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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 12-24-2011, 08:47 AM   #9061
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Well I couldn't let it sit without some meat on it.

Threw some hot Italian sausages on for dinner, had a little trouble keeping the heat regulated and it seemed to take forever to get the sausages cooked (3 hrs???).

Found two problems with my thermometers.

#1 The small thermometer I was using to measure internal temperature of the sausages reads low when you just stick the tip into the side of the sausage, jam it in from the end a couple of inches and it reads much higher.

#2 The thermometer I was using in the drum is from my turkey fryer. Decided to see how accurate it was and boiled some water, I didn't know water boiled at 250 degrees. If I was running the UDS at 250 on the thermometer it was more like 212 degrees. That might be why it was taking longer then I thought it should have. Good news though the small thermometer I use to check the temperature of the meat was spot on.
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Unread 12-25-2011, 08:34 PM   #9062
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Well learning more as I go.

Yesterday it was ribs on the UDS. Unfortunately I had tickets to the Redskins vs Vikings game so I tried talking my 19 year old son through the process. Thought I had him started before I left for the game, figured I would have ribs ready for me when I returned. Son left the vents wide open, melted the stick on fridge magnets, got the drum up to at least 350 for a couple hours, then asked me when he should put the ribs on. Finally got him sorted out over the phone and the ribs at the right temp. I'm guessing because of the high starting temp he ran out of charcoal. Ended up finishing the ribs in the oven. But they tasted great.

Today went a bit better. I had a package of 2 pork shoulders from Costco. Woke up about 7:00 got the meat out, had the #2 son inject some apple juice and put the homemade rub on the meat while I got the fire started. Had the meat on the fire before 8:00. Got the UDS settled down between 225 and 250 where it stayed nicely all day.

But even after 12 hours the meat thermometer was showing only 170 internal temperature. It was smelling too good and I was getting hungry for a late dinner so I pulled them off the grill, let them sit for a little while and started chopping one up. Made some awesome sandwiches with some basic Carolina vinegar sauce and just a touch of Sweet Baby Ray's.

Family was happy with the results of all three cooking attempts so far.

Here is the pron of the pork shoulders on the UDS.

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Unread 12-26-2011, 08:52 AM   #9063
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Nice PRON!
My first attempt on the UDS with Boston Butt went kind of the same as yours. Didnt give myself quite enough time and everyone was staving so off it came early and little or no rest but was still great.
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Last edited by Lawdog's Smokewagon; 12-26-2011 at 08:57 AM.. Reason: added UDS
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Unread 12-26-2011, 12:06 PM   #9064
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Here's the UDS I built about 5 months ago. I've done about 50 cooks on it since then. It makes the best BBQ I've ever had...well except for my favorite BBQ place so I won't name it because I don't want to start a battle.

Here's a pic from the first burn/smoke test.


pics from first smoked tenderloin



and the first brisket

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Unread 12-26-2011, 01:52 PM   #9065
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Looking good!!!!
That's a bit of cooking in a little time!!
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Unread 12-26-2011, 02:09 PM   #9066
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I started a thread in Q-talk about this but also wanted to share it here too.

In the UDS thread and other places people have mentioned getting expanded steel from Amazon. The prices always looked good but based on the description of the items, it was hard to really tell what you were getting unless you know metal and take the time to compare the specs. So anyway, I bit the bullet and chose one that I thought sounded similar to what a lot of people get from the local hardware store in the 2'x2' cuts like the photo below that usually run around $20.



This is a 3/4" (the open space) as opposed to the 1/2" many stores also carry which is much smaller. So back to Amazon I found the following which I was guessing was pretty close. Now the best part is it is 4'x4' and only around $30 with free shipping. So, you get 4 times the metal for 1.5 times the price.

Carbon Steel Expanded Metal Flat Sheet, 2.1" LWD Diamond Openings, 0.075" Thick, 74% Open Area, 48" Width, 48" Length
Amazon.com: Carbon Steel Expanded Metal Flat Sheet, 2.1" LWD Diamond Openings, 0.075" Thick, 74% Open Area, 48" Width, 48" Length: Industrial & Scientific@@AMEPARAM@@http://ecx.images-amazon.com/images/I/415BlkVVzTL.@@AMEPARAM@@415BlkVVzTL

It arrived the other day and I finally had a chance to compare it to what I have used in the past. Granted, is is no where close to the heavy duty stuff you can get from a metal fab shop but I think it will do nicely for charcoal boxes, reinforced grates/racks, and any number of other applications.

It comes shipped between two pieces of cardboard that are stitched together around the edges.



Here are some close-ups of the sheet.




I happened to have a little bit of scrap from one of the old sheets from Home Depot. I clamped it on so you can see some of the slight differences. Overall it is pretty close to the same size and spacing.



Not the best pic but the Amazon sheet does seem to be a tad thicker in gauge.



This photo does illustrate the slight difference in spacing. Notice at the top the two are lined up pretty well. However, as you move down, the alignment is off dramatically.




