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Q-talk *ON TOPIC ONLY* QUALITY ON TOPIC discussion of Backyard BBQ, grilling, Equipment and just outdoor cookin' in general, hints, tips, tricks & techniques, success, failures... but stay on topic. And watch for that hijacking.


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Unread 12-29-2012, 10:24 AM   #1
johnnysmoke
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Default Good Smoker for around 300

are there any good offset smkers for around 300 bucks?
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Unread 12-29-2012, 10:39 AM   #2
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Weber Smokey Mountain.

edit: Yup, just read the title only.
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Unread 12-29-2012, 10:56 AM   #3
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You may find an offset for $300 but a good one is less probable. Everyone has a different opinion of good though. For an offset, quality is in in large part in relation to quantity of steel... and steel costs $$.

try craigstlist too. sometimes you will find a great deal on a used pit.
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Unread 12-29-2012, 11:00 AM   #4
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Yes & No If you don't mind putting in a little work to make it cook right YES If not No. At that price point you going to get thin metal not much of an issue in my neck of the woods but in Ct they are fuel hogs in cold weather. That being said Two come to mind CharGriller Outlaw and Old Country, They both need a few mods to regulate the temps and eliminate hot spots and seal up air leaks.
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Unread 12-29-2012, 11:02 AM   #5
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If you want something that you can just go out to the local Lowes, Home Depot, Menards or similar stores the Weber WSM and the Chargriller Outlaw with firebox are both good options.

It just depends on what kind of setup you want to use. While chargriller isnt a top of the line offset Ive used a buddies several times and made some good que with it. Like the above comment states the cheaper cookers have thinner metal and more air leaks which equals more work on your part to keep temp. The Weber from what little experience I have with it hold heat quite well.
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Unread 12-29-2012, 11:12 AM   #6
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Build an Ugly Drum and you will be happy forever.
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Unread 12-29-2012, 11:31 AM   #7
johnnysmoke
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Default I see Your Points

Is the longhorne from homedepo worth 500?
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Unread 12-29-2012, 11:59 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by johnnysmoke View Post
Is the longhorne from homedepo worth 500?
My opinion - no. Its out of sheet steel, bolted together and overpriced.
(Bolted construction will result to airgaps and rust down the road - a bad combination.)

As pointed out - finding an affordable, well-made, and reliable offset does not exist in that price range.
Better quality normally are welded together with thicker steel at a much higher price.

Buying a 22.5" WSM for 400 will provide nearly the same space, better efficiency, longer burning, and provide better possibilities right out of the box.


[FYI: The above advice is from a heavy-metel offset guy - who also plays with a WSM for his backyard needs]
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Unread 12-29-2012, 11:59 AM   #9
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Your not going to beat a Weber Smokey Mountain. IMHO its the best bang for the buck in that price range
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Unread 12-29-2012, 12:09 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BBQ Bandit View Post
Buying a 22.5" WSM for 400 will provide nearly the same space, better efficiency, longer burning, and provide b etter possibilities right out of the box.
+1 - to be honest the $125 charbroil offset from home depot is fine with some mods made to her, yes it is thin, yes it leaks like crazy, yes it is not efficient but its cheap and easy to use and learn for a new member of the smoking community. i started with one and i still have it today (although its modified slightly), if you close all air vents and leave stack open 1/4" her airbox leaks enough through vents and clean out door to burn for about 6 hours on 8+/- lbs of lump at 225 degrees with a water pan (cheap loaf pan from walmart filled with water) with ambient temp around 60-70 degrees. that being said im doing a smoke tomorrow of 9 racks of baby backs (with rib rack) in 25-30 degree temps in the snow she with only go about 3.5-4 hours on 8lbs of lump with the air vent open 1/4" inch to allow more a flow thus burning hotter to compensate for lower ambient temp, i think i said enough, im sure whatever you decide it will be great for you and once you learn her the next begging on knee questions for the wife will be can you get a bigger one!

all that said the WSM is the best small smoker out there for the $
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Unread 12-29-2012, 12:11 PM   #11
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22.5" wsm
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Unread 12-29-2012, 12:21 PM   #12
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+x WSM - popped my BBQ cherry on it. I couldn't have asked for a better smoker. Of course, if you're like me, afterwards you will want MORE, but it is incredibly capable and easy to manage.
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Unread 12-29-2012, 01:14 PM   #13
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I have a cheap offset Brinkman - thicker steel than they use now even - I wish I would've bought a WSM back then instead. I'd have several more years of making "good" Q consistently if I had. Not that you can't on the cheaper offsets, it's just harder and more work.

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Unread 12-29-2012, 01:42 PM   #14
Bob in St. Louis
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I like to chime in once more, if I may......

--in my opinion--

A guy that knows what he's doing can make great food on cheap equipment.
A guy that doesn't, needs better equipment to help him make "good" food...or at least help him to not screw it up.

Is that a fair statement?
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Unread 12-29-2012, 02:06 PM   #15
JPS11
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I noticed this Brinkman Trailmaster Limited offset at Home Depot today for $299. It was up on a shelf so I couldn't get a good look at it but it seems more heavy duty than most cheap offsets. Weighs 170 lbs. Says welded construction and the reviews are pretty good.

http://www.homedepot.com/buy/brinkma...l#.UN9LKqxtVSQ
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