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HDM Smokers - Building a Texas Legacy with a Torchmate Plasma Table  


HDM Smokers - Growing a Fabrication Business with Torchmate

HDM Smokers is a small metal fabrication business located just 30 miles west of Houston in Brookshire, Texas. HDM Smokers started with a vision born from years of being part of the BBQ community. Slade Dinn, co-founder and pitmaster, saw a need for smokers in Texas after learning how long other companies were taking to build and deliver them. This ignited the flame to open HDM Smokers. Soon after, Slade brought Glen Henderson and Paul Mata aboard to officially start the company. Paul Mata, part owner, Chief Operations Manager and Designer of HDM Smokers, has been fabricating since his middle school shop class. Paul then enrolled in a welding course in high school, and began welding railroad bridges right after graduation.

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After five years of welding, he became a high precision machinist for the next seven years. He continued to expand his skills by eventually becoming a quality control manager. Paul’s experience continues to help HDM Smokers thrive. They specialize in the design and fabrication of large offset smokers and live fire starters and planchas. HDM Smokers design their smokers to cook with flavor while maintaining quality that will last generations.

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The Beginning Wasn’t Easy

HDM Smokers first opened in January 2022. Like many businesses, it had a rough start. Paul told us, “Four and a half months went by before our first sale. Prior to being open, we were already in the works of purchasing a Torchmate 4510 table. Before the table was delivered, we were handcutting 100 percent of smokers with a regular handheld plasma cutter. The process was expensive and time consuming.

Before agreeing to start the business with Slade and Glen, I told them I am only in if we buy the Torchmate machine. I knew it would be necessary for success and to separate us from competitors. Like Henry Ford once said, ‘If you need a machine and do not buy it, you will find that you pay for it without getting it.’ For the first few weeks of owning the Torchmate, I had to learn its personality. Thankfully, Torchmate support is very helpful and quick to respond. At first, I called to get help with settings, to learn when to change consumables and other user errors I caused. I had a good experience each time I’ve had to call Torchmate support.

Eventually, we overcame the growing pains of opening a new business and conquered the Torchmate table. Another favorite quote of mine, by Winston Churchill, ‘‘Perfection is the enemy of progress.’ When we started it wasn’t perfect, we just got moving and eventually gained momentum. Once I turned on the Torchmate and saw its software and first cut, I knew it would be a game changer for the business. I knew success and profit would follow.” Now in December 2022, HDM Smokers is consistently delivering high quality smokers by working smarter and faster.

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Taking Over the Texas BBQ Smoker Industry with Torchmate

“With the help of our Torchmate, we will have built and sold twenty-one smoker pits to finish the 2022 year. All but a couple of those smokers were made in the second half of the year.” HDM Smokers has progressed exponentially. With the Torchmate table, the business is much more efficient.

The smokers are all built custom, but with select dimensons to streamline the fabrication process. “One of many things I love about the Torchmate 4510 is how intuitive the software is, especially the onboard nesting. We had so much scrap before purchasing the table, the nesting saves so much money by reducing scrap. Between the scrap, time and labor savings, the Torchmate has already paid for itself,” Paul said. He has designed every smoker and part from scratch on the Torchmate CAD software.


Paul enjoys taking his laptop home so he can design on Torchmate CAD from the comfort of his house. He learned everything about the sofware by watching our online library of tutorial videos called Torchmate Academy. “I completed the chapters online and applied the information in the real world on the machine. It was easy transitioning to the machine itself,” said Paul.

Now, HDM Smokers is becoming the preferred business in Texas for smoker pits. Their Torchmate runs at least three days each week to keep up with demand. Thank you to HDM Smokers and Paul for telling their story. On behalf of everyone at Torchmate, we are thankful for each of our customers’ business and are happy we are contributing to your successes.

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Check out HDM Smokers social channels. On their Website, they display a wide variety of custom smokers, LiveFire starters and planchas. Customers can place orders for custom or personalized projects. Additionally, HDM Smokers frequently posts new content on all of their social media platforms. Visitors will find behind the scenes photos and videos about how the company manufactures such unique products. To view their social content, place an order or for more information about the business, please visit their YouTube, Facebook, Instagram & Website pages.

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