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-   -   Smoker Opinions and Options (http://www.bbq-brethren.com/forum/showthread.php?t=192335)

eddiek2000 06-27-2014 08:14 AM

Smoker Opinions and Options
 
I am trying to get into smoking. I had a brinkmann smoker many years ago. I never really had a good understanding of using it and which woods to use. needless to say we didn't use it much and it is long gone.

Fast forward to today and I want to try again. I want to use an electric smoker, but I really hate to drop $500+ on a Smokin-it #3 if this is not going to be something I am going to use semi-often. I like the looks, function, size of the #3. I was all set for the #2, but saw a video and it seemed VERY small.

I was looking at a Bradley, but you don't get a smoke ring. Then I saw the Masterbuilt smoker, but the reviews were really bad. Now I am just trying to figure out what to buy.

Then there is the PID option. I would like to build my own in the future out of a raspberryPi, but that is a thread for another day.

Any advice would be great.

DaveAlvarado 06-27-2014 08:18 AM

Are you married to electric? A WSM and a PartyQ will give you 95% automatic temperature control, and will cost you about $500. Or if you want to go more electric/automatic, consider a pellet fired smoker like a Traeger or Yoder. I think you'll end up with a better final product but still get the ease-of-use you're looking for. Plus a lot more folks use WSMs and pellet cookers than electrics.

ButtBurner 06-27-2014 08:20 AM

I agree with Dave

I was always a electric or gas smoker until I tried wood/charcoal.

Once you learn the basics its real easy and the flavor cant be beat.

sliding_billy 06-27-2014 08:26 AM

Maybe split the difference and go with a pellet pooper.

ICDEDTURKES 06-27-2014 08:30 AM

I agree with above something easy to manage with charcoal like a WSM or Akorn or if you do not want wood or charcoal than gas..

oldbill 06-27-2014 08:57 AM

Come to the dark side bro, get a stick burner and learn to make the best Q on the planet! It ain't EASY but once you get started you'll be hooked.:wink:

thesemicullen 06-27-2014 08:58 AM

Another vote for a WSM. I've been using mine for almost a decade with no temp controllers. It's about as set and forget as you can get using charcoal/wood.

sliding_billy 06-27-2014 09:00 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by oldbill (Post 2971457)
Come to the dark side bro, get a stick burner and learn to make the best Q on the planet! It ain't EASY but once you get started you'll be hooked.:wink:

Nice. Even I wouldn't try talking someone looking at an electric into using a stick burner (even though it is my weapon of choice). :wink:

Lake Dogs 06-27-2014 09:05 AM

I agree with oldbill, BUT honestly the elcheapo offset smokers are probably the toughest to learn fire (and subsequently smoke) control on, to the point that I think they're a waste of money, time, and effort. I'm thinking either the pellet pooper or a Weber Smokey Mountain would serve you best; my preference being the WSM.

This from a guy with 2 reverse flow smokers, the best is my Lang 84 that if I ever sell it, it will be to get another one.

eddiek2000 06-27-2014 09:09 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by DaveAlvarado (Post 2971402)
Are you married to electric? A WSM and a PartyQ will give you 95% automatic temperature control, and will cost you about $500. Or if you want to go more electric/automatic, consider a pellet fired smoker like a Traeger or Yoder. I think you'll end up with a better final product but still get the ease-of-use you're looking for. Plus a lot more folks use WSMs and pellet cookers than electrics.

As far as the WSM, I guess it could be an option. I was really trying to be pretty much set and forget, hence the ease of electric.

Had to look the PartyQ up. Guess I could get the raspberrypi to handle it. I think I saw where you have to add some pipe and ball valves to the bottom to use the PQ?

Shagdog 06-27-2014 09:09 AM

Since no one has said it yet (and I'm shocked they haven't)

Build a UDS :thumb:

sknabnoj 06-27-2014 09:13 AM

I have to agree with the above... I started with a masterbuilt electric smoker. It produced what I thought was some great Q. Needless to say, once I tasted ribs off a UDS I never went back. Sold my masterbuilt and built a UDS and the rest is history. I think that people get caught up with the automation but, you can get that same result with not a lot of effort on a WSM, UDS or something like that. Also, the pellet smoker isn't a half bad idea, I just don't know if you'll get one that you'll be happy with as far as capacity with a $500 price range.

sknabnoj 06-27-2014 09:13 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Shagdog (Post 2971472)
Since no one has said it yet (and I'm shocked they haven't)

Build a UDS :thumb:

YOU BEAT ME TO IT!!! :mrgreen:

eddiek2000 06-27-2014 09:14 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Shagdog (Post 2971472)
Since no one has said it yet (and I'm shocked they haven't)

Build a UDS :thumb:


Not at the moment. I don't need another project. It doesn't seem hard, but I don't have the time.

eddiek2000 06-27-2014 09:15 AM

Damn this place is busy. I really didn't expect so much traffic so quickly.


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