First UDS Build+Questions

Discussion in 'UDS Builds' started by krj, Oct 2, 2015.

  1. krj

    krj Fire Starter

    So I decided to pull the trigger and I bought a food grade barrel the other day on ebay to turn into my very first UDS. Over the past couple days I've been mulling over posts, pictures, videos, and whatnot on the internet deciding the exact design specs/features I wanted. I threw together a rough blueprint on gimp for measurements, in hopes that before I receive my barrel next week I can get some feedback from everyone, and then I can fine tune my design before I begin working.

    As you may see, I used some features I found from different builds I've looked at. The cooking grates will be adjustable on the stainless nuts B through G, H is my nuts for my drip/water pan rack. These are all welded to strips of steel, and then welded into the barrel, props to hugestapedius for this idea. are two sets of holes directly across from each other for rods to hang ribs on hooks. I grew up learning to smoke on my Grandpa's smoker where we always hung the ribs/chickens, and it has stuck with me as I developed my own style of smoking. If you would like to see the basic idea for doing it in a UDS I found from the "Pit Barrel Cooker", I will however be improving(I hope) on the concept. I  is my fire basket, haven't decided on the final diameter yet, but it will be 9" tall made of expanded metal, sitting atop 2" tall legs. J  be my three .75" intake ports set 1.5" from the bottom, once outside the smoke two of them will turn 90 degrees upward to an 18"ish nipple and ball valve. The third will be capped off directly at the nipple. And last but not least is K, is my 1" tall ash pan. The one thing I didn't draw up was the lid, which will be a flat lid with four .75" nipples with 90s on top with removable plugs for ventilation adjustment. This idea I spotted on youtube from "Daddy Cooks".

    Again, I'm open to any and all suggestions/criticisms/high praises that everyone has, anything to better my knowledge and thereby better my build. Hopefully I'll remember to take pictures, and I'll update this with my build shots.

    I do have a couple questions to ask as well.

    1: I was considering adding 3 toggle clamps to hold down my lid. Does anyone have any experience with this, and which style of toggle clamp would be the right type for this application?

    2: I plan on installing 2 or 3 grommets from webber to run my probes through, but I'm not entirely sure at what measurements I should install normal thermometers into the barrel.
    Last edited: Oct 2, 2015
  2. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    For the therms you want your pit probes on or at the level of the rack you are cooking on. Using the Weber grommets you can space them near your racks and adjust the cables according to where you racks are.

    I'd move your intake vents up to 2"-3" off the bottom. I wouldn't use risers on them. Straight pipe out with valves. The risers look cool but can cause air flow problems.

    The bottom of your charcoal basket should be near the top of your air intakes or just above. I'd attach your ash catcher to your charcoal basket.

    Now for the exhausts. I'd not go with the elbows. Once again they can cause airflow issues. I have a 2", and 1" (bung holes that came in the lid) the are open all the time when cooking. And provide excellent air flow for the smoker.

    Just some suggestions. Both the UDS's I have built have been set up this way and they perform great.
  3. krj

    krj Fire Starter

    I'll do some more looking around on the exhaust, and adjust the intake heights.

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