To mop or not to mop?

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We're making ribs and we can't decide if we want to mop them or not.  I've got them rubbed with salt/pepper/garlic/onion/paprika/mustard/thyme/oregano and I don't want to add sweetness.  I also don't want to jeopardize the crust.  They'll be fine without a mop right?
 
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LOL. How long have you been here?!? A question like yours ... on a topic like ribs ... could/will get answers from across the entire spectrum of "rib-making". 

From the way you're asking, I think you're looking for a "no mop" answer. I'll be happy to give it to you. 

You'll be just fine without mopping.
 
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What rib? I treat pork rib almost exactly as you wrote (but I will put a bit of brown sugar in the rub) and never mop them.
 
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LOL. How long have you been here?!? A question like yours ... on a topic like ribs ... could/will get answers from across the entire spectrum of "rib-making". 
It's been a while since there's been an interesting conversation around here.
 

phatch

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To me mopping is about the texture of the rub and how it s behaving during cooking. A coarser rub forms bark better if you give a little bit of mopping along the way. If the rub is fine enough you can get pretty good bark from the moisture coming off the ribs naturally.

A mustard slather helps in both cases.

Of course cooking here at high altitude and low humidity, those can be contributing factors to my theory too. I just can't control for those variables to tell.
 
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I mop every hour with a 50/50 cider vinegar/olive oil mix. It sets the rub and helps form a great bark. But I also put the rub on very heavy in the beginning because yes you do lose some.
 
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They'll be fine without a mop right?
Bit late to the party but the short answer is: yes. I rarely mop my ribs. In fact the only times I do mop them is when I make a marinade that has a strong character, for example a vietnamese fish sauce/lemongrass/cilantro marine, and I want a strong taste of the marinade. Then I keep mopping more marinade on top of the ribs. 

Please understand that I'm not saying that one should never mop ribs. I'm just saying that it's perfectly possible to make great ribs without mopping them. 
 
So we mopped 50% of the ribs and the rest we left dry /img/vbsmilies/smilies/tongue.gif
... were you able to tell them apart? What would you say is the difference? 
 
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pete

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I usually don't mop ribs, but I have on occasion, especially if they are thicker and more meaty.  Babybacks, though, never get mopped.  No need to, IMHO, as they don't take that long anyway.
 

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