Today's Rib Adventure (Qview)

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by thebig1, May 22, 2016.

  1. thebig1

    thebig1 Meat Mopper

    It's my second time ever smoking with an offset. 2 weeks ago I did a spatchcock chicken which came out pretty good. Today I'm trying some ribs and Gary's beans.

    Got the blue smoke going, both are ready to go on the smoker.]

    Ready to begin the Rat race.]

    And rat race it has been for the past 1 1/2 hours. It started out too hot running at around 300 degrees and I couldn't get it down. Once I got it down now I'm struggling to get the temperature back up.

    It's holding around 215 now but know that I should be between 225 and 240.

    I've got a lot of white smoke coming off of the cherry splits that I'm using. I just hope that it's not too bitter when it's all said and done.

    Should I add about a 1/4 chimney of lump to keep it going?

  2. smokinal

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

    Looks like a great start!

  3. thebig1

    thebig1 Meat Mopper

    These darn wireless thermometers are screwing me up. I can't fully trust them. They jump around so much that it's not funny.

    I'll just hold with what I've got and hope for the best. Bought them for $20 a piece at Lowe's.

  4. tsonka

    tsonka Smoke Blower

    Where are your intake / exhaust vents at? (How far open)
  5. thebig1

    thebig1 Meat Mopper

    I have the intake full open and the exhaust 3/4 open. It seems that if I close them any more my temp drops.

    What I did do was took the charcoal basket out, turned the grate that it sits on 90 degrees, and set the basket back in on the lower setting. Wasn't sure if I was smothering the fire in its own smoke.

    Was holding around 220 to 230 for a bit and it just began to drop a bit. Just threw another log on.
  6. lamar

    lamar Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    From looking at your pic, I would recommend you push the probes a bit more through the potatoes. The sensing part of the probe is the tip, and may possibly giving you a false reading.
  7. thebig1

    thebig1 Meat Mopper

    If the sensor is the skinny point, I do have it poking out of the other sides.

    I just put some more lump charcoal in. I hope it works. I'm definitely of the mind that I don't have a damn clue what the hell I'm doing. I should have bought an electric smoker so I could just set the temp and walk away.

  8. joe black

    joe black Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Hey Chad, Take a deep breath. We all started the same way.

    1. It will only get better from here.
    2. You can always eat your mistakes.

    I would leave the exhaust wide open and the intake wide open and control the temp with the fire. I use lump to get a good bed of coals and add wood splits to that. I always pre-heat my splits. It helps them to ignite very quick and maintain or build heat better. After the first splits have begun to burn down to coals, I put a couple more on and close the CC doors to allow the CC to come up to cooking temp. When the CC is about 5-10* above where I want to cook, I add a couple of pre-heated splits and the flavor chunks. The CC temp should still be very close and the smoke should be quickly getting to TBS. Then add your meat. When the temp gets about 10* below your desired cook temp, add another couple of pre-heated splits. If your splits are pre-heated, you should see immediate ignition and almost no white smoke before returning to TBS. If you haven't noticed, switchover to all wood as soon as you can and ALWAYS pre-heat your splits.

    Try this and stick with it. Good heat management takes a lot of practice and a little bit of luck. Keep on smokin', Joe. :grilling_smilie:
  9. tsonka

    tsonka Smoke Blower

    Naa .... Half of the fun of outdoor cooking is being outside doing it

    Now I do realize I just used my own smoker for the 2nd time, but here is a thought on your vent position. And if I am wrong, someone please correct me.

    Shouldn't you have your exhaust fully open and control your temp with the intake? If your exhaust is partially closed and your intake open, your letting in more air then can exit. This creates a restriction which holds in the smoke, which adds bitterness to the meat and blocks oxygen of the fire? 
  10. thebig1

    thebig1 Meat Mopper

    Joe, a few questions.

    1. How do you preheat your splits?

    2. Secondly, When you're burning wood are you burning your good smoke wood for the fire the whole time or are you using a different wood for fire purposes?
  11. thebig1

    thebig1 Meat Mopper

    Sonka, that's a good point. I think that I'm going to try Joe's way. Just leave it all open and use the fire to control the temperature. Of course that'll be easier said than done. Definitely a learning experience.

  12. joe black

    joe black Master of the Pit OTBS Member


    1. I have a warming plate on my FB. I notice yours is a round top. You could make a saddle of some kind and hook it to the FB door hinges. The splits could lay in the saddle. The saddle could be some bendable steel slats or maybe a couple of pieces of angle iron hooked to some steel wire. Anything to get the splits in close proximity to the heat. Another way would be to balance the splits on top of the FB. I guess we just need to start somewhere.

    2. I se Oak basically for cooking heat. I just add flavor chunks for the first couple of hours. I just got a load of Pecan for free and I'll be mixing it in with the oak when I get it split. But, my cooking wood go to will always default to Oak because it's more readily available at the local wood yards.

    I don't leave the FB door open for the entire cook, just the air intake vents. When everything is rolling along, I close the FB door. If it's cold or windy, I will prop this door open about an inch or so. Actually, I just close the door on the poker for a little space. It's whatever works best for you and your smoker.

    If you have any other questions or I can help in any way, just let me know. I'm not an expert, I'll just tell you what works for me.
    thebig1 likes this.
  13. cliffcarter

    cliffcarter Master of the Pit Group Lead OTBS Member

    Joe Black has given you some very good advice on cooking on an offset.

    Now for my advice- if you want to post a picture just click on the picture icon, the one with two mountains right next to the film icon for uploading video, and you can upload directly from your computer or camera. No Photobucket needed.[​IMG]
  14. thebig1

    thebig1 Meat Mopper

    Well it was 6 hours and the thin end, which I had nearest to the FB, was 172. The bigger piece of the ribs was 145. It was 530 and everyone was busting stones so I just pulled them. Next time I'll turn the ribs around the other way, lesson learned.

    Of course they were a little tough but edible and the flavor was amazing.

    Gary's beans were off of the charts!

    Here's a few pics.]]

    I tried uploading the pic directly and it wouldn't show in the Preview screen.

  15. thebig1

    thebig1 Meat Mopper

    Joe, thank you very much for that great information. That's good stuff. I'll be putting your suggestions to work next weekend.

    I have a good pile of maple out back. I'll start using that for my fire wood for now.

  16. joe black

    joe black Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I notice there's a spare place at the table. But, that's ok. It's a long way from here to PA. However, I did think I got a whiff of cooking ribs yesterday. They really look good, and you can never go wrong with a good pan of beans.

    Good job, Chad. Thumbs Up
    thebig1 likes this.

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