BRADLEY SMOKER | "Taste the Great Outdoors"

Consumables and Accessories => Accessories => Topic started by: nsxbill on July 15, 2004, 12:37:22 AM

Title: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on July 15, 2004, 12:37:22 AM
I have been in touch with the owner of the temperature controller, Barbecue Guru.  I have asked him if this is something adaptable to the Bradley.  He will be discussing with his crew and will be calling me when he gets back from a trip he is now on.  

I have not even fired up my new SS-BS to season it, and can see the benefit of Hi-Lo limit switches to control the heat.  The Barbecue Guru has a chimney vent controlled by the switches, and I really don't think the BS generates enough heat to need an automatic heat release damper.

The concept, applied to the Bradley to control voltage to the heating element might be a better road to take.  I would be interested in getting any feedback that the group might have on things they would like to see a controller do.    The controller MSiler made working like an oven thermostat would turn lamp off and on.   I wonder if a range of temp controlled by two switches automatically would be a better choice for our smokers.

I am a pretty lazy guy.  When you ask someone who is lazy to do something, many times they will find an easier way to do something.  I really don't want to stay out to watch the temp on my Bradley , or keep checking it with it if there is an automatic option.

Welcome back from Alaska, Kirk.  I enjoyed the cruise to Alaska, but certainly agree that the tourist traps along the way were not really what I went to Alaska to see.  I definitely acquired a taste for Alaskan Amber, and glad it is available in the stores in California.   Goodbye Newcastle, and hello to Alaska Amber as my new beer of choice.

Please give me feedback on what you would like a controller to do.

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: Cold Smoke on July 15, 2004, 03:09:07 PM
NSXBill- I'd be interested in something that would allow us to "set it and forget it". Let us know how that works out. I'm technologically challenged in a big way and hope it doesn't come with 10 pages of scematics. [xx(]

Cold Smoke
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on July 15, 2004, 04:36:18 PM
Hello Coldsmoke,

I honestly think MSiler's controller would meet our needs to control, but posted up an inquiry, request to order, and no reply(Vacation maybe).  Like you, I am electrically challenged, and would probably buy one before making one myself.

Impatient to get the show on the road, and in light of no response from list member, I am looking for an alternative.  Controlling the temp is a top priority for me.

MSiler are you still out there????  I would like to get one of your controllers if you are going to make them up!

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: Sesh on July 16, 2004, 08:33:31 PM
I'm interested in this too.  The first time I read msiler's post the part was listed at partsguy.com.  Figuring I remember enough from electronics lab in high school to throw this together I put it in the 'things to get around to' category.  After the first two smokings in my Bradley the need for a temperature control was moved up in importance. Back to partsguy.com I went and couldn't find the part.  I emailed partsguy.com about the part twice and never got a reply.  After some web searching the part turned up at Sear's online parts store for $47.99 and I snagged one, or so I thought.  Turns out they are on backorder.  Now I check the order status about a week later and it says the order is complete but the part is no longer available.  I'm not sure if my part is coming or not but it looks like they aren't available anymore.  I know enough to follow msiler's instructions but not enough to suggest a replacement thermostat.  If I can get my hands on a thermostat I'd be happy to post more detailed instructions on how to build it, maybe even pictures if I can find the digital camera.
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: Cold Smoke on July 16, 2004, 09:21:33 PM
That's great- another sleuth on the case. I will await your findings.

