Today is the day...I hope! Help? please?

Discussion in 'Charcoal Smokers' started by mrscruffles, Sep 8, 2009.

  1. mrscruffles

    mrscruffles Fire Starter

    So, hopefully today I can get this project going! Ive been using this char-broil grill as a smoker (fire off to one side, food on the other) for a while now.
    But yesterday I went to my local Lowes to get some charcoal. (I got Stubbs briquettes... dont think Ill do that again.) but I did find a great sale on a char-griller SFB on sale for 20 bucks! (was 70)
    (Yes, thats a pink, fold up Papasan chair. Free at the dump. I dont care if its pink. Its great to chill in waiting for food!)
    so now I just gotta take apart this one, and get it to my friends house and get this sucker welded on... and do a few other things to it.

    I have this feeling, its going to be more of a bitch that I had expected. and I also think Im gonna lose this part too.
    mainly because If im gonna do this, I wanna do it right, and I dont know if Ill have room to have that second rack.
    Ive been reading and reading and It just makes me even more confused! So many different mods, and ideas! I really want to make it a reverse flow, but is it worth it? can anyone give a poor confused smoker some helpful hints and tips?
    I know I need to get a stack on top... the thermo on there needs to go, but that will come sooner or later, I got a digi anyways... But smoke does seep out EVERYWHERE on this thing. sorry for the long rant, but I need help!!!
    Thanks for lookin everyone!

    Oh yeah, other pics too...
    bottom of it... shot to hell.

    empty inside view
  2. helljack6

    helljack6 Meat Mopper SMF Premier Member

    Yes, smoke leakes out of them EVERYWHERE. They're cheaply made and you end up doing a lot of mods if you're going to be serious about using it as a smoker, as well as feeding it a lot of fuel for therapy. has an entire 215+pg thread dedicated to these smokers. There's all kinds of mods from lowering the internal smoke stack down to grate level to reconstructing the side fire box charcoal basket, to you name it. I've heard some get about 4-6 hours out of a smoke but they went through hella fuel. I had the same one and had the same issues and went through it all and finally decided blowing through 36lb of fuel every weekend plus what I went through during the week wasn't worth it and built something way more efficient, a UDS. But like I said, it's all about how much beer therapy you need. Me personally, I have too many other things to do while trying to manage a 6+ hour smoke.
  3. forluvofsmoke

    forluvofsmoke Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I had to look at this because I was thinking about converting an old brinkmann gasser 34" to a horizontal smoker awhile back, and I'm also still considering a reverse flow conversion for my SNP as one of it's next mods.

    That is a helluva steal for the sfb @ 20 bucks, too. I can see your reasoning behind this project...I would take advantage of a situation like this too, no doubt.

    The pics tell a pretty good gave good views of what you're up also tells me you're serious about getting this done.

    Your grill presents a whole new set of challenges, which will be difficult at best to overcome:

    1. the ash pan will need to be secured to the body and sealed. Self drilling sheet metal screws may work the best for this, as welding will cause warpage on non-structurally rigid material;

    2. the front access door will be another leak site requiring attention possibly just using wood stove door gasket material and cement. You may want to keep this door functional for future access to an additional cooking grate?;

    3. sealing of the top may not be as important, but can help with heat control. If the fit is not very close, things can be done to get a tighter fit. Gasket material may not be a good idea, as it could slough off of the surface and get into your food;

    4. the depth of the body cavity may be worthwhile to exploit by adding a second set of grates under the main grate (the coal grate may work);

    5. reverse flow may not be the best for this conversion with a shorter chamber length, and especially until you know it has no leakage issues. If you really want to go reverse flow, plan it out so you have no design changes (vent stack position, lower cook grate, etc);

    It will be a quite a bit of engineering on the fly, so be ready for that. It may seem like it will take quite a bit of work, so just think about cost of conversion without the time involved...low cost conversion vs high cost of buying a pre-fab rig, or building one from scratch. The time you spend on it should be part of the experience in creating your own customized specialized equipment.

    Some folks may say that it isn't worth the time it will take to get the work completed and get it to work properly, and seal up all the leaks. That's a personal opinion. This is a personal opinion as well: it's worth it to put forth the effort if you are willing to see it through to the finish. Only then can you reap the benefits of your labors.

    Keep posting with any progress or concerns on this and I'll follow along. If I see any potential problems or solutions I'll come back on.

    Good luck, and keep your chin up! Looks like a great little project, even though it will pick your brain at times.

  4. mikey

    mikey Smoking Fanatic

    Not sure if this is in your budget or if you're dead set on repairing what you have. Your initial idea is somewhat doable if you have some welding skills. Imo, I think the above mentioned unit could be had for $800.00. Not sure if you could build one like this for that kind of money.
  5. roadrunr

    roadrunr Meat Mopper

    hmmm my take on this is ya wanna put that chargriller sfb on that char broil 940 grill right? Well lemme tell ya...i totally disagree with at least one of these posts. These things dont leak, at all. I was gonna do the same thing, but I already have enuff smokers. That grill is built like a [​IMG] it holds heat real well cuz its heavy gauge metal. All you need to to is cut the football size opening and either bolt or weld the sfb on. Your ash pan and charcoal grate can stay exactly as they are. I say go for it. [​IMG]
  6. forcedsquint

    forcedsquint Fire Starter

    That's a nice find. Four hour drive for me...hmmmmmmmmm.

    As much as I love my UDS I still want a unit like that (and a 22" WSM).
  7. rickw

    rickw Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Not really much to gain going from a uds to the big Weber.
  8. mrscruffles

    mrscruffles Fire Starter

    Well, I got the SFB on! Lots more to do... gotta get the damper and all that good **** goin on, but I lost motivation, and started drinkin some PBRs. so I stopped workin on it. Ill post pics in the morning of what got done. Right now I got some drumsticks on the char broil H20 smoker for my friend. They just got their electric and gas shut off, so they called me so I can smoke some food for them!! either way, updates in the morning.
  9. forluvofsmoke

    forluvofsmoke Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Well, right there's your biggest troubles!!! [​IMG] J/K

    Sorry, couldn't resist...haven't drank that stuff for over 30 years.

    Utility cut-off definately trouble due to lay-off I best to you and your land-based friends.

    When you get a chance, show us how she looks, and definately the maiden smoke q-view...I'll be waiting for the results.

    Enjoy you dinner with them also!

  10. alx

    alx Master of the Pit OTBS Member

  11. mrscruffles

    mrscruffles Fire Starter


    only pic I snapped yesterday... But its on! today I gotta get some sealing done, a smoke stack (damper, whatever you wanna call it) the heat deflector by the SFB... and if I get the time a few coats of paint...
    OH YEAH! I forgot, the other side, where there isnt wood right now... a buddy took some nice cherry wood and sanded it down... It looks beautiful!

    and dinner from last night! three of them injected with sweet baby rays BBQ sauce, other three teriyaki sauce. smoked on the H20 upright. they came out awesome!


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