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Old 04-05-2013, 01:05 PM   #1
Knows what a fatty is.
Join Date: 03-09-13
Location: Springfield, MO
Default Beginner Smoker for Grandfather - Suggestions?

Hey All,

I was visiting my grandparents for Easter when my grandpa said he had been thinking about trying his hand at smoking. He has some free time on his hands and he's always wanted to try it.

As you can imagine I was pretty elated. He wants a to start out with a cheaper unit then move to something nicer if he ends up liking the hobby.

I'd love to surprise him with a smoker. Can you guys offer some suggestions on a relatively inexpensive smoker that would be great for a beginner? Thanks to my father in-law I started out on a BGE so I don't have much experience with other types of smokers.

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Old 04-05-2013, 01:07 PM   #2
Found some matches.
Join Date: 03-13-13
Location: South Jersey

Define 'inexpensive'. It's a relative term. :)

A UDS, WSM, or the small Traeger are probably the cheapest options... probably in that order too.
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Old 04-05-2013, 01:08 PM   #3
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I think for someone just starting out a Akorn would be great. Very similar to the egg but a lot cheaper. If not that then a wsm (weber smokey mountiam) would be great.
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Old 04-05-2013, 01:16 PM   #4
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I would consider a simple Weber One Touch gold. You can smoke on it and its pretty cheap and convenient. If you want to step it up, get a WSM. They are around $300 and very easy to cook on. I actually find the BGE and other Kamado type cookers have a slightly harder learning curve than the WSM or kettle's.
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Old 04-05-2013, 01:22 PM   #5
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My first smoker was a UDS, couldnt be happier.
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Old 04-05-2013, 01:28 PM   #6
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Location: northern california

WSM are easy to use and produce great results. 18 = $300, 22 = $400.
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Old 04-05-2013, 01:36 PM   #7
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Old 04-05-2013, 01:39 PM   #8
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Join Date: 09-24-12
Location: Sauk City, WI

presumably he's not going to be cooking for large crowds (at least not at first)?

I'd consider building him a mini WSM
Matt...Sauk City, WI...WSM 18.5" (DZ)...WGA (A)...22.5" OTG (DZ)...SJG (AD)
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Old 04-05-2013, 01:47 PM   #9
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18.5" WSM would be my suggestion. Many a wonderful meal has been made on WSM's and at $299, it's hard to beat!
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Old 04-05-2013, 01:49 PM   #10
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Pit Barrel Cooker is having a sale. Free shipping. Akorn amazing quality at a low price. WSM as set and forget as you can get for smoking but honestly I prefer the higher temps in the PBC.
The Mini WSM gets used a lot for 4 hour cooks around here. You have lots of options, best part is whatever you choose, you are right.
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Old 04-05-2013, 02:00 PM   #11
checkrd past
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Join Date: 01-23-13
Location: Anaheim Hills, ca

Make it easy and get an entry level pellet smoker ,Treager ,Green Mountain Grill etc
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Old 04-05-2013, 02:15 PM   #12
El Ropo
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Location: Austin, TX

Define smoking? does he want to cold smoke cheese and meat, or does he want to actually BBQ smoke? Don't want to p off the old man and get him the wrong setup.

^that is my pet peeve, people call 'em smokers, I call 'em BBQs, unless they are strictly cold smokers.
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Old 04-05-2013, 02:38 PM   #13
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Location: New Market, MD

18.5" WSM or a WSM Mini.
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Old 04-05-2013, 02:43 PM   #14
somebody shut me the fark up.
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Join Date: 04-02-07
Location: Warren, Vermont

Speaking as a grandfather I would love it if a grandson wanted to build a smoker for me with me. I vote for a WSM that you both plan and build together.
Jim - Another transplanted Texan

Large and Medium Big Green Eggs , Black 18.5" WSM, Blue Weber Performer - Stainless, Green Weber OTG Kettle , Brinkmann SnP Pro, and a Stainless UDS. One retired Portable Kitchen grill.

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Old 04-05-2013, 02:50 PM   #15
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A Weber Charcoal Grill would be my suggestion for the beginner...
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