Who would be a brick layer, like so many things in life it looks so easy until you actually try. Now its done, and I can safely say there will never be another ( although I do have a plan for a proper bread oven but that’s another story).
As you can see I have built the brick enclosure for the smoker which stands at about 1.2mts high with a cast reinforced concrete roof to create some thermal mass. All the bricks were reclaimed from some old garden structures we had in the garden. Therefore we have just had to pay for sand and cement + 3 ventilation bricks, all of which totalled about £50, which I reckon is pretty good for a project of this size. I did look at some You Tube videos where folk had made smokers in old Oil Drums or filing cabinets to save money. Putting aside would you want to eat food from an old oil drum, the cost has been modest to create a quality unit. The most expensive part of the whole project at £35 has been a couple of barbecue grills to put the food on. By the time its finished the total cost will be in the region of £200 plus sweat, to make a real smoker. Even if you brought the bricks it would be under £300, for a smoker which probably if you wanted to, would be big enough to earn a living from. Just think of the bacon you could make, my mouths watering already.
The downside was it took a day and a half by the end of which I was exhausted. If I ever get as far as the bread oven I will make sure I have a builders mate at least then I will have someone to mix the mortar.
The last component I have to build is the door and door frame. As this is designed to be both a hot and cold smoker I cant make a wooden frame and door its all going to be steel construction, so weather and work permitting that’s next weekend. After that I have people lining up to sample the inaugural smoking. Now if I was really clever I would ply them with hot smoked food, cold white wine, supermarket bread, and when sated ask the question ” how much better would that have been be with hot crusty bread from a wood fired bread oven” and who could turn down the chance to be the builders mate. That’s a plan