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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 05-25-2011, 05:46 PM   #7996
huaco
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Looking for quantities of BIG K to put in the basket and Chimney...
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Unread 05-25-2011, 10:17 PM   #7997
mmcgough
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Got my UDS built and did my first cook on it this weekend. I bought a 8 pound boston butt and it was done in like 4 hours. Why did it cook so fast? I know my thermometer is reading correctly because I calibrated it with boiling water. I kept temps at 225 - 250 the whole time. From what I have been reading it isnt possible for the meat to cook as quickly as it did if that is accurate. Is it possible that the temperature on the side of the drum is that far off from the center of the smoker? The thermometer has a very short stub sticking off of it, maybe an inch. Any other ideas?
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Unread 05-25-2011, 10:47 PM   #7998
colonel00
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mmcgough View Post
Got my UDS built and did my first cook on it this weekend. I bought a 8 pound boston butt and it was done in like 4 hours. Why did it cook so fast? I know my thermometer is reading correctly because I calibrated it with boiling water. I kept temps at 225 - 250 the whole time. From what I have been reading it isnt possible for the meat to cook as quickly as it did if that is accurate. Is it possible that the temperature on the side of the drum is that far off from the center of the smoker? The thermometer has a very short stub sticking off of it, maybe an inch. Any other ideas?
You are exactly right. If you do not use a diffuser of any sort then it was much hotter at the middle than all the way to 1" from the side. Many people including myself use $5 turkey fryer thermos from walmart. These will read the temp at the center of the drum. You can also get cheap oven thermos and place them on the rack around the meat to test your temps.

BTW, how did the hot and fast butt turn out?
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Unread 05-25-2011, 11:20 PM   #7999
Spicy McHaggis
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Finally got around to posting some shots of my build. Ho-hum to most of you I'm sure, as my design is simply a rip-off from others that have already been posted on here. It smokes great though!





Thanks to everyone who's posted on here and helped with my project!
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Unread 05-26-2011, 06:47 AM   #8000
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Great looking drum mchaggis! I hope to have mine finished by the weekend.
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Unread 05-26-2011, 01:42 PM   #8001
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Colonel00 Thanks for the response. The butt came out great even though it cooked too fast. I am sure that it will even be better when I take more time to cook it :)
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Unread 05-26-2011, 06:18 PM   #8002
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FWIW, I think butts are better cooked around 300-325 degrees. The first one I ever did was on a Chargiller w/SFB, and my temps were all over the place (totally new to the whole thing). To date, that is, without a doubt, the best tasting one I've ever done.

I learned to do the 225 thing once I built a drum, but was never overly satisfied with the butt results at that temp. I started coming across guys cooking at a higher temp, and even winning comps that way, so I decided to try it. Results just kept getting better. I've totally sold on doing butts at a higher temp mow. Briskets & everything else I keep "low & slow", but not the butts.

Whatever you end up doing only matters to you. If you like the results, keep doing what you do.
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Unread 05-27-2011, 02:40 PM   #8003
huaco
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Got my first UDS built this morning. A welder up here at work came in on his day off to help. Will post up pics as soon as I can. All I have to do is take it home and burn some pallets up to get rid of the high-grade kerosene that was in it! WOOHOO... No liner at all!
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Unread 05-29-2011, 11:05 PM   #8004
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Got a question about the fire basket as I get ready to build my UDS. I've tried searching this, and I know somewhere I saw someone post about this, but I'm not sure I've seen anyone using this idea...

Has anyone made an "O" shaped fire basket with a cylinder in the middle to keep the charcoal in a ring instead of the full basket? Would this reduce the hot spot in the middle and aid in more even heat distribution?

I think I saw this idea as I was searching about heat diffusers. My thought would be to use an 18" charcoal grate, wrap the expanded steel maybe 8" high around, and put a "roll" of expanded steel, probably 5" in diameter, in the middle. Thoughts?
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Unread 05-30-2011, 12:01 AM   #8005
propsync
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I just wanted to add that adding an aluminum air bake pizza pan (had been under the stove drawer for years) wrapped in foil as a diffuser works well for me. I set my bolts four inches under the grate, although some use clips. After a couple of butts, I went with the pan. Money. I did my first brisket today. Awesome. Was ten degrees under due to a bad thermo after the fact, but was better than anything I'd done on a kettle to this point. Much juicer.

Also, Otis, I'm with you. I'm up to 260-270 for butts. Next one is going at 300 min. I think the fat will melt better and I think it will go though the stall quicker. We'll see.
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Unread 05-30-2011, 01:25 AM   #8006
BBQpower
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Now I got the 30Gal drum for free and was Clean inside, to small for a UDS, someone suggested I do a mini but I was thinking of just using it as a firebox and putting a 55gal drum horizontally but then it won't be a UDS anymore Time to go find 2 55Gals.

I love clean drums


Should I burn it out or can I just stick a fire basket in a clean drum and cycle it with some smoke once and be good?
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Unread 05-30-2011, 08:26 AM   #8007
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Quote:
Originally Posted by enasnidx View Post
Got a question about the fire basket as I get ready to build my UDS. I've tried searching this, and I know somewhere I saw someone post about this, but I'm not sure I've seen anyone using this idea...

Has anyone made an "O" shaped fire basket with a cylinder in the middle to keep the charcoal in a ring instead of the full basket? Would this reduce the hot spot in the middle and aid in more even heat distribution?

I think I saw this idea as I was searching about heat diffusers. My thought would be to use an 18" charcoal grate, wrap the expanded steel maybe 8" high around, and put a "roll" of expanded steel, probably 5" in diameter, in the middle. Thoughts?
I'm not sure how the minion method would work with this set-up. It would have to burn in a circle (?) I start my fire in the middle, and it smolders its way outward. If you feel the middle is too hot, put a diffuser over it.
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Unread 05-30-2011, 12:35 PM   #8008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MushCreek View Post
I'm not sure how the minion method would work with this set-up. It would have to burn in a circle (?) I start my fire in the middle, and it smolders its way outward. If you feel the middle is too hot, put a diffuser over it.
I was thinking about that. With the two ways I've seen the minion method done, I think it would only be possible to have a basket half full of unlit on the bottom, then put the hot coals on top for a top-down burn versus an inside-out burn like you do. This is all in theory as I have not even built my UDS yet. Some of the posts I have seen said that they burn through quite a bit more fuel w/ a diffuser. I am curious to see if this would elliminate the need for one. I think it would be easy enough to try, maybe use a coffee can in the middle and check the center temp with it and without it. Anyone want to try it for me?
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Unread 05-30-2011, 12:52 PM   #8009
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It certainly wouldn't hurt to try- you never know, it could be the next big breakthrough! Just make it removable, so if you don't like it, you haven't welded it to your fire basket.
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Unread 05-30-2011, 02:15 PM   #8010
Prollo
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Seasoned my drum yesterday and smoked some wings, sausage, and beef ribs today. I think I am noticing a metal taste in the wings. Has anyone ever experienced a metal taste cooking from a drum.
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