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Controlling Temperature Ceiling

Royal CoachmenRoyal Coachmen Posts: 254
edited 8:00PM in EggHead Forum
So I'm slow cooking my first pork butt today. I got my fire started no problem and temp locked in at 225 in preparation for an 8-8.5 hour cook. I went upstairs to shower and came back down and noticed the temp had spiked to 300+.

I assume this is because I had the lower vent open too much (about 1.5 inches). I left it open this much because the temp would fall when I would shut it down to 1/4 inch or so. The daisy on top was open all the way.

Nevertheless, knowing 300+ is too high to slow cook a pork butt I could not bring the temperature back down quickly. Can any of the more experienced cookers out there coach me on how to bring down the temp once it gets out of control?

My remedy was to shut the vents all the way and cut off oxygen. My wife volunteered to open the vents once the temp had dropped down to 200-225. I asked her only to open vents 1/2 inch or less on the bottom and all the way on the top. Thanks.

Comments

  • fishlessmanfishlessman Posts: 21,872
    each egg is a little different, but drop the lower vent down to about a quarter inch and sqeak open the holes in the daisy so a tooth pick will just slide in. that should get you to a temp between 230 and 175 over the next hour or so. an average sized butt cooked 225 dome will take maybe 18 hours to cook, 250 dome maybe 14. i have no problems starting a cook like this at 300 but will drop it back to 250 as the cook goes on
  • RipnemRipnem Posts: 5,511
    Target 250, BGEs just seem to hold that temp well and it would equate to a 225 grid temp anyhow. The vent settings for 250º will be about 3+/- credit cards (thickness') on the bottom and the daisy wheel should be just cracked open.

    GG put together some info you would gain from reading. ;)

    General links
    http://www.eggheadforum.com/index.php?option=com_simpleboard&func=view&id=843650&catid=1

    Vent setting
    http://www.eggheadforum.com/index.php?option=com_simpleboard&func=view&id=746823&catid=1
  • FSM-MeatballFSM-Meatball Posts: 215
    I always watch it close for the first 30 minutes or so until the temp is stable. Just because its at 250, doesn't mean it will stay there. My first few low and slows would get wildly out of control at the start (like yours) then the fire would go out in the middle.

    300 is not too bad, if you open the lid and put the meat in, plus put the vents where they need to be it should stabilize back down to 250.
  • Thanks all. I'm cooking a 4.5 lb butt so I'm really hoping it doesn't take 18 hours. I planned on 1-2 hours per lb hoping to wrap up the cook around 5-6 pm tonight. Guess we will see.

    My wife is acting as my remote thermometer and just updated me that the current temp reading is holding steady at 230. I think I have the bottom vent right but have the daisy open too much.
  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    if the bottom vent is right, the daisy isn't doing anything ;)

    one of these, the daisy or lower vent, is the one ultimately choking the flow of air. you can work both together (i do), or either one alone.

    i like to kick the lower vent around when starting the fire, to make bigger adjustments, but eventually 'dial in' with the daisy. simply because it is a little easier to see and understand exactly how open it is.
    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • probe1957probe1957 Posts: 222
    I don't have a problem throwing a butt on at 300 degree dome. The temp will drop a lot when you put on that piece of cold meat and it is easy to stabilize the temperature as it climbs back up. Much harder to get temp down so I try to lock it in on the way up.
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