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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 08-02-2011, 12:57 PM   #1
JMSetzler
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Default The Birth of a UDS

I picked up my second drum yesterday after not being happy with the first one. The new drum is a food-grade drum with a removable lid and it has a tan liner on the inside. Here are some photos...



The drum came with plastic stoppers in the top holes, so I swapped them out with the metal ones from the other drum that I'm not using...





This drum has a clamp type locking ring for the lid. I'll probably hang on to that...





The top diameter of the drum measures just a little over 23 1/4 inches which is a bit too large for a kettle lid.



My plan:

My objective overall is to build a UDS with two cooking racks and a lower rack where I can place a diffuser and water pan if needed. I am not going to cut the top lip off of this drum because I want to be able to use a dome lid or the flat lid depending on how much meat I plan to have on the smoker. I will find a dome lid and flare the lip on it to make a good fit. I will have three 1" air intakes at the bottom of the drum. One will be used with a simple cap and two will have elbows and riser pipes with 1" ball valves. I will attach side handles on the drum and a handle on the flat lid as well.

Build plan:

1. Assemble charcoal basket from expanded metal, charcoal grate, and make legs for it from stainless steel nuts, bolts, and washers

2. Make a suitable handle for charcoal basket

3. Clean out residual corn syrup from the drum

4. Measure and mark all holes for air intakes, mountings for the internal grates, pit thermometer, and internal meat probes.

5. Drill all the holes

6. Use weed burner to remove all exterior paint and interior lining from the drum

7. Use wire brush / angle grinder to remove all residual junk left over from the burn from interior and exterior of drum

8. Clean drum with rubbing alcohol

9. Paint the exterior of the drum, lid, and air intake system with Rustoleum high heat primer and let dry

10. Paint the exterior of the drum, lid, and air intake system with Rustoleum high heat black pain and add any extra graphics that I decide on and let dry

11. Install mounting nuts, bolts, and washers (all stainless steel) for diffuser and cooking grates

12. Spray the inside of the drum, lid, and cooking grates with cooking spray

13. Execute a seasoning burn in the drum with charcoal and wood chunks

14. Bask in the infinite glory of having accomplished this task when I already know I stink at building things.

I'll update this thread as the build progresses. It may be a week or two until I get started with the construction. I plan to get my charcoal basket built first so I will know where my grate measurements need to be.

Your feedback on this plan is appreciated!
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Unread 08-02-2011, 01:06 PM   #2
PatAttack
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Sounds like you're on the right track, JM.

Good luck with the Build, Brother!
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Unread 08-02-2011, 01:08 PM   #3
sandiegobbq
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Try the Easy Off before you do anything.
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Unread 08-02-2011, 01:12 PM   #4
ssbbqguy
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I've never understood why do a test run, seasong burn. Put some fatty meat in or do like I do, spray when cool with good smelling cooking spray. Say olive oil or similar. You won't learn anything about burn rates or fuel use without product. Good luck on your build, but would have liked more to see you get a unlined drum. Steve.
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Unread 08-02-2011, 01:14 PM   #5
dan09554
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Lots of luck. could be inspirational to me as well. keep us posted
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Unread 08-02-2011, 01:16 PM   #6
JMSetzler
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sandiegobbq View Post
Try the Easy Off before you do anything.
I did. Easy Off appeared to have no effect on the lining on the inside of the lid.
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Unread 08-02-2011, 01:33 PM   #7
pman777
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I'll make a suggestion because I crossed that bridge. After you've burnt out your inside you'll be left with sort of a pink ash. If you jump on that with a wire wheel you'll create plenty of dust to breath. Even though some will squawk at introducing water into the equation, I found that using scotch brite or even steel wool on that inside after wetting it down will remove the ash quite cleanly. Then use your wire brush. Immediately afterwards spray it down with PAM.


Others have said a car wash spray will remove the ash but I didn't try that.
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Unread 08-02-2011, 01:50 PM   #8
el_matt
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I just made a UDS out of a high fructose corn syrup barrel. I did 2 hot burns, and then sanded the inside with my random orbit sander and 40 grit. Make sure you wear some sort of respiratory protection, my mask was filthy when done.

Glad you finally got a suitable barrel for your first UDS!!!

Matt
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Unread 08-02-2011, 01:56 PM   #9
JMSetzler
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Can I buy a piece of pipe that will thread directly into the larger top hole on the drum lid for a smoke stack? I haven't decided the best way to create an exhaust on that lid. I have seen a lot done with smoke stacks and just by drilling a few holes in the top lid...
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Unread 08-02-2011, 02:00 PM   #10
N8man
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2" Black Pipe Nipple, 8" length....
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Unread 08-02-2011, 02:06 PM   #11
Carbon
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Are you gonna have an ash pan attached to the charcoal basket?
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Unread 08-02-2011, 02:24 PM   #12
JMSetzler
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Carbon View Post
Are you gonna have an ash pan attached to the charcoal basket?
Not sure yet. I haven't gone to look for parts for the charcoal basket yet, but it sounds like a good idea.
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Unread 08-02-2011, 02:31 PM   #13
Smiter Q
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JMS,

I love your plan!!!! I think my ADD would have me off my own rockers if I tried to write it all down. My UDS build once again got put on the back burner of time. And because of the HELLACIOUS TEXAS HEAT!
When I pick it back up, I will be revisiting your post! Thanks for your earnestness.
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Unread 08-02-2011, 02:41 PM   #14
sandiegobbq
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Ok maybe the easiest solution now is to just get it sand blasted.

You can probably get it done for about 30-40 bucks.

To me it is worth the money and saving the headache of all that sanding and
grinding.
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Unread 08-02-2011, 02:43 PM   #15
RevZiLLa
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This is going to be nice
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