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Unread 02-02-2011, 01:08 PM   #1
Q-Dat
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Default Aluminum tuning plates????

Ok I'm looking to take this pit...

uploadfromtaptalk1296673346462.jpg

And put tuning plates in it.

The dimensions are about 24" x 5'

I'm going to fit and weld a permanent steel baffle over the opening to the firebox. I have an old diamond plate tool box that should give mr plenty of pieces to go across the chamber. My question is will the aluminum conduct to much heat to serve as an effective diffuser?

Any help is appreciated.



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Unread 02-02-2011, 01:50 PM   #2
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Also if anyone has a suggestion for the distance between the plates and the cooking grate that would be great.
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Unread 02-02-2011, 02:20 PM   #3
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If it were me, I'd probably try to find a local steel shop that would sell you a drop big enough to fill the area you want of 1/4 inch carbon steel. Shouldn't cost over $50 and they may even shear it to the size(s) you need.
Aluminum does conduct heat extremely well which could decrease it's effectiveness at a heat baffle, and some folks are afraid of the reactive properties of aluminum when under high heat conditions.

Not saying it's an issue... but I'd rather err on the side of caution for just a few bucks.

just my 2 cents
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Unread 02-02-2011, 02:53 PM   #4
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I used aluminum plates in the cooking chamber and everything was fine. Just don't use it in the firebox it will disappear as in melt and don't ask me how I know. Mine was used in a Bar-b-chef offset but what I did was add 4 plates. and just increased the distance between each the more as I got away from the firebox. I would leave say the last 6 inches open on an offset this size.
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Unread 02-02-2011, 03:30 PM   #5
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Thanks for the answers. Since its free I think I'll give it a shot. The steel baffle should extend out enough to keep the aluminum away from the direct heat of the fire.

Now does anyone have a suggestion as to how far below the cooking grate the plates need to go?

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Unread 02-02-2011, 03:33 PM   #6
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as far as you can get it without restricting the flow
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Unread 02-02-2011, 03:49 PM   #7
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I guess Ill start the baffle just above the firebox opening and just maintain that height with the plates.
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Unread 02-02-2011, 04:33 PM   #8
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If I own it I would make a reverse flow out of it be lot easier
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Unread 02-02-2011, 04:34 PM   #9
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BTW You can make a very nice looking smoker out of it I see a lot of potential.
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Unread 02-02-2011, 04:53 PM   #10
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Cut a template to width *before* you cut your tuning plates! It's harder than you'd think to cut a piece to fit inside a curved surface at the height you want. Don't ask me how I know .. and I've been fabricating for 30+ years! :-)
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Unread 02-02-2011, 05:04 PM   #11
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I agree with above a good stiff piece of cardboard make a good one
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Unread 02-02-2011, 05:04 PM   #12
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Ok new plan! I just realized that my firebox is a 14" pipe. Plus I just happen to have an old tank that is 14" as well. I now plan to cut a section of the tank to match the curve of the firebox opening. Then I will cut that into smaller sections and space them out along the bottom as needed to even out the heat across the grate. This way I won't have to worry about fitting a piece to match up to the inside of the dome. This should work in theory, but I still appreciate feedback.

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Unread 02-02-2011, 09:22 PM   #13
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Would this make the "heat tunnel" too small?
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Unread 02-03-2011, 04:11 PM   #14
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Anyone? Anyone?
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