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Midwest Freak

fire bricks in the fire box ?

i see a lot of guys putting fire bricks in the floor of their fire box , what does this do ? my guess it helps hold the heat better but would like to know your thoughts on this ? here's a pic that Ben Lang posted on his face book page


animal

Helps to insulate and raising the fire a friend tells me makes his more efficient, the concern I have is the ash collecting between the blocks and causing rust, maybe line the box with foil first to keep the ash off the bottom.  
Wood River BBQ Team

On my Cheapo Char Grill Smoking Pro I had to try every trick I could think of to maintain heat, which leaked all over the place. I installed "tunning plates" and a "baffel" in order  to reverse flow the heat and smoke and under the plates I used LAVA ROCK. That mod worked. Eventually, I converted it to propane and used lava rock around the burner in the fire box.

I was thinking of adding lava rock to the Lang fire box but it sure would be a pain to clean out the ash so I rejected the idea. Fire bricks would also be a pain to clean out the ash. Additionally, I don't think the Lang  needs any modification to the fire box BUT if Ben Lang added them to his smoker then what do I know. It will be interesting to see what others think.

Don G
Midwest Freak

just to clarify Ben shared a pic of someone else cooker , he not saying to put them in there but why are so many people doing it is what i want to know . they are heat resistance bricks so they block the heat so i thought it would take the cooker longer to heat up and not heat evenly just do not get  it ?  Confused
mr.piggy

hey fellas last wk while was getting ready to cook I checked the bottom of my fire box, and yea the heat loss. I was thinking fire brick also. but how about a piece of thin gauge sheet metal  , on top of the bricks to catch the ash.

            vincent
Wood River BBQ Team

I'm smoking a turkey today and I'll measure the heat on all fire box walls with my infrared thermometer and publish the results.
Wood River BBQ Team

Here's the temperature readings. The Lang gauge read 290F as did my chimney temp gauge and the digital temp at the meat was 300F. The temp for the front side was 501F, the back side was 503F, the top was 534F (probably because heat rises) and the bottom was 494F.

Taking a cue from Mr. Piggey (thin gauge sheeet metal) I decided to shove a piece of alum foil under the fire grate, which isn't easy because that's one hot sucker -- have your arm hit the door to find out what I'm talking about. 15 minutes later the bottom temp had dropped to 313F!!

I think that shows a couple of things -- fire bricks would prevent heat from escaping through the bottom and would radiate heat upwards and the alum foil makes ash clean up easy. A piece of sheet metal might be a better idea but I think it's easier for me to fold up the ash in alum foil. The problem with the sheet metal is the door opening size versus the bottom of the fire box --ash would fall all over the place.
mr.piggy

[quote="Wood River BBQ Team:2396"]Here's the temperature readings. The Lang gauge read 290F as did my chimney temp gauge and the digital temp at the meat was 300F. The temp for the front side was 501F, the back side was 503F, the top was 534F (probably because heat rises) and the bottom was 494F.

Taking a cue from Mr. Piggey (thin gauge sheeet metal) I decided to shove a piece of alum foil under the fire grate, which isn't easy because that's one hot sucker -- have your arm hit the door to find out what I'm talking about. 15 minutes later the bottom temp had dropped to 313F!!

I think that shows a couple of things -- fire bricks would prevent heat from escaping through the bottom and would radiate heat upwards and the alum foil makes ash clean up easy. A piece of sheet metal might be a better idea but I think it's easier for me to fold up the ash in alum foil. The problem with the sheet metal is the door opening size versus the bottom of the fire box --ash would fall all over the place.[/quote]   don thanks for taking the time to check the lost heat for every one. the bottom temp  was 494 f then you put  the alumin foil the temp. droped ro 313 f  that is a 181f  loss in cooking heat .  fire brick for me this weekend.  thanks  you  vincent
Midwest Freak

thanks for taking the time to analyze the temp difference  Very Happy
Wood River BBQ Team

Vincent: This morning I cleaned out my fire box and laid in 2 sheets of heavy duty alum foil with the shinny side up. I don't think the fire bricks, unless I could find thin ones, will work for me. The reason is because of my charcoal basket and the door opening. The front of my basket is shorter than the sides so I can add fuel. Bricks the size of the ones in the picture would raise my basket too high and make it harder for me to add fuel. The other concern I have is the one Animal brought up -- ash collecting between the bricks and causing rust. With the alum foil I just fold it up after the cook, dispose of it and add 2 more sheets.

