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Displaced Texan 04-23-2014 12:27 PM

Another UDS question
I am about to start constructing my first UDS and have a question: Is the water pan necessary or even useful? I've been reading the forums and it seem like most people use them. I would rather just use a diffuser and not worry about the water if I don't need to.

I will post some pics of my smoker when I have it done, and will even try to keep a worklog.

Thanks in advance,

The Displaced Texas

chunkylatinlover 04-23-2014 12:29 PM

You don't need a water pan a diffuser well work great to distribute heat.

ClintHTX 04-23-2014 12:31 PM

Honestly, you don't need either one of them. Definitely no water pan but you can use a diffuser if you feel it's necessary. Try it with and without and see what you like best. I like the juices from whatever I'm smoking to hit the charcoal and STEAM!

ITBFQ 04-23-2014 12:34 PM

I do not use a water pan in mine, either. I have a diffuser that I use (two foil pans filled with lava rocks and covered with foil) that goes on the bottom (third) rack. Easy clean up and easy to remove if I don't want to use it.

Bagman 04-23-2014 12:34 PM

No water pan or diffuser for me.

Tricky 04-23-2014 12:35 PM

Part of why I like my UDS is the simplicity, and having to add a water pan to the setup would make it too complicated for me. ;)

I don't use a water pan, and only occasionally have used a pizza-pan-with-holes-in-it heat diffuser.

Fwismoker 04-23-2014 12:37 PM

No water..ever

My logic as to use a diffuser is drippings still hit the coals and temps even out from the center to the edge so why not?

SmittyJonz 04-23-2014 12:44 PM


Originally Posted by Tricky (Post 2894556)
to add a water pan to the setup would make it too complicated for me. ;)


I run a water pan.

HookedOnQ 04-23-2014 12:46 PM

I dont use anything and it works great. The uds is supposed to be simple no need to complicate it with a water pan.

Fwismoker 04-23-2014 12:52 PM

Water doesn't add moisture to the meat

UDS are easy to maintain temps with out water

.... so the only reason left to use water is because you want to burn more charcoal and who doesn't want to use more fuel? :icon_smile_tongue:

Bludawg 04-23-2014 12:55 PM

A UDS with a diffuser is like a training wheels on a tricycle ya just don't need it. Might as well save your time and energy and buy an ECB for less money as you will have more in a UDS with a water pan the same effects.

Bludawg 04-23-2014 12:57 PM


Originally Posted by SmittyJonz (Post 2894570)

I run a water pan.

yeah but your Ma dropped ya on your head a few times when you was a Wee lad so we tend to over look it:laugh:

Beentown 04-23-2014 03:28 PM

I have used both and prefer just a catch pan. The water pan cooks always took longer with no flavor help. Water did seem to make the smoke ring brighter. Maybe it was just more nitrates in the rub?

Bbq_lover 04-24-2014 07:33 PM

I made one for myself, and I use a holey pizza pan as a diffuser. I made 2 others for family and just tell them to use a throw away half restaurant pan with water or just as a catch for drippings. It all works well.

SmokerKing 04-24-2014 07:36 PM

no water pan
diffuser yes

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