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first bbq pit / smoker

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  • first bbq pit / smoker

    hey guys,

    I've been crusing around the forums for a while but have never had a chance to register so here I am. I'm asking for some advice on how to get my project's warpage taken care of. I'm building a bbq smoker out of 1/4" plate and schedule 10- 20" diameter black pipe. Everything went well until i cut the door with my spectrum 625. The section of door I cut got warped in the process. I even spaced out the cuts just like i would with welding with time in between to let the piece cool. Anyways after i was done it was warped slightly. SO i clamped it back into place when I was welding the 1" x 1/8" flange on the out side. I spaced out the welds again with ample time in bewtween to let the piece cool. I thought everything was honky dory until i let loose the lower clamps when the door bowed out like a 1/4" along the bottom. This was after everything cooled. Any ideas on how to bend this beast back ??? I've included pics to give you guys an idea on whats up. thx!!!!!




  • #2
    here are some ideas from a bbq board.
    these aren't my pits , just thing i have seen others do.





    Hope this helps.

    You can check out pictures of my smoker build by going to my BBQ site.

    http://www.castandque.com

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    • #3
      Fixing warpage...

      This might not be feasible for you but do you know anyone who works In a fab shop? It would take 2 minutes to pop your door in a roller and bend it back into place.

      From the previous post I'd say the first picture would be best, only I'd add more than two threaded bars to get a even bend. With a ratchet type system where you screw all bolts down evenly and with the application of heat you should get it don well enough.

      Preheat and post heat reduces thermal distortion but again this might not be feasible.

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      • #4
        can my bend in my door be fixed without heat??? I do not have a torch set available to me. I was possibly even thinking about placing some welds along the inside of the door when i have put tension on it with whatever way i decide. It would still put heat into the door i would just have to grind the welds down when it cools. Anyone's take on this???

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        • #5
          is the gap so big that some latches won't hold it down enough to seal?

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          • #6
            Heating on the inside will fix it. But first I would heat it up pretending to use it & see how that heat effects it. It may surprise you as it cools it may pull back enough to do the job. Lot more even heat than torch & as it cools it will pull it down quite a bit. No sense making it perfect & then the first time you use it it may overshrink. Keep us posted.
            252 Miller Mig
            180 Synchrowave
            R - 45 Milling Machine
            Kingston 1100 Lathe
            Miller 2050 Plasma Cutter

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Chuck_050382 View Post
              is the gap so big that some latches won't hold it down enough to seal?
              the latches are fine...it just got warped a little initially when i took a plasma cutter to it the first time i cut the door out.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by blaznhot_23 View Post
                the latches are fine...it just got warped a little initially when i took a plasma cutter to it the first time i cut the door out.
                If you can get it wo seal with some latches, I wouldn't try to bend it a lot.

                I think the Metal Doctor was on to something as well. The pit will grow while in use. My smoker leaks some as it comes up to temp, but once it all gets hot it doesn't leak enough that I am going to worry about.

                Chuck
                Last edited by Chuck_050382; 07-17-2008, 01:27 PM. Reason: spelling

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                • #9
                  Hello and welcome to the forum.

                  As suggested I would fire it up and get it good and hot and see what happens first. It doesn't look all that bad and it may solve itself.

                  As to whether or not you can bend it without heat the question is really how hard will it be to bend it without heat and get it where you want it to stay. I'd go a bit at a time with the jackscrew idea. Its controlable and you can put the presure wher you want easy enough.

                  Nice work BTW.

                  Good luck.

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                  • #10
                    With no heat you will have to adjust the plate beyond the point you are after so it springs out, with heat you won't...

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                    • #11
                      How about cutting a few "ribs" to the proper curve, clamping everything tight and tack welding the ribs in?

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                      • #12
                        How about cutting a few "ribs" to the proper curve, clamping everything tight and tack welding the ribs in?

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                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Chuck_050382 View Post
                          If you can get it wo seal with some latches, I wouldn't try to bend it a lot.

                          I think the Metal Doctor was on to something as well. The pit will grow while in use. My smoker leaks some as it comes up to temp, but once it all gets hot it doesn't leak enough that I am going to worry about.

                          Chuck
                          i'm curious as how much it will expand when heated. I used 1/4" wall pipe along with the flange i put on thats another 1/8" thick. so my total thickness at the edges would be 3/8" in. I know when you smoke the barrel temp usually hovers anywhere from 200-275 degress F. depending on what you are cooking and your fire load. the top portion of the door and the sides have a great seal on them and i was just hoping for that along the bottom edge. I guess i'm just picky when it comes to minor details. I'll definitely keep everyone posted as to what comes out of this. Plus my thanks to everyone's advice/help. I greatly appreciate it

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                          • #14
                            cant read your hole post the ads are in the way
                            this site is realy going down hill
                            its getting slower and slower

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                            • #15
                              Texas style bbq smoker

                              Excellent learner project.

                              My second attempt on a smoker did the same thing.
                              Rolled pipe with a weld seam.
                              I think the purpose is for billboard poles.
                              Anyway... I tweaked the hinges and tried to heat the flanges and beat them down to make a seal. and even thought about putting the flanges on the inside of the smoker.

                              Then I started cooking on it.
                              I learned that.. when the pit got hot enough to cook on,and starts to draw correctly,
                              the smoke actually turns clear and doesn't even come out around of the big lid anyway.
                              Straight out the exhaust.
                              Use dry wood preferably with no bark on it.
                              Keeps your meat from turning black ++++
                              Note the large wrench used for the counter weight on mine.
                              Oil pump jack tool. Note the empty place on tounge
                              for propane bottle and a burner for beans or flip lid over burner to heat tortillias.
                              Axle was the stub knuckes from Norhern tools. and heavy wall 2 inch square tubing.
                              When I built mine I used 3 types of welding to get the practice.
                              Stick mig and stick.
                              I love "Harleys" rub!!!!
                              Fire it up and call me.

                              Randall

                              2 cents.
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