Don G
mr.piggy

hi don, on seconds thoughts I agree about the aluminum foil in stead of sheet metal. your wright after the unit cools down the next morning you can just reach in and fold and  remove the foil. good idea, going to get fire brick this wk.  and do a cook on Sunday and put the foil on the bricks  Vincent.
Midwest Freak

the research i did most people use Rutland Replacement Fire Brick (604) from Ace shipped  to store for 19.99 for 6 bricks and they are 1-1/4" thick if that helps .
animal

OUCH, that is pricey
Midwest Freak

that is only $3.32 a brick and no shipping , i thought it was not to bad of price .
Wood River BBQ Team

The fire box on the Lang 36 is 17X17 and the bricks from ACE are 9X4.5 so you'll need a couple more beyond 6 and my ACE won't sell single ones so I'd have to buy 12, which is no biggie. I had forgotten that with my thin metal cheapo smoker, in order to contain as much heat as I could, I not only added lava rocks to the bottom of the cooking chamber but also had them sitting on a sheet of alum foil. I don't know if it worked because I didn't own a heat gun at the time -- but I don't think it hurt either.

I'm going to see how the shinny side up double sheets of alum foil works in the fire box before I spring for the fire bricks. Next cook is a tri-tip on my Santa Maria Grill, then it will be turkey time. I'm going a little battey with the alum foil as I added it to the bottom of the Santa Maria Grill. Oak , which is my wood of choice for the tri-tip, is very expensive here and hard to get (I'm almost out of it) and hopefully I can get more heat with a little less fuel.

Don G
JimmyZ

Don't know if there is one near you but Tractor Farm Supply sells them indivually for $3.19 each and they stock them in there stores.

Here's the information on them.

•Brand - United States Stove
•Material - Brick
•Package Height - 1-1/4 in.
•Package Length - 9- in.
•Package Width - 4-1/2 in.
•Type - Firebrick
Wood River BBQ Team

Many years ago I purchased some sort of a tile, I don't even know what it's called, for the bottom shelf of the oven of my motor home. I don't know where I purchased them or what I paid. We've never used the oven and I'd forgotten they were even there -- until yesterday when I discovered them. They're are 4 of them at 7.5" X 7.5" X1/4". The thin 1/4" is exactly what I was loooking for. I'm going to insert them today and cover them with alum foil (for easy ash clean up) and I'll see what happens. Since I had them in the oven I can only assume they're heat resistant. I wish I could provide more detail to forum listers.
Wood River BBQ Team

I think they are UNglazed porcelain tiles. Glazed tiles would crack and break due to the heat. I hate suggesting stuff I've never tested so don't take my word on this subject as this product may not provide the desired result.
Wood River BBQ Team

I hope all you Lang smokers are having a nice Thanksgiving!! My birds on the smoker and cooking.

To recap, I added thin UNGLAZED porcelain tiles to my fire box and covered them with shinney side up alum foil and then took readings with my heat gun. The Lang gauge registerd 300F and the chimney gauge read 295F. The front of the fire box read 536F, the back read 483F, the top read 568F and the door read 399F

A couple of weeks ago the bottom, with only alum foil, read 313F. Today, with the combination of the tiles and the alum foil, the bottom read 125f!! Obviously, I'm not losing much heat through the bottom as most of it's going where it's suppose to go -- into the cook chamber. The mate that added the fire bricks had a good idea.

Don G
mr.piggy

happy thanksgiving to all the lang family, I am sitting in my kitchen .having a few cold ones,
looking out the window at my lang  (not cooking ) the wife dose not let me cook the turkey on the bbq. or smoker. she says turkeys are cooked in the oven. I say did the pilgrims have a oven.    I"l HAVE ANOTHER COLD ONE



                           HAPPY THANKS GIVING,    VINCENT
Wood River BBQ Team

mr. piggy: Tomorrow, pick up a small turkey or a breast (which I prefer)  -- they'll be giving them away -- and test drive it next weekend on your Lang. Let your wife be the judge, which is the only smart thing to do, as to which tasted better her's or your's. Be sure to brine and inject. Might be better to let her win -- I don't know as you'll have to be the decider. Maybe, or maybe not, next Thanksgiving you'll "be cooking turkey on your Lang".

After the turkey, test drive a HAM so you're a "shoe in" for XMAS dinner.

As one smoker brother to another, I'll tip a "tinney" (Aussie for beer) as soon as I submit this post.

Don G
mr.piggy

thanks don,  happy thanks giving. I"l try anything.
dummy que

brick in firebox

i halve lined my lang 60 firebox on the bottom along the sides and across the back as well as down the bottom of the tunnle for the reaverse flow it realy helps in cold temps. and aids in stableing out temps. during cooks as far as cooking turkey`s i halve trown my turkey fryer away if your wifey thinks that they should be cooked inside do one she will never do one inside again ther is no need to inject or brine smear skin with oil of choice season an let your lang work it`s magic

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