Electric oven smoker conversion

Discussion in 'Other Builds' started by campfirestu, Nov 29, 2015.

  1. campfirestu

    campfirestu Newbie

    This is a report on the use of a GE wall oven used as a smoker.

    I am not sure this is what you would call a build, but I did fabricate the smoke generator.

    After looking at the smokers at the local BBQ eatery (they use Ole Hickey smokers) I made some observations (any clarifications, corrections, or additional info from someone more familiar with Ole Hickory smokers would be helpful)

    1. They were natural gas fired with a PID temperature controller

    2. There is a small fire box off to the side that has wood in it. When the unit calls for smoke a burner ignites an starts the wood smoke generation process

    3. There was not that much smoke coming out of their stacks.

    So with that in mind: Here are the goals I developed

    1. Wanted a controlled temperature with quick recovery regardless of ambient temperature, wind, or food load

    2. Wanted an insulated cabinet for stable temperature and cook time

    3. Wanted the cook temperature and the amount of smoke separate and controllable

    4. I wanted a unit with a very quick startup to be able to use it often

    5. Wanted to use it inside the garage

    6. Wanted a unit with low cost

    7. Wanted something quick to convert and put into service

    8. Wanted a second oven for cooking and warming

    I found a GE Profile convection wall oven on CL for 50.00 it is almost like new.

    I made a venturi smoke generator powered by an aquarium pump and plumbed it into the center of the bottom of the oven. There is a moisture trap as shown. No solder is used - its all just copper tubing pushed together. I  am going to swap out the 

    last piece going into the oven with black pipe or SS

    The oven plugs into my buzz box welder outlet so I did keep it 220. I set the unit up on blocks.


    1. The unit is very well insulated possibly due to the fact that it is a wall oven.

    2. The unit already had a chimney of sorts, and it is vented through the front of the unit. I plan on adding an upflow pipe vent soon. I don't know if I will be able to smoke with the garage door closed (plumbing the vent thru the wall) but it might be possible. 

    3. The temp controller is not terribly bad (there is about an 18 degree swing) but I'm going to replace it with a PID controller and industrial thermocouple. Since the oven came with an electrical diagram I should be able to deploy the controller with the overtemp safety switches already in place in the circuit. The PID also has alarm outputs for overtemp that can sound an alarm.

    4. Temperatures inside the cabinet  varied greatly from the upper rack to the lower rack (like 18 degrees) until I turned on the convection fan, then they were within a few degrees of each other. Using the convection fan also seems to increase the smoke generation and flow.

    5. The smoke generator itself doesn't like to stay lit for over 20-30 minutes. Still working on that.

    6. I had to get a cord because being a wall oven it was hard wired in previously. The cord was 25 buck (ouch)

    Other than the above issues I don't see too many huge obstacles but we are only 4 smokes in. BTW I do like the oven light.

    I hope this info helps someone.

    Best Regards 
  2. campfirestu

    campfirestu Newbie

    Well I've been trying to learn as much as I can about the smoke generator, but I am ready to order an a-maz-n unit. I have found out I need a shutoff valve and check port to get the generator burning cleanly before introducing the any smoke to the smoker. I also realized I need to preheat the generator prior to running it as well.
  3. campfirestu

    campfirestu Newbie

    Well I finally got the Omron PID controller (ebay 29.00) up and running. The controller cycles the 2350 watt element thru the SSR relay very well. I have some experience with Omron products and can recommend them. A type J thermocouple (from automation direct) is as close to grate level as possible.

