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Catering, Food Handling and Awareness *OnTopic* Forum to educate us on safe food handling. Not specifically for Catering or competition but overall health and keeping our families safe too.


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Unread 12-10-2013, 08:30 AM   #31
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i'm looking at a pair of 120's for my place, what's your average capacity? max?
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Unread 12-10-2013, 05:10 PM   #32
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Quote:
Originally Posted by early mornin' smokin' View Post
i'm looking at a pair of 120's for my place, what's your average capacity? max?

I have not loaded it down yet as I have only had about 3ish weeks. It will hold 4 buts per rack and has 5 racks however they say not to blanket load the bottom rack (not sure why) So if you put 2 butts on bottom rack then you can get 18 butts per load.
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Unread 12-10-2013, 07:26 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by HBMTN View Post
Know Bull - I never open the door so heat BTU's getting out that way. I bought it so I could sleep and I have been sawing some logs

Weardc - I like your smoke adapter I have thought about adding something small like that. There is room in the firebox for it, the firebox is on the back of the 120 where I think it is on the bottom of the 100. I could add a few chunks of wood for the first few hours, then go to bed.
HBMTN, the adapter actually belongs to Jasonjax. I want one, though! I just couldn't tell exactly how he had attached it, and I don't want to go drilling holes in a the wrong place!
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Unread 12-11-2013, 09:23 PM   #34
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Oh, man, this is great! Exactly how did you attach the metal to the firebox? That's the only problem I have with my FEC...how to get more smoke flavor! Thanks in advance! Oh, and do you just hang the chunk slightly over the firebox to get it started?
I used the existing screws from the firebox. You just have to lift up the sheet metal. SUPER easy.

As for placing the wood chunks, exactly, just place them a bit away from the pellets dropping into the firebox and the heat takes over from there.
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Unread 12-14-2013, 08:58 AM   #35
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HBMTN, the adapter actually belongs to Jasonjax. I want one, though! I just couldn't tell exactly how he had attached it, and I don't want to go drilling holes in a the wrong place!
Cookshack now makes a piece to hold the extra wood chunk for additional smoke in a FEC100. Simple bolt on, no drilling or cutting required. When I got mine a few months ago, it was so new that it did not even have a part number yet. Call sales or customer service.
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Unread 12-22-2013, 06:09 PM   #36
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Well it looks like one of my biggest fears with buying the FEC has come true with barely having it a month. I went out and started up the cooker to put some butts on that I want done in the morning. After about an hour I was outside and checked on it (as I was still gun shy about it not running properly) and low and behold the unit was off. I checked the power supply and it was good. The FEC is currently DEAD Unit does not power up at all. The manual says there is a high temp cut out to check but it does not tell you where it is and I have removed the panels and checked everywhere and can not find one. I was only cooking at 200* so I can't imagine it got too hot. So I fired up the trusty old Lang 84 and put the butts in it. I guess I'll call CookShack in the morning to see what is up. Glad it happened now vs once I went to bed or I would have been dead in the water for my catering job tomorrow.
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Unread 12-22-2013, 06:40 PM   #37
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OK I may have jumped the gun a little but I still like to post the real world cooking on one of these units so people can see "real life" operation of one.

The story - when I found the unit had turned off I went and checked where it was hooked to the outlet and it was mostly unhooked "I think my kids may have kicked the cord" but after hooking it back up the unit still would not turn on. Me being an auto mechanic by trade for 27 years could not let it rest and I went back to seek out and find the high temp kill switch and I finally found it. There is a black plastic piece on the back of the pellet hopper and as it turns out is simply a cap and when I twisted it hard it came unscrewed to reveal a push button under it and I heard it click when I pushed on it and I turned the unit on and it is now working. My theory is that when the power cord was close to coming unplugged it cause the high temp switch to trip. I am going to run and monitor it for a couple hours meanwhile I have the meat on my Lang and if all looks good I will switch the meat back over to the FEC before I go to bed. I will then get up and check on it a couple times throughout the night to make sure that is all it was. On a good note- Those butts getting a few hours on the Lang is a sure fire way to get smoke in them :)
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Unread 12-23-2013, 09:15 AM   #38
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The FEC run all night with no high temp tripping issues. Last night was the first time that I have tried the cook and hold feature with the meat probe. I had it set so that when the meat internal temp was 195* the cooker would back down to 140* and hot hold for me. I went out at 6am and it was in hot holding mode. About 8am I decided I am very gun shy of the thing right now so I am going to go probe those butts. I checked them and they were not even close to done. I have read nothing nor can I find anywhere I that I need to calibrate the meat probe. I kicked the cooker temp to 325* and at 9am I pulled the butts and tried to have pull the meat and it took force so I pulled it down to smaller chunks and foil wrapped them meat in a pan and kicked the cooker temp to 350* and now I am praying. I have to pull that meat at 10:45am to have time to get to my drop off. This will be my closest call in 4 years in business. I know when I get this thing dialed in that it will be a good cooker but I sure am gun shy right now.
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Unread 12-23-2013, 08:46 PM   #39
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HBMTN View Post
The FEC run all night with no high temp tripping issues. Last night was the first time that I have tried the cook and hold feature with the meat probe. I had it set so that when the meat internal temp was 195* the cooker would back down to 140* and hot hold for me. I went out at 6am and it was in hot holding mode. About 8am I decided I am very gun shy of the thing right now so I am going to go probe those butts. I checked them and they were not even close to done. I have read nothing nor can I find anywhere I that I need to calibrate the meat probe. I kicked the cooker temp to 325* and at 9am I pulled the butts and tried to have pull the meat and it took force so I pulled it down to smaller chunks and foil wrapped them meat in a pan and kicked the cooker temp to 350* and now I am praying. I have to pull that meat at 10:45am to have time to get to my drop off. This will be my closest call in 4 years in business. I know when I get this thing dialed in that it will be a good cooker but I sure am gun shy right now.
Hold on, let me see if I understand this. You did a probe cook, setting internal meat temp to 195, with a holding temp of 140. At some point in the night the cooker went into hold mode and dropped down to 140. You don't know when this happened, but at 6am when you looked for the first time it was already in holding, and at 8am you probed and the internal on the meat was south of 195.

