A Practical Way To Have a Smoker – With Your Old Filing Cabinet

Filing Cabinet Smoker

The start of the summer holidays is widely regarded as the unofficial kickoff to the backyard grilling season. But the calendar is becoming increasingly irrelevant as our shared love of all things grilled and smoked becomes more of a year-round obsession  – even in regions that experience cold winters!

That’s probably why there are lots of smokers and even more plans to make one. But how many are conversation starters like this one??? Old filing cabinets are easy to get hold of – often for free! So, if you’ve ever wanted to have your very own smoker you will surely love this idea.

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Analog Electric Smoker with 3 Smoking Racks
  • Built-in temperature gauge
  • Temperature control is easy with analog dial
  • Wood chip tray slides out for easy ash removal
  • Three chrome-coated smoking racks
  • 1,500-watt heating element for even, consistent smoking

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05/15/2022 01:01 am GMT

The digital era has indeed taken away the need for a lot of the common items we used to have back in the ’90s. And though many people and businesses still do need filing cabinets, there has been a decrease in demand for this furniture. Just take a trip to your local thrift stores, or search up Craigslist or Gumtree and you won’t have a hard time finding a couple of these units! Maybe you’ve already got one at home storing moldy old papers that should have been thrown out years ago!

Yes – filing cabinet paints s can contain some hazardous chemicals, but there are paint removers and spray paints for grills that you can use to make your DIY smoker safe.

How to remove paints from your old filing cabinet?

  • Wash the filing cabinet with soap and water
  • Wipe all parts of the filing cabinet with a cleaning solution, then dry it with a piece of fabric.
  • Take out first the loose paints with a cutter or any removing tool, then use paint thinner for the remaining paints that are hard to remove. Remember to use a piece of fabric and gloves when using paint thinners.
  • Using a paintbrush, spread the paint remover on all parts of the filing cabinet, and leave it for five minutes to absorb (Check the paint remover instructions written on the bottle or box of the product, to ensure how many minutes before it is absorbed). If the paint looks crumpled, then it is ready to be pulled off. 
  • Again, use a cutter or any removing tool to get rid of the remaining paint. Add more paint remover if necessary.
  • Lastly, wash the filing cabinet thoroughly with a sponge, soap and water or a cleaning solution. Remove any residues. Let it dry. And now you can start making your own DIY smoker!
Filing Cabinet Smoker

What are the materials needed to make a smoker out of an old filing cabinet?

We say this is one relatively easy DIY smoker project that anybody can do. You’re not only helping reduce trash from the landfill, but you’ll also end up with some delicious meals on your dinner table! So stop filing paper and start filing a few epicurean delights :D!!!

You’ll need the following materials and tools to turn your old filing cabinet into an effective smoker.



  • Hack Saw
  • Drill
  • Pliers
  • Screw Driver
  • Tin Snips
  • Hammer
  • Grommet/Punch Press
  • Miter Saw

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