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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 05-15-2010, 01:14 PM   #1
dataz722
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Default Couple of quick UDS questions

I am going to be firing up the UDS for the first time today and have a couple quick questions. I plan on cooking some ABTs, a fatty, and some MOINKs for this afternoon and night but then before bed plan on throwing on a butt to have for tomorrow. When the food for tonight is done should I shut everything down then relight for the butt later on or should I just keep it barely going? Also I have about a 1/2 bag of Competition K and just bought a 15lb bag of Stubbs. Do you think the 15lbs of stubbs would be enough for everything or should I add some of the K too? My coal basket is pretty big so it should be able to fit a ton of coal.

Also about what are the cooking times on the stuff for tonight? I was thinking MOINKs and ABTs would be about 1.5 to 2 hours and the fatty 3-4. Does that sound about right? And do you usually take an internal temp of them or just when the bacon is done the rest usually is too?

Thanks.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 03:33 PM   #2
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Ok, I must have lit way too may coals. I held the propane torch on them for 1-2 minutes but the temp jumped up to 400+ in no time. Now I am having one hell of a time getting it back down. I will get it to drop down to 200-250 then as soon as I take the lid off it jumps right back up to over 400. I am just going to let it sit until the coals go completely out.

Any idea how long it takes to extinguish the coals? It looks like I might have to come up with something else for dinner tonight.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 03:54 PM   #3
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dataz722, I too am a newb at using the UDS. Built mine 4 weeks ago and today is the second time Ive used it. Halfway through my brisket cook my coals went out. Today halfway through my Butt cook the coals again went out. I use an entire bag Stubbs Lump Coal. Mine always jumps to low 400s after I dump my chimeny in. Just close the valve half way. Gotta be patient with it. I have yet to find that magic spot on it to "set it and forget it". Best of luck
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Unread 05-15-2010, 03:54 PM   #4
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If you have NO airflow,less than 45 minutes.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 03:56 PM   #5
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Guys, lump can be a bitch. I used charcoal for the first few years, now trying to switch back to lump. You might try putting in unlit lump and then put in about 10 lit briquets. If your temps spike that quickly, you are starting with too big of a fire. Much easier trying to bring the temps up than trying to bring them down as the old poohbah would say. I shoot for 175-185 as a starting point.

Unless I am doing chicken, then I like to cook it hot and fast at 350.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 04:00 PM   #6
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I am using briquettes and I put probably about 20lbs in the basket and help a propane torch over the middle just trying to light a few but I think I lit waaay too many.

What is the best way to light it with a propane torch? How long and how close should I keep it?
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Unread 05-15-2010, 04:19 PM   #7
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Can't tell you, I use a chimney. BTW, when I start my charcoal, I have a rectangular basket, I pour the coals in one corner. You might try lighting off to the side. Also, 20lbs is a lot. I usually get a 12 hour cook out of 10.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 04:35 PM   #8
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Ok, this is really pissing me off now. All the coals and everything had gone out and the temp was down to about 150. I took the lid of and opened all the vents and after 5 or 10 minutes it was down almost to 100 and nothing relit. I assumed everything out completely out. Well then I took what little pieces were left in the bottom of my OTS from my last cook a couple nights ago and put that into a chimney with about 6 or 8 new briquettes and lit that. Waited until the new ones were just about completly ashed over and dumped that into the middle of my basket. Qith 5-10 seconds one of the wood chunks lit on fire so I quickly closed off all the intakes and clamped the lid down. Within 2 minutes it was around 300 degrees. I have everything closed up and waiting for it to drop again.

Once it drops to just below 200 I am going to try and just crack open the intake and hopefully it doesn't completely take off again.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 05:31 PM   #9
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Try this;

Fill your charcoal basket with briquets or lump (whatever you like) and some chunk hardwood (I like hickory).

Turn your chimney upside down (so the small part is on top), and put 10-15 briquets (or an equal volume of lump) in the small end.

Light it however you like (I like 3 paper towles lightly coated with vegetable oil due to less ash).

When the briquets or lump is just about uniformly grey, pour it on top of your charcoal basket and spread it around evenly (the fire will burn where it wants, and I've never noticed controlling it by putting it just on one side).

Put on your lid and leave all intakes open until the temp hits 200.

At 200, close one intake completely.

At 220, put on your meat, and close the second intake completely.

At 225, close any remaining intakes by 50%, and fine-tune to keep temps around 225.

Always leave the exhaust fully open, except when extinguishing coals at the end of the cook.


Good luck!
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Unread 05-15-2010, 05:44 PM   #10
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Thanks, I never thought to turn the chimney upside down.

I did get it to hold steady at 230 but then it started to drop quick after about 15 minutes. I opened everything completely up took off the lids and stirred up the coals a little bit. I had it hold right around 255 and if it holds that for 30 minutes or so then the ABTs and MOINKs are going on. I don't think I have time for the fatties now. If all goes well around 10 i'm going to toss on a butt.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 06:04 PM   #11
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AHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!! I am about to take this damn thing to the scrap yard. After 10 minutes it had dropped to 148 so and I had both end caps off and the valve about half open so I opened to valve all the way. 10 more minutes and it is down to 243.

I am starting to think that I don't have enough airflow because I did screw up and only did 3 1/2" nipples instead 3 3/4". I figures it would still be ok though but guess I was wrong.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 06:17 PM   #12
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15 more minutes and with everything all the way open it is at 244. I guess that is as high as she is going to go.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 06:40 PM   #13
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And now it is up to 260. I am afraid to let this thing go overnight now. Who the hell knows what it will do.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 07:24 PM   #14
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Looks like 266 might be the magic number. Been there for over 30 minutes. Considerably higher than I wanted but if it is steady I will live with it.
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Unread 05-15-2010, 07:50 PM   #15
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266 not a bad temp for butts I ran 3 all night doing a bunch of butts. Don't get frustrated with the UDS they take a few times to get right. Once you get the hang of it you will sing it's praises.
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