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conroe85 02-13-2010 02:04 AM

new UDS build with pron
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Thought I would share a few prons of my new UDS. Fired it up Sunday for the game and smoked three slabs of BBR. Turned out great...sorry no pron of the Q :mad:!!!
Anyway, thought I would post a few of the build process.
Also had a few questions about the first cook. I had a lot of trouble keeping my temps low. I am using a digital thermo in the center and the thermo on the side at grate level. Even with all ccaps closed and ball valve mostly closed I was running 290-300 the whole time. I have about 22" between bottom of the basket and the top grate. I mixed Kingsford and lump..bout 10-12 lbs and put about 20 lit coals on top to start it up. Spiked as I thought when I took of the lid and never would settle. Could it be that I had too much lump maybe? Maybe should lower the basket some, but I only have about 3" to the bottom of my barrel.

hondad 02-13-2010 02:23 AM

nice build........ i would start with a few less lit coals, maybe 8 lbs of unlit, and be sure to catch the temperature on the way up. also try shutting down your intake a few minutes before removing lid, then waiting a few minutes after replacing lid before you open them back is tough to get the temp to drop after letting it spike, so best to avoid it as much as possible. keep are going to love that thing ! and again, nice drum!

sdb25 02-13-2010 02:46 AM

Drum looks just how it should!

Try this; 10 lit briquets added to your charcoal basket of briquets mixed with chunk hickory 2:1 by volume, and all intakes open. When temp at grill level hits 200, put on your meat. When grill level hits 210, close all but one intake. When grill level hits 225, close last intake 50%. Fine tune to keep temp 225-235. If it runs too hot in the center of the cooking surface, add a shield/diffuser. I like a perforated pizza pan, but there are a million options.

Good luck!

conroe85 02-13-2010 03:00 AM

if I added a diffuser, like a pizza pan, how and where do you put it? Do you make another rack just below the cooking grate? would I need to put in some more bolts below to set the pan on? Thanks for the ideas. Also, I just use the lump charcoal bought at the store...HD or grocery store...and some chunk wood with the Kinsford. Should I stick with the charcoal and chunk wood and leave out the lump?

grillfella 02-13-2010 03:06 AM

Nice looking uds. make me one now:-D

sdb25 02-13-2010 03:08 AM

My limited experience with lump is that it burns a bit hotter, and not as consistent at briquets. However, I'm sure there are people here that use only lump in their drums. They can help you if that is your preference. However, I think overall briquets are more forgiving with temperature control.

For the diffuser, you can use a pizza pan, a terra cotta saucer, an empty roasting pan, or even a grill covered with foil.

I use a perforated 16" pizza pan I picked up at target. I set it right on top of my charcoal basket. I have NO hotspots, and my fuel efficiency is not affected.

Good Luck!

conroe85 02-13-2010 03:13 AM

sorry bro but ya gonna have to get in line! everyone that has seen this thing has been blown away. Who would have known that a simple metal drum could make such awesome Q! I'm like a proud Dad with my new build. Love the site so much I became a paying member tonight. Money well spent for such good advise and helpful people.

conroe85 02-13-2010 03:18 AM

Thanks SDB I have a Target across the street...guess I know where I will be in the AM. I am not sold on lump, just thought it might make the charcoal keep burning better. One less bag to buy if you ask me. I thought about placing a diffuser right on top, was just afraid that it would choke out the fire a little too much. Guess I will have to experiment...practice makes perfect and I love to practice!!!

SmokinAussie 02-13-2010 03:20 AM

Very nice drum. Every thread I read about drums, there is a new Idea, new advice, positive comments. I just love these threads...

Captain Dave 02-13-2010 06:11 AM

How many coals you have lit have nothing to do with it. Temps are controled by how much air gets in, BUT once the temp runs away you'll have a hard time getting them back down. So catch them on the way up.

dudz 02-13-2010 09:35 AM

I use just lump and a perforated grill skillet to diffuse heat i have mine a few inches up from the for me

Rich Parker 02-13-2010 09:49 AM

Nice drum conroe!

The cruiser in the back was probably affecting your air flow or maybe you were napping and forgot to adjust the air valves as the temp came up or you just lit to many coals before placing them on top of the unlit. :biggrin:

Don't stress to much on temp and just take the meat off when its done. Some folks cook at 225 and other folks cook at 350 and both can produce amazing product.

BobBrisket 02-13-2010 10:56 AM

Oh snap.........first pic ever of a Drum getting arrested for being Ugly (at the beginning anyway!) That is one sweet looking drum!! And just like you said........."sorry bro but ya gonna have to get in line! everyone that has seen this thing has been blown away. Who would have known that a simple metal drum could make such awesome Q!"

Proof that the Drum is a bad arse cooker!! Welcome to the Drum Nation! I'm seeing some handcuff handles on that bad boy!

Quick note on temp control. Drums tend to run hotter as it is. But, I noticed that the ball valve is secured to a steel base that is then secured to the drum by four bolts. Give the flatness of the base and curvature of the drum, you may be getting air pulled in all around that area between the base and the drum. Maybe a hit of some high temp silicone around it. Those temps you were at is where I usually cook.

Pepo211 02-13-2010 11:43 AM

Great looking UDS!!!! Congrats on the build bro.....

CmdCtrl 02-13-2010 12:02 PM

awesome looking drum there Conroe.

Just wanted to mention, since no one else has recently, different brands of coals also burn differently. It's kinda obvious but it's part of the dialing in process I guess.

Other than that, perhaps less lit coals to start. Try a few more runs before you do the diffuser. Good luck, great build!!

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