My Red Neck Easter Basket

Discussion in 'Charcoal Smokers' started by smokin' dick, Mar 8, 2009.

  1. smokin' dick

    smokin' dick Smoking Fanatic

    I started my first UDS yesterday. I made up the charcoal basket first as that is most of the work. Some expanded metal, bolts, an old grate, some aluminum for a handle and a top from a 30 gallon barrel. Here it is complete with some "eggs."

    I'm thinking it's a bit tall at 12", cuz that's 5 pounds of briquettes at the bottom.

    Here is a cleaner shot with Sparky the Dog anticipating some future good stuff. Notice that the ash catcher is attached for easy loading and unloading.

    The interior empty

    Running at 223*

    I drilled 6 - 3/4" holes for vents at the bottom, just because I like things nice and even, you know every 60* , and here are my vent covers.

    I started with 5# of cold briqs and 11 lit briqs. Three vents full open till temp was about 220. Shut down 1 vent, temp rose to about 240* then fell back to 217* It is now running with 1 full open and 1 at half open and is stable at 230* This thing seems as good or better than the WSM!

    Thanks to all who have gone before on this journey!
  2. bigtrain74

    bigtrain74 Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Man, I wish my kids would be as happy with that for easter as I would be...
  3. rickw

    rickw Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Nice looking drum, congrats on the build.
  4. hog warden

    hog warden Smoking Fanatic

    That's the ticket!

    I'm going to be swapping out my two drums with plastic liners for one without, and rumor has it the place I'm going has lots of options. A lid for a 30 gallon will be on the list if they have one.

    BTW, there are two ways to cut the expanded metal for the basket. You did it the right way. Cut the other way leaves little teeth sticking up to gig you and is much harder to wire to the grate. May take some talking to get it cut that way. The larger sheets they cut from are 4' x 8' I think and oriented wrong to cut a piece off the 4' side. But the pattern should be so the long side of the diamond shapes are horizontal vs. vertical.
  5. smokin' dick

    smokin' dick Smoking Fanatic

    Yes I saw those teeth before I cut and deemed it to be dangerous. Plus there was actually less material to cut oriented this way, lazy sometimes make the right decision. I had an option for some barrels with the liner, but decided $30 for a reconditioned one was a better deal. Good luck with your build. Now I need to think about paint.
  6. hog warden

    hog warden Smoking Fanatic

    Right or wrong....(I mention this as I've already been wrong a couple times), I found some 1,200 degree F engine paint at the auto parts store. They had a larger selection of colors at 500 degree F level, but I went with the higher temp paints.
  7. smokin' dick

    smokin' dick Smoking Fanatic

    Auto parts store it is then. Now what colors to use? What design? Oh the choices! Probably gonna be flat black.
  8. sixpack

    sixpack Fire Starter SMF Premier Member

    Nice Build.[​IMG]

    I believe Sparky's really getting ready to season your charcoal basket.[​IMG]
  9. hog warden

    hog warden Smoking Fanatic

    This is what I have in mind.........

    Might swap the red with the white......or just red and black to match my other grill. It's $8 per can if that matters. With a can of primer thrown in, I've got nearly $40 tied up just in paint! [​IMG]
  10. ddave

    ddave Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    If your just smoking with it (temps to 250°) you don't need high heat paint. Even if you want to do chickens at 350° to 375°, you still don't need high heat paint.

    I've had mine up to around 425° and it didn't hurt the paint at all.


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