Wabby First UDS

Discussion in 'UDS Builds' started by wabby, Feb 13, 2016.

  1. wabby

    wabby Fire Starter

    Hi guys,

    Building my first UDS.

    Collected 2 drums today. Not lined. Brand new shiny metal inside. They have had novacote in them so I assume I need to burn out to 'sterilize' the inside? This will also remove the paint from the outside so uts ready for paint afterwards??

    Planning on 2 x 3/4" ball valves plus one that will be capped most of the time. Teo cooking grills plus a grill for a grease catcher between food / fire.

    Anybody any ubber advice? Pictures and progress will be updated in here as I go.
  2. stokensmoke

    stokensmoke Smoke Blower

    I built my UDS about a year ago and am very happy with it. You will want to burn it out both for paint and chemical removal. I used 2x4 scraps from work. They burn hot and fast. I started with 1 ball valve and one called pipe and was not getting enough air flow so I drilled in 2 more cap/pipes. I open all 4 to get it up to temp then cap 2. Usually will settle about 250. Perfect. I have one grate up too for cooking and one in the middle I put a pizza pan on for a heat diffuser / grease blocker. Just play are, make adjustments and see what works for you.
  3. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I am a n my second UDS. Both I built with (3) 3/4" valved openings.

    I used the flat lids that came with the drums. The lids have a 1" & 2" bung. I leave both open when smoking for exhaust.

    Make a good charcoal basket with a built in ash catcher. I used expanded metal to form the basket. Added 4" carriage bolts as legs and welded a pizza pan to those for an ash catcher. Works great.
  4. wabby

    wabby Fire Starter

    Cheers for the info guys.

    What is the SHORTEST length bolts I will get away with to hold the racks?

    Going to use a washing machine drum for the fire basket, and room will be tighter than with the home made baskets you guys tend to use.

    Would 3/4" length be too short?
  5. dirtsailor2003

    dirtsailor2003 Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Depends on the rack you use. You just need enough to support the rack.
  6. wabby

    wabby Fire Starter


    Struggling to find the right parts in the UK. Having a nightmare. Cant find any decent priced stainless steel ball valves. All the brass ones I can find are nickel plated.

    Cant find parallel stainless steel nipples. All I can find are reducing bushes, and not sure of the length of these.

  7. smokin monkey

    smokin monkey Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    A UK member was building one recently, and was also struggling with parts, I will try and find his post.
  8. wabby

    wabby Fire Starter

    All of the ball valves that I can find at reasonable amounts are brass coated with Chrome.

    Is chrome safe for the ball valves? I know they are outside of the drum and shouldn't get that hot .. but you never know?
  9. smokin monkey

    smokin monkey Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Hi Wabby, chrome valves will be OK.

    I have sent Kiska, a PM, he will be along shortly to give you some advice on the UDS build, has has built two.
  10. kiska95

    kiska95 Smoking Fanatic

    Ok Wabby
    Drill the holes first before burnout it helps the combustion
    Scrub interior with hot soapy water n scrubber after burn then light coat of veg oil
    I rubbed off the outside paint when it was still hot! Just be careful!
    All you need is a trip to screw fix they do 3/4 brass nipples, caps and flanged nuts to keep em all in. You don't need SS each bit is 99p
    I put 3 in the bottom plus a 3/4 valve, use that one for my Digi Q
    I put 8 around the top ( no Bung in my lid) evens out the smoke distribution
    SS Bolts n nuts from eBay again you don't need much protruding about 25mm if you get bigger they can be cut 6mm does
    57cm Grates from sunshine BBQ or home base
    Used a ProQ coal basket with a cheap BBQ ( £12 sainsburys) base bolted on
    Degrease outside prime and then Spray with engine paint and job done easy peasy!
    hakamo0o likes this.
  11. wabby

    wabby Fire Starter

    Cheers for the info pal.

    Screw fix items ordered. Just scouring eBay now looking for suitable nuts and bolts, and trying to find a suitable ball valve :)

    I'm using a washing machine drum for the basket thats free so thats the basket sorted, just need to sort the grills. Cant find them on either site, so will nip into home base and look ski :)

    Cheers for the info thus far. Mucho Appreciato.
  12. kiska95

    kiska95 Smoking Fanatic

    Try wowbbq about 15 quid Amazon 25 quid
    Google 57cm grill replacement
  13. wabby

    wabby Fire Starter

    Well, all of my stuff is here so I can start to build tomorrow.

    Pictures and progress reports will follow :)

    Just incase it helps anybody else out, I got the grills from Homebase as suggested above for a whopping £4.99. Yes, thats right, £4.99.

    They look like the right size, so only time will tell when I test dry fit tomorrow (or wet fit if its raining ;) ).

  14. wabby

    wabby Fire Starter

    As promised, here are some update pics.

    Just after sectioning the barrel into 3 equal parts.

    Holes drilled, bottom ball valve on and screws inserted for the racks.

    Just need other bottom lock nut, then to give the inside a really good clean.

    Strip the paint off the outside with a paint prep disc on grinder and paint in some VHT paint.

    Oh, and make the basket / find a washing machine drum close enough to me to use.

    Only took me an hour or so to get this far, so going to build the other drum that I bought at the same time and try my luck selling it on ;) haha

    Top racks are at 6" and 9.5" down - Will mainly only be cooking one rack at a time but nice to have the option to do ribs and other meats :)

    Just waiting on my thermometers to arrive and then I will drill the hole for that, strip paint, paint, clean and get smoookkkkiiinnnggg :D
  15. smokin monkey

    smokin monkey Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Hi Wabby, looking good so far👍
  16. wabby

    wabby Fire Starter

    All done.

    First UDS now seasoning.

    Plans for the next one are to build it the same, but to add some removable hangers to turn the thing into a grill as well as a smoker.

    Hopefully these pictures inspire others or help people :)

    Step 1: I chose to strip with stripping discs rather than burn out as the inside was already clean and free from crap.

    Step 2: Threw some BBQ paint on from The Range.

    All built :)

    Washing Machine Drum Fire Basket.

    SMOKING :)

  17. kiska95

    kiska95 Smoking Fanatic

    Hi Wabby,

    Looking very good but just a little heads up. Although the inside of the barrel looked clean it actually has a lacquer sprayed on it to stop it from rusting, which is why we do a burn out and then season with vegetable oil as you would a wok.
  18. kiska95

    kiska95 Smoking Fanatic

    Hi Wabby

    I would also get something to insulate the lid handle too as it will get very hot

    Did you remove the rubber from the underside of the lid in the groove?
  19. wabby

    wabby Fire Starter

    Definitely nothing on it mate. Took the stripping disc to it and made no difference to the surface. The surface had started to brown over with rust from the few days sat 'unsealed' since I took the seal off the lid
  20. kiska95

    kiska95 Smoking Fanatic

    Ok but do you know what was in the barrel previously?

Share This Page