New to the smoke house building....

Discussion in 'Brick Smokers' started by firerun1, Jan 22, 2015.

  1. firerun1

    firerun1 Newbie

    Hello Guys/Gals,

    I'm new to this forum but sorta been watching from a far. I am planning to build a brick/ concrete block style base with the smoke house being wood sort of like the 1 (atcnick) built.

    here are my thought's followed by a few questions.



    4ft wide x 10ft long x 4" thick concrete slab reinforced with mesh and rebar

    **wood box**

    brick or concrete cinder block mortared together with a cast iron door kit like this ( then line the whole inside with fire brick and a steel plate on the top with fire brick lined above before layering more brick or block over top

    **smoke transfer**

    I plan to run a 3 foot stainless double wall chimney from the backside of the fire box into the side of the smoke house base, then encase the tubing in clay chimney liner and mortar it in brick

    **Smoke house**

    4ft x 4ft x roughly 30" Tall cinder block base, 1 layer of these (, then build the wood smokehouse on top out of cedar 2by's and diamond plate steel inside n out. using stainless hardware throughout.

    Now onto my questions, I live in southern Michigan right north of the Indiana line,

    1) does anybody see a issue with my base slab?

    2) what kind of mortar should I use to seal all the bricks and fire bricks and such together?

    3) how does the plans sound so far?

    4) any thoughts, plans, or insight that it sounds like I have missed?

     I'm new to the whole brick smoker thing so I can all will take any and all knowledge that I can. Thanks, Mitch
  2. I am not a brick guy but it sounds like a nice build. Someone will be along soon with answers to your questions. I see this is your first post. When you get a chance will you drop by roll call so everyone can give you a proper SMF welcome?

    Happy smoken.

  3. firerun1

    firerun1 Newbie

    Will do, thank you. :)
  4. Be sure and post pictures as you go, everybody loves to see a build coming together

  5. jim williams

    jim williams Meat Mopper

    Hello Mitch, Jim W. here.

    - slab base        Check with local codes for frost depth and footings. I am in Nebraska and had to go 36" deep 8" wide topped with 12" slab. I will be putting 5+ tons brick on top and don't want the baby to heave in 3 years!!

    -type S (structural) is a lot stronger and best way to go. better than N (non structural).

    -I am going type S with fire brick also, does not burn hot like a fireplace 24/7 and will last for your life time, or a repair or two.

    -Sounds like you have a plan, make a drawing to help us help you.

    -YOUR steel plate is what I am doing this spring. I had been warned not to incorporate brick/mortar/steel as they will expand and crack joints.

    I am putting 3/8" flat steel lid over 2 walls (fire brick and cinder block) and my veneer brick will cover all.

    Wes W. has some brick plans and pics on sight here

    Jim Williams has plans and pics on sight also.

    Check those out, there are a lot of detail. -good luck man!
    Last edited: Jan 23, 2015
  6. josh banta

    josh banta Newbie

    you might also add fireclay to your mortar mix.  I use 1/2 bag per bag of mortar when building fireplaces. It really makes for a durable firebox.
  7. firerun1

    firerun1 Newbie

    Josh Banta, what is "fireclay" where would I find it?
    Thanks, Mitch
  8. josh banta

    josh banta Newbie

    Fire Clay is added to type S mortar to make it like refractory mortar. Without it the mortar between your firebrick will deteriorate over time. I buy it from my brick supplier. You won't find it in a home improvement store.
  9. wes w

    wes w Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Josh makes a good point.

    Josh, if you were doing a project for yourself, would you use the fire clay mix or use refractory?  Is one better then the other?  I don't want to get the thread off topic, but if spring ever gets here I plan on starting a brick oven.   Unlike a smoker, a oven will reach extreme temperatures.  I want it to last as long as possible.  Thanks
  10. Can't wait to see you get started

  11. josh banta

    josh banta Newbie

    I am by trade, a masonry contractor. I've built many masonry fireplaces in the past 15 years and always use type S with 1/2 bag of fire clay when building the firebox. We built a firepit for Jim-n-Nicks BBQ that burns 364 days a year. No problems in 9 years.
  12. wes w

    wes w Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Thanks for the reply Josh.  That ends the debate for me as to how to lay the inside of my oven.  Thanks again. 
  13. jim williams

    jim williams Meat Mopper

    Thanks Josh, I have pondered this way to many times, I assume you mean 2 scoops to 1 scoop mixtures and do not worry about weight for weight?

    Sorry, I know I can make it difficult as I am not a brick tender and will be building Wes' twin tower. 

    Thank you very much for your patients and knowledge Josh and Wes!
    Last edited: Feb 4, 2015
    wes w likes this.
  14. rob sicc

    rob sicc Smoking Fanatic Group Lead

    Awesome thread so far.

    Mitch, did you ever start your build?  If so, do you have any pictures that you can post?  I am anxious to see it.

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