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grinding the lid on my 55 gallon drum


Meat Mopper
Joined May 21, 2008
I am planning to make a UDS and the drums I have (4 of them) are from a bakery.  They have had canola oil in some and molasses in the other.  The question that I have is they are not a removable lid, they are a close lid.  How do I grind the lid off so that I can reuse the lid for my UDS?   What grinder do I use?  Do I use a standard grinder, a drimmel, I just don't know.  Any suggestions would be great.  Thanks.


SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Joined Nov 12, 2010
Use a thin cut off wheel on a grinder. Think about cutting the drum 1" below the end. Then maybe expand the 1" lip outward so it overlaps the drum or expand the sides outward so the lid fits inside the drum walls. This can be accomplished with two hammers using one for support. It will take time and may be a solution to consider.


Smoking Fanatic
Joined Jul 1, 2009
A die grinder and a 3" cutoff wheel should do the trick. Hammer down any edges that are sticking out as these will be quite sharp. I have see people use a Weber kettle lid as the top of their UDS.
Last edited:


Fire Starter
Joined Nov 29, 2009
I did the same thing with my smoker, but didn't reuse the lid. I now use the weber top as the lid. This will also give a little breathing room for the top rack.

el ropo

Joined Jan 23, 2011
I used a 1/2" cold chisel and a hammer, took about 5 min. per drum.

It just occurred to me that this may be my first post here.  Hi all!

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