Building a meat smoker - who's done it?
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    Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    Currently in the process of building a homemade smoker and was curious if any other fanatics have done something like this in the past?

    For the smoker itself I am using a hollowed out stainless steel combine muffler (of all things) and I am probably going to go the electric route as far as a heat source.

    Any thoughts/tips/advice?



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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    I've never built one but I have seen on the internet that people have built a smoker using a steel oil drum. Unless you have a love of labor and want to build it I'd recommend you just buy one. You might put as much money in building one that may or may not work right than just buying one that you know will work. Just my 2 cents.

    PS Weber Smokey Mountain is an amazing charcoal smoker if you would consider charcoal


    "The greatest risk in life is not taking one"

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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    I married a meat smoker. Divorced now though. Good luck.


    I'd agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong.

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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    Quote Originally Posted by Acylum View Post
    I married a meat smoker. Divorced now though. Good luck.
    Spit my coffee out on this one. Well done !



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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    I built a poor mans WSM two years ago. I have 85 bucks in it, 10 pounds of charcoal will hold 220 for 12-13 hours depending on weather. I am currently working on a trailer mounted reverse flow. It has a 2 x 1 1/2 tube steel frame and will have high temp ceramic insulation sandwiched between 16 ga steel. The goal is to be done by my 40th party next april. Good luck with your quest.


    That rug really tied the room together, did it not dude?

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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    i haven't built one, but would love to build a brick smoker in my backyard someday. i just have an upright propane smoker right now. there are lots of different plans available online.


    #BEATIOWA

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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    Quote Originally Posted by CysRage View Post
    I've never built one but I have seen on the internet that people have built a smoker using a steel oil drum. Unless you have a love of labor and want to build it I'd recommend you just buy one. You might put as much money in building one that may or may not work right than just buying one that you know will work. Just my 2 cents.

    PS Weber Smokey Mountain is an amazing charcoal smoker if you would consider charcoal
    you're nothing but a woman. unless you're willing to spend $300 + on a store bought smoker, you're likely getting a cheap "beginner" unit that isn't that great. You can build yourself an offset or reverse flow out of just about anything for relatively cheap (<$100). I ate great BBQ last weekend out of an old refrigerator that cost $30 to build.

    It doesn't matter what a smoker looks like, or how much you spent on it. It's all about the product it turns out.



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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    Quote Originally Posted by stevefrench View Post
    you're nothing but a woman. unless you're willing to spend $300 + on a store bought smoker, you're likely getting a cheap "beginner" unit that isn't that great. You can build yourself an offset or reverse flow out of just about anything for relatively cheap (<$100). I ate great BBQ last weekend out of an old refrigerator that cost $30 to build.

    It doesn't matter what a smoker looks like, or how much you spent on it. It's all about the product it turns out.
    Really a woman? That's laughable! Did you read the bottom of my post? I have the Weber Smokey Mountain which in many professionals' opinions is the best mid range smoker on the market. I have cooked for many family and friends who have told me my ribs, chicken, and loin is better than anything they can get at a restaurant. I just don't have the time to build my own smoker when I know I can buy a proven unit at the store even if it costs 3x the building price.


    "The greatest risk in life is not taking one"

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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    have one made out of an old fuel barrel. 4 hp electric motor with a lawnmower tranny for turning. so clutch



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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    Quote Originally Posted by CysRage View Post
    Really a woman? That's laughable! Did you read the bottom of my post? I have the Weber Smokey Mountain which in many professionals' opinions is the best mid range smoker on the market. I have cooked for many family and friends who have told me my ribs, chicken, and loin is better than anything they can get at a restaurant. I just don't have the time to build my own smoker when I know I can buy a proven unit at the store even if it costs 3x the building price.
    congrats on your weber. and like I said, unless you're willing to spend a few hundred, you aren't getting that good of a unit. last I checked the smokey mountain is right in that range. unfortunately the OP is asking for tips on building a smoker, not purchasing one. way to contribute...


    OP there is a lot of ideas and plans on this site: Smoking meat forum

    good luck with the build.



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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    Quote Originally Posted by stevefrench View Post
    congrats on your weber. and like I said, unless you're willing to spend a few hundred, you aren't getting that good of a unit. last I checked the smokey mountain is right in that range. unfortunately the OP is asking for tips on building a smoker, not purchasing one. way to contribute...


    OP there is a lot of ideas and plans on this site: Smoking meat forum

    good luck with the build.
    I was just giving my 2 cents to help the OP. If he takes my advice great if not it's no big deal. I don't get posters like you who try to stir the pot for no reason. I have given you too much of my time. Carry on.


    "The greatest risk in life is not taking one"

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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    Quote Originally Posted by CysRage View Post
    I've never built one but I have seen on the internet that people have built a smoker using a steel oil drum. Unless you have a love of labor and want to build it I'd recommend you just buy one. You might put as much money in building one that may or may not work right than just buying one that you know will work. Just my 2 cents.

    PS Weber Smokey Mountain is an amazing charcoal smoker if you would consider charcoal
    As much as I would prefer going the charcoal route with my smoker, I am going to have to use electric heat as my apartment complex doesn't allow charcoals grills

    As far as building vs. buying I have wanted to build one for a long time, and I realize that it will likely wind up being considerably more expensive. I think I personally will get more enjoyment from building my own rather than cussing at a list of assembly instructions for 3 hours.

    Additionally, for temperature control I am planning on using an Arduino board to read in temperatures from the meat as well as internal air temperature inside the smoker and subsequently tripping the heating element on/off through a solid state relay. Has anyone ever done something similar? Maybe not with a smoker per say, but used an Arduino for controlling a project?



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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    We need a group hug in this thread.



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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    I think I've seen a couple of different plans at Menard's actually. I believe they're in with the fire pit, stone bench, etc plans.


    I'd agree with you, but then we'd both be wrong.

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    Re: Building a meat smoker - who's done it?

    Quote Originally Posted by ianoconnor View Post
    We need a group hug in this thread.

    Uhh...not until Angie or Cowgirl join the thread for me. You keep dancing to your own drummer, though, that's cool.

    Cobra: WRT Arduino, I have a trager pellet grill/smoker, there's a forum for pellet grill users and I know I've seen people on there that have created their own temp controllers (the pellet grills come with a temp controller, but like anthing these days...there's going to be a forum for people who hack them).

    Unfortunately, I couldn't find a search option, so you might be looking for a needle in a haystack, but I'll post the forum link anyway...I guess...there are people who have done similar things out there, you just have to find them....

    Pelletheads - Index




    Quote Originally Posted by cowgirl836
    moar yoga pants, please.

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