Will the top of this barrel come off in such a way as to be usable as a lid? It seems to be melted/glued on to be an integral part of the barrel, so I'm guessing the only option is to saw it off.

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SolarMike's idea of using a broomstick is excellent, and that worked to place my fitting. However, because I had drilled the hole through the bottom where the thickness of the plastic has significant variations, it wouldn't seal. I even bought a Uniseal, which seems to be a fine product, but it still didn't seal.

I pondered how to put the fitting in a hole drilled on the side of the barrel, hoping the plastic would be more even there, and considered how to plug the hole on the bottom.

Then an idea dawned on me which seems obvious in retrospect: flip the barrel, drill a hole in one of the caps that's already fitted and threaded. A little pipe joint compound was all that was needed on the threads, and a gasket around the fitting.

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    Do you want the lid just as a dustcover or must it make a perfect seal? Does the barrel have to keep its structural rigidity so it can be moved? If so then use the two openings provided...
    – Solar Mike
    Aug 19, 2019 at 4:53
  • @Solar_Mike Just as a dustcover. I need to gain access to the inside to put a connector near the bottom for a hose, but don't need to be able to move the barrel while filled. Aug 19, 2019 at 7:00
  • @Solar_Mike - not enough rep yet to comment on your answer, so: I was doubtful about making a tool of some sort to do this, but your broom handle comment got me thinking. Yes, that will work, for sure. Aug 19, 2019 at 12:33
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    good luck, especially when you drop the nut.. guess how I know :) ...
    – Solar Mike
    Aug 19, 2019 at 12:36
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    Even got the arrows pointing for the fitting! Good job.
    – Solar Mike
    Aug 26, 2019 at 17:55

2 Answers 2


Then, based on your comment that you only need the lid as a dust cover, I would cut around the top of the wall as close to the lid as possible.

Once separated then remove any excess on the lid to leave a slight taper to help the lid "sit" neat after.

I have cut these with a hand wood saw before, a bit boring but the plastic usually cuts well. I found a jigsaw too "bouncy" and it would not be close enough to the lid.

I did 8 of these barrels for my parents for rainwater and made a tool on a broom handle to hold the nut & washer to screw the fitting into so the two original holes were fine, no need to take the top off... Depends on what your fitting is I suppose...


These barrels are used for highly corrosive materials and the lids are not designed to come off like the normal 55 gallon ones with the screw ring.

  • Yup, they don't want you to remove the top for fear of accidental catastrophic uncontrolled release of the entire nasty contents. Aug 19, 2019 at 2:58

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