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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 11-29-2010, 07:55 AM   #1
Dave Russell
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Default UDS intake preferences

Anyone got any strong feelings for UDS intake designs?

Although I'm curious about my buddy's design, (and I think I saw one other pic here like it), of the four pipes running from the sides and ending up UNDER the charcoal basket, I'm probably gonna go w/ the conventional side vent(s) so I can bolt a pan to my charcoal basket for easy peasy ash removal. My first UDS would get really nasty on the sides from ash sticking to the sides. All in all, I think here are some issues I'm considering:

Any way to overcome the dreaded "Kingsford midcook peter-out" from ash accumulation? (I think I bookmarked a "shaker bar", and some folks use a rod or something to stick in to stir the coals?)

Easy lift out basket w/ bolted pan to remove ash

(Any case that is strong enough to sacrifice the above convenience, probably involving the scenario I described at the top of post)

Norco's/BDS type intake hole distribution vs. single intake

What say you?
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Unread 11-29-2010, 08:15 AM   #2
h20loo
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Good-2" hole with a speaker magnet over it.
Better- BGE stainless cover over the 2" hole.
Why- don't need an ash pan as you can pour the ash out the 2" hole. If your basket gets a bridge you can stick a poker in the intake and bump the basket.
You don't need nipples on the back of your drum as the UDS fire doesn't burn towards the intake. Beter range of heat than many of the original designs.
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Unread 11-29-2010, 08:23 AM   #3
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if i ever build another it will have just one intake hole no need for four when they stay closed all the time
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Unread 11-29-2010, 09:25 AM   #4
BamaRambler
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Mine has one 1" ball valve and three 3/4" intakes spaced equally apart around the drum 2" up from the bottom. I like having the four intakes because of wind direction may change and it can make a deference so you can close one and open another if needed. This setup works great for me and i wouldn't change it for my next one.
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Unread 11-29-2010, 10:59 AM   #5
Dave Russell
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Quote:
Originally Posted by h20loo View Post
Good-2" hole with a speaker magnet over it.
Better- BGE stainless cover over the 2" hole.
Why- don't need an ash pan as you can pour the ash out the 2" hole. If your basket gets a bridge you can stick a poker in the intake and bump the basket.
You don't need nipples on the back of your drum as the UDS fire doesn't burn towards the intake. Beter range of heat than many of the original designs.
I made a single slider vent w/ (5) 3/4 inch holes for my first UDS and didn't notice that the charcoal would burn any faster on that side, either. (Wouldn't a stoker or guru fan blow into a single intake?)

I like the idea of one big hole to stick a poker through to bump the basket. Not going to invest in BGE anything, and will probably come up with another slider vent, but about the speaker magnet, how does it seal tight when the drum is round? Does the magnetism pull the hole edges tight to the flat surface of the magnet?

Thanks a bunch for the input!
Dave
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Unread 11-29-2010, 11:10 AM   #6
Dave Russell
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sitnfat View Post
if i ever build another it will have just one intake hole no need for four when they stay closed all the time
Even for high heat?

I can understand if the nipple is rusted on so you just leave the drum lid off longer for a chicken cook, but for a big turkey or sirloin tip that'll take a while to cook, I like sufficient intake so temps won't eventually dip. I'd usually leave my (5) 3/4" hole intake 100% open for HH. Of course, being that it was a single slider operated w/ my foot, it was pretty convenient.

Thanks for the reply!
Dave
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Unread 11-29-2010, 11:14 AM   #7
Dave Russell
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BamaRambler View Post
Mine has one 1" ball valve and three 3/4" intakes spaced equally apart around the drum 2" up from the bottom. I like having the four intakes because of wind direction may change and it can make a deference so you can close one and open another if needed. This setup works great for me and i wouldn't change it for my next one.
Thanks for the input!
Dave
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Unread 11-29-2010, 11:17 AM   #8
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Just to add my 2 cents...I have done 2 now with (4) 3/4 nipple pipes. I plan to keep doing it this way because it's cheap and it works.

Also, when i worry about accumulated ash...I stick a straitened coat hanger with small open loop in one end through one of the holes, grab a leg of the basket, pull it hard to slam it against the side of the drum and then go do the same thing through the opposite hole and then pull it back to center through the original hole.
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Unread 11-29-2010, 11:39 AM   #9
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Ive made 6 or so Drums all with 3 intakes. 2, 3/4" and 1 with a ball valve of the same size. I recently bumped these up to 1 inch.

My next will be a single door like on a BGE. Not sure if it will be better.
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Unread 11-29-2010, 11:43 AM   #10
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I have the Norco design on my UDS' with the nipples and one ball valve...if I can score nice magnets somewhere I will replace it with the nipples.

3 holes,2 magnets and 1 ball valve would be my next build.
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Unread 11-29-2010, 11:54 AM   #11
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I use 3 pairs of 3/4" holes that are controlled by a flat piece of steel.

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Unread 11-29-2010, 12:36 PM   #12
Dave Russell
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Thanks, guys for all the suggestions.

My buddy told me to do a search for JD McGee's intake since I was leaning toward a single large one. I haven't looked for it yet, but I'll probably just make one out of sheet metal like my old one, only difference being the single slot instead of five holes. On my old one, I had just bent the sheet metal out in a dog leg shape that I could push w/ my shoe toe. It worked ok, but I want a "handle" of something heavier if I can finagle it.

Thanks again.
Dave

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Unread 11-29-2010, 01:45 PM   #13
AUradar
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I have a single 1 1/2" intake that I used instead of 4 3/4" intakes (same intake area).

I also used a right angle and pipe to bring the intake up to the top of the barrel to make adjustin easier.

I never bought a ball valve for it because it was just to dang expensive. the pipe was pretty pricey as well.

Just something to consider, price of material.

Other than that from what I read it doesn't seem to matter to much, as long as you got the area big enough.
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Unread 11-29-2010, 01:46 PM   #14
Dave Russell
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Found a UDS page w/ a pic of JD's 2X4 inch huge intake vent! I think I can tell how he made it, but pics of his design on another post weren't in photobucket anymore.

I'm going this route. HH will be easy, and you have a bit of access to knock ash off or stir the coals a bit. I'll be sure to knock out 2 more 3/4 inch holes in my Kingsford lid and I'll use magnets to cover if needed.
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Unread 11-29-2010, 01:50 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jetfxr27 View Post
Ive made 6 or so Drums all with 3 intakes. 2, 3/4" and 1 with a ball valve of the same size. I recently bumped these up to 1 inch.

My next will be a single door like on a BGE. Not sure if it will be better.

i too use 2, 3/4" and a single 1" ball valve with elbows and a length of pipe to raise them up a bit. as for bridging issues, i give the drum a kick ever so often when i wander by. never had a problem!
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