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-   -   DigiQ DX help! (http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/showthread.php?t=124496)

BBQ Bros 01-21-2012 09:18 AM

DigiQ DX help!
 
I just got a new DigiQ DX the other day and have been trying it out on a 10 lb butt cook. I started about 1:00 am last night. I have a 22.5" WSM. I clipped the pit probe to the top grate, around the middle area. I set my target pit temp on the DigiQ for 210. I got up once during the night to check it (about 4:00 or so) and then again just a bit ago around 7:00. The lid therm on the WSM has read 40-50 degrees lower than the DigiQ pit probe the entire cook so far. At 7:00 though, I opened the lid for the first time to add a 7 lb brisket. I closed everything back up and let it ride for 1/2 hr and now the WSM therm is only about 25 degrees lower than the DigiQ. Also, per instructions in the DigiQ manual, I've got the damper on the blower shut about 1/2 way (that is their recommendation for small to mid size bullets).

So...is all this normal behavior? Should I be clipping the pit probe somewhere else other than directly on on the grate? Once the DigiQ reads 5 degrees or so past 210, it stops blowing anyways and just rides and the WSM therm has read dead on 210 all night, so maybe all is well. I just wasn't expecting there to be a 40-50 degree difference from the top of the dome to the area near the grate. That probably just shows my inexperience... :sad:

I know a lot of you guys have a lot of experience w/ DigiQ's on WSMs, so any advice would be appreciated.

Thanks

Ron_L 01-21-2012 09:34 AM

I don't have a Guru, but what you are really concerned about is the temp where the meat is, so i would think that your placement is correct. Do you have another remote thermometer that you can put at grate level o verify the temp?

Also, why 210? I do my butts and briskets at 250-ish and the results are fantastic and it saves some cooking time.

steve6224 01-21-2012 09:41 AM

Thats about right. I have tested my probes for calibration because I was concerned initially with what I was seeing with the guru and my 2 22" WSMs. I even thru a small oven thermometer on the meat rack to see what it read. Guru was correct. And as mentioned above clip the pit probe where the meat is but not touching the meat.

The Cosmic Pig 01-21-2012 10:18 AM

Q got "big."
 
Quote:

Originally Posted by Ron_L (Post 1921532)

Also, why 210? I do my butts and briskets at 250-ish and the results are fantastic and it saves some cooking time.

I've always read that the greatest smoke deposition occurs at or near 200f. I've asked several times "does anyone still subscribe to that theory?" but never get an answer. I know you have a lot of experience, so what is your take, Ron? I usually start my butts out at 200, and stay there until the internal temp hits 150 - usually about 6 hours - and then kick the smoker up to 225 or so. I don't suggest anyone else do this as it's just personal preference, but it's based on articles I read long ago before BBQ got "big."

P.S. This post wasn't supposed to named "Q got big;" strange things happen when I use a laptop in the dark! :crazy:

Ron_L 01-21-2012 11:47 AM

I've never heard that theory. I have heard folks say that the smoke ring will stop forming at around 140 degrees, but never anything about the pit temp.

Here is a brief article about the smoke ring formation...

http://home1.gte.net/res004na/ring.html

I haven't looked into the science behind that, but it seems to make sense.

So, have a lower pit temp will keep the meat below 140 degrees longer and should theoretically give a better smoke ring. It will also take longer to cook, so the meat will be exposed to more smoke.

MStoney72 01-21-2012 01:39 PM

Your experience with the dome temp being lower than your pit temp is totally different that what I have experienced with my digi q on my performer, are you measuring your temp on your lower grate by chance. I am typically 30 - 50' hotter at my dome temp than pit temp, although it some seem to get closer to one another the older the fire gets. I have also noticed that the damper setting on the blower motor is everything in getting everything dialed in. Outside air temperature also influences a lot, meaning a 50' outside temp is gonna be different than a 20' setup, on blower damper. I hope I'm not already telling you something you already know and you find this helpful. I have also heard that if you have the damper open to much it will have a cooling effect on the fire

