The UglyBox Build

Discussion in 'Brick Smokers' started by mrmosmo, Nov 18, 2015.

  1. Due to some circumstances I found myself without a smoker and decided to build one. After many hours of doing research I decided to build a vertical smoker using cinder blocks as a main building material. This would give me plenty of insulation, making it easier to keep my temps up during the cold Ohio winters. I started by digging down to 34 inches and pouring a footer to build on, I did not get any pictures of this. I then built up on that using cinder blocks, and then poured my cement pad to build the smoker on.

    I used some cinder blocks to get a feel of how big I wanted to build it.

    Then I started building using the cinder block and high heat mortar.

    A look down inside the build.

    Cinder blocks done and the bottom lined with firebrick.

    Firebrick done, starting with red brick the rest of the way up.

    Inside brick work finished, for now. In the spring I will take the bricks the rest of the way to the top, trying to get it usable this year and the temps here are getting colder.

    Using a cedar door for now, it should work till spring when it will get replaced by a steel door or something as good.

    After a very long and hard wait the first fire.

    The firebox door is in and looking good.

    The racks are done and ready.

    Ready for smoking some food!

    So that is my little UglyBox. The plan is in the spring I am going to finish the bricks inside the rest of the way up. Then use large flat stones to finish off the outside. I have smoked several items on it already and forgot to get pictures, but will be doing many more smokes on it and will get some loaded. Still doing some tweeks to make it run a bit better but so far so good.  

    Please feel free to give me any feed back you might have I am open to some constructive criticism. 
  2. Looks nice. I don't see any venting on your firebox door. Is there any? If not, plans for vents?

    Also, I've been using wooden doors on my masonry smoker for 20 years now - wood actually works quite well - insulates MUCH better than steel! I used my new little infrared thermometer to measure the temps of various parts of my smoker the other day about 12 hours into smoking a couple pork butts and the steel fire box door was 400 degrees F while the wood top and doors hovered right around 90 degrees - it was in the low 80s outside.

  3. jim williams

    jim williams Meat Mopper

    Looks super. Where is the vent to the Hot box? Also, did you purchase or build your steel door? I built mine but didn't see anywhere to buy reasonably..

    Happy Smoking Mr.
  4. Are you responding to me (PianoV) or the original poster?
  5. jim williams

    jim williams Meat Mopper

    Sorry, To PV. It is awesome as I have not seen one like this before.
  6. jim williams

    jim williams Meat Mopper

    Looks good also MR. M I love brick builds before and after building mine.
  7. Not a problem - I just didn't know.  Thanks for the compliments. The smoker sure seems to work very well. Smoked three slabs of baby-back ribs today - major YUM!!!

    "Where is the vent to the Hot box?"

    The fire box door has a slide vent on the bottom that really opens up a huge amount of area for air intake to the fire. And then I have one six (or eight?) hole vent in the upper portion of the door. I'm thinking of adding maybe two more vents of that type, but install them at the very top of the door. I think they will function better as a cooling vent that way.

    "Also, did you purchase or build your steel door?"

    Built my door myself. Started with a hunk of 3/16" plate and went from there. Seems to work very well!

    Terry Farrell 

    Tampa Bay, Florida
  8. wes w

    wes w Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I personally don't see anything ugly about it.   Its what comes out that counts.    Your on the right track.    

    If spring ever gets here I look forward to seeing it complete.   

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