Cold Smoke
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: PAsmoker on July 17, 2004, 01:45:19 PM
Sesh, go to your local appliance dealer.  I am sure that they can fix you up with either a new oven therm or even a used one.  I own an appliance store and one of these days, I'm going to get around to making a setup for my BS.  I made one with an old therm I had laying around for a refrig smoker two years ago and it worked great.   If only I had the time and motivation I'd make one for the BS.
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on July 17, 2004, 09:01:04 PM
PAsmoker

<blockquote id="quote"><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote">Sesh, go to your local appliance dealer. I am sure that they can fix you up with either a new oven therm or even a used one. I own an appliance store and one of these days, I'm going to get around to making a setup for my BS. I made one with an old therm I had laying around for a refrig smoker two years ago and it worked great. If only I had the time and motivation I'd make one for the BS.<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">

<b>Shesh!</b>  I don't want to do it myself.  I have a good schematic of one already.  I don't just want a thermostat.    I want a unit that I can walk away from knowing that the switch system won't let the unit fall under a certain temp and will control voltage after reaching a High temp that I set.  I want to be able to set the high and low... and while I am at it would like one that would also do an auto shut-off after preset hours.

I know my limitations and hopefully will be able to purchase a controller that know will meet my expectations without me frying myself or my BS because I am electrically challenged.

Will keep those interested up on my quest for the ultimate controller.

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: PAsmoker on July 19, 2004, 02:17:22 PM
Um, Bill, does not a thermostat control voltage?  I believe a therm will only let it fall a certain number of degrees before it kicks back on and will get to set temp +/- a few degrees before shutting off.
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on July 19, 2004, 11:06:08 PM
PA
If you are happy with your unit, great.  Thanks for the response.  Again, for those interested, I will post up my findings when the guy gets back to me.

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on August 04, 2004, 07:22:38 PM
I promised I would keep you up on the latest on controlling the temperature on the Bradley Smoker.  I just got off the phone with Fred, who apparently is the Big Kahuna there and discussed the use of the BBQ Guru on the BS.  

I am not an electrical type.  Here is my understanding of what makes the thing work. Needed is assembly or development of a thermocouple that would either plug into the wall or the back of the smoke generator that would essentially ramp up the temperature of the smoker at high heat to maximum, and then when within 15 degrees higher than the goal you set for you food temp, take over the control of the heating element to keep the temperature controlled within a range of temperature you set through the use of microprocessor to measure and ramp up or down to maintain that temperature of the smoker to efficiently meet the goal temperature.  As we talked, he could see the potential to also work with other electrical smokers….Like any business, he has to know that the product he is developing has a market.

Of course, I volunteered to beta test his work. [^]

They have been without internet service and phone service due to financial collapse of his internet and phone company, thus delaying getting back to me.  I was sending emails asking for status and got no reply.  Today, one his tech people got my email and carried it over to the boss.

Seems like a real nice guy, and been doing BBQ his whole life.  Hope he can come up with something that works.

Here is description on how it works.  http://www.thebbqguru.com/ramp_mode.htm

(UPDATE)I have ordered one.  He just called me back and is making up a unit that not only will control the 600W lamp in the guru, but will controll up to 2000Watts so it has broader market for other electrical smokers.   He will have it my hands in 10-14 days so I can test it to see how it works.

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: Cold Smoke on August 04, 2004, 08:52:55 PM
Anxious to hear how well this works. Thanks for keeping us in the loop.[:)]

BTW- How many rubles?

Cold Smoke
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: BigSmoker on August 04, 2004, 09:17:49 PM
I have a BBQ Guru for my ceramic cooker.  If we are talking about the same thing mine will keep the temp within a few degress from set point until you shut the cooker down or until all charcoal burns up.  I would love to see this product for the Bradley.  I'm not sure how they will do it but can't wait to hear the results.  For a charcoal grill a small fan blows on the charcoal.  The fan is controlled by a microprocessor that checks the pit temp every 6 seconds.  It has a setting called ramp mode.  In ramp mode the processor will begin to bring the pit temp down when the meat gets within 25 degrees f of target temp.  By the time the meat is done the pit temp should be the same or a little less than meat temp.  This allows for the meat to stay warm but does not continue to cook it.

