We’re not actually sure that it’s a good idea at all, but it’s got a heck of a lot of style; [Morgan]’s barbecue grill is turbocharged. Literally.
Keeping with the automotive theme, a serve-motor-driven throttle from a Ford Mustang serves as a (naturally-aspirated) air intake, and a Honda Civic manifold delivers it to the grill. But when he really needs to turn up the heat, a 360 watt fan can force-feed the fire.
The reason this is on Hackaday, however, is that the fan and the throttle are all under the control of an ESP8266 buried underneath it all. [Morgan] has even written a web app to control it all from a cell phone, and included presets with absurd automotive names or accelerometer control over the turbo. Check out the functionality in the videos below.
If it were us, we’d take on the problem of automating the grill next, although we’re not sure how we’d keep up the grill’s fantastic automotive aesthetic. But cars are basically robots these days, anyway, right? Why not add some temperature sensors to the “ECU”? After that, it’s a simple matter of engineering to tweak grilling and roasting temperatures to achieve optimal results. It’s what VW would do!
How hot does your grill need to be? Are you also forging steaks? Chime in with your culinary comments!
71 thoughts on “Here’s The Turbocharged BBQ Grill You’ve Been Waiting For”
It’s a supercharger not a turbocharger. Super chargers use mechanical means to power the blower. Turbo charger uses exhaust gases to power the blower. It’s not as if an actual turbocharger part is being used in this setup. It’s just pipes, throttle valve, and an inline axial fan.
“Forced induction” is most accurate.
Forgive my ignorance but by looking at the picture it appears to simply be a high powered fan. It does not resemble any supercharger or turbo charger I’ve ever seen. Also, “Forced induction” in reference to ICE requires something to compress the air. This fan doesn’t look capable of doing any such thing.
0.1 inch of water static pressure counts! :-D
Any old fan compresses the air, which is why the air then moves away. I think “forced induction” is better to describe this setup than “turbo/super-charged”, even if pro-level forced induction forges are at a whole other level.
Surely it’s supercharged rather than turbocharged? Either way the fan sound perfect for getting it started. Probably a little much whilst cooking.
@0xfred and @Jonathan: Mea culpa! Despite having owned a turbo (car, not grill) for years, I didn’t know that it had to be exhaust-gas powered.
That said, the OP has a “rolling coal” (tee-hee) mode that puts the fan on super-low for use while actually cooking stuff.
I think you meant to say “while actually burning stuff” as most cooks desire moderate but stable temperatures while cooking.
Good steaks need to be seared at extremely high temperature. World famous steak houses sear their steaks at over 1000 degrees F(over 500 C).
Aren’t You mistaken by a crematorium?
Hmm ed, that raises the consideration that the corpse in such crematorium scenario might be consumed far more quickly ie With far better thermal & oxygenation distribution for a faster burn if it were tossed, batted, poked, prodded & rotated rather than (at first) seared… Eek – think I prefer to give my bio energy back to worms which someone can use for fishing bait :shrug:
For the barbiecue maybe a thermoelectric stack under the fire box to produce electricity to keep the (tossed)
salad cool in readiness for the visitors, nice place to chill the Chardonnay too…
That is absolutely true, world famous steak houses broil their steaks at very high temps for very little time, the actual cooking is finished when the steak gets pulled out and put on a plate. Kind of like a burn continues in your body even after you have taken the heat source out. Peter Luger steak house broils all their steaks. For $75bux for a low end steak you taste the meat not the heat. :)
> The reason this is on Hackaday, however, is that the fan and the throttle are all under the control of an ESP8266 buried underneath it all.
Seriously? This (the fan + manifold + BBQ) is a really cool hack on its own. I wouldn’t have realised it had to have a microcontroller to qualify for HaD inclusion.
About to post the same thing.
An advertisement for the new ESP32 or an article about redefining the SI unit for Ampere are less of a hack.
Anyone who has burnt their fingers on a log stove would probably appreciate how useful one of these could be for indoor heating- I’d certainly like the ability to stoke up a log fire by twiddling my phone rather than having to kneel down on a tiled hearth and get soot all over myself.
