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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 12-09-2007, 12:07 AM   #1
ChiliMacDaddy
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Default Building a pellet cooker

Anybody here have any experience or knowledge in DIYing a pellet cooker?
I've been wanting to build one for a few years now but never can find a good design or set of plans/pics. I used to own a couple of FEC-100s so I got the basic jist downpat on how they work. But the pellet mechanisms are not cheap from the typical BBQ sources.

While perusing the web and ebay awhile back, I see there are quite a few sources for cheap pellet stove auger assemblies, fire pots, controllers, etc. And there isn't all that much different between how a pellet stove and a pellet cooker operate. Seems like it wouldn't take too much moolah to fabricate something a little different, what with the availability of parts out there.

Anybody ever built a pellet cooker before?
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Unread 12-09-2007, 12:09 AM   #2
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Nope. If I built a pellet pooper, these guys would have me commited.
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Unread 12-09-2007, 01:07 AM   #3
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Been looking for an old pellet stove to disect. Not so available in sunny So Cal.
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Unread 12-09-2007, 12:24 PM   #4
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We have built a couple of pellet cookers... One out of a kingfisher, one out of a proofing oven.

We were trying to go simple... The biggest complaint about using one in comps is that boards go out, augers jam, etc. So we were (are) trying to build a better mouse trap.

We have been trying to use a gravity feed, and no forced air. It has been successful, sometimes. If you can get a good draw, the pellets will burn nicely without forced air, but unless you have an insulated unit, you need the forced air to generate enough heat to keep thing cooking.... (or multiple firepots.) It's way to nasty out right now... but if we get a break in the cold/ice next before Christmas, I will snap some pics of what we have done so far.
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Unread 12-09-2007, 02:27 PM   #5
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Different approach but much cheaper and less problems with electronics and augers may be to build the pellet smoker device that Norcoredneck illustrates in his post down below. It probably could operate off your car battery or cig lighter at a competition with little or no problems. Only draw back would be you still would need to use a traditional source of heat. Just a thought.
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Unread 12-09-2007, 03:44 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mo-Dave View Post
It probably could operate off your car battery or cig lighter at a competition with little or no problems. Dave
Next one will have a battery backup aquarium pump.
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Unread 12-09-2007, 03:51 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Norcoredneck View Post
Next one will have a battery backup aquarium pump.
There you have it.
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Unread 12-09-2007, 11:31 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HoDeDo View Post
We have built a couple of pellet cookers... One out of a kingfisher, one out of a proofing oven.

We were trying to go simple... The biggest complaint about using one in comps is that boards go out, augers jam, etc. So we were (are) trying to build a better mouse trap.

We have been trying to use a gravity feed, and no forced air. It has been successful, sometimes. If you can get a good draw, the pellets will burn nicely without forced air, but unless you have an insulated unit, you need the forced air to generate enough heat to keep thing cooking.... (or multiple firepots.) It's way to nasty out right now... but if we get a break in the cold/ice next before Christmas, I will snap some pics of what we have done so far.
Yes, I would like to see some pix if you get a chance.
But I can't see where you are going to be able to get around the forced air feature. Every pellet burner I've ever seen had it in some fashion or another.

What I'm envisioning is a box that's sized similar to the Stumps clone that Keri & Robert of Oklahoma put together (look here) http://tinyurl.com/ytg682 but instead of using a gravity fed charcoal firebox, substitute in a pellet assembly of some sort.

Anyway, that's the very basic concept so far. I've collected some parts pix and an engineering overview of how the electronics should work on a pellet stove. I think the main thing is finding a reasonably priced auger assembly that could be easily incorporated into the design. An auger assembly would be sort of difficult to DIY, imo. But I think the rest of the components could be fabricated without much difficulty.

Look forward to see what you've done. No hurry for me. Weather is rotten here too. Besides, I've been mulling this project over off and on for quite awhile so what's a few more weeks or months?
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Unread 12-10-2007, 12:35 AM   #9
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check out this site. It is where Robert and Kari got started. You will find some familiar names over there, including mine!
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http://www.phpbbserver.com/phpbb/vie...orum=smokinjim
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Unread 12-10-2007, 03:24 PM   #10
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That's a nice link there.
Looks like great minds think alike
Gives me some good ideas to consider.
Thanks!
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Unread 12-10-2007, 07:32 PM   #11
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There are a lot of ideas to mull over on the site that Yelonutz posted.Also many discussions on thoughts and theory.
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Unread 12-10-2007, 07:55 PM   #12
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This guy built a pellet feeder into a Stump clone.
http://www.kodakgallery.com/ShareLan...fromshare&Ux=0
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Unread 12-10-2007, 08:07 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Norcoredneck View Post
Been looking for an old pellet stove to disect...
2nd post, eh, Pat? I'm surprised it took you so long.

As soon as I saw the topic (DIY Pellet Smoker), I knew you'd get sucked into this thread like its was gravity...

Can't you get some of your aerospace pals to do some R&D and post a 3D CAD file for us???
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Unread 12-10-2007, 08:17 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Norcoredneck View Post
This guy built a pellet feeder into a Stump clone.
http://www.kodakgallery.com/ShareLan...fromshare&Ux=0

Awesome project, thanks for the link
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Unread 12-10-2007, 09:00 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Norcoredneck View Post
This guy built a pellet feeder into a Stump clone.
http://www.kodakgallery.com/ShareLan...fromshare&Ux=0
Thanks. This was great to see.
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