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  1. #11
    Jackb is offline Allowed to bring in wood for The Pit Jackb is an unknown quantity at this point
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
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    Kearney, Mo.
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    51

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    By and Pig, thanks for the input. When the temps start to fluctuate a bit, in all honesty I start to panic figuring I screwed up like last time when I turned 2 slabs of bb's into truck tires. Apologize for the newbie questions but I really want to learn as much as I can to consistently turn out good food or at the very least EDIBLE

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Carthage, MO
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    Also I personally believe if you use the 2 valves open there is a possibility of cross drafting that can potentially cause temperature spikes and variations when all you want is a lower temperature and not trying to go 300+.

    Something to think about as you find the best way for your drum to hold temps. Don't let a little fluctuation get your toes curled back. Give it a chance to find its own level.
    Plank Owner ..................
    I didn't fight my way to the top of the food chain to be a vegetarian!



  3. #13
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    St. Petersburg, Fl.
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    No problem on the questions. We all started somewhere and asking questions is a way to help learn how to do something.

    Remember it takes a lot of practice to learn how to use a cooker and even then we all make mistakes. It's just part of playing with smoke and fire.

    I too like using only one intake valve. You'll have to play with the exhaust. Like Joe and I said let the drum show you what it likes and where (at what temp ) it likes to cook. Most drums like to run around 275--give or take a little. It may be that you are trying to choke it down too much to cook at to low of temp(around 220--225). That is not a magical temp that is the only temp to produce good Q. That is a myth. Don't believe that, just look at the temps most comp cooks are cooking at.

    I usually like to cook around 275 to 300 for most things and 325 to 350 poultry.

    Have fun and don't worry so much. It will all come together in time.
    Jim

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Location
    Craig, Mo.
    Posts
    1,199

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    Reading through today's posts, I didn't see any mention of "If your lookin, you ain't cookin". If you remove the lid, do it for very short periods and get it back on and let the drum settle before removing it again. Drums love to spike when the lid is taken off for any length of time. Once you figure out your drum, you will love the near "set it and forget it" attitude they have.
    Steve


    1-UDS
    1-Homemade stickburner/ Buela

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Location
    Tulsa, Ok
    Posts
    2,326

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    I have one ball valve, and eight 1"holes in my lid. The ball valve is never more than half open. I also have a half inch hole 180 from the valve for a little more air for high temp ( over 325), but I've never needed it. Once I approach the temp I'm shooting for, I close four of the lid exhaust holes. If I turn the valve off and leave the lid holes open, it stays at 220 till all the charcoal burns up. It's just a theory, but I think the lid holes can act as intake as well as exhaust. Be gentle with your adjustments. A little goes a long way. When I say gentle I'm talking moving the end of the handle an eighth of an inch at a time. If it starts to get out of control, shut it down. Let the temp drop then open it slowly.

    You didn't say what type of charcoal your using?

    Remember; if your looking, you ain't cooking.
    Master Cabinetmaker,KCBS Certified Judge,Student of the smoking arts,All around gear head
    Ugly drum smoker,Chargriller,Custom Backwoods Chubby,Bellfab backyard model

    "I love what mine cause, whats mine is all mine. Gives me a reason to go get more"- John Popper, Blues Traveler.

  6. #16
    Jackb is offline Allowed to bring in wood for The Pit Jackb is an unknown quantity at this point
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
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    Kearney, Mo.
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    51

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    Great advice guys and again, thanks for taking the time to baby sit me. If you cook at 275-300, how long do you usually leave baby backs on before you wrap them? Thats what I would usually like to cook the most and am looking for the ideal temp and length of time. My first cook was a Boston Butt and I think I truly lucked out 'cause it came out perfect but I really struggle with the baby backs. I use Stubbs charcoal, but when I cooked the butt I used Royal Oak lump.

  7. #17
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Location
    St. Petersburg, Fl.
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    Ideal temp is what your drum likes to run at. Some run best at 250 and some at 275, they are all different. You need to find what temp your drum likes to cook at, and that just takes practice.
    At 275, I guess you could foil after a couple hours, leave in foil for 1 hour, and then out of the foil and back on the drum to set up til done(pass the bend test). I'm not sure because I don't foil them. Time means nothing, they are done when they are done. Every piece of meat can be different. Learn to cook til meat is done (pass bend test or probe tender). The only time that time is truly used is in baking.
    Jim

  8. #18
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
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    St. Petersburg, Fl.
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    The other times cooking to temp may be involved would be cooking a steak ( I cook by feel ), cooking a butt for slicing-not pulling, a few of these type of instances.
    Jim

  9. #19
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
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    Carthage, MO
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    If you're going to foil (which is fine) usually 2 to 3 hrs before foiling. One good way to judge how long is when you get the color you like on your ribs then foil for an hour or so. How long depends on the slabs and how skimpy or meaty they are.

    Try to get out of your mommas method of "time no matter what". BBQ is a process of breaking down tougher meats and each cut is different, so relax and go with the flow.

    I realize you're still learning and looking for guidelines so keep some notes to fall back on as you go until you learn your drum and each cut. Keep asking until you are clear and understand.
    Plank Owner ..................
    I didn't fight my way to the top of the food chain to be a vegetarian!



  10. #20
    Jackb is offline Allowed to bring in wood for The Pit Jackb is an unknown quantity at this point
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Location
    Kearney, Mo.
    Posts
    51

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by PigCicles View Post
    If you're going to foil (which is fine) usually 2 to 3 hrs before foiling. One good way to judge how long is when you get the color you like on your ribs then foil for an hour or so. How long depends on the slabs and how skimpy or meaty they are.

    Try to get out of your mommas method of "time no matter what". BBQ is a process of breaking down tougher meats and each cut is different, so relax and go with the flow.

    I realize you're still learning and looking for guidelines so keep some notes to fall back on as you go until you learn your drum and each cut. Keep asking until you are clear and understand.
    Trust me, when I ask a question I print off ALL the comments Clear and understand? That's another matter, but I'm not giving up, sooner or later the light will go on as I learn more. Thanks to all!!

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