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View Full Version : PLEASE Help Me Decide on a Backwoods for Comp


Teamfour
09-04-2012, 08:10 PM
I have a Chubby on order. My intention was to get started in comps using the Chubby and one or two UDS's. I recently spent a weekend with a team at a comp and saw all sorts of equipment including the larger Backwoods cookers.

This got me wondering if my equipment selection would actually work. I have the money set aside for the Chubby, and MIGHT be able to afford a Party. Anything bigger is a no-go. So my questions are:

Could I make a Chubby and 2 UDS work?
How about a Party and UDS?
Could I cook a comp all on a Party?

Please recommend a combo of the above and maybe suggest what meats would be cooked on what.

Thanks in advance.

Pelkster
09-04-2012, 08:21 PM
If you can afford it, get a Fatboy. I use one and am fortunate to be able to be able to borrow another for comps (many, many thanks Giggler). I have done a couple of comps using just mine, and with slight adjustments of timelines, the food comes out right on time with little problems. I cook two 14-17# briskets and two 10# butts overnight and they finish about 8am. I put my ribs (3 racks) on about 9am (they finish in 3.5 hours for me) and my chicken (20-30 thighs) goes in at 930. Plenty of room for everything.

Smokin' Joe
09-04-2012, 08:42 PM
The Fatboy should be renamed the Competitor :-D The Fatboy is the best model in the line for comps - and its not close

Teamfour
09-04-2012, 08:47 PM
Thanks y'all. But to reiterate, a Party is the most I can afford.

Ron_L
09-04-2012, 08:56 PM
I did two 10 lb. butts and 2 12-13 lb briskets in my Party a couple of weeks ago. If you time thing right you can do it all in a Party. Cook the big meats and get them done and in a cooler or Cambro then put in the ribs followed by the chicken.

But, a Party and a UDS would give you more flexibility in case the big meats are stubborn or if you want to do chicken at higher temps.

BTW, I know that you said that a Party was the max, but look seriously at the extended Party. It is deep enough to fit a full pan and will make ribs easier to fit. Plus, my one gripe with my Party is the grates. Two 10 lb. butts on one grate was bending the grate. The grates on the extended Party are much heavier wire.

rookiedad
09-04-2012, 08:57 PM
you might think about going small with another chubby. i think you could fit two butts in one and two briskets in the other and get them coolered in time to use one for ribs and the other for chicken. you could put them on each end of a table and have the door on one of them mounted in reverse so they both open into the center work area of the table.

Smokin' Joe
09-04-2012, 08:59 PM
Thanks y'all. But to reiterate, a Party is the most I can afford.

Sorry - missed that part the first time - Get the party, I think you can cook a contest on a party with good timing. I did it a couple of times when I first started. I ended up cooking the ribs pork and brisket on the party and the chicken on another pit - that worked well. A UDS and a party would be a great comp setup I think

mjl
09-04-2012, 08:59 PM
Have had a Party, Chubby, and Fatboy. You can do well with any of them. My all time fave is the Party, easy to move and easy to use. I have done an entire Kcbs contest on a Party, just plan on have your big cuts off and resting before chicken and ribs go on. A contest with a Party and UDS would be easy peasy.

habsslabs
09-04-2012, 09:04 PM
I love the Party and think you can win a competition on it. We did. We took 2nd at Memphis in May in Ribs using the Party. I know other MBN teams have used it as well. It will handle butts and brisket as well - the ONLY negative to it is that it won't hold it's temperature quite as long as larger smokers. But if you really pile in the charcoal and work your vents just right, you should still be able to get at least 5-6 hours out of it without having to reset the fire.

mjl
09-04-2012, 09:10 PM
I love the Party and think you can win a competition on it. We did. We took 2nd at Memphis in May in Ribs using the Party. I know other MBN teams have used it as well. It will handle butts and brisket as well - the ONLY negative to it is that it won't hold it's temperature quite as long as larger smokers. But if you really pile in the charcoal and work your vents just right, you should still be able to get at least 5-6 hours out of it without having to reset the fire.

Consider building a charcoal basket. We made a basket out of expanded metal that fit inside the original charcoal tray. Ran the basket up to about 2" inches under the bottom of the water pan. The cooker would very nearly go an entire contest worth of burn time. Congrats on the MIM, I need to check that out someday.

ML

Just Smokin' Around
09-04-2012, 09:40 PM
With a Chubby and a Party, you would probably be okay. I also think you can get started with the Chubby and a UDS or 2. I've used a Fatboy to do everything and it worked, but, if the big meats ran long, it got a little crowded. I think doing it all in a Party would be tough. As everyone has said, it takes good timing and hope you don't have a stubborn brisket or butt. Good luck.

