Failed cook Ok Joe but not his fault I think

Discussion in 'Wood Smokers' started by paul catt, Sep 22, 2015.

  1. paul catt

    paul catt Smoke Blower

    So I have had a MBES 30 for a few years I like it a lot and have had some great luck with it  ...but doing pork butts in it is just messy I got a Ok Joe longhorn   did some ribs on it  came out great ... using chunk charcoal and wood blocks for smoke

    today we had an event at work and I volunteered to cook 4 butts and everyone has liked them in the past ... Rubbed em  got the grill cozy with some chunk  put on the butts   made several looks at the weather report   should be no problems ..right ... 18 mph wind coming from every direction  I'm spinning the grill  working the  vent its running 250 degrees (that means its 200 at cooking lvl  per my oven thermometer)   all day I'm feeding this hog ... I have to get her some logs ... she is just eating through the chunks ....

    Then it happens ... the buts hit the wall at 151 Degrees .. normal right ... remember the weather man  nice  day ... here come the rain it all I can do to maintain temp  I mean what the hell   damp air ... was going to set up a tent over it  but  the wind ... gheesh   that wouldn't have work 3 hours at 151 .. wont move  and I can barley keep the grill at 250 .. rain stops   boom  the butts start their climb  and stop again at 170  .. grrr   finnaly I give up ... everyone is hungry so its sliced butts   not pulled pork ...they were tasty and everyone seems to love them and they took all of it home  ... so maybe not a failure   but gheesh was it the rain  or was it me ....

    I will say that the only MOD I have done so far is the 3 inch elbow  

    I will gladly take your 2 cents

  2. smokeburns

    smokeburns Smoke Blower

    I have a Ok Joe as well. At first my temps were all over the place. So I had researched on this site all the mods you can do to tame your cos smoker. I ended up making charcoal basket , installing tuning plates, sealing the whole smoker tight etc. now I can maintain 250 at least 3.5 hours before I have to add a split. On longer smokes or on a really windy day I close my shutter completely and use my pit master IQ , which is basically a cruise control for your pit. And also a less expensive route to take if you can't afford a bbq guru. Any way here are a few pics of some of the mods I have done.
  3. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Paul, that is the nice thing about the Masterbuilt Electric. Sealed tight, insulated so wind not an issue and with a plastic storage container over the electronics, rain is no problem. Back in the old days I had a New Braunfels Offset, no mods. Changing weather conditions messed with it all the time. I could babysit it and feed more charcoal but hated sitting in the rain. Sounds like leaks/gaps were eating charcoal and  wind and rain was sapping the heat. Try sealing all the gaps and insulating with a Welding Blanket...JJ
  4. paul catt

    paul catt Smoke Blower

    Turning plates ?   I have seen pics of them  but don't understand them ...might look into the pittmaster IQ   Thanks
  5. paul catt

    paul catt Smoke Blower

    Hey Jimmy  how ya been .. ya its hard to beat the set it and forget it MBES   walk around with your remote and make adjustments :)   I just wanted something bigger to do whole briskets and stuff like that  and it was tight in the MBES...  I have done 4 butts in it before  but it was a mess with the grease runoff lol   not to mention  the missing smoke ring   and yes I know we cant taste the smoke ring  but it is pretty lol 

    This is from my first cook with the OK Joe

  6. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Nice Ribs. I can agree there is a difference. Just gettin' lazy as I get older and the remote makes it so easy...JJ
  7. hardcookin

    hardcookin Master of the Pit

    As far mods go...I made a fire grate out of angle iron & expanded metal. It sits about 3 1/2" off the firebox floor. Next I welded a convection plate up out of 1/4" steel. Then used 1/2" nomex self stick gasket to seal my cooking chamber door.
    I fill a chimney full of charcoal/lump mix and when it's lite and all glowing. I dump it in my firebox and then add 2 splits. I then let the smoker stabilize. "20 - 30 mins"
    And start cooking, adding a split about every 30 mins or when your temp starts dropping. You then maintain your temp by the size of your fire.
    Pork Butts like to figure about an hour a pound @ 275....foiling @160 will speed the process up some.
    The main goal is maintaining a clean fire.

    I hope that helps.
  8. smokeburns

    smokeburns Smoke Blower

    Here is a good Linc that breaks down scientifically the use of baffles and tuning plates. From amazing ribs .com. › tips_and_technique
  9. wichita chief

    wichita chief Fire Starter

    I had that problem or it's brother uncontrollable heat temp in mine at first. I put a gasket between the two halves of my firebox.

    I made a charcoal basket. (two actually. I made the first too small)

    And I bought a "heat management plate" for a Yoder Wichita and put in mine. It's good and thick which stores heat and helps with consistency.  Along with the plate I tied it into the firebox wall to block off the gigantic hole from the firebox. Now it is sized per the build calculator and the heat goes under the plate to enter the cooking chamber.

    My temp is controllable now and my inlet vent is kept approx 1/3-1/2 open now. More vent opening helps the draft and keeps the smoke moving through the cooking chamber. All these sure helped mine even out and stabilize the temps.

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