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0rygun
08-11-2009, 01:44 PM
Okay, so I just bought an old ceramic cooker last weekend. I don't know much of anything about it. It is an old orange Sazco Sultan in decent shape. The metal is rusted, the swinging top is missing and the firebox is missing and there was no grill. Sounds like fun, huh? What can you guys tell me about it? Ceramic or clay (seems to be ceramic)? OK for hi-temp cooking (pizzas or searing)? I have seen a couple folks on here that have them and thought that someone might be able to shed some light. Thanks!

Skip
08-11-2009, 01:50 PM
No idea but I did find this. May help a little.

http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/showthread.php?t=42611

0rygun
08-11-2009, 01:54 PM
Caught that post and a couple others on the board, but am still a bit puzzled. I have the idea to recreate the firebox with a big stainless bowl that I drilled out and threaded SS rod to hold it up to the right position. It sounds like a complete mess, but the best I could come up with so far. As far as the rust rings, I was going to blast them and paint them with some hi-temp rattlecan. Any other ideas?

Norcoredneck
08-11-2009, 05:45 PM
I made a firebox out of a ceramic planter for my Sazco.
http://i91.photobucket.com/albums/k296/norcoredneck/IMG_2918.jpg

http://i91.photobucket.com/albums/k296/norcoredneck/IMG_2599.jpg

http://i91.photobucket.com/albums/k296/norcoredneck/IMG_2602.jpg

http://i91.photobucket.com/albums/k296/norcoredneck/IMG_2601.jpg

0rygun
08-11-2009, 11:29 PM
Got any better pics of what type of planter and mods you did?

Diver
08-11-2009, 11:38 PM
begin hijack - Dadgum Norco...do you have all or parts of every grill/smoker/cooker/accessory in existance! You are the man! - end hijack

Norcoredneck
08-12-2009, 01:25 AM
begin hijack - Dadgum Norco...do you have all or parts of every grill/smoker/cooker/accessory in existance! You are the man! - end hijack

Damn thing is I can't cook on any of them!:biggrin:

Norcoredneck
08-12-2009, 01:31 AM
Got any better pics of what type of planter and mods you did?
I have it at my other place. I went to Walmart and bought a ceramic planter the right shape. I cut part of the bottom out with a tile saw. I got a charcoal grate from a weber smokey joe and wired a lodge trivet to the grate. I pit it inside. Works great. I had this Pre Egg. I still use it down there. If you look you will see the pot in the bottom. The blue didn't match the vibrant red.:roll:

http://i91.photobucket.com/albums/k296/norcoredneck/IMG_2639.jpg

Norcoredneck
08-12-2009, 01:38 AM
Here is a trivet. It would have been nice if this set on sides of pot leaving room for ash but it didn't. That is why I used a weber grate. I also replaced the rusted grill with a Large egg grate.

http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/41JN8JQRDVL._SL500_AA280_.jpg

0rygun
08-12-2009, 09:09 AM
I will make the long trek to WallyWorld to see what I can scratch up. Another hot topic... These old things OK for high-temp and low & slow? I know some of the old IKs are not because they are earthenware.

82muchhomework
08-12-2009, 09:34 AM
Be careful with the high temps. Quick fluctuations in temp can cause problems. I would suggest that you be careful firing to high temp in the extreme cold. I'm not saying that it would be impossible to do that, I just wouldn't wait for winter to try it if you plan on it. If the clay cools to fast it could encourage a fracture.

Also, be careful washing it and firing it up afterwards. Any unglazed parts of the clay might still be porous. If the water boils inside the clay and the vapor can't escape fast enough... pop. Pieces will jump off the pit. After you wash it out (if you do), do a low and slow firing before any high temp (If you do high temps) and you should be fine.

Just from experience working with clay in general. I have no experience with these ceramic pits themselves.

0rygun
08-12-2009, 09:39 AM
No plans on letting H20 meet my old friend here. Thanks for the help, though. I just don't know what material this cooker is made of and what I can do with it. If it is clay vs ceramic.

82muchhomework
08-12-2009, 05:26 PM
No plans on letting H20 meet my old friend here. Thanks for the help, though. I just don't know what material this cooker is made of and what I can do with it. If it is clay vs ceramic.

Not sure you mean by clay vs ceramic?

Earthenware vs stoneware? Porcelain vs some other mix?

In my understanding, clay is the raw material, ceramic is the final material post firing. After it reaches about 1100 degrees F clay goes through quartz inversion and becomes ceramic. Earthenware is limited to about cone 04 (~1800 F I think), much beyond that and it will melt. Stoneware is good to cone 10 (~2350 F) and then will melt. The clay is fired to its max temp so that it is "matured" and solid. It will ring like a bell if it is well fired.

