-   Q-talk (
-   -   Ugly Drum Smoker (

Mister Bob 02-17-2012 06:47 PM

Finally added a UDS to my BBQ arsenal
Talk about luck, the day after the mason on my job came through with a 55 gallon drum for me (free), a 22.5" Weber lid turned up in my dumpster! Definitely time to add a UDS to the arsenal.

The barrel had held synthetic oil and had no liner and no paint inside. I gave it a good hot burn.

Washed out the inside and sanded the outside:

and gave it a few coats of Rustoleum High Heat Paint.

The lid didn't fit, so I welded in a strap and caulked the seam with silicone. Perfect seal!

Some wheels on the bottom,

and a single 1" pipe for air, increased to a 1-1/2" valve (so I could use my Guru fan adapter from my Stumps cooker).

Here's the charcoal basket.

Two cooking grids six inches apart.

I had the magnetic mount for the Guru from my Stumps as well.

Here's the finished product. I can wait to get her seasoned tomorrow, I've got lots to cook on Sunday and I think I give her a whirl!

bbqwilly 02-17-2012 09:32 PM

Awesome looking build Mister Bob. Cant wait to see pics what you put on that thing.

Lawdog's Smokewagon 02-17-2012 10:31 PM

Very nice setup

unklechuckles19 02-18-2012 11:07 AM

This thread really is the absolute Mecca for the UDS. I went through about 200 pages of it, before I finalized my plans and started the build. I took some pics through and I can't wait to hear some feedback and get cooking on it!

Started as a standard 55 gal. 33.75" tall and 23.5" wide

Little fire to help burn the paint off

Took a little sanding at the bottom to get all the paint off, but after the burn

After I wire wheeled the inside

Made some L brackets out of 1" angle iron we had laying around to hold the rack

The fire basket is 16.5" in dia and 10" tall. I made the whole thing out of 9 gauge expanded steel, as I couldn't find an 18.5" weber grate anywhere around here (all the box stores said they'd have them in a few weeks for spring, but I wasn't waiting that long!!) I used some legs from a coal stove we had to trim down for a customer earlier in the year for my feet, and a piece of welding rod bent over as a handle. Not the prettiest thing in the world, but I think it'll get the job done.

Some paint (Let's go Flyers!!), a stack, and a handle on the lid and she's ready to roll!

Thanks for looking, and all the help you've all given me in this thread! :wave:

unklechuckles19 02-18-2012 11:09 AM

And now that my UDS is all done, I've got a question for you guy. I'm running a Maverick 732, does the lid of the UDS to get too hot to sit the plastic thermometer right on top of??

Pappy 02-18-2012 12:54 PM


Originally Posted by unklechuckles19 (Post 1951970)
And now that my UDS is all done, I've got a question for you guy. I'm running a Maverick 732, does the lid of the UDS to get too hot to sit the plastic thermometer right on top of??

I wouldn't think it would be good for it. I wouldn't do it.

Frenchy 02-18-2012 04:22 PM

Going to start my first UDS tomorrow. Great thread guys. Thanks for all the info.

Lawdog's Smokewagon 02-19-2012 10:52 AM


Originally Posted by unklechuckles19 (Post 1951970)
And now that my UDS is all done, I've got a question for you guy. I'm running a Maverick 732, does the lid of the UDS to get too hot to sit the plastic thermometer right on top of??

I set two Accurite thermometers on my UDS and run the probe wire thru the exhaust hole. Never had a problem.

brickie 02-19-2012 10:25 PM


Originally Posted by maliclipse (Post 1947423)
I've been looking at the grainger barrels labeled as "unlined" though coated with a "mild rust inhibitor". I live in an area where I wouldn't be able to burn out the barrel for hours.

Since this is a new barrel do I need to do a big burn out? Can I have the barrel sandblasted or get the coating off with a mild fire like with a 20lb bag of charcoal?

I'm thinking of getting the 96 gallon drum because its 16 gauge (vs 18 on the 85).


Spray the inside with some heavy duty Easy Off and let it soak overnight then wash it out real good and you'll be fine..

On the last Uds I built I did this then burned it with a weed burner from HF.They are cheap and work great in areas where a full blown fire might get the fire dept to your house. I then it it with a grinder and was ready to go.Very easy .


Paul Worth 02-20-2012 06:38 AM


Originally Posted by wmarkw (Post 1951098)
I'm having a difficult time trying to find a drum here in Augusta, GA. There is a guy in SC about 1.5 hours away that has a bunch of food grade drums for sale. There is also a oil company downtown that sell re-conditioned drums, that they say have been commercially cleaned and then this company buys for resale. So there is nothing in them. What should I do? Make the drive or stay local? TIA

Get the oil company drum. If it is unlined, it is better than the (probably lined) food grade drum. Scrub the barrel with hot water and Tide and get started building a UDS. Burn a couple of pallets in it if it makes you feel better. My first UDS had wheel bearing grease. The one I'm building now had hydraulic fluid. Both came completely clean with just hot water and Tide HE.

wmarkw 02-20-2012 02:04 PM

Well good news. I found 4 food safe drums; a little road trip but I'm gald I made the trip. I got 3 that are unlined that held Tobassco sauce but get this, the sauce was in a plastic barrel and you just lift out the plastic liner and boom a brand new unlined drum. The other one I bought is closed and has the tan liner in it but since I made the haul I wanted to get my moneys worth and stock up. So I got all 4 drums and an extra lid for $60!!

I'm ready to get building. Do I need to do a mega burn out since my drums are liner free and clean inside? I do want to re-paint them but I'm assuming I can just paint over the black color now. I dont think I should have to burn it off. From there once I get everything ready I will do a high temp seasoning.

I have read most of this thread and wowza. I'm overloaded with info but for my first build I'm sticking with the KISS method and then on one of my other drums maybe I will do the weber lid version. I will post some pron this month. Thanks.

Stacks 02-20-2012 03:08 PM

It's done!!
Read this thread once in 2010 and decided to build a UDS then again the last few months to get ready to build. Didn't want to post until I had something to add to this epic warehouse of knowledge. Well, here she is in all her glory. Thanks for all the great ideas and information along the way.

The Barrel

The Burn

The basket

Ready to add hardware

Hardware added

Seasoning with peanut oil. temp got to 500

Painted it this morning before the rains came.
I've got some traveling to do so my first cook will have to wait until April. I'll also finish the second barrel in Harley Davidson colors.
Again thanks to eveyone for all the great info.

daninnewjersey 02-20-2012 03:30 PM

Looks great....and of course having 2 is better than having only one.....

Drunken Monkey 02-20-2012 07:22 PM


Originally Posted by BGBarracus (Post 1934255)
Got so much info from this thread when I built my drum. :clap2: Decided to built a cut off vent for it.

Upright Drum Smoker Vent System - YouTube

Do you have any info to share about how you did this? It's an amazing concept!

ClintHTX 02-20-2012 07:28 PM

That cut off vent is genius.

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 08:43 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8
Copyright ©2000 - 2022, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
2003 -2012 BBQ-Brethren Inc. All rights reserved. All Content and Flaming Pig Logo are registered and protected under U.S and International Copyright and Trademarks. Content Within this Website Is Property of BBQ Brethren Inc. Reproduction or alteration is strictly prohibited.