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Homemade meat smoker build along

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46 replies to this topic

#1
Rancid Crabtree

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The racks for smoking will be supported by 3/4 inch poplar dowels. They will be supported by the hard maple strips on each side. I drilled a 7/8 inch hole about halfway through the maple and then split each one on my table saw. Each strip will be able to support 5 dowels.

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Once I finish lining the entire inside with aluminum, I will attach the maple rack supports.
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#2
Aardvark

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Nice work. Especially like the attention to detail shown by the smoothing of all the sharp edges/corners.

#3
stevomiller

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Rancid, good to see you posting! Always liked watching you do your thing, you are a great craftsman and backyard engineer.

I used to have a smoker I made out of a new trash can. Used a thermometer out of a discarded instrument panel, some aluminum and ss sheet, a bbq rack, and an electric hot plate. Worked great...... Left it at pops house when I moved to an apartment and he sold it at a garage sale or something :~(

#4
Rancid Crabtree

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Dont know why my starting post was truncated so I will try again.

My last homemade smoker lasted 15 years. It was a converted chest freezer I tipped on its side and it worked great for hot smoking but eventually rusted through because of the heat and moisture and salt inherent to the smoking process.

Being that I like to build things, I began building a new smoker from scratch. I searched online for big electric smokers to get a feel for what’s available and to find something to pattern mine after (never been ashamed to steal a good idea) Most of the smokers were too small for what I want but none of the big commercial units allowed for cold smoking. Part of the reason I want a new smoker is so I can smoke things like cheese, nuts, lox and other things that are cold smoked. Also the big commercial units cost around $4,000. I think the price is fair considering what you get but I would rather make my own.

This is an example of what out there.

http://store.cooksha...oven-sm160.aspx

I like it but it cant be used to cold smoke and it has too few racks. My smoker will sit outside year round so it has to be weatherproof. Since most of the meat smoking I do is in the winter in temps below freezing, I will insulate the smoker with 1 ½ thick foam board. I will use treated lumber for the legs since its going to sit outside year round. I will make it for hot smoking but will build a cold smoking adapter. I want ten racks and the extra height for smoking hot sticks and bacon sides. The inside smoking area I’m shooting for is 25” wide, 20” deep and 48” tall and will be lined with aliminum. Its going to have dual exhaust, and T-111 exterior siding and will be about 7 feet tall. The inner walls are going to be ½ inch thick plywood.

The back wall

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Fast forward to the completion of the structure. The upper opening is the smoking chamber. The lower is where the electric heating elements and pan filled with wood will go. each compartment will have its own door so I can add wood and adjust the heat without opening the upper area and letting all the heat out. The recessed areas are 1 ½ inches deep and will be filled with pink foam board (R-7.5).


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Here is the inner ceiling. I’m using 3 inch galvanized for the smoke stacks. I cut and bent tabs all the way around to attach it to the wood and to have a good seal.

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Testing to see if it fits.

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The space between the inner ceiling and the outer roof will be filled with insulation board. This was to test the fit to make sure I had the smoke stack holes in the right place.

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I don’t have a sheet metal break for making the bends in the aluminum lining so I improvised.

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The floor piece being tested for proper fit. My plan is to wrap all the exposed wood with aluminum. I will use aluminum nails to hold the aluminum lining in place to avoid rust.

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The racks for smoking will be supported by 3/4 inch poplar dowels. They will be supported by the hard maple strips on each side. I drilled a 7/8 inch hole about halfway through the maple and then split each one on my table saw. Each strip will be able to support 5 dowels.

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Once I finish lining the entire inside with aluminum, I will attach the maple rack supports.
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#5
BONES

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WOW! Nice build!

Can't wait to see some smokey treats from the new smoker.

Where are you at in Wisky? I'm near Sheboygan.
"I would never use deadly force to guard ice cream. Pie, now. I'm a pie man; all bets are off with pie." Andy
"As a side note, there is no such thing as "almost" having a martini - you either do or you don't. :-)" Johnny West
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#6
rio

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i love it rancid , nice build up so far:devil::tu:

#7
Rancid Crabtree

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WOW! Nice build!

Can't wait to see some smokey treats from the new smoker.

Where are you at in Wisky? I'm near Sheboygan.


Delafield, Just East of Oconomowoc. Unless you live in WI, you will say: "where the fox hat" :lol:
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#8
Ad Astra

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:devil: Love the smoker build.

