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Full Version: Q-Control BBQ Smoker FAQ
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What is a Q-Control BBQ Controller Project?

Well if you're asking what a Charcoal BBQ Controller can do for you then you can get some basic info from some of the commercial products websites.  I have no ties to any commercial products but if you find you don't want to build your own Controller then feel free to buy a commercial product.  Here's a beginners link, and another link at what commercial products can do to help with your cooking.


What is the status of the project?Still early on, but its usable at this point....I'm sure lots of things may change as I build a few more for friends/family and such...but here is where it's at:
  • Start and access local wifi (if it cannot connect, then it will start a local AP and serve webconfig pages to phone/tablet via wireless). It does captive DNS so you don't need to know the ip once you connect to the esp-wifi device....just type any url and it will hit the config page(neat!)
  • configuration via webpages for all of Q-Control parameters(probes,lcd,fan,pid..etc), as well as configuration of your thingspeak account(free) and of course wifi settings to connect to your internet router.
  • every 15 seconds it will update thingspeak servers so you can view/react to BBQ Cooking Data (4 probe temperatures, real-time graphs).
  • It will also check every 5 seconds for remote temperature set....this allows you to input a setpoint on the thingspeak site and have the temperature set on your Grill at home!
  • Works with internet cloud services (thingspeak & mqtt). You do NOT require any port forwarding or open ports on your router for it to work from the outside.  MQTT support allows it to work with many existing home automation systems....
  • You can update the unit via-WiFi.  Don't have to connect the unit to your computer to patch or update with new version!! 
  • ScreenShots?Sure,  checkout this album...Also,  try the online demo dashboard....  I'll update as I take more screen shots.

Cool...so how is Q-Control different?

Well First, it's a open source/free/hobby project I'm working on in my spare time....but on the plus side it can be really fun DIY build and learning experience, and can be a huge money saver using standard chips and hardware!!

It's designed to be an Internet-of-things (iOT) type of device.  Which means once initally setup, Q-Control will work with the internet/cloud to update near real-time graphs and get commands like to set temperatures remotely and even send you alarms and such when things are out-of-whack(or just finished).

Do I have to be a rocket-scientist to build one?

That would help Smile ....seriously,  I'm a software guy that 'plays' a bit with hardware so I know it may seem complicated at first but it really isn't too difficult.  That said, you should have some computer/network knowledge and have some basic soldering skills....if you're a totally newbie like I was, just watch some youtube videos and you'll be an expert in a few hours!