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-   -   I need your advice (http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/showthread.php?t=148480)

Big Griz 11-26-2012 12:24 PM

I need your advice
 
OKÖ.I am new to the forum (this is my first post)and could use your advice. I have a horizontal grill with an offset smoker box (I think you guys call them stick burners) that I tried using this past weekend to do some smoking and found a couple of issues.

Most importantly, the door for the fire box is mounted upside down so that the air intake is at the top of the box rather than the bottom. I was smoking a couple of 5 lb bologna chubs because I wanted to start slow while I get the hang of things. I decided to try smoking it by placing all of the charcoal at one end of the grill and the bologna at the other and using the vent on the fire box to go control the air intake since it is in line with the intake on the side of the grill. The temp was coming up nicely so I decided to start closing the vent to regulate the temp before it got to hot (something I learned from you guys) when I found my second problem. Since the fire box is only bolted on to the grill and not welded on, it didnít seal well and even with the vent closed on the fire box, it was drawing enough air through the gaps that I had real problems with keeping the temp right.

I said all of that to ask this. I am not a welder so even though I can use a grinder to remove the door brackets, I would have to pay someone to weld them back on so that the door is right. I would also either have to pay someone to weld the firebox onto the grill or purchase some bolts and fender washers to suck up firmly enough against the grill body to restrict air. While I enjoy grilling with what I have, I am wondering it would be better to invest the money I would spend fixing my rig and spend that making a new UDS to smoke on. I have read the UDS thread and think I could do it, but wanted to get your thoughts. (sorry this is so long!)

aawa 11-26-2012 12:27 PM

I am not an offset smoker genius but one thing you can do to seal the fire box to the smoke chamber is use the high temperature silicon to prevent any leaking from there.

grantw 11-26-2012 12:53 PM

You used too much wood, cut back on the wood and don't worry so much about the air. They are hard to work with. One of the easiest cookers in the world is a wsm. If you cut back on the air in your set up you will end up with off tasting food. It has to be a small clean fire

mnmikew 11-26-2012 01:03 PM

Do you know the brand of your smoker? Brinkman? Char-griller?

Lake Dogs 11-26-2012 01:30 PM

Sounds like a P.O.S. homemade job to me. Not all stickburners are "hard to work with" as grant said above. However, the cheap ones are. I've seen folks spend twice what one is worth trying to "fix" these things, some with some success, others just wasted money, time, effort, hope.

A good/inexpensive smoker would be a WSM (aka. Weber Smokey Mountain). I love my stickburner, but it's a GOOD one.

grantw 11-26-2012 01:53 PM

I just took it for granted he was using a cheaper one, and they are hard but not impossible. I wouldn't put money into it

qnbiker 11-26-2012 02:32 PM

You will get more useful feedback if you post what brand it is. There is plenty of info online about modifying cheap offset smokers, and most of the mods are inexpensive.

As for the firebox door, I've never seen one mounted "upside down" before. The manufacturer should fix it if it's a defect. If not or if it's homemade, just keep the existing air intake closed and put a couple of cheap ball valves on the bottom of the door. Don't put a lot of money into it.

plakers 11-26-2012 05:19 PM

As a cheap offset owner myself, I would advise the UDS route or the WSM if you got the money. My UDS got built for about 75bucks and that counts the new grills and the very used Weber lid, but it did include a ton of my free labor.

Since then the offset has remained a very good grill but I have yet to smoke anything else on it. The UDS will pay for itself within a summer if you used to use charcoal to fuel your offset and you want to smoke stuff weekly(or three times per week in my case)

Big Griz 11-26-2012 06:06 PM

It's the older model of this Char-Griller:

http://www.chargriller.com/index.php...emart&Itemid=2


The firebox they sell now is completely different than the one mine come with, but I got mine about 15-20 years ago.

I have just about decided that rather than spend much money on it, I am going to just build a UDS and keep this for grilling. It still does good at that. I wish I could go out and buy a new smoker, but with 2 kids in college, thats not going to happen for a couple more years.

Pyle's BBQ 11-26-2012 08:47 PM

Did you check to see if you could unbolt the firebox? If it is not welded on, it has to be attached some how. Even if you have to cut the bolts off, you can get new one and bolt the firebox into the correct position. Sounds like you need to turn the box 180 degrees to get it into the correct position. When you put the firebox back on is when you should put the high temp silicon to seal the gap if there is still one.

Limp Brisket 11-26-2012 10:00 PM

It's time for a UDS.

Daggs 11-26-2012 10:04 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Limp Brisket (Post 2281755)
It's time for a UDS.

This indeed!

Bigdog 11-26-2012 10:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Big Griz (Post 2281562)
It's the older model of this Char-Griller:

http://www.chargriller.com/index.php...emart&Itemid=2


The firebox they sell now is completely different than the one mine come with, but I got mine about 15-20 years ago.

I have just about decided that rather than spend much money on it, I am going to just build a UDS and keep this for grilling. It still does good at that. I wish I could go out and buy a new smoker, but with 2 kids in college, thats not going to happen for a couple more years.

Those make good grills and lousy smokers unless you're name is BigMista and you are cooking on a small porch in California with no firebox.:wink:

Tonybel 11-26-2012 10:26 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Limp Brisket (Post 2281755)
It's time for a UDS.

I agree.

Big Griz 11-26-2012 11:12 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Pyle's BBQ (Post 2281701)
Did you check to see if you could unbolt the firebox? If it is not welded on, it has to be attached some how. Even if you have to cut the bolts off, you can get new one and bolt the firebox into the correct position. Sounds like you need to turn the box 180 degrees to get it into the correct position. When you put the firebox back on is when you should put the high temp silicon to seal the gap if there is still one.

I wondered about that, but the vent hole between the box and he grill match up correctly. If I unbolt it and turn the whole thing over, they won't. In theory the vent between the box and grill would be at the top of the firebox and the intake would be at the bottom right?

http://dixiegrilling.com/images/smokesec3.jpg

The way it is now, both the intake and the vent between the grill and the box are the top. I think I would have to grind of the hinge brackets that hold the door on, turn it upside down and then weld them back on. That way the intake would be at the bottom so the airflow would go across the coals/wood.

Rather than paying someone to do all that welding for me, I may drill 2 or 3 holes across the bottom and use the same type ball valve set up as a UDS and see how that works. I am going to build a UDS as well, so then I'll have two smokers to add to my signature when I create one. lol


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