UDS Question

Discussion in 'UDS Builds' started by sontavas, Jun 23, 2013.

  1. Greetings!

    I am planning on building my first UDS.  I ordered a Big Pappa Smoker Kit for most of the parts but want to make some modifications in order to improve the efficiency of the unit.  My main concern is that the air inlets on the bottom of the Big Pappa Smoker kit are sliding units (similar to the top of a webber) and I imagine that they are not very air tight in the closed position.  I notice that most of the custom build UDS's use ball valves, which I imagine make it easier to adjust the precise amount of air let into the unit. Do you think its worth using ball vales instead of the sliding units that come with the Big Pappa Smoker kit?  Also, any additional modifications that you all might be willing to recommend would be greatly appreciated.  Thanks.
  2. fwismoker

    fwismoker Master of the Pit

    I don't have any problems with my BPS vents, in fact you'll really like them...it's nice just sliding them vs capping and un capping nipples and adjusting ball valves.  You should put  high heat silicone around the outside edges before installing...Also i took a rubber mallet and tapped down the vents so it tightens up the slider.     LOVE IT...  no complaints at all.  

    I did put a 1 ball valve on but it's for my ATC for when i use it. 
    Last edited: Jun 23, 2013
  3. Hello sontavas and welcome to the fun.  Many good folk here with a load of experience that they are more than willing to share.  If you have specific questions just start a thread and someone with experience will be along soon to offer advice.  Spend some time doing some research on the forums, tons of advice and recipes already available there.  The trial and error method works well.  We will try to help you keep the errors to a minimum.  I see this is you 1st post.  Please swing by Roll Call and introduce yourself so that we might give you a proper welcome.  Also it helps if we know your location so as to be better able to tailor an answer to your questions.  Have fun.  Good luck.  Keep Smokin!

  4. FWI has you covered.

    Remember to post pics of the build or you will be seeing a lot of this.


    or this[​IMG]

    Happy smoken.

  5. wneill20

    wneill20 Fire Starter

    I have two Big Poppa drums and the bottom vents work great if install right. The good things about the vents you can take as low as you want to go. I have had mine down to 180 for ten hours no problem very little adjustment needed. Give them a try
  6. Thanks for the info guys. I am excited to get started. Out of curiousity, what vent positions do you guys usually use for smoking? I realize that it will be different for each UDS, just trying to get a feel for what most folks are running. Thanks,
  7. I open all 3,  3/4" bottom vents, And the top vent to get it going. After I get it close to temp I plug off 2 of the 3/4" vents. I then use the other 3/4" ball valve to dial in my temp. I also have a side smoke box on mine That i leave wide open. The entire time. Top vent wide open the entire time.

    Happy smoken.

  8. wneill20

    wneill20 Fire Starter

    If I'm going to cook at 225* i will place about fifteen lit coals on top of the basket full and open the top vent all the way, open both slide vents so that one hole is exposed each side. When it gets close to the 225 * i will close one side all the way and adjust the orther side as required. On my drum 3/4 of one hole will keep me close to the 225 mark.
  9. fwismoker

    fwismoker Master of the Pit

    This...it's super easy to figure out though.    I used to put the lit coals on top but now i make a little pocket on the edge of the basket...could be 6 of 1 or half dozen of the other but it works well for me. 
  10. Thanks everyone for the help. My kit came in the mail today and I am picking up my drum tomorrow. I elected to spend a few extra bucks ang get a brand new food grade drum. Do you think that it is necessary to strip all of the brand new paint off of the outside of the drum and the. repaint with high heat paint? What is the purpose of stripping the original paint? Do you think the factory paint would peel after a few smokes? Again, any advice is greatly appreciated.
  11. The original  Paint will burn off. Allowing all of your hard work to look like a rusty burn barrel. In no time.

    Happy smoken.


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