First smoker, considering UDS or offset firebox, need guidance.

Discussion in 'UDS Builds' started by tommy rylander, Mar 31, 2016.

  1. Hi, this is my first non-rollcall post. Thanks already for all the great information I have got off of this forum by lurking.

    I have access to some old oil barrels and my brother in law is an experienced cutter and welder. It seems that the Ugly Drum Smoker (UDS) is the most commonly recommended use for such a barrel, but i have a few questions:

    1. If you have the means, is something with an offset firebox better than a UDS? I was thinking of something very similar to the one in the smokingmeatforum logo above (the one a pig is masochistically cooking with.

    2. I have read in some of the forums that drums have a hard time retaining heat. Are there any measures I can take to insulate it, either from the inside or the outside?

    3. If I went with the offset shape discussed above, what are some easy things I could make the firebox out of?

    4. Is it feasible for me to make this a reverse flow smoker in such a (relatively) small cooking vessel? Otherwise, I am thinking I will just put the smokestack on the opposite side. I assume I should wait until my next build when I maybe have access to a larger more insulated tank before i go reverse flow.

    Thank you all for any guidance you can give me.
  2. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I wouldn't use an oil drum to make an offset smoker. The metal is too thin to retain heat well.

    Drums work great for UDS smokers. They are very stable temp wise and you can do low and slow or high temp smokes. You can use racks or you can rig it up to hang meats.
    grillard likes this.

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