Ken Barger, a nice gentleman in Panama, emailed me a while back with some questions about building a parrilla-smoker hybrid. Since I had never built a parrilla before, I could only offer a few tips and suggestions from what I have learned over the years in addition to some of the specs from my parrilla. Well, Ken has finally finished his parrilla and, wow, did he do an excellent job at that! As you can see in the photos after the jump, in addition to cooking by means of a typical brick-concrete parrilla design, he can attach a rotisserie bar or a removable smoking box when needed.
Update: Due to some file compatibility issues, I failed to see the text that Ken originally attached to his photos. Issue resolved and the text has been added.
Update 2: Added some drawings.
The fire is usually started and maintained at the right side. When the coals are ready they are spread below the cooking grate at the left, the grilling area. A small amount of coals are kept at the right so that, if needed, extra wood or coals can be added to prepare for later use.
Underneath, the two red 30 gal plastic containers are for storing hard and medium hardness charcoal. To the left is a chimney, and an area for storing dried hardwood for smoking and cooking.
Dimensions of grill:
Total: 86″ height x 66″ width
Grill Surface: 36″ length x 24″ width
Min. Lowered Grate Surface: 2″ from bottom
Max. Raised Grate Surface: 27″ from bottom
Close up view of the cooking grate: As you can see there are two cables, located at the center on each side of the grate. The grate is balanced by 2, 3 inch angle iron guides attached at the center on each side of the grate and run along the sides of the two rectangular beam. A 3 link chain is welded on the grate at the center and is connected to a cable that runs parallel alongside the rectangular beams. At the top, the cables are attached to pulleys. A ½ inch steel bar slides through each pulley and also the rectangular beams.
View from the side:
A lockable hand crank on the outside allows you to adjust the height of the cooking grate.
Lighting and Exhaust:
There are two switches.
One is for the two adjustable overhead lights for evening grilling. Each light can be adjusted to ones liking; one on the cooking grate and the other over the extra wood or coals to the right.
The other switch is for the exhaust fan which is located inside the vent at the top.
When using the rotisserie, the cooking grate is moved to the top.
Motor: Stainless steel casing gear rotisserie motor, load weight up to 50 lb test.
Bar: Stainless steel 1/2″ diameter x 4 ft length. The bar is 17″ from the bottom.
Forks: Stainless steel heavy duty, 4-prong meat forks.
For smoking or indirect cooking, a metal box is positioned on top of the cooking grate.
Material: 16 gauge steel
Dimensions: 30″ length x 20″ wide x 11″ height.