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Unread 10-26-2013, 11:51 PM   #1
grillinguy247
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Default WSM or stick burner?

Maybe this is an old question but I don't want to waste money. I'm experienced enough to know that weber is raved about in every way but hey I don't mind (and like to) tend to a fire. I'm not blessed when it comes to a financial situation (Anything 400 and under) so looking for the best bang for my buck when it comes to a stick burner. What say you Oh mighty brethren?

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Unread 10-27-2013, 12:50 AM   #2
JazzyBadger
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In all seriousness I have yet to see a stick burner that I really, really want that's going to cost less than 400 dollars. There are ones that are out there that will 'do the job' but the amount of mods you're gonna be after, and the sort of hassle they'll bring is just not something I have any interest in.

If you're looking forward to tending a fire, then you might enjoy the hassle that comes with one of those stick burners. I myself multitask while I'm smoking, and prefer the set it and forget it aspect of smokers. My money's on the W.S.M. personally.
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Unread 10-27-2013, 01:07 AM   #3
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wsm, if you want to tend the fire in it load it with less coal
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Unread 10-27-2013, 01:08 AM   #4
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barring a CL score on a decent offset, your price range of $400 or less and wanting bang for buck, I'm gonna have to say a 22.5 WSM is gonna be the rig for you.
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Unread 10-27-2013, 07:02 AM   #5
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I agree with the consensus so far. While there are stickburners less that $400 most are made of thin steel or poorly made and you'll end up making a bunch of mods just to get one to cook they way it should.

If you're handy, another option would be a UDS. You can build one for much less than the WSM. But, you'll need some tools and may have to do some tweaking if your design isn't right the first time.
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Unread 10-27-2013, 07:20 AM   #6
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I agree with everyone else, for your budget go with the 22.5 WSM. Any stick burner your going to pick up for $400 is not worth the hassle in my opinion. Get the WSM and you will enjoy many days of great "Q" while your saving up for a stick burner you can truly be happy with.
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Unread 10-27-2013, 07:23 AM   #7
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If you want a stick burner, consider for $429 at Lowes an OK Joe

I have one and could not be happier with it

its plenty thick enough to hold heat well.

I have 2 set and forget vertical charcoal pits but would much rather use the stickburner

Academy sports has some nice cookers too I understand if you have s store by you, I do not
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Unread 10-27-2013, 07:39 AM   #8
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Do you have Weber kettle? You can smoke on one of those but it typically takes a little more work (*) and has less capacity than the WSM (one grate vs. two.) They're generally available on Craigslist for a fraction of your budget and that gets you in the game. Then you can watch CL for an offset at a price that fits your budget if that's the way you really want to go.

A UDS is also an excellent choice if you don't mind a little tinkering and work to get your smoker up and running. I have no direct experience but I suppose when properly configured, it would provide an experience similar to a WSM.

Good luck with your choice!


(*) You can use a charcoal basket and add charcoal about as often as you would add wood in an offset. If you use the 'snake method' the need to tend drops to what you do with a WS which tends to be get it set and leave it alone for hours as it just cruises along.
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Unread 10-27-2013, 07:44 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ron_L View Post
I agree with the consensus so far. While there are stickburners less that $400 most are made of thin steel or poorly made and you'll end up making a bunch of mods just to get one to cook they way it should.

If you're handy, another option would be a UDS. You can build one for much less than the WSM. But, you'll need some tools and may have to do some tweaking if your design isn't right the first time.

Exactly what I was thinking.


Orrrrrr....you could ask Ron to release some of his fine fine wares! I swear pickle, your list of cookers looks like my final wish that I'm slowly checking off minus a jambo smoker and a lonestar grills vertical! Very nice tastes in smokers and grills sir!
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Unread 10-27-2013, 07:44 AM   #10
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Since you say you like to tend the fire, I am going to suggest you look at the offsets at Academy and decide if you can stretch your budget just a little bit. If you are really set on <$400 though, I say go with the WSM over a COS or you start scouring CL for an offset. If you do go with a big box offset (like the Academy stuff), be aware the the quality can vary pretty widely from unit to unit. Don't be afraid to be picky about the welds and seals.
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Unread 10-27-2013, 08:29 AM   #11
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I would also agree for $400 your best bet is looking for a good used stick burner [ if thats what your set on ] But your not going to go wrong with a WSM.
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Unread 10-27-2013, 08:51 AM   #12
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I agree with the other comments and say go with the WSM.
I assume your first priority is turning out good Q and the WSM
will offer you more consistency which will help you achieve this goal.
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Unread 10-27-2013, 09:06 AM   #13
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Setting aside that you can't get a quality stick burner for under 400...look at flavor. All wood burners produce great flavor and cooking directly over a fire like a UDS (no water pan or clay pot) produces great flavor...

I like that flavor of cooking over fire letting the drippings go down to the coals and the efficiency to do overnight cooks so i went the UDS route.
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Unread 10-27-2013, 09:19 AM   #14
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WSM for sure...
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Unread 10-27-2013, 09:23 AM   #15
grillinguy247
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sliding_billy View Post
Since you say you like to tend the fire, I am going to suggest you look at the offsets at Academy and decide if you can stretch your budget just a little bit. If you are really set on <$400 though, I say go with the WSM over a COS or you start scouring CL for an offset. If you do go with a big box offset (like the Academy stuff), be aware the the quality can vary pretty widely from unit to unit. Don't be afraid to be picky about the welds and seals.
I do to but I'm here in southern California and there's no Academy here. Thanks for the suggestion
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