Yah, I was thinking the same thing. I’m not putting down the ESP8266 but this would still be just as interesting of a hack if he controled it some other way. What was the author trying to say there? It just sounds like a validation of all the “it’s only here because they used an Arduino” complaints only now ESP is the new AVR.
Not as cool as Colin Furze’s Turbaque :
this is fine but the one at the top is just going to cover all the food in wood ash.
Ahh man… The title and picture fooled me. I thought this was gonna be one of Colins’ projects.
Colin has already done this.
:-) Thought the same! Needs more jet to be a Furze project though.
Moar Air=Moar Heat, Moar Heat = Moar Meat, Meat Good so this Giood!
Heh, could have a definition of BBQ as follows… The application of far too much fire, to far too much meat, to assist in the absorption of far too much beer.
You say this like it’s a bad thing…
:-) while this is definitely a nice thing .
why is this being referred to as a turbo when it is a throttle body? neat idea yeah but not a turbo.
because behind the throttle body there is an electric fan for forced air induction (inb4 supercharged, not turbocharged)
If you have a spare Scuba tank you can always set up an Inducer Air Motion Transformer but, with 230Bar that might be a bit too much unless you have a sturdy pressure regulator. Easier would be a cheap acetylene regulator with a regular 90psi cheapie home compressor, still pretty effective for all sorts of chemical engineering flow/reaction sub-systems…
Why not just use the regulator that comes with the home compressor?
Because its best left as part of the compressor as in many workshops its a regulated tool not meant to be savaged
for parts but, you can buy an ex acetyline regulator for the lower pressure you need just fine without stepping on regs…
Very cool. Our barbecue is a kitchen sink with a bunch of holes in it – hook a hair dryer (with heater removed so it can run off 12V) up to a pipe and blow air through the plug hole. Ready to cook in no time. Not nearly as aesthetic as this version though
Yours is even cooler. I would recommend putting a fan blade on a garbage disposal underneath so as not to loose any aesthetics. You should write it up and submit it to HaD. Did you use an aluminum or porcelain covered cast iron sink. To make the holes did you use: A) a drill. B) a rifle. or C) a shotgun. If a rifle was used you could explain how you calculated the proper angle of trajectory so as not to ricochet off the sink and flatten a tire on any nearby homes. And do not forget the obligatory Arduino, toss one under a rib, wing or hoof and when it s nothing but pins and traces “supper is served”.You could title it “The best BBQ two states east of Texas”.
It’s a very cool idea!
Run it too hot and it’s turbocharred (or supercharred).
Ok, Ok, so it says Turbo. Nobody complains about the advertising industry when they slap Turbo on everything. Turbo Mouthwash. Turbo Dish Soap, Turbo Bill Pay, Turbo Colon Cleanse. Other words to watch for are ‘extreme’, ‘Signature’. and ‘Inspired’. At least there was no confusion on wether it blows or sucks, this one blows. Blows air that is.
Turbo Colon Cleanse would of course have some direct relationship with exhaust gasses.
Hmm & here was I thinking such causal relation was perfectly well designed in re gaseous emissions (whether a god, ID,
evolution, FSM etc) – even if occasionally accompanied by minor suspended delitrium even whether soilds or fine liquid
drops – all subject to Hepa filters built into modern underwear – have we checked that recently, ie Lets make sure all
underwear is Hepa regulated – especially to suburbs whos demographic indicates high spice/chilli ingestion… :D
Ok, I’m not the only one that calls their tighty-whiteys “fart filters”. :P
No, wait, I mean, I wear boxers, yah thats it.
I think maybe you are the only one… but 5 minutes later I’m still chuckling.
To make this project I used a lot of various skills (mechanic, electronic, programming, photography…) and the only thing which seems important is the definition of a turbo! XD.
This is the internet after all.
Love it , it looks more like a turbo charger than a super charger.
Super chargers as others have mentioned are traditionally mechanically driven from the crank
Turbos are driven by exhaust
This one is electric driven so maybe it’s ELECTROcharged
No still a supercharger… Much less powerful than a typical IC engine supercharger or turbocharger though.
In the formula 1 they even had/have a combination. A turbocharger with a brushless motor on the shaft, where they can put in extra energy from the hybrid system.
as someone who likes their meat rare, i just have to say this:
Hotter flame, faster searing, less cooking in the middle right?
