I have an old brick coal bunker around which decking has been laid. I intend on converting it into a BBQ, but have not attempted a similar project before. I have a plan, and the question is whether it is feasible.

Step 1: Create a rail system to hold a drum BBQ in the centre of the bunker

  • This rail system will use oval chrome rail fixed to the drum replacing the as-bought legs
  • The rail will then slot into oval sockets, such that the BBQ can be lifted out if it requires cleaning or replacement

Step 2: Build the side walls of the bunker up to prevent sparks from damaging the fence

  • Use similar bricks and mortar to create a 1m high planar wall on each side
  • Not sure if any reinforcement will be required

Step 3: Create a surface around the BBQ drum

  • Currently considering stainless steel sheet with a cut out for the drum
  • Use timbers to brace on either end, resting on bricks front and back
  • Not sure if more bracing will be required
  • Not sure if it will require fixing - tempted to let gravity and the drum hold it in place, in case it needs lifting

Step 4: Some sort of roof?

  • Probably wooden slats over the top of the two brick walls, just to keep off the worst of the rain
  • BBQ will be covered anyway, when not in use

Eager to find out if I am wasting my time, or if this could be a good project over the next few weekends to prep for summer.

  • Be careful with charcoal grills over or near the wood deck. It only takes one misplaced ember, and the fire could start hours or days later. – Tyson Apr 16 '19 at 12:39
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    Good shout, thanks @Tyson - I've got a tap right behind the bunker, so I'll make sure to give the area a dousing after use – Jim Ashworth Apr 16 '19 at 13:12
  • based on how much i wouldn't want the thing to tip over when lit, or ever, i wouldn't leave it unsecured. A roof would help maintain steady temps when slow-cooking in rain. I wouldn't box the grill in too much, you want wind to be available if needed to increase the temp in the grill. Stone or brick-like pavers would be cheaper and less effort to build-up the non-weight-bearing portions than actual bricks. – dandavis Apr 16 '19 at 18:35
  • @dandavis Fair point - I'll make sure the surface can't tip the BBQ if it slides. Grill itself will only be "boxed" on two sides, with about a foot clearance on either end, so plenty of airflow. Good call on the pavers - only weight they might need to hold is small shelves for condiments, if I get around to it. – Jim Ashworth Apr 17 '19 at 9:33

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