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Hello everyone . . . I initially posted a question a month or so ago about maintaining low temperatures (in the 225 range). As some of you suggested, I decided not to be fixated on that exact temperature and settled for anything between 225 - 275 for long, slow cooks of brisket and ribs to great effect. I've done slow cooks now on 8 different occasions and on 6 of them I've been able to keep the temperature low. Again, as a few noted, if I ever let them temperature get much above 325, I was not able to get that temperature back down without snuffing the fire and starting from scratch
Now, perhaps an easier question. For "regular" bbqing in the 350 - 450 range. I perhaps naively though that once I got the temperature in that range, I could set the Egg and forget it. But, the last 2 efforts failed miserable. I go the temp to about 400 playing with the bottom vent and daisywheel. I made sure the temp stayed there for ~20 minutes and then put my chicken on (on a chicken stand with no placesetter installed). I was planning to come back 50 minutes later to find a perfectly cooked chicken. On both occasions, I came back to an egg that had reached temperatures too high to register on the dome thermometer and a nice pitch black and ashen chicken!!
So, here's the naïve question . . . with these failed chicken experiments . . . did I not wait long enough to ensure the temp was locked in at 400? If not, how long should I give the fire to feel comfortable that the temp will stay as is? And, perhaps an even more basic question . . . how can I be assured that the fire is actually set so that when I start closing the vents and daisy wheel I am not inadvertently smothering the fire (this is a much more relevant question for low temp cooking, I realize, but still trying to gain confidence with these basics)