Originally Posted by Richard_
should the charcoal basket be ?? and how far up from the charcoal should the cooking grates be ??
Yes Richard you will need a charcoal basket ! coals on the bottom of the drum might work but I would recommend a charcoal basket - and one that elevates the charcoal from the bottom 2 to 3 inches
ideally you want the lowest cooking grate 24 inches from the top of the charcoal grate << go back and re- read that many times thats 24 inches from the grate you elevated off the floor of the drum to hold your charcoal
so -- math class here --
if you elevated your charcoal off the bottom of the drum 2 7/8 inches and your charcoal grate is 1/8 in thick - the bottom of the lowest cooking grate would be 24 + 3 =27 inches from the bottom of the drum AS MEASURED FROM THE INSIDE
of course you will need to make the measurements and math for the parts and elevation you use