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Old 02-27-2020, 05:23 PM   #1
Pork_lover
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Default Help with smoker build

Getting ready to take on a adventure of making my own smoker. I have a backwoods fat boy already and wanting to build something similar to that but instead of having the firebox underneath I want to to do a gravity feed.
So my question is does anybody have a reason why a gravity feed reverse flow cabinet smoker would or wouldn’t work?
Any help on how to do the fire chute on the gravity feed? chute size, heat tube size into the fire box, draft pipe size, how to locate the draft and heat feed pipe in the fire chute.
Any all help would be greatly appreciated!
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Old 02-27-2020, 05:36 PM   #2
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That give me a headache just thinkin’ about it
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Old 02-27-2020, 05:40 PM   #3
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There's a couple of companies building reverse flow gravity feed smokers. My question is why would you want gravity feed over a bottom feed and what would the advantage be?
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Old 02-27-2020, 06:31 PM   #4
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Smoker companies have already made their mistakes, changed up the design until they finally got it right.

Starting from scratch with no prints may prove interesting. . A good design to work from would be invaluable.

good luck - shoot pics during your build.
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Old 02-27-2020, 06:59 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by luv2smoke View Post
There's a couple of companies building reverse flow gravity feed smokers. My question is why would you want gravity feed over a bottom feed and what would the advantage be?
I think the ease to add charcoal to the chute, seem to be able to keep the smoke flavor more controlled, and easier to control temp are my assumptions.
I’ve never cooked on a gravity feed but they have always intrigued me.
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Old 02-27-2020, 07:42 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pork_lover View Post
I think the ease to add charcoal to the chute, seem to be able to keep the smoke flavor more controlled, and easier to control temp are my assumptions.
I’ve never cooked on a gravity feed but they have always intrigued me.
There's several threads about lack of smoke flavor with gravity fed units and there's some that claim good results. I have about a 40 hour burn time before reloading fuel on my bottom fed reverse flow cabinet so I don’t see a gravity fed unit as being advantageous. I load my wood chunks in my fuel box prior to lighting so there's no need to add wood chunks during a cook. I control my wood flavor simply with the amount of wood chunks I put in the fuel box prior to lighting.
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Old 02-28-2020, 04:20 AM   #7
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Besides ^^^^this^^^
Think about how many cooks you do that are more than 6 or 8 hrs max.
Are you wanting to do lots of briskets/butts? Then gravity fed might be for you.

I still do plenty of overnight cooks. But at least 80% of my cooks are 8 hrs or less. So there is not as much need/requirement for having to add coals/wood chunks. thru a cook. But, having to add coals to be able to smoke for 12+ hrs can be a problem if you do it often enough.

I have a vertical cabinet that used to be reverse flow. I modified it to a direct flow cabinet. With dual exhaust, 3 large intakes. As I am able to either burn coal/wood. Or burn pure wood and smoke using a water pan. Or burn pure wood and use as a grill. With the advantage of adjustable grate height locations. When required. I have different coal baskets for lengths of cooks also. For better temp control/burn and less coal waste.
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Old 02-28-2020, 03:48 PM   #8
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So I have decided to just do a reverse flow backwoods type cabinet smoker. Is there a ratio for fire box to cooking camber for these type cookers?
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Old 02-28-2020, 03:50 PM   #9
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Not 100% Sure but Don't think there are Any Reverse Flow Gravity Fed .............I don't think it'd work well as heat/smoke come from side firebox under the chute - the far side would not have equal Heat/Smoke/Draw - and smoker would most likely have draft issues

https://www.smokerplans.net/index.ph...roducts_id=128

https://www.smokerplans.net/index.ph...roducts_id=177

or

https://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/s...d.php?t=277422

or just look at google images and Gravity Fed smoker web sites and read description and features and think one up..........Go to St Louis BBQ Store and look at some....... https://www.stlbbqstore.com/search.p...ry=gravity+fed
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Old 02-29-2020, 05:31 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pork_lover View Post
So I have decided to just do a reverse flow backwoods type cabinet smoker. Is there a ratio for fire box to cooking camber for these type cookers?
Just compare what your backwoods has.
Are you satisfied with the amount of hours your backwoods coal basket is able to run on one load of coals?
If not increase the size of your new coal basket.
If your new build is larger than the backwoods. Then add to the size of your coal basket and firebox area. If that makes sense.
You did not mention what direction you were going.
Also you might think about having cooking grates and cook chamber access door wider. And not as deep. Opposite your backwoods. You won't have to pull out grates anywhere near as far during a cook. Or not at all. Can't do that on the backwoods.
Just a thought.
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Old 02-29-2020, 03:35 PM   #11
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I could be wrong, but I think most gravity feeds pretty much require some kind of draft system as it is. By adding a couple of 180 degree turns in the airflow, I would think it would make a natural draw even more difficult. just my thought.
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