Well, you asked for it. Here, Smoky answers the most commonly asked questions. He is direct, honest and offers an insight into the time proven techniques to preparing great barbecue that is unavailable elsewhere. If you are unable to locate the exact answer you are seeking, feel free to contact him directly and ask!
He returns all questions . . . . . . .
Topic: Brick BBQ Pits . . . . . . From: Steve,
Subject: Re: Plans,???
I'm looking for construction plans for a brick barbecue pit. Any ideas on where I might find them.
There are plenty of plans, but unless you seriously masochistic, consider the following:
1. A useful brick barbecue grill will cost more than a comparable metal one - even if you are a brick layer and have all your fire bricks left over from a government job. Even if you also own a metal working shop.
2. Unless you own ample stock in a charcoal company or a wood yard, the operating cost will be more than your income taxes. You can have Ribeyes catered cheaper than you can burn weinies.
3. Without ingenuous design and superior metal work, brick grills have limited flexiblility for the various uses to which a grill is normally put. If it is set up for barbecuing - 210-250*F - the fire grate must be raised or the meat grill lowered for satisfactory broiling (grilling). Likewise, a medium position must be reached for roasting (275-450°F).
4. They are seriously deficient in the portability aspect and they are ALWAYS built in the wrong location.
5. It is normally difficult to replenish the coals and removal of the ashes is the pits.
If, after all those caveats and emptors, you still want to build a brick barbecue pit, I probably have the largest collection of designs outside the library of congress. If you decide that you really need to do some serious penance, describe for me the intended use, size, location, your skill levels, bankroll, and fax number, I'll choose a few and send them to you.
Meanwhile, your library may have some old copies of SUNSET's "Barbecue Book." They used to have a brick pit or two that seemed better than their other information which seemed to have come from women's magazine food editors.
I must say in their defence that brick barbecue pits, with all their deficiencies, do make beautiful and useful flower planters.