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DPP Clone build
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auto5man
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Joined: 04 Jun 2009
Posts: 192
Location: Memphis, TN

PostPosted: Thu Nov 14 13 2:05 am    Post subject: DPP Clone build Reply with quote

Finally I have enough progress to post some progress pics on my build. This build has started and stopped a couple times, and languished in between stops, lol. Finally making progress again!

Here are links to a couple threads I started when I was gathering information…I'm neither a welder nor a fabricator and had to ask lots of basic questions:

http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=60977&highlight=

http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=60573&highlight=


Full disclosure on my pit building skills: mods to my New Braunfels offset. The Homebuilt listed in my signature line was built by my BBQ team partner/buddy, I have lots of cooking time on it.

On to my build progress. I started with a 500gallon propane tank. Purchased from Craigslist, it was mounted on a pop up camper trailer and set up as a propane hog cooker. I don't have a readily available pic of how it looked as purchased.

First pic shows the initial mods that my buddy helped me with. Removed the propane guts, plywood deck, and axle. We welded a new steel deck on and built/installed a new axle/springs/wheels set up:



I have posted this pic in the link I posted before, but there must have been a problem as the picture no longer shows. Gonna hit 'submit' to test and make sure it posts at the right size.
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New Braunfels el Cheapo offset
Born in the Que-S-A Comp Team
36in x 120in Homebuilt
DPP Clone Build in progress: http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=65139&start=0


Last edited by auto5man on Mon Dec 08 14 8:31 am; edited 3 times in total
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auto5man
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Location: Memphis, TN

PostPosted: Thu Nov 14 13 2:51 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Seems to have worked, all the ring adverts stayed in place.

Whenever I can, I will detail mistakes I've made…maybe it will help somebody else. Have to say I have really sweated over details and let that hold me back….as you can see from my other thread on design questions, I was kind of in a quandary whether or not to join the firebox and tank with round pipe or by a rectangular duct…I've seen it done both ways. Initially I decided on rectangular, but changed my mind back to pipe. I also learned that the Pit design calculator numbers don't apply directly to the DPP clone design. I spent a lot of time thinking about the internal construction and whether to use snouts vs a diverter, and stack location. Initially I decided to use a rectangle duct, but changed my mind and decided to go with snouts. On stack location I went centered and very close to the ends (inside the cook chamber, the stack opening will be centered between upper and lower racks) The next pic shows compressor tank that was intended for the firebox initially:


I ended up changing my mind on this too at the advice of my welder, he preferred thicker steel so I bought a 5 foot chunk of some serious pipe:



Pic doesn't show it well but both ends welded on, nephew and daughter helpers for scale:


I didn't mention this before, but the build is actually happening about 70 miles from my home, probably a good thing or I'd be driving over there everyday to check on progress (and generally worrying the welder to death, lol). My brother stops by there every so often and checks on progress for me, so when he sent me these three pics I really started to get excited! First stack on:


Two stacks on:


and a view of the stack from the inside:



Couple other changes I forgot to mention. The rear portion of the trailer was chopped and tank moved rearwards to accommodate the firebox. Another pretty major change was to the door. When I got the tank it already had a door cut but was pretty crudely done and way to big. It was cut at 10 o'clock and about 6 inches up from 3 o'clock. Door was unnecessarily huge and HEAVY. Old cuts re welded and changed to a few inches past 12 o'clock. I'm still not liking the door cut above 3 o'clock, but more on that later as my welder convinced me to leave it there for now. Stay tuned, more to come.
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New Braunfels el Cheapo offset
Born in the Que-S-A Comp Team
36in x 120in Homebuilt
DPP Clone Build in progress: http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=65139&start=0


Last edited by auto5man on Thu Nov 14 13 5:10 am; edited 1 time in total
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auto5man
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Joined: 04 Jun 2009
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Location: Memphis, TN

PostPosted: Thu Nov 14 13 3:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fitting the snouts:




More dry fitting/leveling pics:






More to come in a bit:
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New Braunfels el Cheapo offset
Born in the Que-S-A Comp Team
36in x 120in Homebuilt
DPP Clone Build in progress: http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=65139&start=0
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auto5man
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Location: Memphis, TN

