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RaiderQ

Help Needed!!!!

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I tried to make a brisket flat but the PIT BOSS started at 250 for a few hours and then started rising in temp. Eventually it got up to 400 degrees. I shut it completely closed when it got to 275 but could not get it to stabilize. Is there something I can do to fix this. I saw a video about putting felt around the top and bottom vent and I'm going to try that. Is there anything else I can modify to make this thing perfect. By the way, it turn out very tasty, just kind of dry. I'm going to make some soup and beans with it.

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Here's a pretty good perspective on temperature control.

It sounds like you started out well - small fire - but gave it too much air, so it grew. Understanding your unit's preferences takes time. In general. I'm finding that bottom vent sets the temperature range and the upper lets you control in that range. For a 250F cook, my lower vent is closed and the upper set in the 20-40% range to achieve stable temps for a couple hours.

 

Your ceramic should be more stable than an Akorn, and your lower vent may want to be open a little. Leaks are a problem, but it seems to me a simple test to kill a hot fire. Mine die quickly with lots of wood left, so I assume  leaks aren't an issue. 

 

Have fun,

Frank

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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.   

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Thanks everyone. I think my lower vent is way too loose. I'm going to try the felt and cut back on how much lump I put in. I think I'm using way too much. I'll get it figured out some day. I'm having fun and that's what count right.

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Controlling the heat by how much fuel you load in there is wrong thinking..

You should fill the lump to the top of the fire bowl vent holes, start a small fire in the center at the lowest level and cover that area with more lump.

leave the top open for 15 minutes or so and then close the lid and set the vents to less than 1/4 open and let it run for an hour or until it reaches your target temp.

Then reduce the vent openings to about 1/4 inch top and 1/2 inch bottom and see where the temp stabilizes.

The airflow causes the lump to burn, the more air the hotter it gets, the less the cooler it runs.

After a 12 hour cook at 275 you will still have enough lump left to do another complete cook.

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You have gotten good and bad advice in this thread.

 

Seal your intake and exhaust as needed.

 

Fill your firebox and light a small fire.  Chasdev has given you great instructions on starting a low and slow.  Follow them, AFTER sealing your air path and you'll have success.

 

As somebody has said before in this forum, trying to control how hot your fire is by how much charcoal you load is like trying to stay under the speed limit in your car by only putting a little gas in the tank.

 

Anybody opening the lid every 30 minutes or so to add charcoal has no idea how a kamado works, as they dump oxygen into the fire every time they open the lid.  Unless you're wrapping meat to power through the stall, there is no reason to open your cooker until the meat is done, according to your remote thermometer and a probe test.

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