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Unread 05-20-2010, 01:08 PM   #1
Southern Home Boy
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Default UDS Fire baskets

Ok guys... I KNOW there's the UDS thread (Monster of all Monster Threads) and I'm pretty sure the answer to my question is in there somewhere, but I just don't have the patience right now to go through the entire post looking for it.

SO... my question is; What is the average cost to have a metal shop fab a firebasket for you? I have no welding skills, equipment or nearby friends who do, and I'm about to make my first authentic UDS. I need a firebasket. I've seen lots of non-welded pics and they look great (no pun intended) and I'll do it that way if I need to, but for some reason, I like the neatness (I know... it's a UDS.... "Neatness" has nothing to do with it) of the welded baskets.

An alternative I was considering was buying a Smokey Joe or similar small portable grill, sacrificing the lid and using the bottom bowl of the grill as the firebasket. My only concern with that would be whether or not you could get enough air to the coals to keep it up to temp. Has anyone tried this?
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Unread 05-20-2010, 03:02 PM   #2
Wyley
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I use the bottom of an 18.5 inch kettle as a firebasket. I do however use have a ring of expanded metal that I bolted into a circle the diameter of the charcoal grate that I sit inside of the firebasket. If you use the bottom as your firebasket you should drill a bunch of 1 inch holes in it so that air can flow through it. I'd also cut the bottom off of it just below the charcoal grate supports for more airflow. If you do that you'll have to make some kind of legs to raise it off of the bottom of you smoker though. I just used some L brackets that I bent into the right shape to get my 3 inches from the bottom.
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Unread 05-20-2010, 03:08 PM   #3
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Labor rates vary from city to city. I'd suggest bringing a sketch to several fab/welding shops in your area and compare prices if you are really set on a welded one.
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Unread 05-20-2010, 03:45 PM   #4
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My Mom works with "patients" that had/have "personal issues",she tries to keep em busy wth different kinds of labors...some do welding.
Both my baskets for the UDS' and charcoalgrate/basket for the Texas Grill were welded there and I got the base for the next basket ready to be welded.

Maybe you could look for welding schools in your area to do the welding for you,they may save a couple of $$$.
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Unread 05-20-2010, 03:51 PM   #5
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I've seen someone post 35$ (he mentioned it was someone he knew at a welder shop) and someone else posted 75$ for a welded basket. So somewhere in between would good to expect.

I made mine with a cut of expanded metal from a metal fab shop here in Dallas for 17$, the 18" Weber charcoal grate for 10$, spool of rebar wire for 6$ at home depot, and a couple bucks for some bolts.

It's not as clean as I want, but after the first few cooks it's ugly as sin
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Unread 05-20-2010, 03:54 PM   #6
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Dude go buy two shees of 12"x24" expanded metal fro HD. Also get a cheapy 13" grate. Get 4 1/4" bolts with washers and nuts and a little bit of metal wire. bolt the pieces of expanded metal using 2 bolts with washers and nuts. Now roll the expanded metal and secure the two ends with the other two bolts washers and nuts. Put your grate in there and wire it to the expanded metal about 2 inches in. Now take some more wire and cut a piece about 5 feet long. Fold it in half. Twist it up, secure one end to one side of your basket, secure the other end to the other side.

You have a fire basket in about 20 minutes worth of work. Stick a pizza pan under it.

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Originally Posted by Southern Home Boy View Post
Ok guys... I KNOW there's the UDS thread (Monster of all Monster Threads) and I'm pretty sure the answer to my question is in there somewhere, but I just don't have the patience right now to go through the entire post looking for it.

SO... my question is; What is the average cost to have a metal shop fab a firebasket for you? I have no welding skills, equipment or nearby friends who do, and I'm about to make my first authentic UDS. I need a firebasket. I've seen lots of non-welded pics and they look great (no pun intended) and I'll do it that way if I need to, but for some reason, I like the neatness (I know... it's a UDS.... "Neatness" has nothing to do with it) of the welded baskets.

An alternative I was considering was buying a Smokey Joe or similar small portable grill, sacrificing the lid and using the bottom bowl of the grill as the firebasket. My only concern with that would be whether or not you could get enough air to the coals to keep it up to temp. Has anyone tried this?
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Unread 05-20-2010, 04:29 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by moda253 View Post
Dude go buy two shees of 12"x24" expanded metal fro HD. Also get a cheapy 13" grate. Get 4 1/4" bolts with washers and nuts and a little bit of metal wire. bolt the pieces of expanded metal using 2 bolts with washers and nuts. Now roll the expanded metal and secure the two ends with the other two bolts washers and nuts. Put your grate in there and wire it to the expanded metal about 2 inches in. Now take some more wire and cut a piece about 5 feet long. Fold it in half. Twist it up, secure one end to one side of your basket, secure the other end to the other side.

You have a fire basket in about 20 minutes worth of work. Stick a pizza pan under it.
I know. K.I.S.S.... I just get delusions of grandeur when it comes to my building plans.... You should see the system of valves and tubes I have rolling around in my head for air control.... I think I have a disease...
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Unread 05-20-2010, 05:02 PM   #8
moda253
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Ha you should see my homebrew system. It looks like I am cooking meth in my backyard. Twice I've had the cops drive by slowly.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Southern Home Boy View Post
I know. K.I.S.S.... I just get delusions of grandeur when it comes to my building plans.... You should see the system of valves and tubes I have rolling around in my head for air control.... I think I have a disease...
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