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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 05-27-2009, 10:40 PM   #1
thirdeye
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Default Best Handle Locations on Drum Smokers



What is everyone's feelings for location of lifting handles? (I have 3/4 ton pickups) Most of the loading and unloading will be by one person. Are they better:
  • At the same height in the upper 1/3 of the cooker (yellow arrows)
  • At mid height (blue arrows)
  • At uneven heights (red arrows)
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Unread 05-27-2009, 10:46 PM   #2
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All mine have been in the yellow zone or higher yet.
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Unread 05-27-2009, 10:52 PM   #3
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Originally I was with the yellow arrows but thinking about my 3/4 ton truck I am sold on the red arrows.
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Unread 05-27-2009, 11:27 PM   #4
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I find they are best on the outside of the cooker!

Baring for that silly comment, I put them just below the grate height that way they hold my thermometer in place.

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Unread 05-28-2009, 12:35 AM   #5
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If that is a Mega 3143, then unless you are a lot younger (read stronger) than me you aren't gonna grab it by two equal handles and "set" it in the back of a pickup. Chances are you will tilt it onto the tailgate and slide it in on it's side. If that is the case I would attach four handels;
1 at the "red" level just below the BDS logo and 1 more above the thermostat at the level of what appears to be your coal shaker handel. This keeps thermo away from truck bed when sliding it in.
1 each at the yellow levels where you intend to, for those occasions you actually have help in loading or unloading. This also prevents the cooker from rolling over and damaging the thermostat...
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Unread 05-28-2009, 01:51 AM   #6
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I like this set up. If i had the ability to build one I would borrow this handle idea.
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Unread 05-28-2009, 02:03 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Desert Dweller View Post
If that is a Mega 3143, then unless you are a lot younger (read stronger) than me you aren't gonna grab it by two equal handles and "set" it in the back of a pickup. Chances are you will tilt it onto the tailgate and slide it in on it's side. If that is the case I would attach four handels;
1 at the "red" level just below the BDS logo and 1 more above the thermostat at the level of what appears to be your coal shaker handel. This keeps thermo away from truck bed when sliding it in.
1 each at the yellow levels where you intend to, for those occasions you actually have help in loading or unloading. This also prevents the cooker from rolling over and damaging the thermostat...
My two BDS's are the Deluxe 2343's. (They are not on the regular line-up anymore because the manufacturer now wants a 100 drum minimum order) I think they weigh in about 75 pounds. I wanted that maximum grate height, but I didn't go with the Mega because of their weight. I can take the lid off for a hand hold and tip the cooker so I can get a hand on the bottom and do the 53 year old man "tailgate press", setting it on upright. It's easier seting them back on the ground. I just think having handles will make it easier on the back, which is not what it used to be.

I would rather have one set of handles positioned for one person moving, because if I have a helper it's no problem at all. And with my side shelf, thermometer and a set of handles I want enough room left to use my hand truck once they are unloaded.
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Unread 05-28-2009, 03:37 AM   #8
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Handles? Handles? I don't need no stinking handles!
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Unread 05-28-2009, 04:02 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Neil View Post
Handles? Handles? I don't need no stinking handles!
10-4 good buddy!

Wayne have you thought about something like this?


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Unread 05-28-2009, 07:37 AM   #10
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I've got a 1 ton van to carry my stuff around and the handles are closer to the yellow arrow height. Most of the time the drums are moved around at ground level so higher handles are needed. Plus my 56 year old back has no problem lifting the drum into the van. I think if you have the handles real low you will be straining and lifting at a very bad angle for your back. Too much bending. That's the wrong kind of low and slow.
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Unread 05-28-2009, 07:51 AM   #11
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I know what you mean about the back not being what it used to be and the "57" year old man tailgate press... Knowing you from this forum, I have no doubt you will come up with a workable plan. Good luck!
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Unread 05-28-2009, 10:41 AM   #12
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Mine are in between the yellow and blue arrows...

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Unread 05-28-2009, 10:47 AM   #13
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As shown in the pic, mine are relatively high up. I use them to steer in offroad mode and I use them to attach my extension ring to the drum via turnbuckels.
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Last edited by Mark; 02-26-2010 at 01:47 PM..
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