BackPorch
09-04-2012, 09:41 PM
I started with a party and after awhile used a wsm with it. SO the party and a uds would work well

Brewer
09-04-2012, 09:44 PM
The Fatboy should be renamed the Competitor :-D The Fatboy is the best model in the line for comps - and its not close

+++++1 :thumb:

Start shaking the seat cushions.... figure out how to find the money or wait till you figure it out... I can't believe I waited so long to pull the trigger on mine.

White Dog BBQ
09-04-2012, 10:14 PM
We use an Extended Party and an 18" WSM for comps and have been happy with our results.

If you get a Party, I strongly recommend having them add two sets of sliders in such a fashion to permit you to have 4 racks 6" apart. The flexibility is great that way and gives you much better access to the meats.

dhuffjr
09-04-2012, 11:05 PM
I'm using a standard Party with two large Big Green Eggs. I think the party would work with the drum cookers. I'd not get a chubby myself unless it is a space thing (ie the party is too big).

bmanMA
09-05-2012, 07:42 AM
BTW, I know that you said that a Party was the max, but look seriously at the extended Party. It is deep enough to fit a full pan and will make ribs easier to fit. Plus, my one gripe with my Party is the grates. Two 10 lb. butts on one grate was bending the grate. The grates on the extended Party are much heavier wire.

Yes I agree with this. There are a few mods you should consider. Keep that in mind as it's added cost:

- extended for the reasons Ron_L mentions.
- commercial fire box
- consider getting more sliders installed. Gives you more options for grate placement.
- 180* door. Should be standard but...
- heat diverter.

It adds up. I'd not want to give any of these up on mine.

Teamfour
09-05-2012, 09:23 AM
Thanks everyone! I am going to go with the Party. I just can't swing the Extended version.

5-0 BBQ
09-05-2012, 09:41 AM
Thanks everyone! I am going to go with the Party. I just can't swing the Extended version.
Good choice. Now you will have to change your signature line.

Teamfour
09-05-2012, 09:50 AM
Good choice. Now you will have to change your signature line.

Done - with enhancement. :thumb:

Shiz-Nit
09-05-2012, 10:17 AM
Go with the extended party not much more money over the standard party.

TheJackal
09-05-2012, 11:55 AM
We cooked entire contests on a Party for the better part of two seasons (we still use it today but have added another cooker along side it). I would recommend getting the extended as others have suggested.

LTG
09-05-2012, 02:14 PM
For what you will be paying for a new party you could find a nice used fatboy. Thats what I ended up.doing and Im very happy.

thaberberger
09-05-2012, 06:59 PM
Thanks everyone! I am going to go with the Party. I just can't swing the Extended version.

Congrats and good luck. The only comment I'd add to everyone else's comments here is I'd heavily consider bringing one of your UDS's with you as well. You may have an easier time with your briskets on it and I bet (in my personal opinion) you get a better smoke ring on it. Plus, I always have at least two fires going at a comp.....just in case. I agree with the others here though -- if you're cooking with only one Backwoods for a KCBS style event you gotta go with the Fatboy. The Competitor would be nice but it's too dang big to cart around if you don't have to.

thaberberger
09-05-2012, 07:01 PM
Oops, I didn't mean to make that sound like the Party was the wrong call. Not my intention -- the Party is a great choice especially if you bring your UDS with you. If only one pit on site, that's when the Fatboy is essential in my opinion.

Don't sweat not having the extended Party for ribs, you can always trim down your slabs. I've never had a problem fitting "2 down's" in the Party anyway.

Teamfour
09-05-2012, 07:27 PM
I will have at least one UDS. Probably for my chicken since I tend to cook that a little hotter.

big brother smoke
09-05-2012, 08:04 PM
I was in your position a few months ago and went with the extended BWS. I have the heavier grates, commercial basket, hear diverter, 180º door and extra slldes.
It is a great comp cooker for ribs, brisket and pork. I am currently using a 22.5 WSM for chicken.

Uncle Buck
09-05-2012, 08:43 PM
We compete with a gator. If you don't have the money for a fat boy or a gator I would go with the extended party which is more than enough to cook a full comp on alone. Big meats go on the night before and the ribs and chicken go on the morning of so there's only a small window of time that all meats are in the smoker at the same time. Plus an extended party will hold a full pan like the gator. Good luck with your decision! No matter the choice backwoods is the way to go!

rolfejr
09-05-2012, 09:00 PM
We use a Party and WSM 22.5

The 22.5 goes 10-14hrs with a brisket and shoulders and still has enough life to crank up to finish chicken.

We are going to modify the charcoal basket to extend the party's cook time.

Very happy with both.

NickyG
09-05-2012, 09:05 PM
When you call and order your party you should ask about this mysterious G2 model that is supposed to be coming out. I have heard a lot of rumors about it, but what I do believe is that it will be able to fit the hotel pans and be cheaper than a fatboy.