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Oklahoma Joe Bronco Owners (or UDS’s too) I Have A Few Questions

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  • bep35
    replied
    I added the thermometer below to my PBC. It can be adjusted so it reads very close to my digital thermometers I use when cooking. It is handy to have an accurate dial thermometer to see when checking out the PBC. I would do it again.
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  • FishTalesNC
    commented on 's reply
    No worries, glad to help, hope you dig it as much as I do! 👍🏻

  • Panhead John
    commented on 's reply
    FishTalesNC Thanks for taking the time to help with my questions. When I first posted these questions I hadn’t really read up very much on the OJB, thus my ignorance about the diffuser. But you’ve given me some great advice which is going to be very helpful. I didn’t know there was actually an OJB thread here, but after finding it I read all of your and other’s posts about it. All your answers tonight are useful and much appreciated. Thanks
    Last edited by Panhead John; March 31, 2021, 07:11 PM.

  • FishTalesNC
    replied
    Congrats on the purchase Panhead John I absolutely love cooking on mine every time I use it, its a pleasure.

    1st Answer: I usually just use the grate with ribs, but that is mostly because the 3 of us typically eat just one rack. I do notice a little difference in taste when hanging vs. grate because when hanging the one end gets close to the charcoal basket and gets a bit more of a grilled flavor. I like both flavors. If I were cooking 2-4 racks I would cut them in half and hang the halves. No need to put on the grate after saucing, just re-hang - with a half rack there isn't enough weight to worry about them dropping. If cooking more than 4 racks I'd just hang full racks and happily gnaw on that last one that gets charred. Here's a link to a thread where I hung three racks of STLs.

    2nd Answer: See link above, in there I included pics that'll show how I draped the ambient temp probe. I usually try to have the probe hang roughly midway down the meat. I do not rely on the included thermometer.

    3rd Answer: Incredibly useful. Other barrels I've cooked on that don't have a heat diffuser end up with "hot spots" in the charcoal basket leading to meat that is overcooked in some spots if you don't turn your grate. The diffuser solves that and your meat cooks more evenly. I use it every single time I can when smoking, but if you're hanging full BBs or STLs in my experience they're too long to use it. But for half racks (problem solved!), pork tenderloins, turkeys, etc. there's plenty of room to use it. I also noticed no difference in taste being that the drippings usually hit the diffuser rather than the charcoal itself, still get that good tasting smoke fog. In fact, in other barrels I'd run into issues if I was hanging 3 chickens - they'd end up trying to douse the fire with their drippings and the diffuser also solves that issue. Not sure though why you think you don't use it in grilling mode tho... use it, but flip it upside down and it raises your charcoal basket MUCH closer to the cooking grate. Here's a link to a thread where I front seared a tri-tip in grilling mode, its got a pic showing how close the charcoal basket gets to the grate when you do it this way. I also sorta talk about my process for flipping from grilling mode to smoking mode mid-cook - its pretty easy, love that the Bronco can do both on the same load of charcoal.

    4th Answer: Nope. No issues running the probe under the lid, it comes with a gasket installed so it won't pinch the wire.

    Only other thing I can think to offer up is some lighting tips, and I put some in this thread here. Honestly I find it a breeze to use and the food that comes off is outstanding. Good luck, I think you're going to love it!

    Oh, I lied, one more... don't go too heavy on the wood until you've had a handful of cooks. IMHO you can over-smoke on a barrel style cooker if you add too much wood given the added "smoke fog". I typically only use 2 chunks for a long smoke and that works for us.

    Leave a comment:


  • Soonerpop
    commented on 's reply
    So, the factory thermometer is bi-metallic. But what does it identify as?

  • Clark
    commented on 's reply
    Panhead John Those barrel cookers must be good. I saw a movie this afternoon and a bunch of homeless people were gathered around one in a snowstorm.

  • ofelles
    commented on 's reply
    Panhead John Am I to late, I have a new in box for $499 as is you PU.

  • Panhead John
    commented on 's reply
    Thanks cgrover60 I’ve been reading up for a while now on the OJB thread to get myself familiar with it before my first cook this weekend. That’s a good idea to hang the probe, if not using the cooking grate. And from what I’m reading most people are using the diffuser plate. I put my hands on a display model yesterday at Academy. The build quality is impressive. If it cooks as good as everyone says it does, this puppy is a steal at $300. I’d seriously consider buying this at $450.-$500.

  • cgrover60
    replied
    Glad to see the stickheads aren't throwing splits at you in this thread Panhead John. Nice choice on the Bronco. If I didn't already have a PBC I would have done the same and if I had the space would get one anyway. And for what it's worth IF I did have a Bronco I'd hang a temp probe from an unused hanger and leave the diffuser in.

    Leave a comment:


  • jfmorris
    replied
    Paging FishTalesNC to this thread, as he has the Bronco and can comment on Panhead John 's questions.

    Leave a comment:


  • Panhead John
    commented on 's reply
    Thanks for your helpful suggestions, again. Yeah, I was gonna do a comparison with my digital probe and the factory thermometer, in the same area. My thinking was, I don’t need an absolute temp., but if it’s close enough for a reference, I’ll be able to work with that. Sigma male. I’ll listen to others as a “reference”, toss out the stupid, then make my own adjustments. 👍

  • Uncle Bob
    replied
    Hanging or flat on the grate depends on a few variables. Since rib slabs aren't the same size typically some might hit the coals without the deflector if long enough. Trimming and "choking up" on the hook location at the top are a couple ways to cope. Cutting the slab in half is another. For all that getting tips for methods is helpful, in the end your personal satisfaction is the subjective judge. If only doing one or two slabs shortly after acquiring the cooker it might be useful to just use the method you're most familiar with if the desired results are critical. Or, depending on the power level of your sense of adventure, hang away first time out the gate and see what happens.

    BTW, the deflector is quite useful in grilling mode as it is one of the ways to give the fuel bin a higher platform to emulate a more familiar grilling orientation.

    As for the factory thermometer, it's a typical bi-metallic type so doesn't have the accuracy of a quality electronic device. Mine are reasonably accurate, but that is probably colored by my lower expectations. Over on the FB Bronco channel I see lots of people throwing stones at the original thermometer for accuracy issues, but I laugh because they ar comparing it with the probes in two different locations, sometimes a foot and a half apart. They are clueless about thermodynamics. My advice is to observe/record what the factory thermometer reads vs what your electronic reads where you choose to locate the probe, and then rely on the mechanical gauge as a "reference" tool rather than an absolute reading.

    As for the few users of the OJB on here that's a matter of insufficient enlightenment. Are you a Beta male who follows trends, or a Sigma male who does the independent mambo?

    Leave a comment:


  • Panhead John
    commented on 's reply
    Clark Work on your spelling (every?) and go back to your Wildflower viewing. 😂

  • Uncle Bob
    commented on 's reply
    For all that I like to poke fun at the PBC crowd most here are accomplished outdoor cooks so their methodology is often insightful. Not so much (though a little) the fuel management stuff they need to do to exercise some level of temp control, but more the cooking processes. Good suggestion that.

  • Clark
    commented on 's reply
    Panhead John You didn't see any answers because you are the first person to every buy one of those things.

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