The outdoor cookout has become a common summertime tradition. For fans of juicy, slow cooked meats, you cannot beat an outdoor barbecue Even though numerous companies produce outdoor barbecue grills, a homemade outdoor barbecue can be an elegant and useful addition to any backyard. By using a simple brick-and-mortar design, you too can have an outdoor barbecue up and running in no time.
Choose a base site for your outdoor barbecue. If a cement base or patio is not available to build the barbecue on, you will need to do it yourself. Construct a wooden framework, measuring 60-by-90 inches and about 6 inches high. The amount of wood that you will need is entirely dependent on the size of your grill. Secure the framework with wood screws. On level ground, fill the framework with cement. When the cement has dried, remove the framework.
Lay the initial layers onto the base patch. Apply a layer of mortar and begin laying the bricks in rows, pressing them evenly and firmly into the mortar, with a one-half inch spacing between for mortar. Scrape away any extra mortar from the sides of the brick after laying. Use a hand level to check your work as you go. Your brick rectangle should mostly cover the base, leaving roughly a brick's width on all sides. Build the rectangle up in layers until it is at about 6 inches from knee level.
Make walls around the back and sides of your barbecue. Continue mortaring and laying bricks in a wall on the three sides until they are four bricks high. Leave a single brick missing on the third layer on the back wall as an air-intake hole.
Install holding bolts for supporting the actual grill surface. Start on the left side with a half brick on the end, laying a steel bolt on top of the lower brick layer between the between that and the next brick so that only a third of the bold is stick out from the wall. Install a second bolt on the left wall, near to the back wall. Place matching bolts on the opposite wall. Apply more layers of brick on the walls until they reach chest level.
Apply a layer of mortar against the inside walls of the grill. Spread it lightly and evenly, smoothing it over the surface with the trowel and then lightly brush the mortar surface with a paint brush for a nice texture. This mortar layer will protect and strengthen the brick surfaces against high grilling heat.
Spray the bricks with water the night before using. Without spraying, the porous bricks will not bind well with the mortar. Press a small length of pipe into the mortar creases. This will give a professional concave look to your masonry work. Install multiple holding bolts at different heights in the wall. Different levels can offer different cooking speeds.
Check local laws concerning barbecue pits to be certain your project adheres to building codes of your community.