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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 06-01-2012, 01:19 PM   #9541
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Quote:
Originally Posted by inraged2002 View Post
I am totally new to this and am getting ready to build my first UDS. I have a question regarding how much charcoal to use. I'm sure it has been asked before but there are soooo many post to look through. How do you know how much charcoal to use? I know it has to be different if you are smoking tri-tips compared to shoulders. From what I have been reading it seems like its about a pound per hour. Would this be a good estimate?
I just fill my basket which is 13x13x13( scraps leftover from a job). When i am thru cooking,i just shut it down and whatever charcoal is left is used on the next cook.
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Unread 06-01-2012, 02:05 PM   #9542
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Thank you gravityguy! Your advice will help me out a lot! I was worried about having to fire it because I've read on here that sometimes it takes multiple firings to get the liner out and I live in a residential neighborhood, so firing it out didn't sound like a good idea to me. Once again, thank you. I'll definitely be posting pictures once we get started!
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Unread 06-01-2012, 09:41 PM   #9543
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Default My first UDS

[IMG]https://lh5.googleusercontent.com/-7.../smoker-16.jpg[/IMG]

This is my 1st UDS. I mostly followed the tips in this thread, but added a different fire basket, and cut the barrel in to. A stainless bowl sits on the fire basket for a water pan.

I flanged the cut line on the top half, so it now sits on the bottom. That way i can lift off the food, and easily access the fire, without lifting the water pan too (a la WSM).

Not seen, i added a rain cap to the flue after the first burn, which also chokes down the airflow. 2" is way too big.

I've fired it up twice. It works amazing. The 1-1/2" threads on the bottom are for a future Stoker fan adapter. I also added a couple of 3/4" nipples so i can use it easier without the stoker fan. It's a little hard to throttle with a 1-1/2" inlet valve.
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Unread 06-02-2012, 09:40 AM   #9544
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Default My first UDS

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Unread 06-02-2012, 11:40 PM   #9545
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Okay, I have another question. If I use a drum that had a plastic bag liner inside and only held stuff like dirt or wood, would I still have to fire it out/sandblast it or could I just wash it out? I'm thinking that I should still get it sandblasted just in case and also so I could get the outside paint off. Once again thank you very much for your help, I really appreciate it!

Last edited by tonoxtono; 06-02-2012 at 11:42 PM.. Reason: I needed to add 1 more thing on to my question
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Unread 06-03-2012, 12:16 AM   #9546
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tonoxtono View Post
Okay, I have another question. If I use a drum that had a plastic bag liner inside and only held stuff like dirt or wood, would I still have to fire it out/sandblast it or could I just wash it out? I'm thinking that I should still get it sandblasted just in case and also so I could get the outside paint off. Once again thank you very much for your help, I really appreciate it!
You don't need to if liner is out. But wouldn't hurt if you want to play it safe.
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Unread 06-04-2012, 07:28 AM   #9547
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Default UDS i built for my sons birthday

Its got 2 cooks racks, ash catcher pan, 15 in fire basket. used a domed lid off of a wally world kettle i got for $29. I could not find a high temp paint i liked for the orange so i used 2 coats high temp primer under regular ol' rustoleum. when i seasoned it i ran it up to 450 degrees and got NO paint dis coloration.

Now making a John Deere themed uds for the son in law using the bottom of the wally world kettle for a domed lid
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Unread 06-04-2012, 08:02 AM   #9548
inraged2002
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Thanks everybody with the help from my previous question. Now I have a question regarding the firebasket. I was thinking about using one of those cheap aluminum stock pots like you would steam tamales in. I believe the measurements were right at 11" x 12". I know I would have to drill a bunch of holes in it but would this work?
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Unread 06-04-2012, 06:04 PM   #9549
bigluelok
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so i survived the 637 pages of this awesome thread. We bought the a char-broil grill not to long ago and my g/f recently bought me the fire box for it i am returning it and gathering the supplies for a uds.
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Unread 06-04-2012, 07:34 PM   #9550
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I've got at least a dozen or more cooks done on my UDS , most of the food that has come off of it has been wonderful. I have read the ENTIRE UDS thread , but I still have a couple of questions for the "pros".
1. My UDS has extreme hot and cold spots , varying as much as 50 degrees over different points on my grates , my charcoal basket is wide and low and I tend to spread my lit coals around on top of my unlit coals. So my question is , will a diffuser of some sort help with this , and will it create any "new" issues od it's own if I did use one.

2. I sprayed down the inside of my drum with PAM before my first cook , and have cooked several fatties , so for the most part the inside of the drum is pretty greasy , but it's still starting to rust on certain spots , is there a need to "re-season" every once in a while , or is this normal?