PostPosted: Thu Nov 14 13 6:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A few thoughts on design: On the one hand, it's fun to theorize how the decisions made will affect performance. But on the other hand, you want a project like this to WORK after you get done! So if I make a error in design, I've tried to make it a decision that can be fixed or adjusted later. The ducting between the firebox and cook chamber, for example, how many pipes to use? I've seen as few as two and as many as five. I went with four spread all across the length of the firebox. My thinking is it will make for a pretty even heat all across the chamber. But what if I'm wrong and the draft goes through the cooker too fast (inefficient)? I'm going to have dampers in each pipe so I can slow this down if need be. The dampers to be…made from hardened steel that should hold up to the firebox heat:


The next two pics involve the door. The original door was just cut wrong, way to big. You can see the original cuts that we welded back up. In the second pic you can see the lower lip of the door cut quite a few inches above 3 o'clock (the chalk line is where it should be). At first I was just going to leave it, but the more I thought about this the more I didn't like it. To maximize cook chamber room between the upper/lower racks, the lower grate needs to be at 3 o'clock, and leaving the door's lip here would have prevented a pull out grate for a bottom rack. Having spent literally hundreds of hours reaching inside a 36" diameter cooker to reach that meat way in the back, I just knew I wouldn't be happy with this decision in the long run. Hot grease dripping on your arms from the upper racks doesn't feel good! So there will be some changes there.


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New Braunfels el Cheapo offset
Born in the Que-S-A Comp Team
36in x 120in Homebuilt
DPP Clone Build in progress: http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=65139&start=0
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Maniac
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PostPosted: Thu Nov 14 13 7:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

great job so far...been thinking of doing a dp clone for a while. will keep an eye on this one to see how it turns out. Keep us posted Exclamation
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auto5man
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Location: Memphis, TN

PostPosted: Tue Nov 19 13 8:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Went by the shop today to check on progress…snouts and firebox fitted and tacked up:








Anyone have a ballpark figure what is a fair price to sandblast my rig?
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New Braunfels el Cheapo offset
Born in the Que-S-A Comp Team
36in x 120in Homebuilt
DPP Clone Build in progress: http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=65139&start=0
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k.a.m.
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 24 13 9:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Very nice work auto5man Very Happy Around here blasting alone will be around 300.00. I look forward to seeing more pics and updates. Very Happy
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auto5man
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Location: Memphis, TN

PostPosted: Fri Jun 20 14 11:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi All,

Been a while since I've posted an update although there's been some progress made. I'll try and post some more pics soon. I have a question though.

Need to give my welder firebox grate input so I'm looking for pics for ideas. I was thinking of using rebar, is that a suitable metal (holding up to the heat and not sagging) or should I use something else?
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New Braunfels el Cheapo offset
Born in the Que-S-A Comp Team
36in x 120in Homebuilt
DPP Clone Build in progress: http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=65139&start=0
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auto5man
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 21 14 10:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

few more progress pics. Firebox door and hinges welded up:



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New Braunfels el Cheapo offset
Born in the Que-S-A Comp Team
36in x 120in Homebuilt
DPP Clone Build in progress: http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=65139&start=0
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auto5man
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 21 14 10:09 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Firebox air intakes:


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New Braunfels el Cheapo offset
Born in the Que-S-A Comp Team
36in x 120in Homebuilt
DPP Clone Build in progress: http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=65139&start=0
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auto5man
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 21 14 10:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

stack damper open and closed:


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New Braunfels el Cheapo offset
Born in the Que-S-A Comp Team
36in x 120in Homebuilt
DPP Clone Build in progress: http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=65139&start=0
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auto5man
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 21 14 10:22 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heat transfer pipe dampers for individual control of all four pipes. A little hard to see but shows the open vs closed positions:




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New Braunfels el Cheapo offset
Born in the Que-S-A Comp Team
36in x 120in Homebuilt
DPP Clone Build in progress: http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=65139&start=0
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auto5man
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PostPosted: Sat Jun 21 14 10:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

firebox intake control:


Now here is the part where I need some advice. The firebox grate frames are started, I'd like to do the basket style but I worry about the expanded metal holding up to the heat. That's why I was hoping folks would post some input/advice. Would it be better to use solid round bar rods across the bottom of the basket? pics of the grate frames so far:


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New Braunfels el Cheapo offset
Born in the Que-S-A Comp Team
36in x 120in Homebuilt
DPP Clone Build in progress: http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=65139&start=0
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Greasyfingers
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 22 14 1:03 am    Post subject: Rebar for grates Reply with quote

Automan.
I like to use rebar for my grates as 1./ Stands up to the heat and doesn't rust away in 6 months like expanded metal. 2./ It's cheap.

A couple of practicality issues you may have with your design is.
1./ Hot ash falling out of the air intake and starting a grass fire

2./ Each time you load more wood you may get a face full of hot ash and smoke when you open the firebox.

