I'm a brand new member here, but have been lurking around or a few months now.
I was able to get a Maverick single probe thermometer for free yeaterday and I thought my first brisket attempt was a good excuse to try my new toy... and that's my problem. It's been only been in the smoke for about 2 and a half hours and already reading 159 degrees... seems way too fast to me. (with any luck, it'll plateau soon, but I'm nervous) When doing butts and things I'd simply estimate an hour and a half a pound or so before I checked temp to see where I was and go from there...
What do you guys think... should I believe the meter??? I'm inclined to ignore it and assume I've got the probe in a fat pocket or something and leave it alone for at least a few more hours and then check with the instant read that I've been using all along.
Your smoker temp seems good as long as your thermometers are working OK. As most people say around here the stock thermometers that come with most units are not good. Most time I use about 3 thermometers on the grate (one left, one rights, and one middle), two in lid (I replaced these with some better ones), and one or two in the meat (depending on how big)... A bit over kill but it is always nice to know the different temps.
One other test you can do is a boil test of your thermometers. Boil up some water and your probes should read 212 degrees (at sea level). Or you could even do a freeze test (not a big fan) but both do work.
One more thing with the probe in the meat make sure you place it in the thickest part of the brisket.
I guess things are working as they should after all. I'm at 5 and a half hours and the temp is up to 166. I must have been stalled somewhere along the line as it's been over 3 hours to get these last 7 degrees... I'll foil for a few hours when I get to 170 and see how long it takes to get to 190 or so... In the mean time it's time to get the ribs and beans going...
Thanks for the kind words of support along the way.
Turned out great ..... although it's the 1st brisket i've ever done that plateaued twice. that was one stubborn SOB....took approx. 16 hours total & it was only a 6.5 pounder . My grandpa loved it though , just as he did the 1st one. He thinks i should start catering ,lol.