Well, what I would think happened is, at some point the meat did finish at 195 (which may not have ever been cooked enough for that piece of meat, we know these things are variable) and then at that point it went into hold mode for some unknown amount of hours more than at least 2. Once the temp of the cooker drops below the internal temp of the meat, the meat temps will also drop as the meat will not stay hotter than the oven. After sitting in a 140 oven for a few hours, your meat is now below it's internal high temp of 195.

The hold feature at 140 is meant to keep food above the danger zone, not keep the internal temp of the meat at your set internal temp.

Does this sound plausible?
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Unread 12-24-2013, 05:44 PM   #40
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As it turns out TailgateJoe the meat was not done. My best figures based on what I have found since is that it went to hot hold when the meat hit about 1605-175* I called Cookshack and they said they are having a problems with the processors not recognizing the meat probe temps properly and they were aware of the issue and correcting it. As soon as they get the updated processors finished they would ship one to me that would correct the issue. I asked if there was a way to calibrate the meat probe and they said no. Lucky after breaking the butts down to smaller pieces and keeping them wrapped they turned out perfect just when needed so my catering job went off great!
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Unread 12-24-2013, 06:06 PM   #41
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Sounds like just more learning curve, and needing to keep the plugs in. Probably would have been fine minus the plug issue. Thanks for the rolling reports
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Unread 02-02-2014, 07:57 PM   #42
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Just want to add that after cooking with the unit another month everything is getting better with each cooking. I have found that by starting the cook at 175* for about 2 hours and then bumping the temp to 225* it really helps get more smoke. A little spritzing goes a long way as well. I'm happy where it's at but I still want to find a way to get a little more smoke for some occasions but it's close. I was told by CookShack they would be sending me an updated processor with the inaccurate food probe temps but I have yet to see it and it has been over a month so I will call them this week. I bought the cover for for like $175 and it was well worth it.
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Unread 02-03-2014, 12:34 AM   #43
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It is good to see that you are having good results with your FEC 120. Like you, I was also a bit gun shy about my poopers(Pro Smoker). My first issue was the outlet I used was a GFI and one unit would trip it when the element was getting it started. I just had to do change where they were plugged in to fix that.

I too noticed that the humidity is probably what seemed to cause my chicken's skin to be a bit tough. The next time I made chicken, I used olive oil before putting on the rub and they were perfect.

The rest of my cooks have yielded some of the best Q I ever cooked(even on my stick burners) and I do get to sleep like a baby at night with my GURU digiQ wifi. I have yet to have an issue, but i can't take the chance of a flame out with a couple hundred pounds of meat in the smoker.

I only added to this thread to help others in case they were thinking of going to a pellet setup. I know I don't have an FEC, but the units are very similar so my info could maybe help someone.
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Unread 02-03-2014, 05:59 PM   #44
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bjbbq that is something I don't like is that if the power goes out for 15 seconds the system will default and stop cooking and you won't know it. I plan to hook my Marverick ET732 to the FEC and route the probe so that it will send me a signal if there is a low temp issue for any reason in the middle of the night.
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Unread 02-04-2014, 10:50 AM   #45
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I know of one that cooks pork loin in an oven, does not even have a smoker on the premises, chops it to almost hamburger with a buffalo chopper and people go crazy over it.
That's an abomination! I don't even know if you should speak of this, it's the Voldemort of BBQ!
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