Has anyone mounted a HeaterMeter to an offset smoker?

JeremyK

New member
Hi guys,

John Bostwick is finishing up the build of my new HeaterMeter and I'm trying to get everything set for installation ASAP upon receiving it!

I have a very basic Brinkmann offset smoker and am trying to figure out how to go about installing the blower for the HM most easily / effectively. Has anyone done a similar installation?

Given that it isn't exactly air tight like a BGE or UDS I was planning to run just the blower without a rotodamper type device at this point.



I was thinking I would either 1) cut a hole in the firebox door and use 1" aluminum tubing but I'm not sure how I would attach it or how I'd attach the blower to the other side. Alternatively I thought about opening the firebox door completely and welding 1" aluminum tubing to a piece of aluminum plate which would effectively block the hole but again I'm unsure how to affix the blower or solidify the tubing / plate.

Any ideas would be much appreciated!
 

RalphTrimble

TVWBB Diamond Member
A better picture of the firebox damper area would make it easier to make suggestions...
You're probable right about the damper, if you can keep the pit temp under control when the firebox damper is open about as big as a quarter then you shouldn't need a damper. If you get temp runaway with a quarter size opening then a damper will help keep that under control, cause the HM blower is going to leave an opening about that size...
 

JeremyK

New member
I'll try to take a picture when I get home this evening, we typically cook with the door about 1/2 open
 

JeremyK

New member
Dog bowl over the intake damper?
Yes, I did see that someone did that here (photo below) but I'm not sure 1) how he secured it to the smoker and 2) how it would work with the smaller, meltable, plastic blower from the HM. Any thoughts?



Ralph - I haven't forgotten about your pic request but haven't been able to make it home during the daylight hours to take one yet!
 

RalphTrimble

TVWBB Diamond Member
I don't have an offset smoker, but I don't think a meltable plastic dog bowl would be a good thing to put on your FIRE box... Get a metal bowl, a dog dish, stainless steel cooking bowl, metal can or something like that. Best if it has a nice flat spot for you to make the connection with the blower. As for mounting, the spring loaded toggle sounds good to me, but since you can open the doors to the firebox and reach in side theres a ton of ways you could connect it. The picture of the door you are actually working with would be helpful when it comes to making suggestions... Ideally IMHO you want to rig up something that connects easily, seals tight, is also easily removable without making permanent mods to your grill....
 

John Bostwick

TVWBB Wizard
Looking at the size of your grill. Im hoping the stock blower would be big enough. Thats an easy fix, if needed once you recieve it to test.

I would definitely go with a dog bowl, or even something like a soup can, as that can be easier to cut a square hole in, then a dog dish.
 

Bob Ivey

TVWBB Emerald Member
A stainless steel dog or cat bowl from petsmart. Just got a new one for my rotodamper. The stainless steel bowl will not melt and it mitigates the heat transfer from the fuel chamber. I had the stock blower attached to a stainless steel bowl and bolted to my WSM 22 1/2 cooker and the fan is just fine. One thing I did to it was glue (high temp RTV) some left over nomex the the dog bowl for added insulation. I will try to post pictures of it to this thread tomorrow morning.

See this link. Cat Bowl 16 oz.

Under size there is a drop down. Click on the 16 oz. bowl.
 
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JeremyK

New member
Alright guys, sorry for the delay. There was a lot of snow on my balcony and getting home when there was daylight proved more challenging than I thought!

Here is a photo of the firebox door. I took it from the inside because it shows the mechanics as well as the holes themselves. Since the background is darker than ideal I outlined the size and shape of the holes in green and of the Damper in Red. As you can see, both holes open and close in unison. If course it would be easy to tape off the top hole if I were to find that necessary at some point.



Given that I have a full size hole at the bottom for the damper, not slotted as on many other applications. I don't think the toggle bolt idea will work (unless I'm missing something?).

Thanks guys!
 

RalphTrimble

TVWBB Diamond Member
Ballpark 1.25" - 1.5"
Diameter?

That hole is way bigger than the output end of the HM blower, you could block off the larger opening and mount to that hole, hopefully forced air through that hole will match what is drawn through that large vent by convection. Or you could make a plate to block off the larger opening and mount the blower to that, but that would put the blower closer to the heat of the fire too... Or you could "dog dish" over the larger opening, since the door swings wide open like that you should be able to come up with a way to mount the dog dish there (other than toggle bolt)
Personally my first attempt would be to put a plate (and/or aluminum tape) over the large opening, close off the vent to the round hole and mount my blower to the round hole and see how that works. You might use some tubing, perhaps copper water pipe, and put a 45 or 90 elbow inside the hole aiming down toward the fire so the air doesn't get pushed right past your fire into the smoker. You can always change the setup if it doesn't work well...
 
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JeremyK

New member
Correct, diameter.

I don't think the top hole will be as effective due to the fire being at the bottom of the box and agree with you that tubing bent to 90 degrees might be a good way to go. Being a soft metal, do you think copper will withstand the temperature in the firebox?

I'll play around at the hardware store on Saturday and see what I can come up with. If I can get tubing in reasonable lengths I'll give that a go, otherwise I'll try to mastermind a way to mount the dog dish to the bottom hole.

Thanks for all of your help and insight Ralph!

Is it best to add "fuel" (air) to the base of the fire or does it not matter the location?
 

RalphTrimble

TVWBB Diamond Member
It's better to have the air go to the fire than over it, that's for sure... My concern with putting the blower on the bottom side is that it looks like it might get pretty hot there? That is why I suggested perhaps trying to use the top hole and angle the air downward with a tube of some sort. I have used copper right inside the burn plate before, my "air burner" is made of copper and sits directly under the coals and it has done ok.... I dont think you will have a hard time with a copper elbow inside that top hole, but feel free to use any metal you like...
 

RalphTrimble

TVWBB Diamond Member
Looks like the guy put a tube in from the top with a little elbow down so the air blows at the fire like I suggested earlier. I think you could do that through the hole you have on your door rather than drilling another hole in the back of the fire box though...
 

Ruben P

New member
I have a similar smoker and curious if you had to increase the size of your fan and what size of fan did you use?
Finished my HM yesterday, first cook with the HM is this weekend (10 CFM fan).
 

SLevy

New member
I have a similar smoker and curious if you had to increase the size of your fan and what size of fan did you use?
Finished my HM yesterday, first cook with the HM is this weekend (10 CFM fan).
I am seeing some people use anywhere from a 15-25cfm blower.. not sure if that works or not though
 

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