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How to Choose the Right Steel Drum For BBQ?

Ideal Size of an Oil Drum | Choosing the Right Steel Drum for BBQ | BBQanswers

Wondering what steel drum size is best for your needs? The following table will guarantee that you pick the right sized BBQ Drum:

The Volume of a steel drum is relevant when deciding how many people you want to serve. This is listed in Gallons (or Litres) in the table below. 

The Dimensions (Diameter and Height) of a steel drum help you to determine whether the Oil Drum Barbecue will fit in the space that you have. This is listed in Inches (or centimeters) in the table below.


Size Volume Drum Dimensions
[H = Height
D = Diameter]
Serves Ideal For
Mini 30 US gallons, (~114 litres) H = 27.50″ (~70 cm)
D = 18.25” (~46 cm)
2-3 people Lone-wolves or Couples
Small 42 US gallons, (~159 litres) H =  28” (~71 cm)
D =  21” (~53 cm)
3-5 people Nuclear family
Standard 55 US gallons, (~208 litres) H = 33.00″ (~84 cm)
D = 22.50″ (~57 cm)
5-7 people Big family
Large 85 US gallons, (~322 litres) H = 37.00″ (~92 cm)
D = 26.00″ (~66 cm)
7-10 people Family get-together
Extra-Large 96 US gallons, (~363 litres) H = 41.00″ (~104 cm)
D = 26.00″ (~66 cm)
10-12 people Family + Friends get-together
Huge 110 US gallons, (~416 litres) H = 41.00″ (~104 cm)
D = 30.00″ (~76 cm)
12-15 people Events and Competitions

Lined Drums vs. Unlined Drums for BBQ

Lined and Unlined Drums | Steel Drums for BBQ | BBQanswers

How to Choose the Right Drum Material for BBQ?

Choosing the right Drum material is essential not just for the long life of the drum but also for the long life of your family. 

When buying a steel drum, you will come across four basic types of drum materials:

Cold-Rolled Carbon Steel Drums

These are the most common steel drums on the market. You can find both lined and unlined drum variants, but most Cold-Rolled Carbon Steel Drums have a lining. So make sure to ask for an unlined drum.

Stainless Steel Drums

Composite Drums | Steel Drums for BBQ | BBQanswers

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