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Old 08-10-2011, 12:27 PM   #1
Got rid of the matchlight.
Join Date: 08-09-11
Location: Madison WI
Default Ugly Drum Smoker/Tandoor Hybrid?

I've been reading the forums and the DIYs and all that and I'm intruiged by two concepts - the Ugly Drum Smoker, and the Drum Tandoor.

What I'm wondering is if this sort of thing could be hybridized in some way.

See, here's the deal - I've wanted to own/build a small tandoor for YEARS. I've also wanted to own/build a good smoker for roughly the same number of years. So after seeing a few different things I thought, hey, I could build one of these! But I can't afford to build both. So I started wondering if maybe I can do a 2-for-1 kind of deal, with the right design. Might not be 100% perfect in either capacity, but since I'm on a budget and it'll like outclass anything I own in either regard, I'm willing to make a few sacrifices.

I realize they're almost polar opposites in terms of concept, but since things like kamodos exist that can do both with teh right kind of cajoling, it strikes me that it really comes down to an engineering question of heat-retention and airflow.

So I was thinking, with a 55-gal drum, I could set up a tandoor-like clay/refractory chamber with an adjustable air inlet, in the bottom half, which could conceivably get really hot (maybe not actual tandoor-hot, but a lot hotter than any other grill I own), or if I'm doing my sums right with properly managed airflow stay at the right temp for a good smoulder, and then above that chamber suspend the smoker racks. Since I'm not a competative BBQer I really only need enough space for a few items, so if I'm reduced to one rack, so be it.

So, am I thinking clearly on this or am I perhaps out of my mind? Has anyone ever tried anything like this? Any advice?
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Old 08-10-2011, 12:34 PM   #2
somebody shut me the fark up.

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Join Date: 06-05-09
Location: Mooresville, IN

You mean something like THIS

merged with a UDS?

I don't know enough about the tandoor oven, but seems pretty tough. The whole idea behind a UDS is way different than a clay oven. Or am I misunderstanding you?
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Old 08-10-2011, 12:50 PM   #3
Got rid of the matchlight.
Join Date: 08-09-11
Location: Madison WI

Sort of. The first one, the "flower pot tandoor" gave me the idea. I realize the two are very different, but instead of using the clay oven for the *whole* thing, essentually using a small clay oven as, well, a small clay oven on the bottom half, and then for smoking purposes basically using it as a glorified firebox.

(not at the same time, of course. It's an either-or proposition at any given time)

Again, not entirely sure if this'll work. Conceptually it seems like it might but I might be missing something obvious, as I've never built either before.
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Old 08-10-2011, 01:01 PM   #4
Wandering around with a bag of matchlight, looking for a match.
Join Date: 05-10-11
Location: ireland

you're going to lose a substantial amount of heat if your tandoor "chamber" is like a box with no lid - all the heat will escape. i have a chamber built -that became a wood fired oven- using firebricks on the top which are hinged with 316 S/S brackets and bars. Pretty much like an old fashioned trunk. Used to get up to 500deg C after 5-6 hours of firing
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Old 08-10-2011, 01:03 PM   #5
somebody shut me the fark up.

Join Date: 07-15-09
Location: Memphis, TN...Formerly of Decatur, AL

Caliking did a thread. The original pics are gone but there are some links further in. I'm sure he would be very willing to answer questions if you sent him a PM. His is pretty much a dedicated tandoor but I bet he's got ideas.
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Old 08-10-2011, 01:16 PM   #6
Got rid of the matchlight.
Join Date: 08-09-11
Location: Madison WI

I'd use a tapered chamber for the firebox, so it'd look more like a tandoor in that regard. Hopefully that'd help minimixe the heat loss out the top of that, but then I'm not sure if that'd work against me for the actual smoking part of it.

I'll see if caliking has any advice! Thanks!
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Old 08-10-2011, 03:57 PM   #7
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Join Date: 07-18-09
Location: USA

My brother built a UDS, and then he turned it into a tandoor. That thing will never be a UDS again. I think it weighs 500 lbs. It takes a lot of fuel to heat up, but it stays hot overnight without the fire still going since it is so massive. Its awesome.
John - Utah

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Old 08-10-2011, 05:32 PM   #8
somebody shut me the fark up.
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Join Date: 10-27-06
Location: Bothell WA

I ran into this guy at a Farmers Market and he built his out of 55 gallon drums, refractory cement and HO LPG burners.

He had it going on! The skewers were awesome, the Naan was fantastic with his selection of toppings looked great (I had butter) and he's gotten excellent reviews around here. He told me he got his design off the googletron.

Take a look at the Flickr pics, there are some backyard Tandoors with tiled walls, and his vending rigs. Pretty cool!
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diy, experimental, Tandoor, uds

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