Jeff

Some say BBQ is in your blood, if thats true my blood must be BBQ sauce.
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on August 04, 2004, 09:58:04 PM
This is a done deal.  I will have the first one.  I paid $148 for the Guru without the damper control, and some more for the controller - can't say how much because they are presently making it and have not set the exact retail price.  If you are lucky enough to already have a guru, you just have to have the piece they are making for me.  I will take pix (inside and out) when I receive it. It will have the capability to control far in excess of required for the Bradley heating element, and will have neon light to let me know heating element is on.  The rest unclear until I get the item.

I am excited, as the first two smokes I did, I was out there constantly manipulating temp, and this will free me up to do other things.

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: BigSmoker on August 05, 2004, 01:47:22 AM
The light to let you know when the heating element is on is probally
the same light that lets you know when the fan is running on a charcoal unit.  I really can't wait to see how this thing works.  Bill you seem to be leading Shotgun Fred into a new phase in his "Guru work".[:)]  Maybe you should ask for a prototype discount?  I know if this thing works many people will want one.  The WebMaster on the Primo ceramic grill forum set Primo users up with a 10% discount.  Thats when I bought mine[;)]  Good luck and happy smokin'.

Jeff

Some say BBQ is in your blood, if thats true my blood must be BBQ sauce.
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on August 05, 2004, 02:18:35 AM
Fred,

I copied your note and sent it to Shotgun Fred.  I know he gave me a cut on the "Demo Model" already, but I did hit him up for a discount for list members.  I will certainly post up what his response is and a review of the final product.

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on August 29, 2004, 07:25:06 PM
I sent Shotgun Fred a request on the status of my custom BBQ-Guru for the Bradley, and reported that he finished testing it on the Meco Electric Smoker just yesterday.  He said it worked very well, and held the temp within the range he selected.  He will be shipping it to me tomorrow.   After I Try it out, will give a blow-by-blow to you on how it works.  Even mounted it in a stainless box to match my SS Bradley!

I will also get back to you on price he plans on charging for this hybrid he build for me.  I will ask him to consider a discount for BS listers.

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: rgardjr on August 31, 2004, 05:33:08 AM
Looking forward to hearing some more when you get it.  Do you know if it will monitor the meat temp ask well as the smoker temp?  When I read about the item this was based on from his website I was very impressed-but a little in shock over the sticker price [:0]  I'm sure the convenience & consistency will be very nice[:)]!
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on August 31, 2004, 07:25:51 AM
The http://thebbqguru.com BBQ Guru website shows what it does to the pit temp.  For us, of course, it is our cabinet temp.  It uses the smoker temp and the meat temp to automatically ramp the temp and efficiently keep the max heat of the meat at what ever you set.  

I just love stuff like this!  I will get you pictures and a report when I get it and use it.   I see today that my bank card has been charged and the Guru is probably on the way.

I will get back to you when I get the Guru and chronicle the maiden voyage.

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on September 10, 2004, 06:28:37 AM
An update on my new addition to my smoker.  I got the BBQ-Guru in the mail Tuesday.  The Bradley edition will be called <font color="red">The Guru Power Raptor</font id="red">.  You get the Guru and a stainless box with heat sink ready to plug for the heater plug.  Looks cool, and I think it will do what I want it to do.  The Guru is pretty well known to Pit smokers and those with it adapted to Primo or Webber.  It ain't cheap, but it will do what I want.

The Guru itself allows you to plug the Bradley in, and it controls the temperature.  Like the Maverick it has two probes, one for the smoker and one for the meat.  A cool feature is the smoker probe it is a stainless alligator clip that you just clip to the shelf.  Good thinking, Shotgun Fred.

I set the desired cooking temp, set the temp I want the meat, and walk away, returning to dump the water and rotate the meat only.  It has an alarm feature that beeps when you reach the optimum meat temp, and LEDs that tell you when you are within a few degrees of the optimum temp.

Optional low and slow ramp mode starts when meat temp is within 25 degrees of meat set point.

The guy shipping forgot to include the 12V power cord, so it is coming by FEDEX Blue.  Going to try it out this weekend.

Will keep you up to date on the trial.

