uds temperature

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by bigblue215704, Jul 7, 2014.

  1. bigblue215704

    bigblue215704 Newbie

    Hello all,
    Any recommendations for getting accurate temp reads on my uds? Internal temp is what I'm looking for not meat.
    I have thermometers (2) on side of drum. Both read around 200 degrees, but my meat seems to be cooking a lot faster than it should at that temp. This is my first uds, do they cook at different time rates? Maybe because the fire is directly below the meat? Not sure but any and all comments/suggestions will be appreciated.

    Thanks in advance.
  2. smokejumper

    smokejumper Smoking Fanatic

    My UDS has a therm halfway up the side that usually reads about 30 deg F lower than the grate temp.
    I am using a Thermoworks Crocodile Clip Oven Probe clipped onto the cooking grate to monitor the temp at grate level.
    You do get radiant heat from the coals, so sometimes I will put a round pizza pan on a lower grate between the coal basket and the grate I am cooking on. Especially for things like bacon that I do not want to render too fast.

    Hope this helps.
  3. bigblue215704

    bigblue215704 Newbie

    Thanks smoke jumper.I will try the pan between fire and meat. Thought about making a water pan in that location.

    While I have your thoughts. How high can you get your temp up? My 200 degrees is with all 3 intakes and all exhausts wide open. Haven't really seen any 225,250 or higher from any of the thermometer.
  4. smokejumper

    smokejumper Smoking Fanatic

    I can get 425 easily.
  5. bigblue215704

    bigblue215704 Newbie

    Can you show me pics of it? How much fuel are you using? Maybe I have 3 bad t-stats??? Doubt it, but possible.
  6. smokejumper

    smokejumper Smoking Fanatic

    Here it is:

    It has a Weber lid with the standard 4-hole exhaust that I run full open. Your four exhaust ports are probably equivalent.

    However I have six 1' diameter intake holes that I cover with magnets.

    I start out with all of them open, then gradually close them off as I reach my target temp.

    Your intakes have the added drag of the pipes and valves.

    It is harder for a smoker to draw air from a raised inlet, rather than from the bottom.

    You need a lot of air flow to get the temps up initially.

    I believe you need to increase your air supply. Add two to four more inlets at the bottom that you can close off with caps as it comes up to temp. You can start by drilling two 1" holes that you can cover with refrigerator magnets, and if that seems like not enough, you can add two more. when you get it working, you can add pipe nipples that you can cap off. I personally just keep using the refrigerator magnets; cheap and simple.

    Another factor is how you start your fire.

    I start with 5 hot coals (ashed over in the chimney starter) that I place in the coal basket evenly spaced.

    From that humble beginning, I am up to temp in about 20 min.

    I hope this helps.
    Last edited: Jul 7, 2014
  7. smokejumper

    smokejumper Smoking Fanatic

    Come to think of it, your four exhaust ports may not have enough area to draw adequately.

    First thing to try is more inlet area.

    Next, you might try adding a 12 to 18 inch chimney to the lid, 3" diameter or so.

    Bottom line is that like any smoker, it has to breathe.

    P.S. - I get about 12 hours on a basket of fuel running at 250 degrees F.
    Last edited: Jul 8, 2014
  8. bigblue215704

    bigblue215704 Newbie

    Thank you very much for your input. I will be experimenting this weekend and will put your advice to good use.

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