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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 01-05-2013, 11:16 AM   #10456
Sizzl
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Sounds like you covered all the usual problems....I never had to use a water pan. I have one 3/4" pipe open and one ball valve opened half way. As the meat cooks and temp. rises i close the ball valve accordingly.

BTW. I use B&B lump. the temps are more controllable with it..

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Unread 01-05-2013, 06:12 PM   #10457
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sizzl View Post
You may have to use a diffuser or water bowl as a last resort
Mine would see-saw the temp before I started using a 16" clay pot diffuser. It really evened the temps out. I made a rack for it to set on between the coals and the bottom grate.







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Unread 01-05-2013, 06:25 PM   #10458
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If that is a golf ball basket used as a charcoal basket I hate you forever! Dammit. I spent I don't know how much time and money designing mine. You make me sad....

;(


Sure it will burn 230 for 20-22 hours but when am I ever gonna use that?
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Unread 01-05-2013, 06:30 PM   #10459
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pitmaster T View Post
If that is a golf ball basket used as a charcoal basket I hate you forever! Dammit. I spent I don't know how much time and money designing mine. You make me sad....

;(


Sure it will burn 230 for 20-22 hours but when am I ever gonna use that?
That's a wire egg basket, if I'm not mistaken.
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Unread 01-05-2013, 06:45 PM   #10460
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You might have a air leak, does your lid fit tight also check any holes you made like for the valves. You might have a drum that's outa round my first drum did the same things yours is doing never could walk away for more than 20 minute. I have since made a new one now and it hold temp all day. Good luck my friend
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Unread 01-07-2013, 05:55 AM   #10461
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pitmaster T View Post
If that is a golf ball basket used as a charcoal basket I hate you forever! Dammit. I spent I don't know how much time and money designing mine. You make me sad....

;(


Sure it will burn 230 for 20-22 hours but when am I ever gonna use that?
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffsee View Post
That's a wire egg basket, if I'm not mistaken.
Are you talking about my (Pappy's) charcoal basket?
It is made with 3/8 rebar around the top & 1/4" pecil rod for the side bars. Used weber charcoal grate on the bottom.
Cost about $5 to make it.





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Last edited by Pappy; 01-07-2013 at 09:55 AM..
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Unread 01-07-2013, 09:57 AM   #10462
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OK here goes ...

Trouble maintaining temps after say 5 hours.

What advantage is a diffuser?
Which is better, a pizza pan, a clay pan, a water pan?
Is the charcoal grate better than the #9 X 3/4 expanded for the basket bottom?
15" X 10" basket, too big?

Thanks
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Unread 01-07-2013, 10:11 AM   #10463
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typically, with my drumpit, around the five hour mark I close the intakes down to help prevent ash flying and gently kick the drumpit to knock down
the accumulated ash from the lit charcoal, wait a few minutes for
the ash to settle, then open the air intake and keep on keeping on...

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peddler View Post
OK here goes ...

Trouble maintaining temps after say 5 hours.

What advantage is a diffuser?
Which is better, a pizza pan, a clay pan, a water pan?
Is the charcoal grate better than the #9 X 3/4 expanded for the basket bottom?
15" X 10" basket, too big?

Thanks
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Unread 01-08-2013, 07:14 AM   #10464
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OK , Yesterday I took apart the UDS to empty the charcoal and I believe I have stumbled onto the problem. It appears the charcoal only burned on one side of the basket and not an overall burn. I started the charcoal using the minion method coffee can in the center. Ash pan is a cheap grill bottom as per Norco but may be blocking some air. I'm going to drill a series of 1" holes around the pan. Second, Does the Weber grate do a better job of dispersing ash than the expanded metal?

BTW I did the kick the barrel maneuver also.

Thanks again
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Unread 01-08-2013, 09:03 AM   #10465
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If an airflow problem exists, rotate the basket 180 half way through the burn time and see if the burn pattern changes...

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Unread 01-10-2013, 07:42 PM   #10466
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OK guys humor me on this post if you will.

Trying to fix a perceived airflow problem on my UDS that was built by Norco's recommended plans back at the first of the thread.

1) I am using a cheap grill pan as an ash pan, I felt the lip on the pan restricted air to the basket so I drilled 24 1" holes around the lip of the pan...this should help air movement under the basket.

2) I had used 3/4 conduit as risers on two of the 3/4 inlets. Got to scratching my bald head and thought that conduit is measured outside and pipe is measured inside so I replaced the risers with 3/4 X 18" black pipe thus increasing the intake air flow. Ball valve (brass) on each riser.

3) Fired up the smoker and ran an experiment on lids. The original has 8 1/2 holes around the perimeter about 2" in. Changed lid out to one that had a 2" bung hole and installed a 2" X 18" pipe riser or stack and appears to have better flow..

4) I am using a 12" turkey thermometer only and reading pit temps by that. Norco's plan uses a thermometer that has a 3" probe and I have read that there could be a 50 degree difference from outside to center ... is it possible that I'm cooking too low if the 3" thermometer (that I don't have) is reading 225* and the center is 50* hotter thus cooking more quicker. (Example outside at 225* as recommended thus the inside at 150* thus too low ???)

Please excuse the micro management of this simple appliance but I was totally not impressed with the brisket that I did last week and trying to get a handle on my problem (If I have one).

Thanks in advance

Jim
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Unread 01-11-2013, 08:03 AM   #10467
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1) I ditched the cheap grill and went to a pizza pan. Holes should work as well
2) Risers on the outside of the grill will reduce airflow. I don't use them.
3) I use the bung hole with a stack. No issues on low and slow, will cause a hot spot on a hot run.
4) ?

My biggest problem was damp charcoal. I fear a water bath would cause same issues. Lots of energy is used to evaporate water. Hard to get temp up when you are evaporating water. Once water is gone, you get a spike/runaway. I could tell the difference from a fresh bag of lump to one that was oppened and left in my garage for a couple weeks.

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Unread 01-11-2013, 09:23 AM   #10468
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JC. thanks for the answers

Let me try to clarify 4.

I had read that there was a 50 degree difference in from the center of the grill to the outside of the grill. If all readings are done from the outside (225*) that would mean the center would be then 275*. OK?

I had smoked a brisket @ close to 225* on the center of the grill and probably didn't cook it long enough but it was @ 195* when I pulled it. The point was to me a little rubbery.

My question is "Where are most reading temps from, center or outside?"

My test burn last night ran about 14 hours with a 90% charcoal burn on about 7 lbs of charcoal, a lot better.

Thanks again
Jim
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Unread 01-11-2013, 09:58 AM   #10469
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I measure from the center with a 12 inch turkey fryer thermo just below the bottom grate. Works great and matches up with my ique very well.
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Unread 01-15-2013, 03:04 PM   #10470
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Default Help a rookie

My brain hurts and my eyes are bleeding from all the info in this thread, but I am excited to build my first UDS.

I hope to do my first burn out of the drum this weekend.

Questions from a Brethren rookie:

1. My drum has paint and rust on the inside and outside.
a. Is the rust a problem? Will the burn out take care of it?
2. How many burns should I do?
3. Do you suggest pre-drilling my air intakes at the bottom of the drum before burning?


Thank you!
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