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MikeUSMC: "Bury Me in Smoke"

Ok, I started with a Jim Beam barrel on Craigslist for $100

Sanded it down with a wire wheel on an angle grinder on the bands.
80 grit, then 120 grit, then 150 grit sandpaper "flapper" wheel on the oak
Cleaned it up nice

5/8" self tapping stainless screws (predrilled pilot holes) in every stave to hold the bands up, and to stop the barrel from falling apart when I cut the top off. This took FOREVER

Off comes the top, out comes the loose char. Smelled like smoky bourbony awesomeness

Little 14" Weber "Smokey Joe" for the bottom. I drilled a ton more holes in this for better airflow, and altered the legs a little so it would sit lower

Access door to refill water pan/charcoal

Four 3/4" threaded pipe air vents w/ caps to control the airflow. High-temp, food grade caulk in each stave joint

Somewhere along the way, after all the hardware was on (holes drilled), I was ready for paint. I love the textured look of this stuff. (Spray paint) "Forged Hammered Antique Pewter"

A coat of stain, and BOOM!

'MERICA. :cheers:

Boss, let me know if you want me to delete any of the double posted pics. I'm not looking to get in trouble here :)


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A few more random things I did:

-set an 18" pizza pan directly in the bottom of the barrel to catch any loose ashes

-used "black" steel wall/floor flanges and threaded couplers (3/4") for the vents on the bottom, and for the 2 exhaust pipes to clamp to on the top. Had to shim those with stainless shims (shiny rectangles on underside of lid) to get the pipes to stay at 90* to the top (they wanted to lean). Another bigger flange and cap (1&1/2"?) to cover the bung

-used the same high-temp, food grade caulk to secure 1/4" (maybe it was 3/8"?) wood stove rope gasket to bottom rim of the lid to prevent leaks. Also filled any cavities around the inside of the flanges/vents heavily with caulk

-Grand Total was something like $515 (barrel and hardware/supplies). Took (estimating here) roughly 40 hours to build

Any questions, feel free to ask!


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Hotrod64 said:
Did you keep some of that char to sprinkle on the coals? would add some great flavour.
Nah, I tried talking the wife into switching out the potpourri in the bathroom for the char, but she shot that down REAL quick, haha!


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Thanks guys! This project was a lot of fun, and very rewarding

Hey HopsNBarley, "Getcha' pull"..... is that from Dimebag Darrell?


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MikeUSMC said:
Now you're gonna get me in trouble for double posting pics :rofl:

I posted a few pics in the community smoker thread, then it started getting a lot of attention, so I decided to start my own, here. Figured I'd show the build too.

Here's the original post I made, with food pics:

All future cooks I do, I'll post in this one :)
OK, I didn't see that. Thought this was an original thread.
Nice grub master.



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No master here, dude. Hahaha
Believe me, I'm still a rookie. I don't even think I have a dozen cooks under my belt yet!


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Still haven't done a brisket yet (on this smoker), but I plan on doing a small corned beef brisket on Friday (4-5lbs for me, my wife, and the kids). I'll probably do a big one on Memorial Day (big picnic)


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No, I didn't brine it at home (that's why it's not in the DIY Corned Beef thread ;) ) Either way, it came out fantastic. Never smoked one before, and I doubt I'll ever boil one again. I'm not sure how to embed a video on my phone yet, but I followed Malcom Reed's recipe from his channel, "How to BBQ Right." If you've never seen his stuff, he has some great recipes; especially his carñitas. Ok, back to St. Paddy's Day


Brisket went on, now prepping the cabbage

Get brisket up to 130*, fill pan halfway with water and cover with foil to braise; cabbage goes on

Brisket at 150*, add potatoes, carrots, onion. Cover back up with foil, back on smoker

Brisket up to 195*, veggies and cabbage should be nice and soft (I let the brisket rest in a cooler, wrapped in towels for a bit)

Cabbage was AWESOME; super buttery and tender, but still had a little crunch

Got my Boos Block in the mail yesterday ;)



Great meal! Happy St. Paddy's Day! Check Malcom Reed out if you haven't already! :cheers:


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Yeah, you ain't kiddin'! I'm really looking forward to sandwiches. I can't decide if I want to make Reubens or just have sandwich melts with Swiss, and mustard mixed with CaJohn's Fatalii Fire :party: