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A little reassurance please!

WarthogWarthog Posts: 83
edited November -1 in EggHead Forum
Okay, I am doing 14lbs of butt. I put it on at 7:00 tonight. The winds picked up about a half hour after I put it on and I can not keep the temp up. It has dropped to 194 right as of right now. I am 3 1/2 hours into an overnight. I keep bumping the draft door open a little more and I can not seem to get the temp to climb. How much lee way can I allow when trying to maintain 230? The meat temp is 138. I have done overnights before, but I don't remember having to fight the temperature like this. Any thought and all recommendations gladly accepted!

Thanks in advance,
Warthog

Comments

  • Big'unBig'un Posts: 5,909
    No problem! The bottom grate has clogged with small coal pieces. bend a coat hanger into an "L" shape and go through the bottom vent and push the coathanger up through the holes in the grate. do this several times. One word of caution.. the temp will jump quickly and you will need to restabilize your egg. Post again when you're done and let me know!
    Big'un
  • WarthogWarthog Posts: 83
    Big'Un,
    THANK YOU! I can't tell if it was clogged or not. This is my first overnight with FULL CIRCLE brand lump, so I am a little antsy. I cleaned out the egg prior to starting, so I didn't think I would have problems with the small chunks. Apparently, it did. Temp jumped immediately. I will continue to monitor it to make sure it stabilizes.

    Thanks again for your help!

    Warthog
  • Big'unBig'un Posts: 5,909
    No problem, I've had it happen to me a few times. That's how you learn. Once you get it stabilized you can get some sleep; unless you are tending it all night. I typically cook mine at about 160F-175F, and pull it at about 192F.

    Tomorrow when it comes out and you eat a pulled pork sandwich, you are gonna go nutz. After I pull apart my pork, I add a small amount applejuice and a little rub, and then toss. I'm hoping you'll post some pics or at least let us know how it went and how the pork was. HTH.
  • Celtic WolfCeltic Wolf Posts: 9,768
    You might want to kick that temp up to 250. At 230 you'll be chasing it all night.
  • WarthogWarthog Posts: 83
    170 cook temp! I am following the competition pork recipe from BGE. It calls for 230, pull at 200. The last one I did was excellent, using this recipe. I have pictures of the twins (two 7lb butts) before I put them on, and then of when I loaded them. I am also trying a two tier rack set up as well. I do like the idea of adding apple juice and rub, post pull. I am up to 218 and climbing slowly. I will get stable and set high/low limits on the maverick to wake me just in case.
  • WarthogWarthog Posts: 83
    What changes between 230 and 250?

    Warthog
  • EggtuckyEggtucky Posts: 2,746
    I didnt read all the replies and I'm sure someone has answered this by now..but sounds like a low lump or air flow problem..wind shouldn't have anything to do with it...FYI..I ALWAYS strip my egg down and clean everything including air holes and all ash out of my egg before an overnighter...you'll get more sleep ;)
  • WarthogWarthog Posts: 83
    I did the full clean prior to the cook. The difference was the Full Cirlcebrand lump. The low temp alarm went off this morning at 5:00. I went down and cleaned out all the holes in the ash grate, but wasn't getting the glow from underneath that I thought I should have. I opened the lid, and checked to see how much charcoal I had left, and sure enough, I was almost empty. I filled the egg with almost a full bag of the FC! I never burned through that much on other overnighters. I pulled everything out (meat, racks, drip pan, plate setter) and added a bunch of BGE lump. I am now back up at 230 and everything looks like it is going the right way. Guess I will keep the Full Circle for the quick cooks and stay with the BGE or the Wicked Good for the all nighters. On a possitive note, the butts are looking really good! Meat is at 167, grate is holding between 230 and 240. Should be good by dinner.

    Warthog
  • Celtic WolfCeltic Wolf Posts: 9,768
    At 230 Dome the grate (cooking surface) is at 200. Your target is 195. It will take some time to get there.

    At 250 the grate is at 220 and where it should be for Low and Slow cooking.

    Furthermore the egg just works better at 250 without assistance from a Guru or Stoker. I can't give you a scientific answer why - it just does.
  • WarthogWarthog Posts: 83
    Celtic Wolf,
    I am using a Maverick ET 73 with the probe mounted to the grate. The other probe is in the lower butt ( I have two butts going on dual grids). I also have another digital thermometer with that one monitoring the upper butt. I am not relying on the egg thermometer at all. In fact I use that as a mounting post for the maverick! That wire stand on the back of the Maverick slides down over the thermometer like that is what it is designed to do. Maybe it is! I did bump the temp up to 240 though and it does seem to "run" better. I am rambling on though. I just wanted to say thanks for your input. It is always nice to know that I can rely on the knowledge of guys like you to pull us through.

    Warthog
  • StanleyStanley Posts: 623
    This is based on my limited experience, but, I agree: 250° is much easier to hold (manually) than 230°. I think it's because 230° is too close to the tipping point towards going out.
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