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Unread 06-14-2010, 08:27 AM   #1
KGB
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Lightbulb Started Trailered Cooker Project - NEED input/ideas to Complete!

Hi Everyone! I recently obtained an unfinished cooker and was hoping to get some ideas for what to do to finish it up. Im working with an ex-boat trailer that is approx 12ft (new springs, axel, wheels and bearings), a 250 gallon tank and a 275 gallon tank.

The 275 is untouched (still full of purple power and water to get the oil out )

The 250 has been cut for a 25% opening lid and has been mounted to the trailer with lid opening at very back- also has 18"x36" rectangular hole in the bottom (intent was to build a 6"-8" deep firebox on the underside of the tank). Handle has been mounted to lid and hinges attached (hinges wont line up due to tank warping when it was cut- intent was to use 2x2 angle iron to straighten out.)

I dont intend to use both tanks in this project- the 275 was obtained because I think a 50% percent opening style lid (i.e. - cut the drum in half) would be more beneficial for whole hog cooking (e.g. - flipping and general access to pig while cooking)- what are you thoughts on that (am I correct or crazy ?)

I'd like to make this trailer a cooker for all occasions (including competition use)- What would you do with the extra space on the trailer (e.g. - a grill, a cooler, a sink, a cutting/prep table, charcoal/wood box, maybe a keg tub on the tongue ;) ) and how would you lay it out? Also, I have an 85 gallon UDS that I'd like to be able to transport if needed (not a 100% requirement though).

Any interesting ideas for avoiding the need for a counterweight on the lid? (e.g. - car hood hinges, etc)


I hope that's enough details to get your creative juices flowing! I look foward to your input! Thanks!!
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File Type: jpg tanks 1.jpg (74.9 KB, 228 views)
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Unread 06-14-2010, 09:09 AM   #2
northern smokey
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what is the thickness of the steel? it looks really thin maybe insulating might be something to look at. with the fire box being on the backside of the cooker are you thinking of a reverse flow type cooker? is that not also going to limit the building on the rest of the trailer as you will need access to the fire box.
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Unread 06-14-2010, 09:22 AM   #3
KGB
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It is either 12 or 14 gauge steel - not thin - standard thickness for these type of cookers from what I have seen.

The original idea (not mine) for the firebox was to have it at the bottom of the tank (not the back) - the trailer has plenty of clearance so I dont worry about the firebox scrapping the ground or anything. If I end up using the 275, Im not sure that I will even bother with a 'recessed' firebox- Ive seen plenty of other cookers without it that do fine.
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Unread 06-14-2010, 09:27 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KGB View Post
It is either 12 or 14 gauge steel - not thin - standard thickness for these type of cookers from what I have seen.

The original idea (not mine) for the firebox was to have it at the bottom of the tank (not the back) - the trailer has plenty of clearance so I dont worry about the firebox scrapping the ground or anything. If I end up using the 275, Im not sure that I will even bother with a 'recessed' firebox- Ive seen plenty of other cookers without it that do fine.
sorry i misunderstood were the firebox was going. i think with a lid that big you shouldnt need to worry about getting access to the pig to flip it. should be exciting to see how the build takes form.
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Unread 06-14-2010, 09:52 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by northern smokey View Post
what is the thickness of the steel? it looks really thin
Agreed
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Unread 06-15-2010, 05:41 PM   #6
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Fuel oil tanks are pretty much the standard for whole hog cookers in eastern NC. We've had ours for about 25 years. I can't seem to find detailed pictures. I will post a couple anyway to give you an idea. I will get better pics when I get back out to the farm.

There's plenty of room and a many a hog has been flipped on it over the years.



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Unread 06-16-2010, 03:00 PM   #7
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Do you want to use propane, charcoal or both? Good call on a getting a new tank, not sure you would be able to flip a whole hog using a 25% opening (even if you could, would be a giant pain in the @$$). Also we have a local place that rents cookers, and they all use oil drums, so i would not worry about thickness of metal.
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Unread 06-16-2010, 03:09 PM   #8
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where the heck do you find a new fuel oil tank? And how much do they usually run?
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Unread 06-16-2010, 03:19 PM   #9
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Quote:
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where the heck do you find a new fuel oil tank? And how much do they usually run?
get too know your heating and cooling guys, as people continue to trend away from heating oil and go to elec and Ngas/lp they will be able to point you in the direction of a good fuel oil barrell.
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Unread 06-16-2010, 10:15 PM   #10
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Wow...that will be a fun project. Remember patient is a virtue and they will likely be tried before you get to put some meat on your master piece. All worth it in the end though! This is my project that took me several months of Saturdays (and usually into Sunday morning) to complete my project. Food sure does taste good though!
Good luck and happy building!





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Unread 06-17-2010, 07:51 AM   #11
KGB
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pomah25 - In the end, I'd like to be able to do charcoal or propane depending on the situation (and rules of the comp ;) ) , but charcoal\wood will probably be used to begin with.

moda253 - Got these off Craigslist- where else? ;) took a few weeks before I found exactly what I was looking for - prices ranged from $25 for a super rusty tank - $100 for a near new one - the one I ended up going with is worth about $50.


Stevesonfire! - Nice build! Really cool wrap-around counter.
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Unread 06-17-2010, 08:03 AM   #12
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Can ya buy one cheaper than building one, like a Lang or some such version? Just wonderin.

Looks like it will be a dandy though.

Good Luck and keep posting your progress.
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Unread 06-17-2010, 10:37 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Southern Smoker View Post
Can ya buy one cheaper than building one, like a Lang or some such version? Just wonderin.

Looks like it will be a dandy though.

Good Luck and keep posting your progress.

I dont think so - I have exactly $0 cash money in this one so far (did some tradin' to get both tanks and trailer- figure $200 worth of trade items that go boom ;) ), but am about to buy approx $100 in angle iron and expanded metal from the scrap yard. I figure another $100-$200 or so will need to for exhaust pipes, thermometers, etc...and that could go up to depending on what I end up using the extra trailer space for. WORST case scenario, I figure I'll have $600-$700 into this. The cheapest Lang I have seen is $1000+.
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