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How do you build a barbecue pit?

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Quick Answer

Building a barbecue pit requires several phases: choosing an appropriate site, leveling the site, replacing the top soil and assembling the cinder block pit with a roof. Build your own wood-fired barbecue pit for under $300 in as little as a day's worth of time.

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Full Answer

Choosing an appropriate site is the important first step in building your own barbecue. Locate a spot that's 80 inches long and 48 inches wide, and make sure the spot is far enough away from any structures. Use a shovel and rake to level out the site, and lay out cinder blocks in a rectangle that's five blocks long and two blocks wide. Place a 2-inch by 4-inch stake in each corner, remove the brinks, excavate the top 4 to 6 inches of top soil for the area within the stakes, and refill the pit with masonry sand. Masonry sand creates an inflammable base for your pit and absorbs grease drippings.

Build the barbecue by laying out your cinder blocks in the same pattern you did before laying the top soil, but remove the two blocks used for width from the side you intend to make the front of your pit. The front opening is used to place fresh charcoal and wood inside with a shovel or branch while cooking. Add a second layer of cinder blocks, lay a 48-inch by 80-inch sheet of expanded metal on top and stack two more layers of blocks on top of that. Finally, place two 4-foot by 4-foot steel sheets over the top as a roof. Make sure the roof sheets have a little bit of overlap, and finish the barbecue by laying a 2-foot by 4-foot steel sheet over the open end of the pit.

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