Delafield, Just East of Oconomowoc. Unless you live in WI, you will say: "where the fox hat" :lol:


:lol: Kinda like the Sofa King: "We're Sofa King cheap, ... "


Mike
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#9
BONES

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Delafield, Just East of Oconomowoc. Unless you live in WI, you will say: "where the fox hat" :lol:


Ya der hey! :rof3::rof3:
"I would never use deadly force to guard ice cream. Pie, now. I'm a pie man; all bets are off with pie." Andy
"As a side note, there is no such thing as "almost" having a martini - you either do or you don't. :-)" Johnny West
Ye Solo Internet Bstd (CLB O' TRU BSTDS)

#10
Rancid Crabtree

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I got the entire inside wrapped in aluminum and the maple rack supports installed. It was a bigger pain in the butt than I thought it would be.

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#11
Rancid Crabtree

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With the interior done I focused on the outside. First the insulation. R 7.5 Pink foam board 1 1/2 thick.

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I caulked around the smoke stacks before insulating. I don’t want any leaks.

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Then the roof went on and more caulk.

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Next was the fascia and some paint.

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Then some tar paper.

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Then the metal roof and drip edge and some white silicone caulk over the aluminum nail heads to prevent any leaks.

Normally drip edge goes on before the tar paper and is covered by asphalt shingles that cover the nails holding the drip edge. The thin metal is not as robust as shingles so I used the drip edge to hold the thin roof metal down and to cover all the nails holding it in place. I put a large bead of silicone under each piece of drip edge before nailing it in place.

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#12
rio

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sweet roof, nicely done:beer1:

#13
WA Martin

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Very nice, Rancid. I like your design.
Wade

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#14
BONES

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Looking really great.

What do you like to smoke?
"I would never use deadly force to guard ice cream. Pie, now. I'm a pie man; all bets are off with pie." Andy
"As a side note, there is no such thing as "almost" having a martini - you either do or you don't. :-)" Johnny West
Ye Solo Internet Bstd (CLB O' TRU BSTDS)

#15
Rancid Crabtree

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You nameit . Bacon, hams, chickens, fish, sausage, ribs, brisket. Now I want to try cold smoking things like cheese, nuts, etc.
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#16
rio

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i can't wait to see this baby when it lits up:beernana:

#17
Rancid Crabtree

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Since I don’t want rain and snow getting into the smoke stacks and since I cant find any caps for 3 inch ducting I made some from galvanized sheet.

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The rolled it and riveted the joint.

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Since I also can't find inline butterfly dampers for 3 inch ducting, I made my own from brass threaded rod and stainless hardware (no rust). It was pretty much a huge pain in the butt but it worked out ok.

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I started cutting the pieces of siding and painting the exterior corner trim. I hope to get that installed tomorrow so I can make the doors.
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#18
Rancid Crabtree

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Got the siding on and the corner trim.

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And I spent some time working on the upper door. The face of the door will be two layers. 1. is half inch plywood and 2. is the same T-111 siding I've been using. It will also be insulated framed with 1 1/2 x 1 1/2 lumber.

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Then another layer pf plywood to support the metal lining.

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I start the aluminum at the bottom and overlap all the joints like shingles on a roof so no moisture can get to the wood.

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Then the sides.

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Then the face. (all metal is held in place with aluminum nails)

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The top piece is the same as the bottom except it laps over all the other pieces.
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#19
WA Martin

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Nice work. I think it would take me about 15 years to put something like that together. You have skills!
Wade

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But this I know with all my heart,
HIS wounds have paid my ransom.


-Stuart Townend, 'How Deep the Father's Love For Us,' c1995, ThankYou Music

#20
Rancid Crabtree

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With the top door completed, I began the bottom door. This is where I will load wood chips and adjust the heat without opening the big door and losing all the heat I built up. In order to have proper venting and air flow to the smoke stacks, I need a fresh air intake. I need to prevent unwanted intruders from entering the smoker (mice, wasps, etc) so I folded over the edges of metal window screen material and screwed to the inside face of the door and I added a set of hinges.

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The front of the door as a floor register vent that I can open and close to adjust the air flow. The white metal around the outside edge of the door is aluminum angle use for suspended ceilings. It was just the right size and color and material for this job. It covers the cut edge of the siding and the edge of the aluminum I wrapped the door with.

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Both doors get a weather-strip seal all around.

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To make moving the smoker easier, I added steel casters. I don’t want rubber casters that will take a flat spot after sitting plus the hard rubber caster will eventually rot from exposure to the outside.

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Then it was time to hang the doors.

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Just for grins (and because I would not be able to see myself) I set the timer on the camera and placed it inside the smoker to see how the door fits and looks from the inside. All seems well.

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Now I will add a side table, door latches and build the cold smoking adaptor box. This project seems to be never ending.
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