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iamddn

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Everything posted by iamddn

  1. Are you cooking hot? I did not have to tighten the nuts for over two years when I was only doing slow smokes (temperature under 250 degrees), but every thing was very loose after one pizza making experiment at 500+ degrees.
  2. I have 2016 24" pit boss from Costco. Over time, the bamboo handle and shelves have gotten moldy from moisture in the air and are now spotted black. I keep the grill covered, but the plastic cover seems to hold in humidity on the air. I see that the new 2017 model has a plastic handle and shelves. I guess I could call the company to ask/buy plastic replacements, but I kind of like the look of the bamboo wood. I was thinking of sanding down and refinishing the handle and shelves. They are pretty small and I figure I could finish with a polyurethane in a short time. Also, I don't think the handle or shelves get particular hot (based on my touch test while cooking), so I don't think I need special finishing material. Anyone try this? Also, I see almost identical handles and shelves parts sold on the Vision Grill site for a pretty reasonable price. I wonder if these would work and hold up better.
  3. With my unit, I find it very hard to cool down temperatures once it gets too hot, so I put all my efforts into maintaining lower initial temperatures. I find the key to temperature control is how you start the initial fire, how much coals you add, and how you arrange those coals. For example, if you start multiple initial fires in a big pile of coals, it is hard to keep down temperatures. For low/slow cooks, I start with a small pile of lump coal (maybe 10 pieces) and light a single bee's wax starter cube at one edge. Every thirty minutes or so, I add a couple more lumps of coal. I also play around with the top and bottom vents, such as to start with the bottom and lower vents cracked open and then close the top vent after I get to the desired temperature. The ceramic really holds heat, so you don't need that much more heat to maintain a desired temperate unless you are out on a cold/windy day.
  4. I have a partyQ that I use with my Pittboss, and I think I paid more last year. I have the same adapter for inserting the fan onto the lower, sliding air vent, but it was previously marketed as a general adapter that includes a sliable edge so the adapter can be used on numerous types of kamados. So you can use this unit on other grills if you get rid of your pitt boss. Anyway, I like it for longer, low temperature cooks. A couple of things I learned: (1) the fan unit eats batteries. I basically have to use a new set of 4 AA batteries for every cook. The fan still works after 4/5 hours but starts to show a low battery warning, which is weird because I have used the fan for 12 hour+ cooks. (2) the unit is good at holding a temperature, but the pitt boss is sufficiently leaky that the partyQ cannot cool down internal temperatures if you start too hot. I had trouble holding 225. So you have to be careful to light a single spot and let the partyQ work to provide air to warm up the coals. I have been playing with closing the top vent to see if that will help limit unintended air to the coals. I have not down any high temperature cooks with the PartyQ, so I do not know if it can help hold a high temperature for cooking pizza or grilling. (3) readings of the temperature probe can vary a lot depending on where you install the probe in the grill, but seems accurate. So I move the meat around, but every time you open the top and introduce fresh air, the temperature goes up a lot. (4) happily, the unit seems to hold up in a light rain without any condensation is on my display. (5) my temperature probe is starting the get gross from contact with BBQ sauce and smoke. The temperature is still accurately sensed, but I worry that the probe will stop working if I get too much crud on it. I may get a replacement probe soon for $22.
  5. You need to start cool to stay cool. 225 is barely ablaze. You probably lit too many briquettes and struggled to stop the burn. When I cook ribs, I fill the middle with lump coal, and light one Green Egg starter cube at an edge of the coals, and mostly close the bottom and top vents.
  6. So I replaced the original dome thermometer with a more accurate replacement unit. The original worked fine at first but started giving insanely wrong readings (300+ degrees off) after I did pizza at a very high temperature. The replacement dome thermometer does work better, but I was still having problems getting good cooking results due to differences between the dome temperature and the temperatures at the grates. Even if I was off by 25 degrees, my ribs would burn. Then I starting using a digital temperature probe and my long smokes got a lot better. I highly recommend you just ignore the dome thermometer and just go with a digital probe.
  7. I just modded my bottom vent by adding felt tape on the slider in the suggested manner. It is really, really hard to move and I did bend up the metal handle for the slider. If I had to do it again, I would trim the felt around the two punched-out pieces of the slider door. Now, my slider will go between totally closed and open about half way (more than enough to get full air flow). I also added a strip of felt tape around the chimney. I definitely notice better control of lower temperature and can shut off air sufficiently to put out a fire. I got my felt tape from my local Big Green Egg dealer where I buy my lump coal and starter blocks. He says that they come with extra felt strips for the top chimney and he just accumulates them.
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