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I'm a little confused. in one post you question whether putting a water pan in to decrease the moisture and the next post you ask why 6 hours will not produce moist tender ribs. Are you using an extension cord? A cord of insufficient gauge (I like a short 12 gauge cord if necessary) will contribute to longer cook times because of voltage drop. What kind of ribs are you cooking? Baby backs can be done in as little as 4 hours. Spares can take upwards of 6 hours at 225º-250º. I usually let 'er rip along at 250º. My gauge for doneness is the pullback from the bone. I'm looking for 3/8" - 1/2" pullback. Of course, this necessitates opening the door so I would check at about the 3 1/2 hour mark for baby backs and about 5 1/2 hours for spares. Also, the bend test can work for you. Grab a slab with gloves on and bend it. The meat should almost crack and be very yielding when you bend the slab. You'll get the hang of it.
When folks read the 101 s and the specificic forums,they find a lot of info that may apply to different cookers and meats,rather than,"one size fits all".

There also might be different reasons for different times,timing,flavor profiles,holding periods,prep techniques,and presentation methods.

The reason we stress reading,is because very few of us can answer one specific question with an off hand general answer.

Just my $0.02
All good questions since you asked me, I'll answer. Let me know if you have more.


what is the point of putting ribs in cooker with the meat side down and then having to open the cooker to turn them over before they are done?

The "theory" for some is that you're exposing the meat to the smoking rising up and the smoke hits the meats side as it's rising. Flipping insures an even cook (not all from direct heat below)

do you think a water pan could actually decrease the moisture in the cooker if it is placed on the rack directly above the wood box since some of the drippings will be caught in the water pan and will not fall onto the hot wood box and vaporize?

Not sure of the logic on that one, but adding a pan of water will raise the relative humidity of the smoker. Period. It will impact the effects of smoke penetration, etc.

I don't use a water pan.

The issue of grease dripping is a relative new topic in the forum (but not new in the BBQ world). It's not the same as "juices dripping on an open fire" a topic of which I think is more BS than fact (sorry for that, but it's my opinion) but for those that love that method, this smoker isn't it. You need an open fire.

also, if cooking at 225 for 6 hours is not producing moist tender ribs, what will be the effect it i increase temp to 250 for the same or shorter time?

You need to test that. Smoking isn't about a specific length of time, it's about the meat telling us when it's done. For more rib info, a good read through the Rib forum would answer a lot of questions.
Well,we old folks miss some things. Wink

Glad all is well.

Wish ya'll could get over for Lakeland,at month's end.

It looks like a pellet convention and all the usual suspects would love to see ya.

Say hi to the missus,and figure a time to come over and spend the week with Barbara and I..

Much closer than "down under",and we speak Oklahoman, over here. Big Grin

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