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Millermatic® Helps Create Pistol Packin' Barbeque Pit

When Joe and Lynn Wood, of Weimar, Tex., drive down the road hauling their barbeque pit to the next cook-off, they often get some incredulous, wide-eyed stares from passersby. That will happen when your barbeque looks like King Kong's six shooter.

The Woods call it their "Texas-style barbeque pit," and it's the talk of Weimar, located about 80 miles west of Houston. "It was a little idea that I'd been kicking around forever, and the next thing I knew I had a barbeque that was 16 feet long and seven feet tall, with a wood handle on it," Joe Wood says. "When I was finished, I said, "Oh my god, what did I do?'"

It took Wood about 200 hours to build the pistol and trailer with his 2-year-old, 250-amp Millermatic® MIG power source. "Everything is made out of carbon steel, except for the bullets, which are stainless steel," Wood says. "The handles are red oak, about 2-1/2 inches thick. The trailer has two 3,500-pound axles for structural support."

Joe Wood created his "six shooter" barbeque pit, with a Millermatic 251.

Wood claims the barbeque wasn't all that hard to build. "But I'm not saying that it was a cakewalk — there's a certain level of craftsmanship to it from an artistic standpoint," Wood says. "Anybody can throw a pistol together, but trying to get the handle, barrel and cylinder to scale was the trickiest part of all."

As for the Millermatic, Wood says, "I couldn't have done it without the Millermatic, honestly. I have a 300-amp engine-driven welding machine that I take around to job locations but you can't build something like this without a good MIG machine. The Millermatic did a great job on thin and thick material." When he isn't working on pet projects, he runs Wood's Welding, specializing in heavy-duty industrial welding.

He and Lynn take the barbeque to cook-offs in the area, where they always walk way with the best-in-show award for the cooker. "Even though we don't know how to cook, we still look cool," he laughs.

And how does his invention work? Wood explains, "You light the fire in the gun handle, which is double-walled and insulated so that I could make it out of wood. The heat comes up the handle and goes through the cylinder of the pistol, which is where you cook your meat. The smoke from the fire comes out the end of the barrel. And believe me, this thing cooks like no other."

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