3./ Personally I would cut the door on the main cooking chamber at least 4 " lower than 3 o'clock and weld plate onto the door or chamber to make it fit.
This will allow you to add an extra shelf.

Just my 2 cents.
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auto5man
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 22 14 1:36 am    Post subject: Re: Rebar for grates Reply with quote

Greasyfingers wrote:
Automan.
I like to use rebar for my grates as 1./ Stands up to the heat and doesn't rust away in 6 months like expanded metal. 2./ It's cheap.

A couple of practicality issues you may have with your design is.
1./ Hot ash falling out of the air intake and starting a grass fire

2./ Each time you load more wood you may get a face full of hot ash and smoke when you open the firebox.

3./ Personally I would cut the door on the main cooking chamber at least 4 " lower than 3 o'clock and weld plate onto the door or chamber to make it fit.
This will allow you to add an extra shelf.

Just my 2 cents.


Greasy Fingers I agree with all your points. For the fire risk I just plan on having something below to catch ash. There is a bit of a communication (language) barrier with my welder, and sometimes I get surprised with a result and the firebox is one of those. Although I like the intake design, I worry that ash will build up around the holes and block air and/or gum up the slide action of the intake adjustment. Also clean up would have been much easier with a door access on one end. I'm okay with the lid on top of the firebox but would have liked it cut more like 12 o'clock and 3 o'clock so the firebox could double as a hamburger/steak grill with a pull out rack.

The point you raise on the main cookchamber door bottom opening cut (and the loss of a pullout rack on the bottom most rack) is absolutely correct. This is my biggest dissappointment on the build so far...when I bought the tank this cut had already been made, and my welder was nervous/reluctant with recutting this part so I have to live with it for now. To get around this drawback i'm going to add another grate exactly where you suggest. For whole hogs I'll just pull out the upper grates and use the lower one. It won't pull out, but maybe eventually I'll make that change. Right now I'm pushing hard to get enough done for some test of performance cooks. Throughout this project I've been on a tight budget and tried to get materials and welding on the cheap, in retrospect I might have been better off to have saved up and paid the money for a conventional commercial shop to build it and gotten exactly what I wanted. Not sure that would have been as fun though, I've learned alot from the project. And in the end, if the parts that bug me are too expensive or not practical to fix, I'll sell and start over going through a more experience builder/shop. Or learn how to weld myself, lol.
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New Braunfels el Cheapo offset
Born in the Que-S-A Comp Team
36in x 120in Homebuilt
DPP Clone Build in progress: http://www.thesmokering.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=65139&start=0
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Greasyfingers
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 22 14 2:12 am    Post subject: No Habla Espanol? Reply with quote

Let me know If you need me to talk to your welder to communicate your points. (I am guessing he speaks Spanish).
I am Bi Lingual.

You can add a piece of plate to the cooker chamber door to extend it down without too much problem. (take care when welding the full length of the door to avoid bowing the door).

You can always weld some metal onto the bottom of the cook chamber to compensate.

Ok, now back to my Malbec wine to celebrate Argentina's latest win in the world cup! Smile
( Thanks to Messi)
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Greasyfingers
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 22 14 2:46 am    Post subject: Another thought Reply with quote

If it is really bugging you, you could do this.

Cut out a rectangle where the firebox mates to the all the tubes.
Then rotate your fire box end to end (left side of firebox is now right). Now the door hinges from the back side and you can rotate it around until it gets to the position you want.
Cut out another rectangle equal to the last section you cut and weld it back in above the heat tubes.
Result you don't have to buy any material and have what you want.
Cons: Alot of cutting, grnding and welding.
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Maniac
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PostPosted: Sun Jun 22 14 3:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

auto5man was wondering when an update would be made Wink
just got most of my materials for my clone...rebar will work as long as you don't go to thin. i'm with greasy on his points hope you get it worked out.
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seattlepitboss
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25 14 9:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'm not really a DPP guy - what is a 'snout'? Got a pic?

seattlepitboss
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k.a.m.
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PostPosted: Wed Jun 25 14 10:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

seattlepitboss wrote:
I'm not really a DPP guy - what is a 'snout'? Got a pic?

seattlepitboss

On a DP cooker the connector pipes enter the cooking chamber about 2/3 the way in. Once they enter the bottom half of the pipes are cut away creating half moon pipes, the heat/smoke is dispersed this way in the chamber.
These pipes are called snouts.
I hope this helps. Very Happy
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