For those folks who want to purchase a guru and the controller, I got the Bradley list a discount offer on the package.  If you were ever walking the fence on getting a guru, here is your chance during September:

Without the discount??  $149 control $110 Raptor = $259 package  
<font color="red">Discounted to $131 control & $98 for the Guru Power Raptor = $229 package</font id="red">

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on September 24, 2004, 04:36:05 AM
Hello all,

Finally some time to test the Guru.  It works great.  Couldn't use it on my ribs because I didn't have the power control (Shipping Department forgot to include it).  Did a test run tonight with baked potatoes.  You just unplug the power coming from the pit, and plug it into the Guru Raptor controller.  Will take some pictures this weekend when I load up the brisket.  I am quite pleased and think it will do just what I want.  Walk-away and only come back to change the water and rotate the meat.

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: MallardWacker on September 24, 2004, 07:01:46 PM
Bill,

Hope the pics come out would love to see this.  And where did you get this thing??

SmokeOn,

mski
Perryville, Arkansas
Wooo-Pig-Soooie

If a man says he knows anything at all, he knows nothing what he aught to know.  But...

Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: BigSmoker on September 24, 2004, 07:31:09 PM
Bill,
I went to the guru site several times recently and don't see anything about the raptor?  I would(if you can) like to see a pic of the unit itself and its setup so I can compare to what I have.  Shotgun Fred just introduced two new items on his site.  First is a very expensive guru that has a cordless receiver(alarm) with a 1000ft range and a portable smoker that breaks down and and will fit into your vehicle trunk.  

MW,
http://www.thebbqguru.com

Jeff
www.bbqshopping.com
Some say BBQ is in your blood, if thats true my blood must be BBQ sauce.
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on September 25, 2004, 01:22:23 AM
mski

the Barbeque Guru is located at the website.  They now make one for the Bradley http://thebbqguru.com.  Price are a couple of posts above this one.  Won't see it on the website yet.  I have the first one, and pictures will be sent to Fred to post there.  Pricey, but worth it to me.

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on September 25, 2004, 01:24:14 AM
Jeff

I looked at that new controller, and wow!  It is pretty cool, but well beyond anything I would ever need.  

The knock down smoker just isn't a Bradley[;)]

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: Habanero Smoker on October 12, 2004, 11:24:10 PM
After doing a brisket yesterday, and my Maverick going "nuts" on me (not a battery related problem), I needed an easier way to do this, so today I order my Guru Raptor. As soon as I get it, I'm going to do some pulled pork.
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on October 13, 2004, 12:21:40 AM
On the Ta-Ta scale, it is two big ones....absolutely TITS!  You won't regret it.  It simplifies the process of smoking so much.  Again, pricey, but universal to other smokers, and once you use it, will wonder why Bradley doesn't already have this built into their smoker in some form or another.

I am about to install a P.I.D. (p = Proportional gain, I = Integral gain d = Derivative gain) on my espresso boiler to digitally control the temperature.  It allows you to set what you want, and learns your system to control the heat source to maintain that temperature through the use of a thermocouple measuring the actual temperature.  It essentially digitalizes the output.  If you want your boiler to go to 212 degrees, you punch that it in, and the thermocouple measures the temp, and a solid state relay pulses on and off to keep the heat source at whatever temp you set, learning all the while the time it takes to get it there.  Pretty much automates the contol of the temp.  I could see them doing that with a Bradley Smoker.  You punch in the temp you want, and then just watch your meat temp.   No electronics person, I will be working off plans that someone already has done on the same type of espresso machine I have.

Imagine walking up to the Bradley, punching in the temp you want the BS to attain, then punch in the temp you want your meat to be, and wait for the alarm to go off to tell you it is there.   Essentially that is what the Guru does with dials, and lights letting you know approximately what the temp is. The PID gives a digital readout of both the temps at once.   Bradley would have to charge more for that type of feature, but it sure would be cool to have an automatic smoker without having to go "Outside" the Bradley world to purchase something that could be built in.

