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View Full Version : Could it be my nipples?


smooookin
09-13-2008, 10:16 PM
I have built several drums but this one is killing me. I switched from 3 1 inch to 4 1/2 inch nipples for the intake. I had never had to remove the 3rd cap using the larger intakes.

I can get things going, the temp seems to settle in, I put on the goodies and the fire will practically go out. I mean if I put things on at 230 with in 10 minutes the temps will start a steady drop until I either remove the third cap or occasionally I have to crack the lid just a bit.

This drum just doesn't seem to want to cooperate. So, is it my nipples? Should I maybe change one out for a 3/4?

Looks like it will be a long night as I have a 12lb packer that needs to be eaten around 7 tomorrow night. I figure I will put it on around midnight and sleep light.

jeffjenkins1
09-13-2008, 10:17 PM
Not enough air flow, what size exhaust (although I don't think it matters)?

Jeff

BBQ Grail
09-13-2008, 10:18 PM
This is the thing about drums that just fascinates me. I use 4 1/2 inch nipples. Three have caps and one has a ball valve.

I rarely need to remove more than one cap. For exhaust all I use is a four inch long threaded pipe in the lid.

smooookin
09-13-2008, 10:22 PM
This is the thing about drums that just fascinates me. I use 4 1/2 inch nipples. Three have caps and one has a ball valve.


I have the same set up. As for exhaust, I used a 2 inch street "L" in the large bung hole and sometimes have removed the small plug as well.

The grate for the fire basket sets approx 2 1/2 inches off the bottom of the drum.

ON THE FARM
09-13-2008, 10:26 PM
Could your fuel be damp?
I have 3 one inch intake on 1 of my drums and only 2 one inch intakes on the other 2 drums.
I have never even opened 2 intakes at all during a cook (14 hour butt cook).

smooookin
09-13-2008, 10:28 PM
Could your fuel be damp?

I thought about that but I have gone through several bags(5 or 6) of RO while fighting this thing. Also the RO was purchased at different locations.

BBQ Grail
09-13-2008, 10:30 PM
RO Lump?

I can't use lump in my UDS. It just won't work. Regular briqs work just find. Maybe 1/2 nipples won't work with lump.

jeffjenkins1
09-13-2008, 10:31 PM
I don't use lump either, I only use briqs.

Jeff

1_T_Scot
09-13-2008, 10:32 PM
3 1" nipples have an equivalent flow area of about 9.45
4 1/2" nipples have an equivalent flow area of 6.28

So would you need 2 more to get enough air?

smooookin
09-13-2008, 10:33 PM
HMM, All I use is RO. I works great in my other drums, maybe RO likes big nipples.

I can just imagine what a mess it will be to change to a larger size since I dont weld.

smooookin
09-13-2008, 10:35 PM
3 1" nipples have an equivalent flow area of about 9.45
4 1/2" nipples have an equivalent flow area of 6.28

So would you need 2 more to get enough air?


Usually the drums with the one inch nipples only need one cap off and maybe crack the valve one other one.

If I open 2 and a half or three and a half intakes the temp goes to high. Maybe this drum just doesnt like BBQ.

Meat Burner
09-13-2008, 11:32 PM
I have 4 1/2 inch valves in all my drums. The nipples inside are 1 inch and usually I have all four open a little to get an even burn on lump or briqs. Strange.

Midnight Smoke
09-13-2008, 11:57 PM
I can just imagine what a mess it will be to change to a larger size since I dont weld.

Get a Step-up bit, it will do it fast and easy. Just go a little at a time so not to get to big a hole.

Beerwolf
09-14-2008, 01:22 AM
maybe try using some sort of blower ( hair dryer mod) at the intake just to see if you are indeed air starved before you start hacking?

Norcoredneck
09-14-2008, 01:51 AM
I started out using 3/4" to 1/2" bushings. I had to have 2-3 open. I switched to 3/4" short nipples and never looked back. Seems if you watch the post the longer the nipples the more restriction. Also not that we have a lot here but humidity seems to affect how a drum burns.

Garth57
09-14-2008, 01:52 AM
I actually use four 3/4" intake nipple on mine. I would use a stepbit and increase to what worked before. Anyways, good luck with your cook tonight.

smooookin
09-14-2008, 04:13 AM
the longer the nipples the more restrictionThat may be the key!! What I did was take two four inch nipples (that is what i had) and cut them in half. They are longer than the close nipples I have used in the past.


At any rate the battle is about to begin.....

I have a 12 pounder, I am going to figure approx 1 hour 15 minutes per lb. so if she goes on around 2:30 should be ready to pull around 5:30-6:00 tomorrow evening. Let it rest in a cooler for an hour and chow down.

I wonder what the people at this camp ground are going to think in an hour or so if they have their windows open. :biggrin:

Norcoredneck
09-14-2008, 04:19 AM
I wonder what the people at this camp ground are going to think in an hour or so if they have their windows open. :biggrin:
If your using a weed burner to get it going give a couple of extra squeezes of the turbo handle to let them know who's the boss!:twisted:
http://i91.photobucket.com/albums/k296/norcoredneck/Flameon.jpg

smooookin
09-14-2008, 04:22 AM
Oh I gotta get one of those. I could hook it inline to the camper. 2 30 lb bottles could provide loads of fun!!

