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Tuning plates or RF build, Which would you do???

 
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20"x42" 1/8' thick steel tubes, RF or Tooning plate build???
Tuning Plate
76%
 76%  [ 10 ]
Reverse Flow
23%
 23%  [ 3 ]
Total Votes : 13

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Matt Matt



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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28 15 3:01 am    Post subject: Tuning plates or RF build, Which would you do??? Reply with quote

I have another thread started on here..

http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=67611

But I am just about to actually start it now but the more I have read here lately the more it sounds like tuning pates is the way to go.

So, if you guys had these cool little steel tubes at your disposal would you go RF or Tuner? And Why??? Thanks!!!

Oh and one other question, do you think I can run two tubes off one fire box? Would that mean a bigger fire box? And if I'm only running one side would it be then to much fire box?
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k.a.m.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28 15 3:33 am    Post subject: Re: Tuning plates or RF build, Which would you do??? Reply with quote

Matt Matt wrote:
So, if you guys had these cool little steel tubes at your disposal would you go RF or Tuner? And Why??? Thanks!!!

Tuning plates, because I prefer cooking with them over R/F cookers.

Matt Matt wrote:
Oh and one other question, do you think I can run two tubes off one fire box? Would that mean a bigger fire box? And if I'm only running one side would it be then to much fire box?

You can build one firebox to cover both cookers size wise, but partition the middle to create two separate fireboxes.
I hope this helps. Very Happy
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Matt Matt



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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28 15 3:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks KAM That helps a ton!

As for the firebox, you are saying to build 1 box but run 2 different fires in it if Im running both sides? Or One fire for both sides and a slide in partition for single usage?
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k.a.m.
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28 15 3:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Matt Matt wrote:
Thanks KAM That helps a ton!

As for the firebox, you are saying to build 1 box but run 2 different fires in it if Im running both sides? Or One fire for both sides and a slide in partition for single usage?

One long firebox divided in two, basically two fireboxes on the inside but looks like one on the outside.
Two separate fires at any given time.
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Flyingj
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28 15 8:37 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm in the tuning plate camp as well Matt Matt. I struggled with the same decision on my build. If you change your mind later and feel a burning desire to run it reverse flow, just add a stack on the firebox end, stack the plates together and your in business. It would be much more difficult to convert from RF back to tuning plates. Either way, you won't be disappointed. Good luck with your build. Very Happy
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Matt Matt



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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28 15 10:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Flyingj wrote:
I'm in the tuning plate camp as well Matt Matt. I struggled with the same decision on my build. If you change your mind later and feel a burning desire to run it reverse flow, just add a stack on the firebox end, stack the plates together and your in business. It would be much more difficult to convert from RF back to tuning plates. Either way, you won't be disappointed. Good luck with your build. Very Happy


PLYINGJ that is an excellent suggestion. I like it! Thinkin I'm goin the tuning plate direction. Just got the steel today. 3/16 to cap the ends and 1/4 to build my firebox. Drew up everything on my cad program and hopefully cut it all out on my CNC plaz in the next few days.
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Matt Matt



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PostPosted: Sat Feb 28 15 10:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Flyingj wrote:
I'm in the tuning plate camp as well Matt Matt. I struggled with the same decision on my build. If you change your mind later and feel a burning desire to run it reverse flow, just add a stack on the firebox end, stack the plates together and your in business. It would be much more difficult to convert from RF back to tuning plates. Either way, you won't be disappointed. Good luck with your build. Very Happy


PLYINGJ that is an excellent suggestion. I like it! Thinkin I'm goin the tuning plate direction. Just got the steel today. 3/16 to cap the ends and 1/4 to build my firebox. Drew up everything on my cad program and hopefully cut it all out on my CNC plaz in the next few days.
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Painless
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06 15 3:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Depends on the build.

When I build another horizontal i'm going to go tuning plates just for the simple fact that you can 'tune' it. My RF has varying temps - but like any pit its not the pit its the master.

Tuning plates also have a big advantage in the cleaning side - putting half your body up through the firebox and under the rf plate gets old.

For vertical I would only use RF.
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06 15 7:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Tuning plates all the way! Why your at it, just add the extra stack and you can have a hybrid. My X2 build is that way. You can run your plates traditional or reverse flow and open/close your stacks accordingly. Now that Ive cooked on my cooker a bunch, I run both stacks wide open and hardly ever touch the tuning plates. I control my heat with my intake on my firebox. My grates run within 5 degrees across them. Its a great way to go.

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Wreckless
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 06 15 8:16 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

TrailerBuilder wrote:
Tuning plates all the way! Why your at it, just add the extra stack and you can have a hybrid. My X2 build is that way. You can run your plates traditional or reverse flow and open/close your stacks accordingly. Now that Ive cooked on my cooker a bunch, I run both stacks wide open and hardly ever touch the tuning plates. I control my heat with my intake on my firebox. My grates run within 5 degrees across them. Its a great way to go.

