In earlier posts you said you do not use the stoker during your test cooks. To control the temps old school and with an empty water pan do you use less fuel and really restrict the vents on the cooker to maintain ideal bbq temperatures?
No. Amount of fuel is exactly the same. Just more fiddling of the vents versus being on autopilot with the Stoker System. Temps will stay consistent for 3-4 hours but after that you have to play with the vents. If I'm cooking butt and brisket, I'll bring out the stoker. For ribs, I do it old school style.
Thank you Harry for all your comments. I want to invest in a Stoker. I currently have one 22" WSM and will be upgrading up to 3 addtional WSM. Can I use only one stoker unit with 8 probes? How do you set up mutilple units? I remember the episode when you got caught in a lightning strom in the desert and you had your extra unit with you, AWESOME heads up
but my question is your setup contain only one unit with one extra for backup correct? BTW how many WSM do you use in comps? Thanks in advance Harry.
You order the Stoker Octopus from John Jackson. It's a custom box that allows you to hook up many other fans and temp probes. You need a special power supply the size of a brick to do so. I did R&D on the octopus for John and it works really well.
I use two 18-inch WSMs in comps. You can see that on the BBQ Pitmasters show.