Norcoredneck
09-14-2008, 04:32 AM
I'm shocked. As long as you have beem in the UDS game and you don't have one of these guilty pleasures? Nothing like the roar of a man and his weedburner.

smooookin
09-14-2008, 04:38 AM
I was always afraid I would knock over my beer swinging it around.

Norcoredneck
09-14-2008, 06:09 AM
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K2Qn_LkOhGg
:twisted::twisted::twisted:

jestridge
09-14-2008, 08:48 AM
When you talking about nipples are you talking about length or Diameter??

Bbq Bubba
09-14-2008, 10:01 AM
I started out using 3/4" to 1/2" bushings. I had to have 2-3 open. I switched to 3/4" short nipples and never looked back. Seems if you watch the post the longer the nipples the more restriction. Also not that we have a lot here but humidity seems to affect how a drum burns.

Humidity plays a huge part in how that drum will run....
If someone can explain that, it would be great!!

Minimum 3/4" nipples for intakes. Drum law.

smooookin
09-14-2008, 10:42 AM
I haven't tweeked my nipples yet as she is cooking a brisket at the moment. I do think I will change at least one to a 3/4 at some point. The wind picked up this morning and the temp did jump for a few minutes, Thanks to the alarm on the receiver I got in a decent cat nap. For now I think it is about strategic placement in regard to the breeze. With a little adjustment (breeze related) she is holding at 229-230.

barbefunkoramaque
09-14-2008, 10:50 AM
I haven't tweeked my nipples yet as she is cooking a brisket at the moment. I do think I will change at least one to a 3/4 at some point. The wind picked up this morning and the temp did jump for a few minutes, Thanks to the alarm on the receiver I got in a decent cat nap. For now I think it is about strategic placement in regard to the breeze. With a little adjustment (breeze related) she is holding at 229-230.

I love the paint job.

BobF
09-14-2008, 11:23 AM
Most of what I saw said use 3/4 close nipples so that is what I did. I have used lump in mine and it works fine up to about 8- 10 hours. Then I have to tweak the fire.
A 3/4 pipe nipple fits a 1" hole in the drum. 1/2" is a bit small I would think.
I agree, on the length. The longer the pipe, the slower flow you will get for any fluid including air.

Meat Burner
09-14-2008, 11:24 AM
smooookin, the first UDS I built I used 4" pipe nipples thinking the oxygen coming closer to the middle of the basket would spread outward better. Wrongo. Had to shake the drum too often so changed to 1 inchers all around and that really made for a more even burn. You will dial it in just like you have in the past.

smooookin
09-14-2008, 11:30 AM
I will make a couple of changes ( thanks to this thread ) and she will be just fine. This is the drum that I usually put my 3/4 extension on. Since I am sure there are a few air leaks with it on I have no problem. It is just when using the lid that she requires more attention than normal.

Of course right now, I am setting in El Paso at the camp ground in a farkin thunderstorm watching the temps fall. Right now there is a little too mush lightening to roll out the awning and move the barrel. If nothing else maybe we will get some more hail.

Barbarian
09-14-2008, 11:33 AM
Maybe this drum just doesnt like BBQ.

Sounds like you just got a contrary drum!!!!!

Meat Burner
09-14-2008, 11:34 AM
You may have to stay longer and take the dents out of the drum when you're through working.:wink:

smooookin
09-14-2008, 11:55 AM
Right now there is a little too much lightening to roll out the awning and move the barrel.*Forest Gump mod*

I had to get that awning out!! Rainin like he!!, I couldnt get my tie strap off of my awning so out came the pocket knife! The awning is now out, the drum is covered and I look like a drowned rat! :biggrin: I didnt set up most of the night just to get rained out in the 7th inning stretch! :evil:

Norcoredneck
09-14-2008, 01:37 PM
Humidity plays a huge part in how that drum will run....
If someone can explain that, it would be great!!
.
I know it sounds foolish but I have noticed I have issue getting up to initial temp and even lighting the basket when it feels muggy. If I get a bigger than usual pile going on initial burn then close it up and overshoot to @ 275-300 then add meat then choke back it burns better. But when it feels dry I just light 10-12 briquetts in center and close up and it climbs to temp. Maybe Rancher draws moisture. Bubba leave my BBQ fantasy bubble alone. :biggrin:

SmokeWatcher
09-14-2008, 01:44 PM
Sounds like you just got a contrary drum!!!!!
it's the ANTI-DRUM!! :icon_devil

BobF
09-14-2008, 06:15 PM
*Forest Gump mod*

I had to get that awning out!! Rainin like he!!, I couldnt get my tie strap off of my awning so out came the pocket knife! The awning is now out, the drum is covered and I look like a drowned rat! :biggrin: I didnt set up most of the night just to get rained out in the 7th inning stretch! :evil:

Sounds like time for velcro awning straps.
Hope the rest of your cook goes well.

Cliff H.
09-14-2008, 07:46 PM
I use two 1" intakes with nipples extended all the way up to the grate level. I use lump almost exclusively. I need a microscope to dial the thing in. An 1/8" addittional open or close can mean 10 degrees one way or the other.

How do you start your fire ?

From the center ? All over top ?

I think the fire basket has as much to do with how it burns as much as anything.

I noticed a big difference in how much air I had to feed the drum when I switched from a makeshift basket using a wsm ring to a no weld ring using expanded steel.