Oklahoma Joes (Grill) - Want to build a side Firebox on it.

Discussion in 'Side Fire Box' started by steelhere, Jun 26, 2011.

  1. steelhere

    steelhere Newbie

     I know I am probably way ahead of myself here.... but I am kind of excited to get something going on this.

     I have almost NO experience with smokers or smoking. But I live on a farm here in Oklahoma, and I have Hickory and Pecan in good supply here on my property.  When we are grilling I rarely ever purchase charcoal (lazy and too far to town)... I usually just walk a few feet from the house and cut up some hickory chunks and use them, they produce some awesome tasting meat (even though I don't know what I am doing....) (hamburgers, chicken regular grill stuff)....

     I love to eat smoked meat, and have wanted a smoker for quite a while... I have a well outfitted farm shop... and a couple of tools most might not have (A CNC plasma table, and an IronWorker)... and I like to dabble at making things from metal.

     I recently found on craigslist an older Oklahoma Joes Grill (has no firebox)... I haven't picked it up yet (tomorrow). I got it for $75, hopefully it wasn't too bad of a deal.

      I plan to add a firebox on to the end, and from the looks of it I will need to replace the grates.... I will post the pic's I have so far, as well as get new ones along the way.... hopefully somebody here will be willing to help me with ideas and advice....

    .... Also, this is not really directly related to this post... but I also have an old 33 Gallon Sears Air Compressor (non functional), I have considered using it to make a smoker???


     The grill as it exists is a 16" pipe.  I would like feedback on making the firebox square (rectangular, boxy)... instead of from pipe (just have more tools and stuff available to me for flat work).

    Also, I watched a video on youtube not long ago, a fellow had made a "pan" that held the wood chips, and had a propane burner under the pan (thick steel).... looked like it got the fire going easily and helped keep it constant... any feedback?

    Next... in the pictures, I notice no temp gauge, looking for info there, location... what to buy etc.....


     I hope I am not rambling too much, and I hope it isn't overstepping by posting before I broought it home... just anxious!!!!

  2. beer-b-q

    beer-b-q Smoking Guru OTBS Member


    Welcome to SMF, Glad to have you with us.

    This is the place to learn, lots of good info and helpful friendly Members.

    Many of our members have years of experience in smoking meat.  They are more than happy helping Newbies learn the art.

    We have members who cure there own Bacon, Hams, Jerky, Snack Sticks, Make Their own Sausage, etc. if you want to learn,
    this is the place. 

    Don't be afraid to ask questions of them and follow their advice. You won't be sorry, you will be making great Q in no time at all...

    Just remember, when curing your own meats follow the instructions included with the cure to the letter, this is not something to experiment with.  

    Never use more cure no mater if it is Tender Quick or Cure #1 or Cure #2 than the manufacturer says to use, this can be very dangerous.

    Tender Quick and Cure#1 or Cure #2 are not interchangeable, neither Cure #1 interchangeable with Cure #2 or vise versa

    Sign up for Jeff's 5-Day eCourse.   Click Here

    Tips For New Members.
    1. Go into your profile and Under Location put where you are.
    2. City & State or Area & State will do. This will help members when answering your questions.
    3. Go to ROLL CALL thread and tell us a little about Yourself (A Name We Can Call You) and Experience & Equipment.
    4. Do Not Post  your other questions and smokes in the Roll Call Forum.
    5. Post your questions and smokes in the Proper Forum, Beef, Pork, Sausage, Electric Smoker, Charcoal Smoker etc.
    6. Use the Wiki Section, many of our members have posted great tutorials and instructional threads so take advantage of them.
    7. When you can't find an answer ask plenty of questions, we have some highly experienced members willing to help you.
    8. When posting about your smokes be sure to post plenty of Qview (Pictures) Our Moto, "No Pics, Didn't Happen".
    9. Get a good Probe Thermometer, Don't Depend on the Built in Thermometer in your Smoker (They are notorious for being off).
    10. A good choice for a remote dual probe thermometer is the Maverick ET-732
    11. Remember, We Always Cook by Temperature and NOT BY TIME...
    12. Don't Take Chances, Always Follow USDA Safety Guidelines When Handling Meat.

    13. If you are wanting to get into curing meat, there are many members here more than happy to help and give good advice.

    14. If you are unsure of a procedure ASK, don't ASSUME, It will make your Smoking experience much more pleasant...
  3. steelhere

    steelhere Newbie

    Also, I notice that the seal strips (not sure what to call them)... for the door are on the inside of the pipe, instead of on top of the door like most?  Any comments on that?  I suppose I could easily add them to the outside and be double sealed?

     And the hinges, appear to be a different style than most of the pictures I have seen... It doesn't have any wheels...

     If for some reason this is not a disirable start (for $75) somebody please let me know soon (I am supposed to go get it tomorrow at noon).
  4. sunman76

    sunman76 Master of the Pit

    as far as the seal strips go I belive they work the same inside or out.  Dont seem like a bad deal to me but I would offer them a less just to see if I could

    save a dollar.  Just make sure that it is not rusted to bad in the bottom, if not looks like a good project to start on and have some fun.

    where you at in oklahoma?
  5. steelhere

    steelhere Newbie

     They originally wanted $100, I offered $75.

      There is a little surface rust on the bottom you can see in the picture.... we got it home and gave it a good cleaning... there is just a little pitting in the bottom where they left ashes sitting for a long time, but I think it will be fine.  We cleaned it as best we could, then rubbed it down with cooking oil, I put a bunch of hickory limbs (small ones our of the yard from recent storms) in it and built a good fire last night. It has cleaned up pretty nicely I think.

      Last night when I went to bed, I went out and checked it (around 1:00am). The fire was died down to a good coal bed. Today at noon... it was still hot.

      The grill is made of 16" pipe (3/16"). The length is 26". So, now I need to determine the correct size for a firebox to add on to the side, and the correct opening between the firebox and the main body. (I want to make the firebox rectangular).

      The grills are pretty much junk... I will be figuring out how to build me some new ones. The stack is also short... i am thinking it might need to be extended to draft better?

      Not too sure how good of a deal it was, but I figure we will have fun with it.
  6. steelhere

    steelhere Newbie

     I forgot to answer the question of where I am in Oklahoma.... I live near Agra
  7. sunman76

    sunman76 Master of the Pit

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