BBQ Bros 01-21-2012 02:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by MStoney72 (Post 1921765)
Your experience with the dome temp being lower than your pit temp is totally different that what I have experienced with my digi q on my performer, are you measuring your temp on your lower grate by chance. I am typically 30 - 50' hotter at my dome temp than pit temp, although it some seem to get closer to one another the older the fire gets. I have also noticed that the damper setting on the blower motor is everything in getting everything dialed in. Outside air temperature also influences a lot, meaning a 50' outside temp is gonna be different than a 20' setup, on blower damper. I hope I'm not already telling you something you already know and you find this helpful. I have also heard that if you have the damper open to much it will have a cooling effect on the fire

No, I'm only measuring the temp on the top grate. Throughout my cook today I've played around w/ the damper and opening it all the way actually has the dome temp and pit temp closer than when i had it 1/2 shut during the night. But...like you said, outside air temp plays a part and it was pretty cold last night. That's interesting that your dome temp is hotter than your pit temp. I would think the grate areas would be hotter since they're close to the fire. Thanks for your insight though, much appreciated.

BBQ Bros 01-21-2012 02:27 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ron_L (Post 1921532)
Also, why 210? I do my butts and briskets at 250-ish and the results are fantastic and it saves some cooking time.

Only reason is that we're eating around 6:00 - 7:00 tonight and since I started the butt around midnight last night I had a ton of time to play with. When I have less time, I cook them hotter.

Both 200-ish and 250-ish are "low and slow" in my opinion and I've never been able to taste a difference in that range.

BLACKSMOKE-LS7 01-21-2012 03:39 PM

Have that same set up,I put the clip under the top grate off a bit so drippings miss the probe.

Cooler juices I hear can effect probe life and possibly accurate temps,just keep butt and probe away from drippings and hot sides.

The Cosmic Pig 01-21-2012 03:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Ron_L (Post 1921646)
I've never heard that theory. I have heard folks say that the smoke ring will stop forming at around 140 degrees, but never anything about the pit temp.

Here is a brief article about the smoke ring formation...

http://home1.gte.net/res004na/ring.html

I haven't looked into the science behind that, but it seems to make sense.

So, have a lower pit temp will keep the meat below 140 degrees longer and should theoretically give a better smoke ring. It will also take longer to cook, so the meat will be exposed to more smoke.

Yes, the 140 went right along with what I heard about the 200f. Good article! Thanks!

glh17 01-21-2012 03:50 PM

Your experience isn't that far off from mine. It seems everyone has a bit difference experience with the digi and lid temp. Normally my lid temp is about 20-30 degrees lower than my grate temp early in the cook. That was the case today when I started a couple of pork tenderloins and a 3 lb boneless, skinless turkey breast about two hours ago. Now, the difference lid temp is about 10 degrees lower than my digi probe. I'm cooking at 270 using Kingsford blue on an 18" WSM. I use a guru probe tree for my digi probe. P.S. The tenderloin went on an hour after the turkey.

BBQ Bros 01-21-2012 05:16 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by glh17 (Post 1921873)
Your experience isn't that far off from mine. It seems everyone has a bit difference experience with the digi and lid temp. Normally my lid temp is about 20-30 degrees lower than my grate temp early in the cook. That was the case today when I started a couple of pork tenderloins and a 3 lb boneless, skinless turkey breast about two hours ago. Now, the difference lid temp is about 10 degrees lower than my digi probe. I'm cooking at 270 using Kingsford blue on an 18" WSM. I use a guru probe tree for my digi probe. P.S. The tenderloin went on an hour after the turkey.

I actually hadn't heard about the probe tree. How do you like it? Think it's worth the $18?

glh17 01-21-2012 05:28 PM

I like the probe tree better than the clip. I wonder if the probe picks up some heat from the grate through the clip. The tree lets me get the probe off the grate and it will hold both the pit probe and food probe. I've never used it with my food probe through.

The only draw back is that it does take up a little bit more grate space than the clip. Sometimes this is important on my 18" but I've always been able to work around it. I think it's worth $18 but can see where some might not think so. Far more people use the clip than the tree. I've only used mine about 12-15 times so I don't know how long it will hold up, but it seems as good today and the day I got it.

Big Stogie 01-21-2012 11:20 PM

I have had that same experience with my WSM's also. My dome temp is about 20-40 degrees lower than what my guru reads. I trust the readings that my guru gives me and the guru is always right. I even use an oven thermometer to make sure. Almost always, the oven thermometer and the guru have the correct readings.

I never go by the wsm's dome temp!


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