At 60 I find it hard to keep up with new stuff, but sure like the benefit from those who know how to make these types of controllers to make life easier.


Good luck

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: Habanero Smoker on October 14, 2004, 10:51:15 PM
I just received my Power Guru, and can't wait to use it. The bad news is, it is raining and expected to continue until Saturday afternoon. I won't be able to check it out until Sunday.
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: Habanero Smoker on October 19, 2004, 12:19:11 PM
I had a chance to use the Power Raptor yesterday. Theres a lot of wires, but it is easy to hook up and operate. Most of the following information I sent to The BBQ Guru to give them some feed back.

I did a 9lb. butt, which took 12 hours to smoke. It would have taken less, but I wanted to check out the Ramp Mode feature. I wanted to get started right away, and the only cut I could get locally was the cut they call the Picnic Cut; more commonly called Ham. It has a lot more bone, and fat. After smoking, I pulled 4.5 lbs of meat, but at $.99/lb. I can't complain. I was surprised at how much diferrent that cut tastes, compared to the Boston cut.

During that smoke, the widest temperature range (before going into Ramp mode) was 15 degrees 202 - 217; as recorded by my Maverick thermometer. I should add all temperature changes were gradual. This is way better then I could have done manually, and I did not have to make any temperature adjustments. I just had to turn it up full blast, and let the Raptor do it's thing. I believe the weather contributed to the rise and fall of the temperature. That day was mostly cloudy, and there were intervals, during the day when the smoker would be in direct sunlight.

I just want two make to comments. One, I did not recieve any documentation other then the "Quick Start Card" for the Guru and the "Guru Competitor Condense User Guide". If I was not a member of the Bradley Forum, and had not read Bill's posts, I would not have know how to hook it up to my Bradley. Two; most of us like to run our temperature probes through the top vent, therefore the 6 foot Thermocouple would have been a better feature for the Power Raptor, rather than the 4 foot that comes with it.

It's pricey, but for me it is well worth the price. As it was pointed out earlier in this post, if you have the Guru you only have to purchase the Power Raptor for $110.00.

Bill, I'm glad you got this company to address the needs of us BS owners.
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: BigSmoker on October 19, 2004, 12:55:05 PM
I spoke with Shotfun Fred at a Atlanta Q festival and he told me he had already sold all the initial Raptors they made during the first go round.  More are in production but the Raptor is already a very popular item for folks with electric smokers.

Jeff
www.bbqshopping.com
Some say BBQ is in your blood, if thats true my blood must be BBQ sauce.
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on October 19, 2004, 12:55:49 PM
Habanero

On my way out the door now, but when I get home, I will try to find the instructions (Wasn't much), scan it, and send it to you via a .pdf file for your information.  It might be available from the bbq guru website too.

Glad it worked well for you.  I sure like it.  Doing 3 briskets tomorrow, and leaving them alone while I drive wife down to in-laws in Napa.  Hope to come back, remove the brisket to enjoy when I get home.  Kinda like crock-pot smoking - don't have to do anything to it all day...just wait til its done, wrap it, cool it off, and enjoy.

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: bdnewman on October 22, 2004, 03:37:45 PM
I just got the power raptor package in.  Very nice, but I have a question for the group.  When hooking it up th the Bradley, do you need to set the temp control on the Bradley to max to get things working correctly?  If i am to use this all the time, should I rewire the bradley to bypass its temp control alltogether?

Bryan
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: Habanero Smoker on October 22, 2004, 05:03:26 PM
You made an excellent choice.

When running your BS, turn the heat controller up to maximum. Plug the heating element of the BS into the Raptor, then plug the Raptor into the Smoke Generator. The Raptor will control the heating element.

As for the Guru; connect the fan cable from the Guru to the Raptor. The Guru will need to be plugged into another outlet for it's power.

