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Your perfect thermometer

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    Your perfect thermometer

    I spend a lot of time programming and playing with electronics and have actually built my own thermometer to monitor and data log my cooks. One of the key reasons for doing this was to monitor many variables at once including 2+ meats, pit temp, ambient temp etc. Another issue is how close I have to stay to the pit. I typically use the pit barrel cooker as it allows me time to spend with family, so I am building it to post to the internet and send alerts to my phone.
    All of that said, what would your ideal temperature monitoring device look like? What would it do? What wouldn't it do?

    Great post John! We're soon to get a lot of comments here.....

    I llike the ease and simplicity of the Maverick ET 732, since the thought of me using my phone or laptop in connection with my smoker is a step toward cyber-tizing my smoker I'm not willing to do. I run an offset burning logs usually, or charcoal and logs. I like the tending, the old school approach it requires makes me feel like I'm making it happen, I'm building a bonfire and making food from carefully tending and stoking it...not an auger and a control box and a knob. That said, I realize digital therms are NOT old school, but regardless I would like the Mav to come in a 6 or 8-prob configuration. Then I could monitor 2-4 cooker zone temps and 4-6 pieces of meat. As it is now, since the Mavs only have 2 probes, I run 2 together to have 4 probes. But at times I'd like more. I don't like using instant reads if I don't have to.


    • _John_
      _John_ commented
      Editing a comment
      I would love to run a stick burner and hang out with it on occasion, but with 2 young kids I would rather spend time with them.
      An interesting story regarding your statement about you feeling like you make it happen. I worked for Sara Lee a few years back and at a meeting I asked why they still make boxed cakes that require milk and eggs, since with today's technology you could do that. An old timer informed me that it was indeed tried in I believe the 50's and they didn't sell. They brought together a bunch of women and asked why they didn't like them, they said that for them the dessert was the course where they could show their love and creativity, and just dumping a box made them feel like they were cheating their family. Sara Lee started testing with removing items and found that if they took out the eggs and milk, that was sufficient to make women think that they were creating it and sales took off.

      Personally the cleaning and trimming, preparing rubs and sauces, and selecting coals and woods fulfills that role for me.

    • Huskee
      Huskee commented
      Editing a comment
      Great comment John, makes perfect sense about the cake. I never would've thought about that. I've always been a pyro and my boys are usually out in the yard playing catch with me and helping me get wood from the woodpile while I'm starting/running the smoker. It's a great experience and I think they'll have fond memories as they get older of me doing that and them getting to help somewhat. Happy smoking!
      Last edited by Huskee; July 13, 2014, 09:16 PM.

    I use a thermapen for instant read temps. If I were to design the perfect arrangement it would be meat temp and cooker temp from an iPhone. I would like to be able to control the temp and monitor the temp by phone, preferably on the golf course!


      Keep your eyes peeled on the site in the next couple of weeks. We have some surprises regarding thermometers coming soon.


      • Bill McGrath
        Bill McGrath commented
        Editing a comment
        Looking forward to it!

      I think the perfect thermometer would:

      use K probes
      Wifi or bluetooth
      waterproof (rainproof to some degree)


        Rainproof yes. Weather doesn't care if today is the big cook, a rainproof therm is a necessity. Maverick Et 732 and 733 transmitters are rain resistant. I've put mine through their paces in the weather.


          I meant that to be wifi AND bluetooth. I know bluetooth is not the answer going forward but its a great plan B


            Originally posted by Aaron 'Huskee' Lyons View Post
            Rainproof yes. Weather doesn't care if today is the big cook, a rainproof therm is a necessity. Maverick Et 732 and 733 transmitters are rain resistant. I've put mine through their paces in the weather.
            I also like their long battery life and long range. The Mavs could be MUCH easier to program though. Maybe that's the answer. Start with something like Mav, add more probes for Huskee, add buttons to make easier to program, add wifi connectivity for remote monitoring from iphone/android.


            • _John_
              _John_ commented
              Editing a comment
              While it could be done on the unit with a touch screen, I will likely use the phone for this but the idea I have is to store your style of smoking for example do you wrap, if so at what temp, how low or high do you want the pit? Store this for each meat and the alarm goes off when any of these are reached (push notifications to Android/iOS).
              This can have 5 probes as is, but can be extended to 13. Tell the program the blue probe is in chicken and accept or override your temp settings and away you go.
              One of my primary reasons for this was the data logging; if I tell this thing I am cooking 2 whole chickens, 2 racks of ribs and a pulled pork if you have enough cooking history you tell it what time you want to eat, and it will tell you what time everything goes on.

            Originally posted by Pit Boss View Post

            I also like their long battery life and long range. The Mavs could be MUCH easier to program though. Maybe that's the answer. Start with something like Mav, add more probes for Huskee, add buttons to make easier to program, add wifi connectivity for remote monitoring from iphone/android.
            "Maverick XL, AmazingRibs edition". Free for us. lol.


              I like my Maverick 732 but agree that it needs to be easier to program. I don't even bother using it for that because of the hoops you gotta jump through. I actually don't need the alarms and such, anyway. I just set the remote on my desk when I'm inside and keep an eye on the readout.
              Last edited by boftx; July 14, 2014, 11:54 AM.


                I like the Mav 732 also, but wish I could get the alarms to work since I often start early in the morning and would like to catch a few zzz's on the couch from time-to-time. Also wish I could get a little more distance on the wireless.



                  1. Push BBQ hi or BBQ low or Food hi, and the temp it is set at will pop up

                  2. Push the button again and HOLD it until it starts flashing

                  3. Immediately push it again to go to your desired temp. You can hold it down to scroll faster.

                  4. Once it starts flashing, if you wait more than a few seconds to suppress, it will go back to what it was set at.

                  5. When you get to the temp you want, hit the MODE button to lock in at that temp. (It has the light bulb on it)

                  6. Now go bush the alarm button (bottom right) looks like this ((.)) so the alarm(s) will go off when they hit their set temp.

                  7. The alarm icon, ((.)), needs to be showing on the screen for the alarm to go off.
                  Last edited by Jerod Broussard; July 15, 2014, 03:57 AM.


                    Thanks Jerod!


                      I definitely prefer wifi support. The Bluetooth devices I tried did not have the needed range. You basically can't go inside. I put an additional wifi unit in my back office just so I would have coverage outside on my deck


                        Thermopen. I tried a Stoker on the pellet jambo for a while. Kept the temp steady and it did talk to my computer. Ended up going back to H-M-L controllers. This year for competition, I'm going to use some Thermoworks Chef Alarms. Interesting, what you're doing!



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