Overall though, I am not that worried about the slight differences. I just wanted to show it in case anyone wondered. Hopefully this will be helpful to future UDS builders as well as many others that may be in the market for expanded metal and want a good deal.
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Unread 12-26-2011, 05:21 PM   #9067
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That looks like it will work fine. By comparison, I use #9, which is about .110 thick, but I haven't seen any deterioration in two years of use. I grill a lot with my UDS, which means the fire basket is exposed to higher temps, but it doesn't seem to bother it.
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Unread 12-26-2011, 06:21 PM   #9068
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mornin' Wood View Post
Looking good!!!!
That's a bit of cooking in a little time!!
Been selling a ton of it at work. They go crazy over my pulled pork.
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Unread 12-27-2011, 02:47 PM   #9069
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Default Finally finished her.

I was surfing CL and found a Stainless Steel Drum about 2 yrs ago. I bought it for $50, knowing it was probably worth close to that in scrap.
It held Tea-Tree Oil that said cosmetic grade (?), no liner. The process has taken about a year, you can see snow from last year on the ground in the lid removal exercise... Side note: A drum deheader will not work on a SS drum. The steel just stretched.

2 Blades Later:

Burn out last summer


Fire basket, the Expanded metal is too light for any longtime use. I was able to get this scrap for free.

All hardware it stainless

Themometer, I need to make a spacer to increase space between the vent holes and the dial.

This is a SS BGE air vent I bought on ebay.

A neodymium magnet will be installed on the lower nut to catch caps.

I need to get the enamel off the lid so I can repaint it.

I have a course cup brush for my cutting wheel, I may go over the outside to make it look more consistent and try to use that to get the enamel off the lid. The discoloration is from the burn out, I used a leaf blower to stoke the flames.
I'll taking it out for a spin later on, a simple cook. sausage.
I'll post pics.

Thanks for all of those that have posted in this thread. There are some seriously talented people here sharing knowledge and experiences.
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Unread 12-27-2011, 03:40 PM   #9070
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MattCom View Post
I was surfing CL and found a Stainless Steel Drum about 2 yrs ago. I bought it for $50, knowing it was probably worth close to that in scrap.
It held Tea-Tree Oil that said cosmetic grade (?), no liner. The process has taken about a year, you can see snow from last year on the ground in the lid removal exercise... Side note: A drum deheader will not work on a SS drum. The steel just stretched.

2 Blades Later:

Burn out last summer


Fire basket, the Expanded metal is too light for any longtime use. I was able to get this scrap for free.

All hardware it stainless

Themometer, I need to make a spacer to increase space between the vent holes and the dial.

This is a SS BGE air vent I bought on ebay.

A neodymium magnet will be installed on the lower nut to catch caps.

I need to get the enamel off the lid so I can repaint it.

I have a course cup brush for my cutting wheel, I may go over the outside to make it look more consistent and try to use that to get the enamel off the lid. The discoloration is from the burn out, I used a leaf blower to stoke the flames.
I'll taking it out for a spin later on, a simple cook. sausage.
I'll post pics.

Thanks for all of those that have posted in this thread. There are some seriously talented people here sharing knowledge and experiences.

IMHO you are not going to get an accurate temp with your thermometer that far from the grill. But then again, i've been wrong before. I would put an oven therometer on the grill and compare the two temp's.
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Unread 12-27-2011, 07:09 PM   #9071
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1FUNVET View Post
IMHO you are not going to get an accurate temp with your thermometer that far from the grill. But then again, i've been wrong before. I would put an oven therometer on the grill and compare the two temp's.
Thanks, going through the side would have been a real PITA when it come to moving grates. I'm using it for a benchmark.
I'll use a digital thermometer to figure out the differential until I get used to it. On all of my WSMs I have one on top, and the grates are usually -15 to 20 degrees cooler.

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Unread 12-27-2011, 08:58 PM   #9072
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Default Baffle

Has anyone got any pictures of a baffle they made for your UDS? Was thinking of trying one. Trying to figure out how to make and how to put it in the cooker.
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Unread 12-28-2011, 11:54 AM   #9073
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 1FUNVET View Post
IMHO you are not going to get an accurate temp with your thermometer that far from the grill. But then again, i've been wrong before. I would put an oven therometer on the grill and compare the two temp's.
I built my UDS 4 months ago and put the thermometer on the lid. My first smoke was not what I had hoped it would be. I had a tough time getting it up to 250. My next time around I added a oven thermometer that sat on the grate and learned there was a 60 degree difference. The main problem was I needed to open the lid to check the temp. Luckly Santa brought me a wireless dual thermometer for Christmas. One probe checks the meat, the second measures the temp on the grate...life is good!
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Unread 12-28-2011, 12:15 PM   #9074
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I was using the dome lid vent hole for the thermo for a while but decided to just permanently mount the short stemmed thermo opposite the vents. I realize the actual reading is not accurate depending on how far you're into the cook but I've learned to 'gauge' the thermometer so I know where I'm at during the cook.
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Unread 12-28-2011, 02:36 PM   #9075
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Quote:
Originally Posted by barbqrken View Post
Has anyone got any pictures of a baffle they made for your UDS? Was thinking of trying one. Trying to figure out how to make and how to put it in the cooker.
I just wrap a 16" pizza pan in foil and lay it across the charcoal basket. I'm sure there are better and fancier ways to do it, but it works really well and suits my extremely lazy disposition.
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