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-   -   electric smoker at Sam's (http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/showthread.php?t=159607)

kik_start 04-27-2013 10:08 AM

electric smoker at Sam's
 
Does anyone have one? How do you like it?
please don't flame....

I own a smokey joe, UDS with cyber-Q, performer and a Ranch Kettle

Just want opinions on one for a friend that wants one.... I have never owned an electric but always wanted to try one.

RevZiLLa 04-27-2013 10:25 AM

I have had charcoal and electric ECBs (el cheapo brinkman) and they both made some mighty fine Q. A friend in North Dakota wanted to get a smoker and I advised him to get something insulated because of the VERY cold temperatures up there. He got a MBES (master built electric smoker) and is very proud of his Q. He has had no problems with temperatures even in the winter at -30 degrees.

j20832 04-27-2013 10:35 AM

If it's the same one I saw last week, it was a masterbuilt 40". I have the barebones model ($175) that I got 4 years ago as my "starter" smoker before I had any idea what I was doing. The advantages are that this smoker is thermostatically controlled so on a long smoke you can get some sleep, works very well for low-temp, minimal smoking (like chipotles, salmon, etc.) The model on sale now also has a built in meat thermometer with RF remote, nice touches.

The downside is that you don't get a clean burning fire, but a smoldering one, so the smoke flavor can be on the harsh side. Also seems like you are paying a lot for a glass window that I can't see remaining clear for very long (short term-steam/smoke, long term-residue).

My advice would be to have your friend get something inexpensive off of CL and start with that. Maybe a COS or a OTG and go from there. For the same price as that electric you are in the price range of a WSM 18" which, if he really gets into BBQ, will be much more useful in the long run.

j20832 04-27-2013 10:38 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by RevZiLLa (Post 2462083)
I have had charcoal and electric ECBs (el cheapo brinkman) and they both made some mighty fine Q. A friend in North Dakota wanted to get a smoker and I advised him to get something insulated because of the VERY cold temperatures up there. He got a MBES (master built electric smoker) and is very proud of his Q. He has had no problems with temperatures even in the winter at -30 degrees.

I guess YMMV, mine gives an error message if the temp is below 40 and won't fire up. In order to get around it, I have to heat the cabinet up with a blowtorch or heat gun for a few minutes in order to trick the internal thermostat. Kind of a hassle, not even sure why it is built that way, maybe they have since changed that (hopefully).

FWIW, I was very happy with the Q coming off mine until I got a COS and smoked with a clean fire, big difference!

kik_start 04-27-2013 10:39 AM

great advise!

Makes perfect sense about the smoke/ smolder

thanks!

BB-Kuhn 04-27-2013 11:33 AM

I have owned and used the heck out of a master built digital smokehouse (all black, no dumb window).

For the backyard cook, it's pretty great. Easy to get steady and consistent cooks for as long as you want, food tastes good, wood and smoke control is up to you, separate from cooking so you can control flavor easily...

BUT, I will admit that there are downsides. Flavor is not as good overall, as charcoal or wood. It's really good but not the best. And you will barely ever see anything do more than resemble a smoke ring with consistency, if that matters to you.

I use mine mostly for long cooks; brisket and shoulder, etc. leaving my charcoal for ribs, chicken, fatties, etc.

I wouldn't get rid of mine though. There's plenty of uses - they're great for cold(ish) smoking fish and cheese as well.

Soonerman71 04-27-2013 12:22 PM

I have a Masterbuilt 30" Electric Smokehouse, and my dad has the 40" model from Sam's. First off, if I had to choose I would definitely go for the 40" model. The extra space makes a huge difference. (I have used both). I didn't have a choice as the old man gave me the one I have. As compared to my UDS, the flavor does differ but the electric does a pretty good job. Everything I have done in it requires babysitting for the first 1-2 hours to add wood chips, but then it is "set and forget" till the end. I have done ribs, briskets, ABTs and a turkey in it and I have had zero complaints from anyone that was eating from it. UDS is pretty much "set and forget" but the ease of setting a thermometer is pretty sweet. I have found that the thermostat and the actual temp is a little different but i just drop a probe down the exhaust and monitor that. Bottom line: I prefer the real fire and wood smoke, but you can crank out some pretty good Q in an electric smoker.


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