View Post
Thanks Matt. I work in CAD for a living nowadays, so it's second nature to work that way for me. I used to do exactly as you do, and of course for some things still do. I didn't have everything planned out, mostly just the sheet metal. I had an idea in mind, but for instance on the trailer it was mostly design on the fly with the occasional reference back to the CAD drawing to find the axle center line or other such reference.

It's funny you mention about someone wanting to make another. The odd thing is - I don't ever want to build THIS smoker again. I enjoy the challenge of designing for someones specific needs, and would get bored building the same thing over and over. Don't get me wrong, if someone wanted to pay me for a custom smoker and this one fit the bill, I'd certainly make another but the price isn't going down because I have this one "figured out" already.

That's not to say that I wouldn't like to build another with similar parts and pieces and stretch them out or completely change one aspect.

The attached pic is an early sketch that I proposed to this customer. I haven't been able to get it out of my mind since I drew it. I'm pretty sure I'll be building a much smaller version of this yet this year. I could see my self making 10 or so of these (small version) per year if there was interest. It would be set up to cook reverse flow, offset, rotisserie, or direct grill with the ability to cook through the doors as a cabinet style or a flip top lid.

I know exactly what you mean about not wanting to make THAT smoker again. Other than hoof picks and bridle hooks and stuff that I knock out in small batches I don't make repeats of much of anything. For the most part the bigger projects I do, I prefer to make people things that are one of a kind. There are times though, that I wish I could remember how long the legs were on this, or what angle I used on that. The parts that took too long to figure out on the first one you know Some day I will start keeping notes.
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  #19  
Old 05-15-2020, 07:04 PM
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Nice looking welds, are you using flux core gasless or with gas?
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  #20  
Old 05-15-2020, 07:24 PM
JBFab JBFab is offline
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Thanks Clive. I'm using ER70S6 solid wire with 75% argon and 25% CO2. I used .035" on the firebox, and switched over to .023" on the 11ga material. Doing so allowed me a little more time to manipulate the puddle. It wouldn't look nearly that good had I kept using the larger diameter wire.

I did break out old blue and stick weld some of the trailer framing with 1/8" 7018. I'll probably post some more updates this weekend.
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Nice looking welds, are you using flux core gasless or with gas?
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