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14 hour Pork Butt lessons learned


Big Steve
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I'm new to the Visions Grill Kamado world and am having a great time learning all about it. Last night I put on a 8 pound pork butt for an overnight smoke. Here's the details:

8 lbs butt

injected with apple juice

mustard slathered, sweet dry rub applied.

1.5 chimney worth of Cowboy lump Charcoal.

Hickory chips (soaked)

No water bath.

Defuser in place.

Butt went from frig (44 degrees internal) to grill which was holding 269 degrees.

Temp dropped to 225-250 ish range. Top vent set at 1, bottom vent at 1 (Vision Grill Classic model)

Kamado stabilized at 225 most of the night. At one point (0400) it fell to 200 but by 630 it was back up to 225. Internal butt temp stalled at 176 degrees at around 0400 AM. by 0830 it started to fall, as was the pit temp with vents wide open to bring up cook temp. Foiled the butt. Added 1/3 chimney lit lump, closed down vents. Pit temp climbed to 250. At 11:00 AM internal butt temp was 186 and climbing.

Since this was being served to friends for lunch I didn't have much time to let it rest or climb higher. Bone pulled out clean. Meat was moist, great smoke flavor. The bark was not excessively thick or hard. We served it on buns with cole slaw. Offered both a sweet commercial sauce and a tangy ACV tomato sauce.

Lesson learned: More charcoal to begin with.

Advise requested: What is your preferred cook temp and time per pound?

Anyone use a automatic temp controller on their Vision Grill kamado?

How much lump charcoal do you use for a 14 hour cook?

Does anyone have to "top it off" towards to the end of the cook?

Thanks,

Big Steve

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Sounds like a successful cook Steve.

On my Vision, for my pork butts I go for around 250 but don't get too upset at any swings.

I don't believe there is a "time per pound". It's done when it's done.

I keep my bowl full - like a full tank of gas in the car. A full bowl does not affect temps, just longevity. No need to top off.

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How much lump charcoal do you use for a 14 hour cook?

Does anyone have to "top it off" towards to the end of the cook?

Thanks,

Big Steve

Fill the fire bowl up. What does not get used you can use the next cook after shutting it down.

Why are people scared to fill it up? The temp has nothing to do with the amount of lump in the bowl. It's all about starting the right amount and your vent settings.

16 hour burn in Jr. and still had at least a third of the lump left for the next day.

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I always clean out all my ashes before a long cook and then like the others said I fill my bowl. I've filled it high enough my heat deflector with the vision bracket was right on top of the coals and I had atleast a third of my coal left in the fire bowl.

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For 250 just this past week for the 4th I filled up my fire bowl tightly with cowboy lump up to the holes. I have the PRO and I set 1 and 1(top and bottom). I smoked a brisket, then ribs, then abts then some corn at the end. I went a total of 18 hours opening up my vents the last 3 hours to maintain 250. I was able to maintain steady 250 all the way as mentioned with the exception of the last three hours gradually opening the vents up since I burnt up almost all my fuel and I wanted to see how long itll go.

AS far as your questions:

As mentioned by Kville no set time per lb for cooking since each cut of meat cooks differently especially butts and briskets.

As for temp controller, I have Cyberq wifi coming in Thursday so Ill report on that later

I guesstimate I used 5lb of cowboy lump for the above cook. Here is a small review I did on Cowboy lump with pics just scroll down http://kamadoguru.com/viewtopic.php?f=56&t=6159

I never had to top it off during a cook

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Thanks for the feedback. For a 250ish cook where are your vents at? Top at 1, bottom at 1 or less?

On my Vision Classic B from Costco, for 225/250, I usually have the top vent at .5 or slightly less, and the bottom vent almost closed with only the two left-most air holes showing. It always amazes me how little air is required to hold 250.

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Thanks for the feed back again guys, it does help. OK, so on a related topic you guys prefer to light a whole chimney of charcoal and dump it in then add unlit charcoal on top or do you prefer to light a smaller "starter area" with cotton ball soaked in alcohol? I've done both and I personally think for low and slow the cotton ball method is easier and allows me to catch the rising temp easier and gain control of the temp. With a chimney of lit charcoal it's like stopping a freight train. Just wondering what your preferences are. Thanks.

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I've never used a chimney to light charcoal in any kamado. A kamado is all about the art and science of temperature control. Besides, aren't kamados really nothing more than a big chimney? Thus it would seem that using a chimney to light charcoal and then dump it in another chimney is more than a little redundant! If you know what you're doing on a kamado, an external chimney is nothing but a waste of money!

Sent from my Galaxy SII using Tapatalk 2

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Thanks for the feed back again guys, it does help. OK, so on a related topic you guys prefer to light a whole chimney of charcoal and dump it in then add unlit charcoal on top or do you prefer to light a smaller "starter area" with cotton ball soaked in alcohol? I've done both and I personally think for low and slow the cotton ball method is easier and allows me to catch the rising temp easier and gain control of the temp. With a chimney of lit charcoal it's like stopping a freight train. Just wondering what your preferences are. Thanks.

I always use cubes and light either a 1-point fire for low and slow, 3 points for medium heat, or a 4-point fire for high heat pizza cooks. I've never used a chimney.

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I light mine the same for low & slow to high for pizza . Its all about who's in control you or the fire . For chimney lighting I fill my fire box just covering the air holes , this will give me 6 hours . I fill my chimney half full ,set it inside grill and light with a propane torch, threw several of the holes, let burn 8-10 min no more. dump on top of charcoal load your grill , and shut lid ,I leave vents wide open until it hits 200 then shut the top down to 1 and the bottom 1/4 of an inch . on my grill this will be 225 . For the electric which I really love to do now , I dig a hole and pile the charcoal on it , plug it in 8 min only ,pull it out smooth the coals out with the igniter ,load it close lid vents wide open till 200 ,close top to 1 and bottom 1/4 of an inch . 3/4 on the top also worked

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I've never used a chimney to light charcoal in any kamado. A kamado is all about the art and science of temperature control. Besides, aren't kamados really nothing more than a big chimney? Thus it would seem that using a chimney to light charcoal and then dump it in another chimney is more than a little redundant! If you know what you're doing on a kamado, an external chimney is nothing but a waste of money!

I use a chimney all the time and I really like it. I have a propane burner from an old smoker which I put the chimney on top of and light the coals very quickly. I put a few coals in the chimney for low and slow burn, and I fill it if i'm grilling. I know air flow is what controls temps but a full chimney of charcoal will seriously cut down on my wait time to get to say 550-600 for my pizzas.

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