Insulated smoker design

Discussion about Reverse Flow Smokers
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Joined: March 25th, 2020, 6:04 pm

Insulated smoker design

Post by TexasForever » March 26th, 2020, 5:23 pm

I have been researching ideas for my first smoker build. I had a design all picked out then talked with a friend about it and he steered me in a slightly different direction. Wanted to get everyone's opinion on which design would work best. (Poorly drawn sketch included. My friend is going to put them in CAD when he gets a chance)

Both designs are insulated built with 1x1 16ga frame.

Firebox will be 1/4" inside wall 16ga outer skin
CC will be 16ga inside and out
Insulated with 1" Rockwool

My original idea was a vertical offset reverse flow design

Cook Chamber Inner Dimensions 46H x 22W X 22D
Firebox Dimensions 18H x 22W x 22D with angled sides
FB Inlet 2x10 lower and 2x4 upper
Firebox to Cook Chamber opening would be 22W x 6H
1/4" Reverse Flow plate 22x6 opening to cook chamber
4" x 4" Exhaust on Firebox side of CC 6-8" Tall

My friend expressed concern that the short travel of the smoke along the reverse flow chamber (18" or so) would cause there to be hot spots in the CC and not have equalized temps.

Which lead us to discuss a reverse flow cabinet smoker . So I came up with the following based on this and other posts on another forum

Cook Chamber Inner Dimensions 46H x 30W x 22D
Dual 2" x 22" inlet from FB into CC (See diagrams) (Could also use back wall if necessary?)
Firebox Dimensions 18"H x 30W x 22D
4x4 Exhaust at bottom of CC (Length TBD, need help/advice on this) 1 or 2 exhausts?

Some things I am unsure of:
1. Length of exhaust stack on both pits? Its my understanding that on a vertical pit you can count the cook chamber for the length of exhaust?

2. Firebox intake - I see a lot of the insulated cabinets just using a single 2" ball valve. After reading the information on here everyone recommends 2 inlets at at 80/20 ratio? How are these guys getting by with a single ball valve? The calculators reccomend 26 sq inches of intake?

3. I am concerned about getting the proper air flow on both designs. If you guys could check my calculations and make sure I followed instructions properly.

I would greatly appreciate any feedback. Thanks in advance.
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Pete Mazz
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Joined: February 16th, 2013, 8:19 am
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Location: Bucks County, PA

Re: Insulated smoker design

Post by Pete Mazz » March 27th, 2020, 5:00 am

Keeping the FB under the CC makes for a much easier build . A vertical really only needs a FB large enough to hold a decent amount of wood or charcoal . RF verticals are overly complicated for my taste . Intakes can be oversized as they can always be closed down . Multiples are handy if the wind isn't cooperating . Stack can be a simple opening with a damper.

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