Bingo… if you’re going to do it black and blue, this would be the ideal way to sear only the thinnest bit of surface. I’m drooling on my keyboard.
What about just painting the meat black on the surface using a propane torch? Thinnest skin of char and icy cold center. My wife objected to a shop torch in the kitchen until she saw famous chef “Ming” using the same kind in a recipe :p
Actually, the device commonly called a turbocharger is a turbo-supercharger, but that fell out of common usage a long time ago. (supercharger = device for shoving more air into the intake, turbo indicating that it’s driven by a turbine.)
Right, all turbos are superchargers but not all superchargers are turbos.
Actually there is a real device called a turbo-supercharger on some aircraft engines. It actually consists of a turbocharger(exhaust driven) section and an additional supercharger(shaft driven) section to make up for pressure loss through the intercooler.
Aren’t all stages in an aircraft engine exhaust driven? Or are you referring to being driven off the output shaft as opposed to a shaft only used to drive other parts of the engine?
Firstly i’m sorry if my english is not perfect. Thank you for your comments, it’s the first time one of my creations is published on hackaday and I’m very happy. When I read the comments, I can see some interrogations.
It is “turbocharged”, “supercharged” or other thing? For sure, it’s not the kind of turbo we can find in a car, the shape is different and is not designed for it. But finally, it is a turbine, so I think we can if we want call that a turbocharged device. Not agreed? I respect but it’s just my opinion :)
Then, why it can be considered like a hack? Because a water tank is built to contain water (and now it contain fire), the exhaust manifold did the opposite of its original function… The ESP8266 is just one piece of that :)
To conclude, I’ve seen the video of Collin some years ago. I love this guy because he is crazy and very talented. His BBQ its totally fancy but the meat is totally horrible… He is british and I’m french so please trust me about food :) The boost is perfect to make coal from oak wood that I cut. It’s funny but from there, when the coals are perfect, I simply use the throttle.
Thank you again!
It’s not a turbine. It’s a fan of an axial flow type. A turbine converts fluid flow and pressure into rotational energy. A fan converts rotational energy into fluid flow and pressure.
Someone’s having fun in the editor’s chair today with three posts in a row:
“The Internet of Meat”
“Here’s the Turbocharged BBQ You’ve Been Waiting For”
“Arduino Detects Pants on Fire”
I’m waiting for the ESP8266-linked fire extinguisher article:
“Fire Extinguisher Tweets Your Friends When The Party Finally Gets Out of Hand”
Challenge accepted :)
Crank it up and it would be easy to get a “Pittsburgh rare” steak!
Of course that cooking style was a hack by the early steel workers.
It needs NOX injection.
And a salutary wave to George Goble of Purdue, king of barbecue ignition.
That’s what im talking about !!! Need this bbq at home !!!!
ps: i wouldnt have put a Honda civic manifold but something more AMERICAN !!! :D
I’m agree with the idea! Initially, I wanted to use the manifold used by a big american engine, but the cost and the profile wasn’t fine. A compact 4-1 manifold is perfect!
I agree, sorry XD.
Is it wise to have a Li-Po Bat so close to a BBQ!!!
When the coals are very hot, you can put your hand everywhere on the stainless manifold. Just the pipes under the tank are hot. But I’m agree, put the lipo in a case may be better. :)
Look for the 2007 Youtube video, of engineers lighting a barbecue- with liquid oxygen.
Then imagine adding an injector system to this setup.
You are totally crazy!!! :)
How to ruin your food in 3.4 seconds
You must surely be a poor cook. In this case for sure you can ;)
Thank you for this very interesting comment.
I just wanted to comment to say how amazing this project is: It looks great (I really admire who can create a great hack, by also focusing on the aesthetics of the final result), has a touch of madness (come on, it has a fan from the turbo of a car engine, and a real throttle and manifold: how cool is that?), is controlled by custom electronics and a custom app. The project page features some pretty nice photography. And you can probably cook some nice steaks on it, since the “supercharged” fan is only needed to speed up the initial ignition. So wtf is wrong with you guys showing your enormous wisdom by repeating the bloody definition of turbocharger instead of praising the skills of this hacker? Great hack, Morgan, I’d really like to see it in action ;) Do not care about these boring commenters! Cheers
Thank you very much Macanever.
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