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Cooked two butts today, and I now know


Woodman
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Dub - I thought I'd never us a controller, but recently bought one for a variety of reasons. Now I can't imagine NOT having my CyberQ. It's a very nice option to have. And it certainly makes life so very easy when you've got a low-n-slow going. The fact that it's WiFi is a plus as well. No range or line of sight issues.

The guy to give you the real 411 here is Robert, aka 5698k. Talk about a Guru!

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Going to excess, I'm sure a BBQ controller with a built-in light and camera (that sit inside the grill) would sell - imagine watching your meat cook inside a sealed grill. Does it help you cook better food? Not likely. But there's no denying it's cool and some people would jump on it.

It took over 20 years for the handheld computer to become ubiquitous. In 1994 most people would say "why do I need that?" Most of them didn't even have a notebook or desktop for that matter. There will always be people to resist technology. Fortunately for companies producing tech, these people will die and be replaced. ;) it's a long term strategy.

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Going to excess, I'm sure a BBQ controller with a built-in light and camera (that sit inside the grill) would sell - imagine watching your meat cook inside a sealed grill. Does it help you cook better food? Not likely. But there's no denying it's cool and some people would jump on it.

It took over 20 years for the handheld computer to become ubiquitous. In 1994 most people would say "why do I need that?" Most of them didn't even have a notebook or desktop for that matter. There will always be people to resist technology. Fortunately for companies producing tech, these people will die and be replaced. ;) it's a long term strategy.

 

Can you get your cook going, then leave it and go out for a few hours and still know what the temps are doing and even change the cook temp? I can with my CyberQ, it makes my life much easier and my cooks much better,  so for me it is well worth the money. Everyone is different in what they like, so it's not for everyone but it's a great little device.

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I can with my CyberQ,

You quoted the wrong post, it makes the reply really odd.

 

Yep, don't know how that happened, I meant to quote Dub.

 

I used to think that I needed a temp controller.

 

 

Now, I doubt I'll ever buy one.  

 

 

 

I've yet to find the need on any cook I've done thus far.....butts, brisket, chuck roasts......no need.

 

 

That may change if I ever encounter a need....but after 5 years of frequent kamado grilling it has yet to present itself.

 

 

YMMV, but quality lump, clear firebox holes, proper vent settings and patience between adjustments seems to go a long, long way.

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Since I've brought the Kamado Joes home, I've had truly set it and forget it cooks. I smoked some pork butts for about 16 hours with a full load in the Big Joe and it held at 250 the entire time. I pulled the racks out to see how much fuel was left and I could have easily gone at least another two or three. That's bizarre you had issues. I also bring the temp up slow and light in one place. This has helped immensely.

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Going to excess, I'm sure a BBQ controller with a built-in light and camera (that sit inside the grill) would sell - imagine watching your meat cook inside a sealed grill. Does it help you cook better food? Not likely. But there's no denying it's cool and some people would jump on it.

It took over 20 years for the handheld computer to become ubiquitous. In 1994 most people would say "why do I need that?" Most of them didn't even have a notebook or desktop for that matter. There will always be people to resist technology. Fortunately for companies producing tech, these people will die and be replaced. ;) it's a long term strategy.

 

Can you get your cook going, then leave it and go out for a few hours and still know what the temps are doing and even change the cook temp? I can with my CyberQ, it makes my life much easier and my cooks much better,  so for me it is well worth the money. Everyone is different in what they like, so it's not for everyone but it's a great little device.

 

 

 

 

I have gone out and left it rolling along for a couple of hours but it's no something I've found a need to do buy a couple times.

 

Like I said....the need may arise to get a pit controller....it just hasn't thus far.

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Except you can't actually "forget it" - at some point you have to pull the meat out. ;) And potentially at some point before that you may check the internal temperature and end up closing the dome again.

Having everything on WiFi means you can attach other automated tasks to go along with the cook. The only limit is imagination at this point.

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what my next accessory will be for my Classic Joe.  It's going to be the KJ temp controller.  Got home from work this morning, put two butts on.  I was shooting for a temp between 225 and 300--wasn't going to stress over this.  Got my grill up to temp at 225, and then when I opened the lid to put the meat on, the temp went up to 375.  What??!??

 

 

Just out of curiosity, how would you describe your top and bottom vents? Was the top nearly closed, and the bottom one more open? Or the bottom nearly closed, and the top more open? Or both top and bottom closed down?

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Here’s a suggestion for next time you do a low and slow cook. When you hit your target temp of 200-225ºF or whatever, close down the bottom vent to barely open, like 1/16”. This will restrict airflow to your charcoal, and should prevent a temperature spike like you describe from happening when you open the lid.

 

How hot a fire burns depends on three things:

  • ambient temperature (it’s hard to start a fire when it’s cold),
  • the type of fuel you use (hardwood charcoal burns hotter than briquettes)
  • oxygen

If you’re at your target temperature for your cook, ambient temperature is no longer an issue. People often blame weirdness in the charcoal for temperature spikes, but I really have a hard time believing this would lead to a temperature spike of 150ºF unless there was a lump that was soaked in gasoline.

 

Which leaves oxygen. My bet is that with the lid closed, your vents were set at a point where your grill was happy at 225ºF. But when you opened the lid, you let more oxygen in, causing the temperature spike.

 

But the key is that the oxygen didn’t come from the top. By opening the lid, you essentially allowed more air to enter in through the bottom vent. The main flow of air through a kamado is from the bottom up through the top, because heat rises, so if the bottom vent is open enough, it can allow a lot of air in once the backside resistance is removed by opening the lid. Think of opening the lid as like having a daisy wheel the size of a manhole cover and opening it up. We don’t think that opening the daisy wheel increases the temperature because it allows more oxygen to come in from the top through the daisy wheel. Opening the daisy wheel raises the temperature by decreasing the resistance to air flow through the kamado, allowing more oxygen to feed the fire through the bottom vent. I think the same principle holds if you open the lid.

 

Of course, if you leave the lid open long enough, oxygen will get in from the top to increase the fire, but I’m assuming that it didn’t take that long for you to plunk your meat on the grill. 

 

I don’t have a KJ grill, but I think the basics of what I do with my grill for a low and slow cook do hold. What I’ve been doing for my low and slow cooks is to have the bottom vent open a medium amount, probably equivalent to your 1/4” on your bottom vent, until I hit my target temperature. Then I close the bottom vent down to barely open, like 1/16”. My grill will still hold my target temperature, and if the temperature does drop, I’ll open the top vent some more. This way, when I do open the lid, the amount of extra air that can enter through the bottom is limited. I’ve never gotten a temperature spike since I started doing this. In fact, when I do open the lid, the grill temperature drops because of the relatively cooler air getting in.

 

As a case in point, this past weekend I cooked this prime rib roast at 200ºF. The times that I checked in on the roast, the temperature dropped by about 40ºF, and then would recover. I never had a problem with temperature spikes. 

 

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My bottom vent was open about 1/4" and the top slider was closed. The flywheel was open about halfway. I'm just assuming I had some weird fuel (Royal Oak).

Half way open for the top slider sounds like too much. I'll let others with KJ comment on that. To maintain 225/250 on my vision I have the top open a sliver (10% maybe). Still don't see how it can drop and rise 50* in 10 mins.
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