The Summer is coming, we hope. And there’s one crucial ingredient for a good Summer: a kick-arse barbecue. While you can buy cheap disposable bbqs from the supermarket, you know what happens, they always end up being a bit rubbish. Good barbecues are big, hot, and at a height you can stand comfortably at. This Summer, why not build your own for free using recycled bricks, barrels and anything else you can get your hands on. It’s surprisingly easy.
Here are 3 different ways you can make your own barbecue:
1. How to build a brick barbecue
The BBC’s gardener’s world has a great instruction tutorial on how to build your own brick barbecue. You can find bricks lying around pretty much everywhere, in skips (which if they’re outside you’re allowed to take from), on Gumtree (people give large heaps away for free) or on Preloved. Start by laying the first layer of bricks around the baking tray/grill so you know you have the size right. Mix your own cement (which you can buy cheaply again on Preloved) and put down a base layer, and then on top and between the first bricks. With the help of a spirit level and a paving slab for the top shelf, follow the BBC’s free tutorial and build yourself an excellent bbq for the Summer.
2. How to build an oil drum or barrel barbecue
This wonderful looking barbecue utilises a second-hand oil barrel which can often be found in farms or in disused contraction sites. Again, often you can find someone giving one away for free on Gumtree or if you have difficulty finding one for free, they cost about £10 on eBay (far, far cheaper than buying a real bbq!)
Instructables, our favourite DIY/how-to tutorial website, has an amazing tutorial on how to build your own oil drum barrel bbq. More complicated than the brick bbq, it requires certain tools to cut the metal (which you should simply hire for a day at a significantly reduced price) but with the finished product allowing you to close the lid to cook things like smoked trout, it’s definitely worth the investment.
3. Make your own fire BBQ pit
The easiest of them all, a fire bit bbq is simply made of bricks laid on top of each other in a circle of square (no concrete needed) with a charcoal fire in the middle. You then pop a big grill over the top once the fire has calmed down, and cook your barbecued meat and vegetables on top. To get your hands on some free tools and other things to help make the bbq pit, join the free StreetBank. A free network for local communities, there are over 30,000 members putting their stuff up on the site for others to borrow. Need a hedge-trimmer for a day? Borrow one.