When Bill see's this he can give you more complete instructions. I am on my way out, so I hope I cleared up your question.
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: bighoof on October 28, 2004, 02:45:16 AM
How about the pics?
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on October 28, 2004, 05:35:07 AM
To answer questions about the Guru:

Set it close to your unit.  
Plug in the smoke generator.  
Unplug the smoker and plug it into the raptor.  
Plug in The Raptor 12V power supply.  
Run a line from the Raptor to The Competitor (The controller).  
Slide the switch on the smoker to high position.
Set your smoker temp
Set you meat temp.
Put in you meat, seasoned, brined, etc.
Plug in the thermocouple(the meat probe and smoker temp are all in one with two seperate leads-one with clip to clip on rack the other pointed.
Power up the Raptor.  I turn off the alarms so it won't wake the neighbors.
Drop in your bisquettes and Bubba pucks.
I wait a bit then hit the advance button on the BS a couple of times.
Come back many hours later, contingent on what you are cooking.  I typically put in pucks for max 4hrs, but don't ever have to touch anything after it is started up.

I like 205 oven temp.  15-20 lbs of Brisket (my favorite) to 185 degrees about 14 hours later done and ready to wrap in foil and into the cooler with a towel wrap for 2-3 hours.  Meat like butter!

If you really want to  spend a load, Fred even offers a remote unit now, and a knock-down smoker that will smoke 200# of meat at a time.  The remote control will work 2 football fields away(600 ft), unlike the Maverick that has problems over 25 ft.

Might even consider both.  Like Fred says, one load of Jerkey would pay for the smoker.  The remote Guru is a toy, but boys do like their toys!

Damn! I love smoking meat!

Bill
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: Habanero Smoker on October 28, 2004, 11:01:15 PM
Bill;

Thanks for the instructions. You should send them to Shotgun Fred, so that he can include the instructions when he ships out the Raptor to customers.

I'm giving some thought to purchasing the 6 or 8 foot Probe Assembly. The 4 foot length, is not enough to run through the vent and set the guru on my cart.
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: car54 on October 29, 2004, 10:25:45 PM
If you are interested in the power raptor, you may want to order it sooner then you were thinking of. It took them 11 days to process my order before they shipped it. I hope that this is an exception.They also did not reply to 2 emails that I had sent them. I'm stilling forward to it.[:(]
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: car54 on November 17, 2004, 12:11:00 PM
I finally received the power raptor and used it on a 12 lbs turkey. It is a nice item and functioned properly. I used it in the ramp mode which I think was a mistake for the following reason.  

 I set the smoke temp at 250, the meat temp. at 175, and the smoker was prewarmed. The turkey was taken out of the refrigerator 2 hours before to warm up. I did not want it to warm up longer because of bacteria. With the bird in the smoker the temps drop off greatly and took a long time to get past 200. In the ramp mode,it will power down the smoker when the meat is within 25 degrees of being finished or 150 degrees. Because of this the smoker never reached 250. The solution is to not use the ramp mode.

 With large quantities of meat I feel you will always get a large temp. drop and a long recovery time. Has any one look into getting a secondary heater? I am in the process of researching that.

 I don't thinking buying the power raptor was a mistake but useing the ramp mode might have limited capabilities.

Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: Habanero Smoker on November 17, 2004, 12:52:37 PM
The ramp mode is an excellent option, but you don't have to use it. What is convinient about the ramp mode is; as Bill has stated in another post - "Set it, and FORGET it". You can do your smoking while you sleep, or while you are away from the area doing errands, or if the cooking process is done too soon and you want to keep it warm until guest arrive; you can do all of this and not have to worry about your meat being over cooked.

If I know I will be around to hear the alarm go off when the meat temperature is reached, then I disable the ramp mode, to quicken the cooking process.
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: nsxbill on November 17, 2004, 04:26:28 PM
I went ahead and got the remote model of the Guru, The Procomm4 while it was on special.  It is so versatile that you can even set it to turn the smoker completely off automatically when the correct temp is reached.  I should have it to start using it for Thanksgiving.  

