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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 09-29-2009, 08:12 PM   #4246
phDog
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ok brethren I found a possible alternative to building a coal basket yourself; a 14" x 6" double mesh round fry basket. ordered mine last night for less than 10 bucks here - http://www.kitchensupplydirect.com/THU-SLFB006.html

i figure i'll make some legs out of bolts and give it a whirl next weekend. i'll let you know how it works.
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Unread 09-29-2009, 08:24 PM   #4247
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Please do...curious to see how it works
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Unread 09-29-2009, 08:53 PM   #4248
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Quote:
Originally Posted by phDog View Post
ok brethren I found a possible alternative to building a coal basket yourself; a 14" x 6" double mesh round fry basket. ordered mine last night for less than 10 bucks here - http://www.kitchensupplydirect.com/THU-SLFB006.html

i figure i'll make some legs out of bolts and give it a whirl next weekend. i'll let you know how it works.
I think the mesh is going to be too close to allow the ash to fall through. You might try and cut out some of the wire to make the holes bigger (think 3/4" expanded metal) then I don't see why it won't work.

Let us know how it turns out.
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Unread 09-29-2009, 09:20 PM   #4249
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MuddHonda View Post
Can order a 22" grill $40 & grate $23 +$15-20 S&H,or but whole bbq for $129.99 and have a dome lid but I wanted a cheap smoker. So did any one use expanded metal 3/4".
I got my 22" grill and 18.5" grate at OSH for $25 and they werent even on sale.
But yeah go for 3/4 expanded if thats cheaper. you'll need just under 4 feet to wrap around a 18.5 charcoal grate to make your basket.
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Unread 09-30-2009, 04:03 PM   #4250
MuddHonda
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I got the fire basket but did anyone use expanded metal for a grill? I thought about covering it with foil and pokeing my finger through it where the holes are then when I clean up just remove the foil?
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Unread 09-30-2009, 04:08 PM   #4251
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I have a line on barrels that have had barite (water based drilling) mud in them. Would a trip through the car wash and a good burn in make these acceptable or should I keep looking?
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Unread 09-30-2009, 05:18 PM   #4252
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Well, I finally got through the entire thread (stupid work getting in the way). I've got a pretty good idea of how I want to do it.

1. 3-3/4" holes 3" from the bottom for intake
2. magnets for control
3. 8-1/2" holes in the lid for exhaust (unless I can find a dome lid)
4. cheap 12" thermometer from wal-mart

I haven't settled on a charcoal grate yet but it will have to be a no-weld design because I'm a no-weld guy... I'm also gonna have to find me a drum still, I thought I had a line on one but the guy didn't have any more...
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Unread 09-30-2009, 06:08 PM   #4253
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fat_bastard View Post
Well, I finally got through the entire thread (stupid work getting in the way). I've got a pretty good idea of how I want to do it.

1. 3-3/4" holes 3" from the bottom for intake
2. magnets for control
3. 8-1/2" holes in the lid for exhaust (unless I can find a dome lid)
4. cheap 12" thermometer from wal-mart

I haven't settled on a charcoal grate yet but it will have to be a no-weld design because I'm a no-weld guy... I'm also gonna have to find me a drum still, I thought I had a line on one but the guy didn't have any more...

Other than this you're on the right track. You are going to need 4 at least at 3/4" I would suggest 4 1" or 3 1 1/4". You might not think so now, but you're gonna want to cook a chicken in there sooner or later.
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Unread 09-30-2009, 06:37 PM   #4254
MuddHonda
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I was thinking again so that means trouble, but for a support for the basket I though about making a cross or X from angle iron pointing up and set it on the nipples so air could travel to the center? Also where would you guys put a thermo with a 1" probe in respect to the valve?
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Unread 09-30-2009, 09:02 PM   #4255
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Finally found some unlined drums here on Long Island. $20each reconditioned. It took me forever searching for drums here locally. I was a day away from buying a new one from Grainger for $150. The one I have now has the red liner in it and 3 6hr burns later and wire wheel still the farkin liner. Will post pics this weekend of the build and the final outcome.
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Unread 09-30-2009, 10:46 PM   #4256
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MuddHonda View Post
I was thinking again so that means trouble, but for a support for the basket I though about making a cross or X from angle iron pointing up and set it on the nipples so air could travel to the center? Also where would you guys put a thermo with a 1" probe in respect to the valve?
I have thought of doing something similar but have not gotten around to it yet. Let us know how it works and if it makes a difference.

Your thermo with 1" probe won't be very accurate. If you can get a deep fry thermometer (Wal-Mart $9) with a 12" stem it will read much better and give you temps at the center of the grate. It can be 30° or more cooler at the outside edges where your 1" therm is located. To mount the deep fry thermometer drill a hole in the center of a 3/8" bolt and attach it to your drum just below the grate. Slide the probe in to cook and remove it to take out the fire basket.
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1 Weber 22.5 with Rib-O-Lator & [/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=Verdana][SIZE=2][COLOR=Blue][COLOR=Navy][COLOR=DarkOrange][B]Orange[/B][/COLOR] Thermopen[/COLOR][/COLOR][/SIZE][/FONT][FONT=Verdana][SIZE=2]
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Unread 10-01-2009, 01:29 AM   #4257
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If that was the only thermo I had, I think I would put it in the lid. If it was a flat lid I would put it in the middle of my circle of holes. If you have a chimney, I would put the thermo midways between the chimney and the furthest edge of the lid.

Whatever you decide, all you have to do is clock it. Put an oven thermometer on the grate in the middle and write down what the outer one is. Then open the lid and check the one on the grate and write that down beside it. If you are going to use two grates, put an oven thermometer on each. On second thought, if using two grates, put the thermometer in between them on the side.

When you season the drum, do this every hour to give the drum time to adjust. Do it every so often afterward during a cook and anytime you calibrate your thermometers if you want to be really sure. Do this no matter where you put the outboard thermometer or what length the probe. As long as you do this, no matter the difference in your outboard thermometer and actual center of grate temps, you can accurately figure the temp inside without opening the lid.

You can use any type of thermo you want, and you'll have the added benefit of no one being able to cook on your cooker quite as successfully as you do.
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Unread 10-01-2009, 11:16 AM   #4258
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On the dial thermo with the 12 inch stem, I think the best placement is to have the pointed tip about an inch below the cooking grate. That way you are measuring the air temp that is going to hit the meat. I know that the dial thermo in the center of my domed lid that reads temps above the meat is usually about 40-50F cooler than the long stem under the grate. Actually together, they give a pretty good idea of what's going on in the drum. Just my .02.
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Unread 10-01-2009, 08:02 PM   #4259
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Quote:
Originally Posted by freqz View Post
I have a line on barrels that have had barite (water based drilling) mud in them. Would a trip through the car wash and a good burn in make these acceptable or should I keep looking?
I think you'd be fine with these drums, although there may be a clear sealer sprayed on the inside of them. After washing and burning, I'd take some very coarse sandpaper or a grinder to a small section on the inside. Put some water in and loosely put the cover on the drum for a few days.

Open it up and look for rust. If it's only on the sanded/ground area, you['ve got more work ahead of you.

Good luck,

Chris
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Unread 10-01-2009, 08:15 PM   #4260
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All the answers to these questions are in this thread. I know it is long and cumbersome but the folks here will have a whole lot more respect for the newbies if they will take the time a go through it. This forum is NOT about "I WANT IT AND I WANT IT NOW" I am off to my room now!
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