Ugly Drum Smokers

Discussion in 'Charcoal Smokers' started by swamprb, Sep 27, 2007.

  1. swamprb

    swamprb Fire Starter

    I built these based on the Big Drum Smoker design and these suckers ROCK!
    I have two 38" drums with 2 grate capacity and a 34" with one 22.5" grate.
    Direct heat-NO waterpan, steady temps, excellent results and easy to use!
    I personalize mine with Weber lids with dome thermometers, but the drum lids work work perfect too! Hope you enjoy!

    Midnight Ramblers
    thunderdome likes this.
  2. hawgheaven

    hawgheaven Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Looks good Brian!
  3. deejaydebi

    deejaydebi Smoking Guru

    I like em! How do you reach the meat in the bottom though? Is there a door or do you need 4 foot long tongs? I've always wondered about that being only 5'2" tall a drum comes up to my chest!
  4. peculiarmike

    peculiarmike Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Deb, the meat is not in the bottom, it's on top on the grate. Fire (charcoal) is in an expanded metal basket in the bottom. The grates are 24" above the fire. Drippings drop into the fire and add a lot of flavor, like on a charcoal grill.
    You could easily handle cooking in a drum.
  5. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Kinda sounds like a good brand name "The Ugly Drum"- your ticket to beautiful food!
  6. chadpole

    chadpole Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    How do you set up the vent/damper system in the bottom for more/less air. I tried tyo see it in the picture but it doesn't show the bottom very well. They look like awsome cookers.Job well done. Happy smoking!![​IMG]
  7. scooter

    scooter Newbie

    where can a guy get good clean drums? Don't want one that has had Petro. in them or any hazardous material

    thanks Scooter
  8. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Deal don't much matter WHAT was in the drum<Excepting chems!>. Roast the hell out of it, and it'll be fine. BTW...roast it BEFORE welding and such...

    Well, perhaps some chemicals might be a bad idea, but oil and such, no worries.
  9. A few things - You either can have just holes drilled in the sides, about 1-2" above the bottom, you can use ball valves, galvanized pipe with caps, etc. Almost anything that lets air in that you can regulate, you can use. I use two 3/4" full flow ball valves on my drum.

    As for clean drums, you can check around bakeries, restaurant supply houses, feed stores, or drum suppliers. The whole idea of the UDS, is cheap, but sometimes you can't find the right drum. Some people have had success with orchards, or even food suppliers like Sysco having old drums. You want a food grade drum, and that is what I would look for if you can find it.

    Never use a drum that has a spray on epoxy coating. You'll never be able to burn it off. I lucked out, and my drum had a heavy plastic liner it in that was removed, so nothing touched my drum walls at all. I just wire wheeled the inside to take off surface rust, and seasoned it with Pam.
  10. richtee

    richtee Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Of's best to get a food grade. But you can burn some clean. yeah..that epoxy crap is tough... also, that may indicate chems were in it and I'd steer clear of that, cause ya never know.
  11. ajthepoolman

    ajthepoolman Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    I will wait a while longer. I have heard positive feedback on the use of these drums, but I can't get over the fact that my yard will look like an oil tanker ran ashore.

    Maybe we can find ways to "pretty" them up.
  12. crewdawg52

    crewdawg52 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

  13. webfoot

    webfoot Smoke Blower

    Maybe a little hi-temp paint on the outside.
  14. ajthepoolman

    ajthepoolman Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    I'm thinking more like encase it in bricks so it looks like a built in grill!

    So what is the secret to these things? I see people with Webers, I have an electric Brinkmann. What is it about the drums that work so well?
  15. smokin for life

    smokin for life Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    The heck with the drums, man did you see that food YUMMY.
  16. deer meat

    deer meat Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Awesome idea, is there a door near the bottom to add wood and coals?

    Mand that food looks great!! Thanks for the Qview
  17. redbrinkman1955

    redbrinkman1955 Smoking Fanatic

    Let the food do your talking those drums rock be sure to post more pics.
    Good luck and Good smoking
  18. zapper

    zapper Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Ain't nothing much to it, all you got to do is put the smoke to it! Just about any rig will give you great Que, IF! you can control the HEAT!

    Anything from the "Flower Pot Smoker" to the "Lang 60" and more, it is about the heat. There are alot of great Pics there, for sure! And that just goes to show that someone has gotten up and done some work! And made me damn hungry!
  19. swamprb

    swamprb Fire Starter

    You are cooking with live fire, direct heat @24" or more above the coals, using wood for smoke. You load @10lbs of briqs and you will run out of meat to cook before you will ever have to add more charcoal/lump! No waterpan, no doors to fall off to add charcoal, I could go on and on! I have WSM's and the drums will hold more meat, easier to use and I don't get temp spikes in the drums like a WSM. Plus I have the satisfaction of cooking on something I built.
  20. salbaje gato

    salbaje gato Meat Mopper OTBS Member

    i agree with that , its very satisfying cokking on something that you built yourself, and you cant blame the manufacturer for burning you butts

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