Well, I learned a valuable lesson...read the entire thread before beginning constuction.
I read about 80 pages, skipped to the back and found the picture thread of how to build one and raced out find a drum. First one was a bit ( well perhaps more than a bit) rusty but it was only $10 so I brought it home and started gathering parts.
I was quickly informed by the wife,that she did not care what I did to it, she would not be eating out of a rusted out drum that I did not or could not tell what had ever been in it. This after the head shaking and eye rolling about why, when there are 3 variations of smokers and grills in the back yard would I need another.
So, read a few more pages, heard that you were safe with food products and found one that had vegetable oil in it with a red liner, much better shape, $25.00. I think there was some beer involved while I skimmed a few pages and it "appeared" all you had to do was burn the liner out...built a big fire with some pecan wood and get it so hot you could almost see through the drum with flames leaping out of the top. Well, as you all know...the liner was still there.
Came back read some more. Decided my time was a bit more valuable and I was not interested in as some one put it.."looking like a chimney sweep", upon completion. So, decided to purchase a brand new drum. $80.0
So, for drums alone, I'm a bit over the allocated budget...
Moral of the story is.. read all 129 pages, then start your build. I'll post pics upon completion.