How to Make a Smoker Grill
To build a smoker grill you will need an inexpensive wire feed welder and salvage materials for the frame. Pipes and rebar work fine for a homemade smoker grill. Wire feed welders can be found at most hardware and home improvement stores. You can usually become proficient enough for light welding with about an hour’s practice.
First design your smoker grill on paper. Decide where the doors will go, where the vents will be, how the frame will fit together and where and how the grills will be mounted in the grill. Make sure you have the proper materials to complete your plans. Any type of sheet metal will work for a grill, including a barrel, as long as it is not galvanized metal. If you do not want to do the sheet metal work yourself, have a local shop do it for you. Make sure to get enough sheet metal to build the smoke chamber and the fire box.
Lay out the pieces for the frame. Weld them together to build the frame. Cut the hole where you want the lid to be. A piano hinge can be fitted to hinge the door to the grill. Sheet metal screws or pop rivets can be used to attach the hinge. Wooden handles are good for grills because they do not get too hot to touch. You can attach them to the lid of your grill with bolts. Use spacers between the handle and the grill. Brass spacers look and work nicely.
Chimney pipe is perfect for your smoke chimney. The lids of a soup can make good dampers for a homemade grill. Water pipe can be used to connect the fire box to the smoke chamber. Once the fire box is attached you can paint the exterior of the grill. When the paint has thoroughly dried, build a good, hot fire in the fire box. This will burn off any sediment left on the sheet metal or in the barrel. Do not try to cook on it just yet.
After the fire is burning nicely, check for any gaps or leaks that need to be sealed. After the fire has cooled, coat the interior of the grill with cooking oil. This will seal the exterior and protect the grill. It also helps to prevent rust. For the grills, stainless steel grills from an old unit can be cleaned and used. When the stainless steel grills are in place, you are ready to use your new homemade grill.
How to Make a Charcoal Grill
Scrap metal like thin pipes and rebar make good frames for a homemade charcoal grill. The body of the grill can be made of any sheet metal or metal barrel that is not galvanized steel. Use the thickest steel you can find because it holds in heat better. This will make for a more high quality product. Line feed welders used for the light welding necessary for a barbecue grill can be bought at most hardware or home improvement stores.
About an hour is all you will need with your welder to be proficient enough to tackle this project. If you are not comfortable doing the sheet metal work yourself, it is not that expensive to have a local sheet welder shop do that part for you.
To begin your grill, draw your design on a sheet of paper. Work with pencil so you can make adjustments as you get better ideas. Be as detailed as possible about materials, dimensions and sizes. When you have a good working drawing, lay out the assembly pieces for the frame. Assemble the frame first and then attach the drum of the grill to the frame. Cut the openings for your door, smoke chimney and dampers.
Piano hinges can easily be cut to fit your homemade barbecue grill, and make good attachments for the doors. Chimney pipe in an appropriate size can serve as a smoke chimney. Can lids make good dampers for homemade charcoal grills. A thick, heavy wooden dowel makes an excellent grill handle that will not get too hot to touch. Attach handles with a bolt, and use a spacer between the handle and the grill lid. Brass spacers look nice for this application. Make sure the seals are tight so that the heat and smoke will be sealed in the grill. The hangers for the grills need to be tightly secured, and have plenty of them. They have to be perfectly matched so the grill will not tilt, slide or topple during grilling.
After your pieces are fitted together, paint the grill and let the paint dry thoroughly. Light a hot fire in the grill. This will burn off any excess sediment or debris on the inside of the grill. When the grill is completely cool, coat the inside of the grill in cooking oil. This will help to seal the interior of the grill and prevent the grill from rusting. Then you are ready to enjoy your homemade charcoal grill.