Help with the Baby Back Ribs and questions about my new smoker

Started by Gaston Guy, January 16, 2011, 05:44:00 AM

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Gaston Guy

Well I finished my first smoke in my new BD6 with less than great results so I am hoping you guys can make a few suggestions to help me.  I had made ribs on my Weber a few times earlier with much better results so this is certainly disappointing.  I just knew that low and slow with 2hrs of apple smoke would be better than on my Weber.   First I have some questions about the smoker and second about the smokee.   
1. I could not get the a temp reading above 190 on Maverick probe even though I set the temp on the Bradley to 325.  I was cooking 3 racks of BB on 3 trays but I would not think this would be meat overload.  Ambient temp was in the 40's most of the afternoon so it was cool but not bone chilling.  A little breeze in the air so I know that was not helpful.  Surely in 5 hours this smoker can get above 200 deg.
2.Because my temps were so inconsistent, I cooked the ribs for 5 hrs.  Normally I would have tried the 3-2-1 or 3-1-1 method but I only had reached a temp of 90 deg after 1 hr.  My thought was "well, they will just cook really low and slow and this will just make them all the more tender and juicy"  I opened the door twice during the smoke(temp did not drop too much as I was fast) after 3hrs and 4 hrs for a quick check and hit them with apple juice misting.   Ribs were a bit dry and too chewee.  Please help!!!!     


Welcome Gaston, sorry to hear the first smoke was not what you were hoping for.  I do not have a digital or use the Bradley.  Some others will be along with more help.  But you certainly should have been able to reach higher temps in those conditions and with that meat load.  Do you have the unit plugged directly into the outlet or are you using an extension cord?

How did you prep the ribs?


Where was the probe that you were measuring the temp?

It sounds like the meat was between the element and the probe, since dry and chewy is usually overly done.
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And what about the vent position, mostly wide open is best. Mine is stuck wide open and I never touch it.

Gaston Guy

Hey fellow smokers,

I read through some past posts with others having similar problems.   Just a while ago, I unplugged and replugged all the wires, filled the bowl with hot water and started the unit up again.  After just 28 minutes, I have temp reading of 212.  Couldn't reach that in 5 hrs yesterday.  So, no longer cursing the DB6. 

Now, if I can just learn to smoke some tender ribs.  I'll keep reading the recipes, how to's etc and we'll get there.  Thanks so much to the members for their contributions and tips!   

Gaston Guy

Hey Rider,

I had it dangling in front of the 3rd rack from the top since the element in in the back.   My probe registered 20 lower than the unit and I think I have read that is not uncommon.

Mr Walleye

Gaston Guy

I think what FLB was getting at is you want to measure the temp just below the lowest rack. The reason for this is you want to see the temp the meat is being exposed to. If you measure the temp above the meat, the meat will influence the temp reading (usually lower). This is also why the DBS will sometimes read a different temp then your temp probe. The DBS's built in probe is also influenced by the fact that it is built into the cabinet at the back and mounted higher then a couple of the racks.

TenPoint5 has a great write up on the recipe site for  the 3 2 1 ribs. Try giving them a shot for a starting point then adjust for your own tastes. Here's a link....

Good luck

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Gaston Guy


Makes perfect sense now on the temperature probe.  Also, I will pull up TenPoint5 and try the ribs again soon.

Thank you and the other members for helping a newbie