    We've had some great food come out of this smoker. Next up, wanting to try the amps in a side box, and pump the smoke in via venturi power. Remains to be seen.
    In the mean time my garage smells great!
    The ssr switches the 220v side to the element that is not controllled by the oven. The other side remains controlled by the oven so all the oven controls and safeties remain in place - you just set the oven temp setting above the PID control setting.
  4. campfirestu

    campfirestu Newbie

  5. campfirestu

    campfirestu Newbie

    Last edited: Dec 26, 2015
  6. campfirestu

    campfirestu Newbie

    Christmas eve:
    Christmas morning:
    For regular store bought breakfast sausage:
    After smoking at 230 (apple wood smoke for first 45 mins) til 170 IT, then
    fire up the broiler on my smoker for 1-1/2 mins a side
  7. Hello Stu! Great project.I have a revolving oven similar to the Ole Hickory. The smoking chamber is of about 100 cubic feet. I already own an AmazeN smoker, as well as the tube smoker. As my oven doesn´t have a firebox, I intend to make one.  Do you have any ideas for me to make it using the Amazen smokers? Thanks for your help!
  8. campfirestu

    campfirestu Newbie

    Hi Gerardo

    Your smoker is awesome!!

    When you say firebox, are you meaning you want to keep your Amazen smoker to the side separate from the oven chamber?

    I use a wood box but most people on SMF are using a mailbox or small kettle grill. I am considering getting one f them myself after I study some posts written on the subject.

    The only difference is how I pipe the smoke into the smoker. I use 3/4 pipes and 'pump' the smoke in with a venturi pump powered by an aquarium pump. The others use (I think) a larger flex hose so the smoke naturally flows into and thru the smoker and out a chimney.

    I have no experience with the mailbox system so you might check out the other posts by searching 'Mailbox Mod'

    Your situation seems like you would want to consider the smoke inlet and outlet chimney position - other folks hopefully will add suggestions on that.

    It seems like the Mailbox Mod (or side box) it is the 'go to' for when you have limited space (not your issue) or limited air supply, or when you simply want to keep the Amazen unit separate.

    I hope this helps.

  9. Stu, thank you for the idea!

    The mailbox mod is exactly what I am trying to do. I found a venturi diagram that think will be a great addition. My only concern is that the AMNPS won't generate enough smoke for the whole chamber.

    Thank you for all your help! 

  10. campfirestu

    campfirestu Newbie

    Here is our smoke pump. It is stuck in the hole at the top of the smoke box.
    I plan on switching to a small grille or mailbox.
    As far as needing more smoke I see people talking about lighting both ends of the a-maz-n smoker.
    I wonder if you could have two pipes/pumps going to opposite ends of the smoker? Or three with one in the middle?
    gerardo saucedo likes this.
  11. thesmokist

    thesmokist Meat Mopper

    If you can get enough air into your smoker you can just light the amazen smoker and put it right in the smoker and let it burn
  12. campfirestu

    campfirestu Newbie

    Hi thesmokist
    You sure can put the amazen pellet pan inside the smoker but that doesn't involve fabrication :)

    Seriously, I keep mine in a side box to control the amount of smoke that goes into the smoker. I let some smoke escape thru the side box door.

    I was checking out your method on Chuck Roast gonna use that next time we do a roast Thanks!!

    On Gerardo's smoker (larger awesome smoker) maybe the larger flexhose would be easier to run the smoke into the smoker - no pump needed just let natural flow do the work.
    gerardo saucedo likes this.
  13. Stu, I will make an outside box, light both ends of the Amazen smoker, connect it with flexible hose and let it flow naturally. If the air doesn't push enough smoke and starts choking the smoker, I will definitely try the venturi. I will let you know how it goes.

    Thesmokist, sadly I don't have a comfortable way of putting the Amazen smoker inside my chamber. 

    Thank you both!
  14. campfirestu

    campfirestu Newbie


    Moved smoke box under oven smoker and it works better the feeder pipe is shorter which might help.

    I did try to put amps directly into the oven and it went out due to lack of oxygen. The oven is built too tight.
    gerardo saucedo likes this.
  15. campfirestu

    campfirestu Newbie

    Did 3-2-1 method

    Used olive oil and 'rib rack rub' from store

    3 hour smoke at 225 using Todd's pitmaster choice.

    Then foil for 1 hour back into smoker

    Bumped temp to 275 then back in the smoker (no additional smoke) for approx 1 hour pulled at 195 I.t.

    On a scale of 1-10 I'd give em a solid 8-1/2 thanks SMF for all the info!!!
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2016
    gerardo saucedo likes this.
  16. campfirestu

    campfirestu Newbie


    Breakfast sirloins
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2016

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