3. I need suggestions for a thermometer , I started out with one of those turkey fry thermometers , it lasted about 3 cooks. Lately I have been using my digital probe through a block of wood sitting on one of the grates but would prefer a side mounted solution. What would be a good thermometer to use? I don't mind paying a little more for a good one , or two.

4. Where should I be reading temps at? between my two grates? Or should I have one just below each grate? I find that if I get my digital too close to the meat it messes with the reading , so I'd appreciate some suggestions here.
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Unread 06-04-2012, 10:28 PM   #9551
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I've sold 2 UDS's for $150 so far, don't really make much off of them but man people love them
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Unread 06-04-2012, 10:32 PM   #9552
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TurboDog View Post
2. I sprayed down the inside of my drum with PAM before my first cook , and have cooked several fatties , so for the most part the inside of the drum is pretty greasy , but it's still starting to rust on certain spots , is there a need to "re-season" every once in a while , or is this normal?

3. I need suggestions for a thermometer , I started out with one of those turkey fry thermometers , it lasted about 3 cooks. Lately I have been using my digital probe through a block of wood sitting on one of the grates but would prefer a side mounted solution. What would be a good thermometer to use? I don't mind paying a little more for a good one , or two.

4. Where should I be reading temps at? between my two grates? Or should I have one just below each grate? I find that if I get my digital too close to the meat it messes with the reading , so I'd appreciate some suggestions here.
I have 2 cooks in on my UDS and have the same questions. My turkey fryer thermometer didn't make it this weekend.
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Unread 06-04-2012, 10:43 PM   #9553
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TurboDog View Post
I've got at least a dozen or more cooks done on my UDS , most of the food that has come off of it has been wonderful. I have read the ENTIRE UDS thread , but I still have a couple of questions for the "pros".
1. My UDS has extreme hot and cold spots , varying as much as 50 degrees over different points on my grates , my charcoal basket is wide and low and I tend to spread my lit coals around on top of my unlit coals. So my question is , will a diffuser of some sort help with this , and will it create any "new" issues od it's own if I did use one.

2. I sprayed down the inside of my drum with PAM before my first cook , and have cooked several fatties , so for the most part the inside of the drum is pretty greasy , but it's still starting to rust on certain spots , is there a need to "re-season" every once in a while , or is this normal?

3. I need suggestions for a thermometer , I started out with one of those turkey fry thermometers , it lasted about 3 cooks. Lately I have been using my digital probe through a block of wood sitting on one of the grates but would prefer a side mounted solution. What would be a good thermometer to use? I don't mind paying a little more for a good one , or two.

4. Where should I be reading temps at? between my two grates? Or should I have one just below each grate? I find that if I get my digital too close to the meat it messes with the reading , so I'd appreciate some suggestions here.
If you are getting some rust inside, just spray with some more Pam and cook on.

I use a turkey thermo that I bought from Wally World for about $5 and have been using it for about 15 months. It is within about 20 degrees of my Maverick.
I also have a cheap side mounted guage that will be very close to my maverick after my uds has been up and running for 2 or 3 hours.

After you have some experience with your gauges verses the maverick you can pretty much know what your smoker is doing. I would just buy another turkey thermo as they are cheap. I used and depended on mine until l bought my Maverick.

One thing about the turkey thermo is that sometimes while cooking, it will get a build-up of crust on it near the tip and will give low readings. I just pull it out and clean it off and put it back in and it comes right back up to the correct temp.
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Unread 06-04-2012, 11:07 PM   #9554
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Originally Posted by retired trucker View Post
If you are getting some rust inside, just spray with some more Pam and cook on.

I use a turkey thermo that I bought from Wally World for about $5 and have been using it for about 15 months. It is within about 20 degrees of my Maverick.
I also have a cheap side mounted guage that will be very close to my maverick after my uds has been up and running for 2 or 3 hours.

After you have some experience with your gauges verses the maverick you can pretty much know what your smoker is doing. I would just buy another turkey thermo as they are cheap. I used and depended on mine until l bought my Maverick.

One thing about the turkey thermo is that sometimes while cooking, it will get a build-up of crust on it near the tip and will give low readings. I just pull it out and clean it off and put it back in and it comes right back up to the correct temp.


I noticed the meat dripping directly on it a couple of times , which had me questioning if directly under the center of the grate was a good spot for it. I may just pick up another one , I liked being able to check temperature at any point from the center to the sidewall just by sliding it in or out of the fitting , but there was the dripping thing. I think cold weather may have killed my last one, I woke up one morning after a hard freeze and it was pegged all the way to the bottom , and I couldn't get it to move back up , even in boiling water.
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Unread 06-04-2012, 11:19 PM   #9555
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Yea, the first time it happened to me, I thought it had gone south. But after pulling it out I noticed some build up on it and after cleaning it off, it continued to work right.
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