Building my first pit I am excited- 20" pipe backyard smoker

Discussion in 'Reverse Flow' started by phat rico, Apr 12, 2013.

  1. So I started Grad School and quit Grad School since I last posted.  I have more free time now so I am back at it.  I have missed some pictures along the way.  I will share what I have.

    Drilled hole for my drain pipe. Harbor Freight hole cutter plus cutting fluid works well. Don't have pictures but it took me a long time to get the drain water tight.  I don't thing I took a picture out of embarrassment.  It was mounds of ugly weld to get it right. 


    Cutting lid with plasma cutter.  Never used one before.  It is an amazing tool. 

    I decided to weld on the hinges.  

    Laid out lines for the side cuts.  

    attached a piece of angle to guide the cutter. Removed the hinges.  I looked around on this site and decided to attach the hinges to the flange. 

    Position top flange

    I welded the top and bottom flange on the door and finished cutting it out. Cut out RF plate.  I was a good 1/2" higher than the drain.  It took me many hours of grinding to get the plate to fit.  Next time I will fit the plate first then make the drain meet the plate. 

    You can see the curved flange piece I haven't welded on yet. 

    After hours and hours of grinding I got the plate to fit.  It slopes towards the drain. Plasma cut the drain hole.

    Cut the slot a little wide.  It is require some creative welding. 

    I used some cheap wood cardboard stuff from another project.  This is the stuff they put on the back unseen side of dressers.  I cut out a circle tracing my end cap.  Got it to fit inside of the pit.  I used that as a template and cut it out. After I made the template I decided to make it a little taller. 

    IT FIT, IT FIT, IT FIT!!!!!! This was the first thing i did that fit as it should the first time with no grinding.  I guess this is what the measure twice cut once thing means. 

    There is my boo boo weld for my drain.  You also see the RF plate welding in. 

    I am about to go out to the garage and snap some more picks and upload them later.  
  2. I decided that I didn't like stand so away is goes! I took this opportunity to weld on the end plate.  

    The pipe is out of round so that was a challenge for me.



    Cut the plates for the casters.3" 300lb casters from Home Depot


    Fitting the pipe to the base.  Used ratchet straps so the legs wouldn't flare out.  I also used them to level the pipe, tightening the low side raising it up. Had a neighbor help lift it. 

    The drain. Got it level side to side.


    Used a washer to tack the wheels on to axel.  I didn't weld the rod to the angle yet.  Not sure I will. What do you think? 


    There is a washer on the inside so the wheel won't rub. 

    Tried to follow the advise I was given from Ribwizzard. Hit it with the flapper disk.  

    I may have to add weld later as a filler so I can get it fully smooth.

    I am proud of the base now. 

    As this project goes on my welds are getting better.  I learned I had the feed speed too high. 

    Next step... firebox.  I will start on it this weekend. 
  3. smokejumper

    smokejumper Smoking Fanatic

    Looking good! [​IMG][​IMG]
  4. beeflover

    beeflover Smoke Blower

    That looks like it will be a nice smoker
  5. Thank you!
  6. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Phat Rico, evening.....   Your welds look like you are young and have great eye sight....   [​IMG]
  7. looking good!
  8. Thanks Dave and Ribwizzard!

    I decided to play with good sketch up and draw up my fire box. First the specs:

    16.75" cube = 4699 cu in 124%

    intake 5"x1.5" times 2 

    FB to CC 52.9 cu in 1.4 not quite 1.5 times the calculator 

    I have a intake on the door to help with heat. 

    I will start cutting next in the morning. 
  9. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Phat Rico, evening....  I'm not sure about all of the dimensions of your smoker build....  I could be off base here but....  for ease in fit up, you want the width of the FB, at the end where the cut out for the FB/CC opening is, to be at least as wide as the RF plate....  that way you can weld the RF plate to the FB and there will be no gaps to fill.....    You probably already figured that in but I just wanted to make sure you knew of that step saver....  FB looks good.....

    Last edited: Sep 27, 2013
  10. Dave, 

    In my drawing below I had the FB to CC opening at 4" and you suggested 4.5" which is what I did. Are you saying I should make the Firebox wider to match the RF plate and keep a 1.5" strip at the top of my arch to keep the opening 52 in^2?   

    My FB dimensions would changed to 18 3/16" W X 16" H x 16" L.  123.6% of recommend. That would be easier to weld.  
  11. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    PR, morning......  Thanks for the drawing ....

     My FB dimensions would changed to 18 3/16" W X 16" H x 16" L.  123.6% of recommend. That would be easier to weld.  


    Now, here's another idea....  sorry for it being this late in the game....  Ribwizzard has done some testing with his builds...  early reports suggest the FB/CC opening can be the same size as the area under the RF plate.....  That helps reduce friction also in the heat/smoke flow.....   Also it is then suggested, the area under the RF plate becomes an extension of the FB....  making for more even heat across the RF plate.....   

    Now it's up to you to decide....  Do you weld the top of the FB to the RF plate and cut the opening (FB/CC) to match the CC (Except the dam at the bottom of the CC).....   I would, because I know how good Ribwizzard is...   Everything else can be left as is......

  12. I mounted my firebox (pics coming soon).  I need to buy my temp gauges.  Should I buy one and put it in the middle or buy two?  Should it be at 3" above grate level or in the middle? I was looking at the 3" Tel Tru Black face with 4" stem. 
  13. Got most of the firebox installed and vent cut out. 



    I decided to buy two probes to make sure my temps are even across the CC.

    My next question is regarding the exhaust.  I went to the scrap yard and pick up a couple options. 

    I have 3.5" pipe                                                                            and 3"x6" box tubing both 1/4" wall


    I wanted to mound the exhaust on a plenum like metaldoctor21

    So I used the Feldon Chimney volume to calculate the length. 237.6 cu in.  (FYI The Feldon calculator assumes 1/8" wall)

    If I use dual pipe exhaust they should each be 16" long. If I use the box it will be 17.25" long. 

    My question is do I run with a dual 3.5 inch exhaust or single box exhaust?  Does it matter? 
  14. [​IMG]

    Got cooking grate and firebox grate made. 


    Did the rear flange welds that I saw in a RibWizzard post.  I think it looks great.  I wish I did them all like this.  It is easy to cut notches with a plasma. 

     Got upper firebox door vent done. 

    Got plenum attached to the smoke stack.  Stack it 32" tall. Dual exhaust was too much work and it would have blown smoke in my face. 

    Cutting out plenum hole. Level cuts make a level stack. 

    Grate level exhaust. 

    I pretty proud of this stack. It turned out well and was easier than I thought. 

    So much grinding and cutting. My garage is covered in metal dust. 

    Smoker with temporary handle. I like it. I may try to make a real handle like it.  I need to install temp gauges and inlet vent covers. Then I can test it out. 

    Do I need two temp gauges?  
  15. lendecatural

    lendecatural Smoking Fanatic

    Greetings Phat Rico,

    It really looks great! I'm sure you are itching to light a fire to see how she draws. The exhaust plenum turned out very nice, great work. I would mount two temp gauges so you can see if you get a hot spot at the firebox end. Wait till you see how much dust is left in the washing machine!

  16. pigbark

    pigbark Smoke Blower

    Your rocking this build man, looking great.. I love the stack...
  17. Are you smoking yet ?  If so is everything working as expected?

  18. Thanks!! My wife is being very patient.  She cant dry her clothes sometimes because I need the dryer 220 for the cutter. lol. 

    I still need to install my gauges and vent covers.  I hope to see smoke Thursday or Friday. 
  19. Excellent work...
  20. Thank you! 

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