JM2CW

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dmike25
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 07 15 9:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Please allow me to barge in with a question for TrailerBuilder and Wreckless, if I may Matt Matt.

TrailerBuilder wrote:
Tuning plates all the way! Why your at it, just add the extra stack and you can have a hybrid.


I'm gonna go out on a limb here and guess that each stack should be sized to vent the cooker by itself?
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k.a.m.
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 07 15 9:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

dmike25 wrote:
Please allow me to barge in with a question for TrailerBuilder and Wreckless, if I may Matt Matt.

TrailerBuilder wrote:
Tuning plates all the way! Why your at it, just add the extra stack and you can have a hybrid.


I'm gonna go out on a limb here and guess that each stack should be sized to vent the cooker by itself?

Yes Mike. Each exhaust should be sized to handle reverse flow or tuning plates respectfully. Basically what ever the calculator calls for is what is needed for both.
While Bahama Mama is a Hybrid cooker, I run her strictly in tuning plate mode with only one exhaust open. My temps rarely differ within 10° to 15° up, down, left, right.
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dmike25
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PostPosted: Sun Mar 08 15 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanx Kevin. I'm going to add the second stack to the smoker I'm building. I'm a believer in "better to have it and not need it than to need it and not have it" Wink
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seattlepitboss
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13 15 6:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have done tuning plates and RF. One thing I like about RF is once it's built, you don't ever have to worry about it again. I can live with 10 or 15 degree temp imbalances. What I don't want to have to do is endlessly be second guessing myself about whether the tuning plates should be tweaked yet again.

And if you take them out to clean, every time you have to worry about putting them exactly back in the same position.

Nope, I vote for reverse flow.

seattlepitboss
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13 15 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

seattlepitboss wrote:
I have done tuning plates and RF. One thing I like about RF is once it's built, you don't ever have to worry about it again. I can live with 10 or 15 degree temp imbalances. What I don't want to have to do is endlessly be second guessing myself about whether the tuning plates should be tweaked yet again.

And if you take them out to clean, every time you have to worry about putting them exactly back in the same position.

Nope, I vote for reverse flow.

seattlepitboss

I take my plates out after every cook and clean it, they go back the same way I took them out. If you take the time and do maybe three cooks to learn where the plates need to be then there is no second guessing, you know exactly where the plates should always be. The only time you would ever even think of shifting plates is if you wanted to create a hot spot for chicken. This is one thing that you cannot do on a reverse flow. Wink
I can understand thinking the way you are if you have never used them, if you have used them and gained these thoughts through use and this is the way you treated them then you are over thinking them. Wink
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PostPosted: Fri Mar 13 15 10:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

seattlepitboss wrote:
I have done tuning plates and RF. One thing I like about RF is once it's built, you don't ever have to worry about it again. I can live with 10 or 15 degree temp imbalances. What I don't want to have to do is endlessly be second guessing myself about whether the tuning plates should be tweaked yet again.

And if you take them out to clean, every time you have to worry about putting them exactly back in the same position.

Nope, I vote for reverse flow.

seattlepitboss


I'm not quite sure I am understanding this logic. If one decides to run their cooker RF with tuning plates, it is a simple matter of moving the plates all towards the FB. Doesn't seem to be a lot to remember there. What one has done with going with a one plate full time RF is just removing the possibility of ever adjusting the cooker again, just something you live with. Myself, I like the idea of possibly tuning / tweaking my cooker to darn near as perfect as can be ( or at least ones own version of what perfect is). To add to this, I even more prefer the dual stack hybrid, especially for a cooker 4' or longer as there is a good chance with that much room, one may be cooking mixed foods, perhaps chicken on the next grate over. Just kind of thinking that if a 10-15 deg diff is not that big of a deal to live with, having tuning plates set exactly like the set up before should not be that big of deal to live with. Mostly tho, as much time and effort goes into building a nice cooker, I see no reason to "Just live with" anything that could have been eliminated with just a bit more work.
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PostPosted: Sat Mar 14 15 7:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I still say tuning plates. I have cooked with mine now for a couple solid years and I do clean them often. But I pay enough attention when I take them out that I know exactly what the distance between them need to be. Tuning plates are nice for when you want to do those chickens also and can make a hot spot, but they are even better when your doing a few racks of ribs and have almost uniform temps across the grates and don't have to worry about rotating anything around all the time so one item doesn't cook way faster than the other.

Comes down to what most cooks and builders on the Ring say, once you learn your cooker and how she runs, you can make it work the best for you anytime...no "second guessing" needed.
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