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Preheating/planning for a low 'n slow

EldeElde Posts: 148
edited July 2012 in EggHead Forum
Preheating/stabilizing for a low 'n slow - platesetter in or out?  Diddle with the vents once loaded, or just wait?

Also, where comes the 1.5-2hrs/lb figure?  I don't recall my old gasser taking anywhere near that long for a pair of shoulders.


  • DuganboyDuganboy Posts: 1,118
    First thing I would recommend with starting the fire is don't let it get too hot.  Get a few coals burning then stir them in with the rest of the lump.

    If I'm going to cook at say 250 dome, I will let it go with the DW open til it reaches 275, then I put my platesetter in and start closing the DW vents and and stabilizing the temp.  Let it burn at this temp until you get the smoke you want, only then do you put in the shoulder, brisket, etc.

    This will take the temp down some due to the coldness of the meat.  It will slowly come back and you should have no trouble stabilizing the temp.  Good luck. 

  • FanOfFanboysFanOfFanboys Posts: 1,970
    I'm doing my 2nd low n slow Friday night
    I am sub'd for tips ha
  • turokturok Posts: 28
    I kinda had the same questions. When do you all put in the smoking wood. The hickory chunks and what not? Right before you light it or after its at temp and just before you put the meat on? I have been doing the latter and it is kind of a pain taking all the stuff then putting it all back in. There has to be an easier more efficient way. I don't want to waste good smoke so that is why I have done it that way.
  • xraypat23xraypat23 Posts: 421
    I mix all my chunks or chips throughout the charcoal for a nice even smoke the whole time. For a low and slow I fill it all the way up till it's almost touching the bottom of the inverted platesetter. Than I bury my electric starter in the middle and let it go 5-8 minutes until I have some flames coming out of the center. I'm not a stirrer, i just let it be. Once it's going, I put the platesetter in, or stone on the spider. Keep the lid open and the bottom open for about 5 minutes, put the grates in than close her up. If I'm not using my ique I leave the top off and bottom open until I hit 200, than the daisy wheel goes on, petals about half open and I choke the bottom down to a 1/4 inch. once I hit 225 I close the bottom to about a nickels width and the daisy wheel the same.  I'm a 100 feet above sea level if that helps at all.
  • EldeElde Posts: 148
    It won't let me quote myself, but I figured out where I've been going wrong calculating the cooking time.  I calculated based on the weight of the [Costco] package rather than the weight of the individual shoulders...
  • lousubcaplousubcap Posts: 10,008

    Once I get the initial fire going for low&slow (dome and bottom vent open) about the size of a grapefruit, I load the platesetter, drip pan and grate shut the dome and adjust the vents to about the target temp (somewhere 250-270). Wait til temp is stabilized for a good 45 mins or so, then add the meat and away we go.  As xraypat23 mentions, I mix chips throughout the lump load.

    The 1.5-2Hrs/# comes from cook run times-always estimate long and then use the FTC if finished early. With an average of around 250*F on the calibrated dome I have never had a butt or brisket (flat) come in at less than 1.8 hrs/# and most are in the 2-2.1hrs/#.  enjoy the journey.

    Louisville;  L & S BGEs 
    Pit Barrel Cooker
  • turokturok Posts: 28
    That's great advice. I never thought to mix the chips/chunks in with the lump. I will try that next time. Thanks
  • OMG EggsOMG Eggs Posts: 118

    I'm with @lousubcab. Load the platesetter as soon as the fire is lit. The platesetter is going to affect the way your fire burns and your egg temp. Also, adding a hunk of cold ceramic is also a heat sink, which will temporarily bring your temp down if you add it after you get to temp, which could cause you to over react and overshoot your temp.

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