Thoughts on using an old 40's-50's fridge

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Sgonnoud
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Thoughts on using an old 40's-50's fridge

Postby Sgonnoud » Tue Aug 07, 2018 6:13 am

Hello all,

I am looking to build a new smoker to upgrade from the small one i currently own. i have found a fridge from the 40's-50's that is in decent condition. has anyone had any experience and or advice if I try and convert this into a smoker. should I use a firebox or section the bottom off and have the fire on the bottom of fridge? Any input would help. thanks
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Re: Thoughts on using an old 40's-50's fridge

Postby GTR » Tue Aug 07, 2018 11:01 am

That would be a cool looking piece. However I don't think the interior would hold up, at least not for long, at cooking temps.
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Re: Thoughts on using an old 40's-50's fridge

Postby Sgonnoud » Tue Aug 07, 2018 11:33 am

I would remove the existing insulation and replace it with oven insulation and add stainless walls to the interior. I believe that would do the trick. I just don’t know what I would do for a heat source. Offset firebox or section the bottoms and have everything inside the fridge.
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OldUsedParts
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Re: Thoughts on using an old 40's-50's fridge

Postby OldUsedParts » Tue Aug 07, 2018 2:46 pm

TOTAL Novice Here :dont: but wouldn't the heat at the bottom be better and give less places for it to go except "up" ? You can always place a water pan or some kind of plate in between, I would think :?: However, I also think that the location and design of the exhaust would be utmost important. :dont: Once again, I know nothing about these just wondering. :scratch:
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david brace
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Re: Thoughts on using an old 40's-50's fridge

Postby david brace » Tue Aug 07, 2018 11:23 pm

It ill work if you are careful about the lining of the refrigerator...you don't want all that nasty plastic or synthetic stuff smoking up your food. :shock:

So re-lining it is the way to go.

I learned a lot about cheese smoking from a guy who made an old fridge into a smoker. He just cut a simple small hole in the top and never dampered it, so it was open all the time. The fire was underneath and the smoke had no place to go but up. Obviously you'll need a cold-air intake below the fire. His was just a simple rectangular hole with hardware cloth in front of it. Real simple system, like the UDS are simple, but it works.

I have a bullet R2 clone that I prefer over my barrel and offset smokers. Seem like it gets the job done a bit faster.

He did almost all cheese smoking in this, so the temps were always under 85. Never did any summertime smoking in it just cool and cold weather smoking here in NY.

I also had another whacky friend who made a smoker out of a 4 drawer file cabinet. FB in the bottom drawer, and different cuts of meat in the other drawers. Weird-o. :dont:
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Thoughts on using an old 40's-50's fridge

Postby PinoyPitmaster » Wed Aug 08, 2018 4:55 am

Do you have a pic? Also send dimensions to help with determining firebox placement. I have one at my deer lease generally shorter and wider made of metal and has separate area for icebox at top. The great thing i like is that it’s metal exterior makes it easy to paint any color you want as long as you build another wall inside. I’m with Sgonoud with gutting the fridge and lining the interior with insulation and another wall.

Btw what are your options ? Do you have welding skills or your intention to use fridge as is ?

Look forward to your pics and dimensions


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Re: Thoughts on using an old 40's-50's fridge

Postby Sgonnoud » Wed Aug 08, 2018 11:34 am

i can post some pics once the project gets started. I am not very good at welding/fabrication but a buddy of mine will be helping me and hes a welder/fabricator with 12 years of experience. The reason i am unsure about building an offset firebox or keeping it inside the fridge chamber is the fact i don't want to have to open the cook chamber to add wood if it is at the bottom of the cook chamber. My buddy and i are meting up this weekend to talk about adding a side door to add wood or cutting the main door to separate the chambers. should be about a week until it begins.
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Re: Thoughts on using an old 40's-50's fridge

Postby PinoyPitmaster » Wed Aug 08, 2018 11:42 am

Sgonnoud wrote:i can post some pics once the project gets started. I am not very good at welding/fabrication but a buddy of mine will be helping me and hes a welder/fabricator with 12 years of experience. The reason i am unsure about building an offset firebox or keeping it inside the fridge chamber is the fact i don't want to have to open the cook chamber to add wood if it is at the bottom of the cook chamber. My buddy and i are meting up this weekend to talk about adding a side door to add wood or cutting the main door to separate the chambers. should be about a week until it begins.

Cutting the door? Are you afraid of distorting the beauty of the original form? Maybe you have a plan you can share ? This is super interesting

Maybe add a firebox below the fridge and just have a hole in fridge for hole to come through. Fabricate a nice matching trim to blend in firebox to look like fridge. It would raise your fridge though.

In any case look forward to the pics!




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