I'm waiting for my MJH to get shipped (maybe another week or so) and so I decided I would build a mini WSM to get me through withdrawals until the new unit arrives. I started with this stuff.
As you can see I used the IMUSA tamale steamer, kind of a pain in the arse. I had to bend the top over and down (this step took longer than all other steps combined). For any future build I would try the Vascondia brand. I used the steamer insert to mark a pattern on the bottom of the pot.
After it was all marked up, I used a 1/4" drill to get some pilot holes.
The I changed to a 1/2" drill and hit all the holes again.
I also added an aluminum control rod (held in place with E-clips) for draft, and an aluminum pie plate for a larger ash tray.
I then added a ash barrier to insure a continuous flow of air even after a lot of ash drops through. It's a canned chicken can with 8 1/2" holes drill in it.
I then used some expanded metal (cold rolled) cut into 3" tall strips to build a cage for the lump. I'm not completely convinced that this step was necessary but that's what they had on the Weber site so I built it.
Fill the cage with Lump.
On goes the pot.
Then I put in a aluminum pie pan as a heat defuser. I'm not completely convinced that this is necessary either since I put the steamer tray back in on top of the pie pan.
On goes the cooking grate.
Started the fire, and then add some food for a test run. I sprinkled some yardbird on pieces of chicken breast and then wrapped in bacon. Let run for an 60-90 minutes (until they were done). Forgot the after pic
but this is what it looked like during the run.
It ran a steady 260-270 for about 4 hours. This load was a half arse dump in the cage. I'm pretty sure I can get 5-6 hours with a full, well placed load. I gotta say this is a really fun/cool project, and when it's done it actually works very very well. I am amazed at how steady it held temps, it was a windy, gloomy day and temp was between 55-60f. I did set it out of the direct wind.
Very fun, you should try it!!