Smoking times seem to always be off

Discussion in 'Pork' started by hophead515, Jan 26, 2016.

  1. hophead515

    hophead515 Newbie

    Hi All! 

    Just joined the site.. Wondering if I could get some feedback on what might be happening with  my process where my meats seem to come out substantially earlier than expected despite vigilant temperature control..I have gotten good results, but my times are always way quicker than expected. Everything has always been falling-off the bone and not dry at all, but I'm wondering if it could be even better? Should I be using cooler temps? I'm at 5600' of elevation. From what I've read, that is supposed to extend times. 

    I made a pulled pork shoulder this weekend . 8 pounds, I was expecting it to take about 12 hours at 1.5 hrs per pound, to be done by noon the next day. Stoked a perfect 225 heat in my 18 inch Weber Smokey Mtn at midnight, and added pork. At 1am, temp was still dialed-in perfectly, so I went to bed.. By 4:30, I meat was at 160, smoker was still at 225 like a champ. I pulled it, wrapped it in foil, and put it back on. By 7:30, it was at 190. I pulled it and put in a cooler to rest till 1pm.. It was great... Moist, falling off the bone.. Question is, it took a little less than an hour per pound.. Most said to allow 1.5 to 2hrs per pound at that temp. Things are supposed to take longer to cook at altitude..I was hoping to only have it resting in the cooler for an hour or two, not five!

    Does this seem weird to you? My turkey at Thanksgiving came out 2 hours earlier than expected too.. It was also quite good, and not dry, but I'm just wondering if maybe I should try smoking at 180-200 instead of 225. Maybe my thermometer in the weber lid is off?

    Thanks all!

  2. dukeburger

    dukeburger Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    The thermometer on my WSM lid reads 25-30 (more in some cases) degrees cooler than what my Maverick 733 reads at grate level. Your 225 degrees that your lid therm was reading could have been upwards to 260 degrees at grate temp.

    Get yourself a good digital thermometer to read your chamber temp and you'll be set!
    Last edited: Jan 26, 2016
  3. tropics

    tropics Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Maybe my thermometer in the weber lid is off?

    That would be something to check.

  4. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I agree, but since you are smoking to IT. Your food is perfectly done. Good job!

    Your just running your smoker hotter than you think you are.

  5. hophead515

    hophead515 Newbie

    Thanks all! Seems we have come to a quick consensus: bad Weber thermometer..

    Plus, I thank Duke for mentioning the Maverick 733. I have an old  RediCheck wireless, but it loses communication all the time.. I was hoping to find a dual probe thermometer that would monitor chamber and meat. This is perfect. Great price on amazon too. I will be making an investment shortly.

  6. tropics

    tropics Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Last edited: Jan 26, 2016
  7. venture

    venture Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I always use a second pit therm to verify pit temps.

    I will note that a greasy, gunked up pit therm can give weird readings.

    Don't ask how I learned that !!!

    Good luck and good smoking.
  8. ak1

    ak1 Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Yeah, Thermometer is out probably 30-40 degrees low. You're still within good smoking temps,  You think your doing 225 but you're probably around 265 or more.

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