Porcelain is simply a very, very refined stoneware.

I'm sure its made of something durable and designed for the function. Ceramicists are very involved with the materials that they use, the chemistry that is involved, and the function of the products they produce. Many mix their own clay from raw powders and most mix their own glazes.

The only way to really know what it kind of clay it is made of is to call the manufacturer. I'm sure its a durable type of clay well suited to its purpose.

I was suggesting to be cautious with the fast cooling in case there is any unknown damage. A hairline crack can easily turn into a full fledged break. Inspect that baby before firing it up.

Hope it helps.

0rygun
08-12-2009, 08:54 PM
I have looked it over well and cannot see any issue with cracks, but it will get a couple of low and slow runs to help me get acclimated to it. Asd far as my questions, I guess I was asking more if these things were a more traditional material (think terra cotta) or something that can hold up to a high temp searing session. I won't be smelting anything with it or anything, but I certainly do not want to exceed any design tolerances for something over 40 years old. I guess if it hasn't been hurt in that much time, what can I do to harm it???:wink:
I am more concerned since it is the 1st Kamado made here in the states that older type materials would be used and it would not hold up to some of the abuse I intend to put it through. Thanks for the input and keep it coming.
I need to post pics once I get it into some daylight to get the clean-up/resto going.

82muchhomework
08-12-2009, 09:39 PM
Take a look at the unglazed part (either the bottom or the top lip since they have to place it on a shelf when glazing). Get a look at the clay body.

Does it look uniform in color and texture?
-clay that has different colored specs in it and is rough usually contains sand and/or grog (previously fired clay that was crushed and mixed in with fresh wet clay). Grog and sand help strengthen the clay as well as make it more resistant to heat.
-clay that is smooth in texture and uniform in color has less sand or grog in it (like porcelain or terracotta). Terracotta is an earthen ware clay and pretty weak stuff.

To be honest, I use terracotta pots in my kiln when doing saggar firings. I've gotten them up to 1800 degrees and they hold up ok (usually 2 or 3 uses and they bust).

Maybe some heavy research is in order before getting this thing up to 700 degrees. Since 700 is well below quartz inversion, I would bet that you should be ok as long as its an even temp. It would probably be a good idea to use a terracotta pot inside to hold the coals off the grill itself and use pot stilts to limit contact between the coal holder and the pot itself. That way the coals will heat everything evenly and not overheat the bottom.

Now that I think of it, you could run a high temp test on a terracotta komado like this one:mrgreen:

http://farm1.static.flickr.com/104/295771935_4e2669836f.jpg

0rygun
08-12-2009, 10:25 PM
I am actually planning on going with a large stainless bowl propped up on stainless legs that I custom fit for it. The bowl should be 1.5" from the outside and a good bit off the bottom. I wonder about using a clay pot since they aren't food-rated and I will be getting it so hot and it may let off some weird fumes or something or am I being paranoid?

82muchhomework
08-13-2009, 10:13 AM
I am actually planning on going with a large stainless bowl propped up on stainless legs that I custom fit for it. The bowl should be 1.5" from the outside and a good bit off the bottom. I wonder about using a clay pot since they aren't food-rated and I will be getting it so hot and it may let off some weird fumes or something or am I being paranoid?

I agree 100%. When in doubt, error on the side of caution

You never know for sure when it comes to ceramics. Usually, most inorganic materials don't vaporize until much hotter in the firing, but when we are talking about food its not worth the chance. There are plenty of chemicals that can be included glazes that are not food safe (usually lead) and I wouldn't want to bbq in those fumes. I think terracotta would be safe, but only because its unglazed.

If you have a stainless pan, all the better.

Now that thats said, I have used old kilns as ovens a few times and no ill effects (they were also free from any glaze puddles). I think that poisoning would likely result from a buildup of heavy metals or similar type of repeated exposure. Thus bbq every weekend might produce different results.

Didn't mean to steer you toward something potentially unsafe.:oops:

0rygun
08-13-2009, 02:59 PM
NO worries... I have the 2 small kiddos to worry about more than myself, so I am a bit OCD about that sort of thing. I know that this thing is not terra cotta, but not quite sure what material yet. I guess I will just work my way up in temps until I break something or it just works!

pickles
11-15-2010, 10:39 AM
Sorry to resurrect an old thread, but I just purchased an orange Sazco and have the same question. Have you put the Sazco through any high heat searing sessions yet? If so, what are the results?
Thanks!!

pickles
11-17-2010, 10:50 PM
Anyone have any thoughts?