Either one of Shotgun Fred's devices, the Competitor or the Procomm4, allow you to have a life without worrying about the temp in your smoker while cold smoking, or those long slow smokes of 12-14 or more hours.  All done like setting a alarm clock.  During the summer months, we spend a lot of time by the pool, and that is beyond the range of the Maverick thermometer...I can't even get it to work from the back porch  to the Master Bedroom.  

The Maverick told me to get up and adjust the Bradley to keep the set temp right so much that frankly I didn't want to be that far away from the smoker.

The Procomm4 has a 200yard range and you can actually tweak the heat of the smoker and check you progress from the remote, and in addition monitor two to four probes going into the smoker.   It is just what I wanted.  Trouble free smoking.  I smoke most things 4 hours, then go back, change the water, and then just let it alone-no peeking required.  Only time I have to go back is to rotate the racks or mop the meat, if I am doing that.

I can go downstairs and get on the treadmill, or out to the garage to work on the car and monitor and adjust the smoker remotely-all through the Raptor.  I want to get one of those big knock-down smokers he sells too.  From a simple Weber kettle or Kumodo or Primo Green Egg, either of the controllers will work on any pit by replacing the electrical controller with a fan controller when you are smoking with charcoal and wood.

I will let you know how it works once I have given it a few tries.  Anxious to try one of DoW's Lo-Salt Hams for Thanksgiving.   Going to smoke a turkey too.  We have lots of family coming over, and hope to have everything done and put in some ABT's (Atomic Buffalo Turds) for appetizers this year so we can enjoy straight out of the smoker in the afternoon.

There has been some discussion about heating up bricks for the bottom of the smoker to hold the heat better.  I think that is the only thing I am going to add to my smoker to make me feel comfortable about opening the door briefly to rotate racks or mop the meat (What do you think Kirk-maybe a cusom casted fire brick with a cut out to accomodate the stainles drip bowl--perhaps a new item from Chez Bubba's emporium of good stuff.

I just can't see any downside to this substantial investment of the Competitor or the Procomm4 - don't even have to have a Maverick with these controllers...when you consider time saved, the remote control and worry-free versatility of cooking in the BS or any other smoker.

Either of units will do the job of allowing you a little time away from the task of smoking great food!http://www.thebbqguru.com/procom4.htm

Bill
(No financial interest in this - just chatting up a good thing)
Title: Re: Controlling the BS Temperature
Post by: Thevenin on November 18, 2004, 03:25:34 AM
<blockquote id="quote"><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial, Helvetica" id="quote">quote:<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"><i>Originally posted by car54</i>
<br />I finally received the power raptor and used it on a 12 lbs turkey. It is a nice item and functioned properly. I used it in the ramp mode which I think was a mistake for the following reason.  

 I set the smoke temp at 250, the meat temp. at 175, and the smoker was prewarmed. The turkey was taken out of the refrigerator 2 hours before to warm up. I did not want it to warm up longer because of bacteria. With the bird in the smoker the temps drop off greatly and took a long time to get past 200. In the ramp mode,it will power down the smoker when the meat is within 25 degrees of being finished or 150 degrees. Because of this the smoker never reached 250. The solution is to not use the ramp mode.

 With large quantities of meat I feel you will always get a large temp. drop and a long recovery time. Has any one look into getting a secondary heater? I am in the process of researching that.

 I don't thinking buying the power raptor was a mistake but useing the ramp mode might have limited capabilities.


<hr height="1" noshade id="quote"></blockquote id="quote"></font id="quote">

Here's a trick I found.  Let the Raptor take the heat of the smoker up to about 300 or so when pre-heating.  Then when you put the meat in you drop to about 225.  Adjust the raptor to hold it there and you're good to go.  The ramp mode makes me feel better about leaving the smoker un-attended for hours like overnight or when at work.

Thev.