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UDS Planning Check

Discussion in 'UDS Builds' started by Chogreshi, Jul 11, 2019.

  1. Chogreshi

    Chogreshi Newbie

    Hello All,

    I am in the planning stage of starting a UDS with a 55 Gallon Drum and I am thinking that I want to install 2 Cooking Grates and 1 Waterpan/Heat Deflector Grate. I plan to use the flat top and not the Weber Dome (Do not like the looks).

    I have planned out where I am going to drill holes on photoshop and want someone just to check over my measurements and let me know if I should move them or if I will run into issues with placement.

    The Firebasket I was planning to make is 9" x 24" Expanded Metal and 1" ash pan. If I can do the normal 12" x 24" Metal let me know cause I would rather go with the bigger size.

    Your expertise would be appreciated

    USD_Measurements (2).jpg
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2019
  2. hardcookin

    hardcookin Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Here is another set of plans. I never did the diffuser. image.jpg
  3. hardcookin

    hardcookin Master of the Pit OTBS Member

  4. Chogreshi

    Chogreshi Newbie

    Thank you for the info provided. I see your original plans had the grates at 5" and 9", was that enough space for larger meats like Pork Butt? or Roasts?
  5. hardcookin

    hardcookin Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    The first one I had, I used a Weber lid for, so plenty of room on the top rack.
    The 2nd one I did, I just used a regular lid.
    And to be honest I don't recall what measurements I used.
    I smoked a lot of chicken.

    Measure a pork butt and space them accordingly.
  6. Braz

    Braz Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    I think the adjustable rack solution that hardcookin posted above is brilliant.
  7. hardcookin

    hardcookin Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I can't take credit for that, it was off another UDS build when I was researching mine.
    It would make rack adjustments pretty nice though.
  8. fivetricks

    fivetricks Smoking Fanatic

    1. Don't add a waterpan. Just not needed. You won't need to add humidity to the barrel and your even-ness of temps won't benefit from it either. Just go with a basic heat deflector and save yourself both trouble and vertical real estate.

    2. Two racks are great for the extra real estate but are also super frustrating to work with. Ask me how I know lol.

    I'm not saying don't use two racks, but I am saying that it's a lot harder to maneuver the upper and lower racks with 300 degrees air and smoke blowing into your face, especially when they're loaded down with food you're trying to not drop.

    You can only have a hot UDS open for so long before it starts to flame up. It will turn into an inferno in no time. Again ask me how I know. So bear this in mind during the design and build stage of your barrel :-)
  9. meatallica

    meatallica Meat Mopper SMF Premier Member

    When I built a UDS, I put a second rack in. I never used it it was a pain in the a$$. I did go with a kettle lid and a hinge, and that made life a lot better
  10. Chogreshi

    Chogreshi Newbie

    Thank you all for your input. I might just do two racks, if I need a diffuser than I can just use the second rack.
    hardcookin likes this.
  11. Geter-Done

    Geter-Done Newbie

    Great idea's.
    I have several barrels.
    I may look into building one of these.