Wednesday, June 4, 2014

OSGP pt.3

I dug around a bit today looking for what kind of solenoid I need to use on a project like this, I'm still not sure. I did notice that several people have attempted and succeeded with this project, gas grill-->smoker. It would appear that gas grills really really want to become smokers.

This poor drill has yet to even drill a hole, and already it's been permanently disfigured.
After skimming though a few of the project pages, attempting to get some solenoid suggestions, I abandoned the idea of going in through the vent. I realized I could get closer to the center and all of my mounting problems would disappear; problems like, where the hell to put knobs, valves and other hardware that will melt . The condiment rack will make a damn fine box for mounting knobs,  arduino(s), lcd screen(preferably this one), and anything else that happens to need mounting. Its the obvious best choice.

This god damned drill bit was $20, and I could only find half inch shank, so I had to turn down bout half of it, lol fml. The chuck I use on my tailstock is 1/2". That's what makes having to modify it suck so bad. I would have used that drill bit in the lathe, as is, no doubt about it, I still will, as is, which is not as was.  I'll be damned if putting a 5/8" hole in something aint got the potential to get expensive.

First Things First
In the beginning there is no need to worry about a solenoid, arduino, code, or network capability etc. Until the burner is mounted where it will stay, and lights and burns with 100% reliability, I will not be moving on to anything, period. I also want to mount 4 thermistors or the K-type thermocouple I have. I don't have an amplifier IC, so I cant really mess with my thermocouple. Though I do think that's where it's at, considering it can cover a pretty big swath of grill and give you a nice average. The thermocouple can do a wider range of temperatures, from -450F to 2500F, in fact. The bad news is, the supporting hardware, ie the amplifier, needs to be tuned to your expected range. In other words, the thermocouple can take extremes of temperature, but that doesnt mean it'll just plug and play and give you an accurate reading on anything from -450F to 2500. The amplifier circuit you use to read the thermocouple must be built with your expected range of operation in mind. If that doesnt make any sense, look up how thermocouples work. The thermistors also only have a band of a couple hundred degrees where they give good data, but the ones I have, wont work above 300F, which sucks. The difference between the thermocouple and the thermistor is the thermocouple wont break for heating beyond it's limit, it just wont do your math right and will give you a bunk reading. I cant say that for a thermistor. I get the feel you can break a thermistor based on what it looks like.

To make it way easier on myself, I'm going to take the grill off the frame and have it set up down here, so I can work on it like I would a motorcycle on a lift. That way I can get under it, behind it, beside it, flip it, roll it etc. Its really a necessity since otherwise I would be working in full sun, and I do mean full. Not a single photon is spared out there.

Traveling Forward In Time......                                                  

Im set up indoors now, much better. I can comfortably get to any area of the grill I need to get to and I can work sitting down, which is not only nice, but pretty necessary for me. Here's my ghetto grill lift--
The grill sits in the crate I got my lathe in rather nicely. This worked out good--I can sit, I can easily slide the grill around, or flip it, or whatever.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                
Im not sure if Ill be able to mount the burner that low yet or not, but if I can, that's center. I read that at least one person uses a separate burner for the wood chips. It would be nice to have it like that, but I only have the one burner.

You can see this doesn't need much to be complete, Really just seal that top and its done, besides actually mounting things. Its easily big enough to hold that knob/valve assembly, the primary concern. There also should be no problem mounting one or more pcb's in there, lcd screen and anything else I may dream up. One idea I have that may seem a bit far fetched, but I believe its possible. That is to use part of the basket to hold wood chips that are somehow fed in to the grill to maintain smoke. More on this later.           


This is where I think I want the knob to be. At this point there are so many possibilities for the condiment basket, I cant decide. For now Ill just focus on getting a working burner installed.

Another view of where I think I want the knob. There is no telling what could happen with that condiment basket by the time its over with. I have so many different ideas at this point that picking one amid the noise and going with it is an impossible task. One the burner is set my best next move will be obvious, that's usually how it works.

I need ideas on how to check for fire. One person I saw used an gas sensor to sniff for gas. I guess that works, but I have some problems with it. I want to actually check for fire. Now, how?

I will update this post rather than make a new one, once I decide on some things and I commit to those ideas. I don't want to sound like a dick, but you guys are no help, at all.

Aww Yis
Just flipping the tray upside down changes everything.

That's almost perfect as is. I had a feeling looking at it put on upside down might give me some ideas, but  I didn't expect what I got. All the holes are great because they will let me dry fit switches or whatever pretty easy. I'm envisioning an aluminum plate that goes over the holy black face, once everything is fit where it will go.

I just laid the knob on there to see what it would look like. It's not attached. If I do it here, one thing that I will have to do is make like a universal joint between the knob and the valve assembly since they are designed to be connected with no angle. Not a big deal, if that's all I have to do to make everything fit right there, then Im in good shape.

I'm going to wrap this post up here. New post will be mounting stuff, drilling holes, sinking screws, drawing blood.

Stay tuned!


No comments:

Post a Comment