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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, equipment and outdoor cookin' . ** Other cooking techniques are welcomed for when your cookin' in the kitchen. Post your hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures, but stay on topic and watch for that hijacking.


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Old 07-10-2013, 08:59 PM   #1
Mustangmark302
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Join Date: 07-09-13
Location: Columbia, Maryland
Default New member UDS build in progress!

Hey everybody, been lurking for about a week, almost dropped 1300 on a Tejas offset smoker and then thought it would be fun to build one myself since I'm handy, ran across the UDS and haven't looked back! So far--

New open head unlined 55
17" coal grate
Plumbing nipples/washers/locking nuts and a 3/4" valve
Heavy duty handle for the lid
Still have to source a 22.5 grate and buy the hardware for the rack to sit on

I'm looking to just do 1 rack about 8" below the flat lid (I like the look of just the flat lid)

I have a few questions:
1. should the ash pan be elevated off the bottom of the barrel or can i just set it in there and have the normal 3" of clearance for the basket?

2. I located the center of the drum using the 2 line, find center, run perpendicular lines. With my straight edge I noticed the drum has a rounded center and want to run a single 2" hole with a stack and rain cover. I've seen people do 2 stacks towards the edge, but i'm thinking the stack should be at the highest point of the lid. Thoughts?? I'll figure out how to put a picture up here in a few minutes. Looking forward to that first burn in a week or two!
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:09 PM   #2
Mustangmark302
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Join Date: 07-09-13
Location: Columbia, Maryland
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may be a rookie but I don't use matchlight!! I have to get rid of that title asap

Here is a terrible cell phone pic of my virgin drum. More to come soon! Should be picking up sheet of expanded metal tomorrow to get the basket fabricated.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:13 PM   #3
boiler93
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Never built one so i cant help with the questions but hope to do one soon. Good luck and welcome aboard. You can use the search button at the bottom of the page and find a wealth of experience and knowledge from former posts.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:18 PM   #4
martyleach
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Glad to see you are doing a UDS. The ash pan should be on the bottom. It is not necessary to have the stacks at the highest point of your lid since it is just a little dome. Good luck!! Have fun.
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Old 07-10-2013, 09:19 PM   #5
N8man
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My ash pan just sits flush with the bottom of the drum...

On my DrumPit version 1 with the flat lid I just used the 2" bung on the side threaded with an 8 inch pipe...worked great..
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Old 07-10-2013, 10:02 PM   #6
ITBFQ
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Good luck on the build. I enjoyed the heck out of building mine, and I love cooking on it - both at home and in the 1 competition I have done. Like someone else said, use the search bar at the bottom, and you'll find that most questions have already been asked and answered. Can't wait to see the results of your first cook!
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Old 07-12-2013, 10:58 AM   #7
Mustangmark302
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Join Date: 07-09-13
Location: Columbia, Maryland
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Made some progress on the drum last night. Of course ya'll have seen this exact same build 500 times by now. It's not going to be anything special besides some custom paint

Custom bent the chest handle for the side, didn't have an anvil or a shaping hammer so I had to improvise. Bought one just to test and see if I could shape it without changing the functionality. I'll be buying another today and shaping it to the drum. Only took about 15 minutes of shaping and tweaking until it was good!

One thing I did different to save $ that I hadn't seen on the site was buying a metal hole saw bit with a 1" diameter for 12 bucks instead of that step bit for 45. I already had a set of carbide drill bits with a 1/4" in there for the pilot as well as the other bolt holes.
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Old 07-12-2013, 11:06 AM   #8
HookedOnQ
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Looking great so far!
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Old 07-12-2013, 11:11 AM   #9
sbrader
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Join Date: 07-11-13
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Looks great! I built my UDS a couple of weeks ago and used it for the first time last weekend. A friend of mine recommended that I drill multiple holes about two inches in from the edge all the way around the lid. He does a lot of smoking so I figured he knows way more than me. His theory was that a single vent hole may allow the development of a hot spot on the grate directly under the vent. I went with eight 1/2" holes relatively evenly spaced around the circumference of the lid. My first smoke went great, but that's the only experience I have thus far.
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Old 07-12-2013, 11:18 AM   #10
RatRod
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Harbor freight has a 2 pack of step bits for $12.... Not great but ill get more than enough holes to justify the purchase. Looking good !
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Old 07-27-2013, 12:30 AM   #11
Mustangmark302
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Join Date: 07-09-13
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Finally got the basket back from the welder, looks really good. Got my exhaust stacks fabbed, finished, leveled, and ready for paint tonight, got part of the drum sanded and primed. Need to get a wire brush for the drill (no DA sander or air tools :( ) Tomorrow is going to be a full day of sanding, painting, wet sanding, painting, and getting the lid drilled for the stacks and handle, getting everything mocked up and ready for paint and final assembly. Then? FIRE pics to come tomorrow!
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Old 07-27-2013, 03:05 AM   #12
Smoke Dawg
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Look forward to seeing this
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Old 07-27-2013, 08:51 AM   #13
Mason Dixon Bowhunta
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Looking good
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Old 07-31-2013, 07:59 AM   #14
Mustangmark302
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Join Date: 07-09-13
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Just finished up 90% of the paint last night and tore all the tape/paper off to get a sneak peak at it, I still need to do the Chicago Bears "C" in the center of the blue, but I still need to figure out how I'm going to do it. Almost ready to re-assemble it!
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Old 07-31-2013, 11:19 AM   #15
uncblue
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Looking great. Awesome to build yourself. Looking fwd to seeing some food pron & happy faces from your 1st cook
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