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Old 11-23-2011, 01:18 AM   #1
Tricky
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Default UDS Weber kettle lid mod help

I've finally located a Weber kettle lid (thanks Craigslist) and of course my drum top is too big. I'm going with a method that some on the forum have recommended -- I have a 6' piece of 1/8" x 2" flat bar steel and I'm going to attach it as a ring inside the top of my drum to reduce the circumference to the size of the Weber lid.

Once I find my special calculator that has a "pi" key ;) I'll cut the steel to the appropriate length. But for those of you who work with metal a lot, what's the best way to persuade the bar steel into place? Do you think I'll be able to just bend 1/8" steel by hand into a ring shape? If I pre-drill some holes in the steel, then drill some holes in the drum as I go, bolting the steel bar into place one by one, do you think I'll be able to just persuade the steel into place with a little elbow grease? Or am I nuts to think that I can do this by myself?
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Old 11-23-2011, 02:13 AM   #2
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Did you also get the kettle base? Cut the top 1 inch or so off, wrap stove gasket around the outside, and fit it into the drum top.

Just a suggestion.
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Old 11-23-2011, 03:38 AM   #3
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Ditto what Sammy ^^^^^ said!
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Old 11-23-2011, 05:19 AM   #4
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I'm considering that, but would love to save the kettle if possible. This way I could continue to use both the kettle and the drum . . .


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Old 11-23-2011, 08:02 AM   #5
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got me an idea last night as I am thinking I need a mod to use the lid from my CL score on my drum.

I am going to take the lid from a second barrel and set the Weber lid on it trace it and cut it out inside of the Weber trace. Then the lid will fit on the drum lid and it will fit nicely on the barrel. Hope fully the drum is slightly larger inside of the lip for the weber lid to fit. Will let you know later.

I have not gone out to dry fit it but I think it will work. Maybe.
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Old 11-23-2011, 08:09 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tricky View Post
Do you think I'll be able to just bend 1/8" steel by hand into a ring shape?
Can you leap tall buildings in a single bound?

1/8" steel is pretty stout. May not get a very smooth bend.
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Old 11-23-2011, 08:14 AM   #7
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You can use the barrel and heat to form the steel. Leave it long till you actually have 99% of the bend done.
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Old 11-23-2011, 08:27 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tricky View Post
I've finally located a Weber kettle lid (thanks Craigslist) and of course my drum top is too big. I'm going with a method that some on the forum have recommended -- I have a 6' piece of 1/8" x 2" flat bar steel and I'm going to attach it as a ring inside the top of my drum to reduce the circumference to the size of the Weber lid.

Once I find my special calculator that has a "pi" key ;) I'll cut the steel to the appropriate length. But for those of you who work with metal a lot, what's the best way to persuade the bar steel into place? Do you think I'll be able to just bend 1/8" steel by hand into a ring shape? If I pre-drill some holes in the steel, then drill some holes in the drum as I go, bolting the steel bar into place one by one, do you think I'll be able to just persuade the steel into place with a little elbow grease? Or am I nuts to think that I can do this by myself?

A couple of pairs of vice grips or c-clamps and a ball peen or small sledge hammer. Clamp the piece of bar at the end against the lip of the barrel, and start tapping your way around, think persuasion,not bend. You will feel the metal "give" then move forward another inch or two then rinse and repeat all the way around. Leave the clamp at the end where you started, but move the others around where you need them for support to help you get all the way around.
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Old 11-23-2011, 09:13 AM   #9
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I would use the bottom of your drum to form it. It should have a flatter more easier to work/clamp with raised flat flange than the rounded top part.
Leave the piece full length (it will be easier to bend than a short piece) and your guaranteed to not wind up too short.
1/8 inch should not put up too much a fight.
Lay the drum on the ground with the piece clamped and roll the drum to help you bend the metal. Your weight on the drum while rolling it will be easier than trying to pull it around by hand alone.
This is on the outside of the drum, once its rolled you can then work it smaller to fit into the top of your drum.
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Old 11-23-2011, 09:39 AM   #10
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A couple of pairs of vice grips or c-clamps and a ball peen or small sledge hammer. Clamp the piece of bar at the end against the lip of the barrel, and start tapping your way around, think persuasion,not bend. You will feel the metal "give" then move forward another inch or two then rinse and repeat all the way around. Leave the clamp at the end where you started, but move the others around where you need them for support to help you get all the way around.
This is what I did.
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Old 11-23-2011, 02:59 PM   #11
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Quote:
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1/8" steel is pretty stout. May not get a very smooth bend.
I can confirm that your prediction was absolutely correct. I now have an egg-shaped hoop that may or may not fit into my drum.

Serves me right for deciding to just go for it in the middle of the night and not waiting for the Wisdom of the Brethren. The vise grips and sledge idea looks like it would work perfectly. I'm going to give that a try.

And man do I wish that I could weld. Seems like that would be much better than bolting it into place.
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Old 11-23-2011, 03:07 PM   #12
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. . . wrap stove gasket around the outside, and fit it into the drum top.
I learned the hard way that stove gasket isn't available at most hardware stores in Southern California the way it probably is in most of the rest of the country. When I was describing it to a guy in Home Depot this morning, he said "You have a woodburning stove HERE?"
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Old 11-23-2011, 03:13 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Tricky View Post
I can confirm that your prediction was absolutely correct. I now have an egg-shaped hoop that may or may not fit into my drum.

Serves me right for deciding to just go for it in the middle of the night and not waiting for the Wisdom of the Brethren. The vise grips and sledge idea looks like it would work perfectly. I'm going to give that a try.

And man do I wish that I could weld. Seems like that would be much better than bolting it into place.
Did you test to see if the lid will fit on the bottom of your drum i.e. flip the drum over and see if the lid will fit. Worked for me, and much easier than what you're trying to rig.
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Old 11-23-2011, 03:26 PM   #14
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Did you test to see if the lid will fit on the bottom of your drum i.e. flip the drum over and see if the lid will fit. Worked for me, and much easier than what you're trying to rig.
I built my UDS more than a year ago, and am now just trying to add a Weber dome so that I can do our turkey tomorrow. I don't have enough headroom for a turkey with my regular drum lid.
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Old 11-23-2011, 03:44 PM   #15
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I've added the inner band of steel to all of the smokers I've built, and never had a problem, including several made out of stainless steel. I use 1/8 X 1-1/4 flat stock, and bend it against my stomach, which coincidentally is about the same radius as a 55 gallon drum. Leave it a little long ( A 6' piece will be a couple inches too long) wrestle it in to place, and put a lot of clamps on it to even it out. If you don't have a lot of clamps. start at one end, and start drilling holes every 5" or so. Keep bolting it in place as you work your way around. Once it's nearly all bolted in, mark the overlap so you know where to cut. I always cut mine a hair long, rather than coming up short and having a gap. If you're going to weld it in instead, you'll have to get the length right before you start welding, but at least you could fill the gap if there is one.

Another option for a tall lid is to cut 1/3 of another drum to make a lid. Cut it at the top of one of the ridges, so it will fit over the top bead. This makes a big, but heavy lid. The 2" bung hole is cool for a chimney stack made from pipe threaded in. The 1st pic is of the flat band installed on my SS drum; the second pic shows the lid made from 1/3 of a drum. BTW- My drum ran hot without an exhaust stack- I think from wind blowing into the bung hole.

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