Read enough on this site about how to build a UDS, so I figured I should give it a shot. I've been wanting a bigger smoker for a while, and a barrel seemed like a great way to go since I don't have enough room in my garage for an offset.
Got the barrel off craigslist for $20. Took it out to my parents' place in the country to burn it out. Too bad the outside paint burned off, it was a really nice blue.
I got all the parts and a buddy of mine came over to weld together the charcoal basket. After I put it all together and seasoned it, tested it out on a rack of ribs.
A little darker than normal, but tasted pretty good.
Wanted to try something that would take longer to see how it held a temp, so I did a pork butt. It was a little cold out, so I used my wind screen to help keep some of the heat in.
All in all, I'm happy with how it turned out. Cooking a pastrami on it as I type this. The last little change I need to make is to cut a hole for all of my probes to go through. For now, I'm just using one of the small holes where a bolt for the upper grate would go, but that is a big pain to get 3 probes through.