I'm 'legal' now- what better place to start than the mother-of-all-UDS threads? Actually, that's how i found this site in the first place. What started all of this was finding a stainless steel drum a couple days ago, and I knew I wanted to build a smoker out of it. I've been looking for an SS drum for years! After hours of exhaustive research (did any one tell you guys that this thread is LONG?!) I've decided that a UDS is the direction I'll go. Tomorrow morning I'll start annoying the neighbors while I get the drum ready. Mine is a sealed head, so I'll start by cutting that off. I have some expanded plate to make a fire pit and grates out of. I'm still trying to decide on a lid. My Weber lid sorta fits, but it's a little small. I put a feeler out to Arctic about their SS grill lid. I've also found SS bowls and wok covers that are big enough.
I'm a tool and die maker by trade, so the actual building will be the easy part, once I gather my materials. I'm still tinkering with ideas to adjust the bottom vents. I might just make little swiveling doors with tension springs to hold them in place. I also thought about making an internal sleeve with holes that line up with the vent holes. I could turn the sleeve to adjust the vents. The ball valves are great, but I don't like it sticking out so far. Stay tuned......