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Unread 02-27-2010, 07:18 PM   #1
tntjz3
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Default WSM vs. UDS

I have made a UDS, and I do not like it. I read alot of folks lovin thier WSM. (UDS also) But my question is: isnt the UDS the same idea as the WSM, minus the water pan? I like the way the UDS holds the heat, but the flavor just sux to me. I have an offset sitck burner I love, but it takes a bit of baby sitting. Before I shell out the cash for a WSM, I would like to hear from someone who owns both. Would the WSM be just like the uds, flavor wise? Thanks.
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Unread 02-27-2010, 07:20 PM   #2
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Define "but the flavor just sux to me"

Too smokey?

Not smokey enough?
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Unread 02-27-2010, 07:27 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tntjz3 View Post
I have made a UDS, and I do not like it. I read alot of folks lovin thier WSM. (UDS also) But my question is: isnt the UDS the same idea as the WSM, minus the water pan? I like the way the UDS holds the heat, but the flavor just sux to me. I have an offset sitck burner I love, but it takes a bit of baby sitting. Before I shell out the cash for a WSM, I would like to hear from someone who owns both. Would the WSM be just like the uds, flavor wise? Thanks.
My first problem was too much wood with the UDS. I have since adjusted it to ounces of wood(roughly 12-14 ounces per basic rib smoke) and usually only add wood every two hours or so. Ever since i did this my UDS has made me slow down from building my stumps clone(its still going to happen, but now on the back burner). Also, i just picked up a Stoker and its night and day cooking. Now i have constant temps vs the extreme flare ups i used to have.

Stoker i think is the best invention for any smoker(that is just me), and i love electronics
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Unread 02-27-2010, 07:29 PM   #4
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I have both and the flavors I get from each are different. However, your original post doesn't give me enough information about what you don't like about the UDS to give you any valid information.
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Unread 02-27-2010, 07:41 PM   #5
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I smoked 2 pork shoulders, 1 on the UDS, and 1 on the Offset. I had people over and did a taste test, all but 1 picked the Offset (out of 20). To me the UDS doesnt make the meat as tender or as tasty as the Offset. So, who owns both (WSM & UDS) and can compare the 2?
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Unread 02-27-2010, 07:48 PM   #6
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I'm ducking as I post, but ever consider a pellet pooper? Burn 100% wood, no charcoal, wood chunks, etc, and the best temp control in the business.
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Unread 02-27-2010, 07:49 PM   #7
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When I first smoked on the drum, it sucked. Honestly, I almost gave up. Tasted like charcoal and way too much work. Problem is, you have to learn to use it. Once you do, it'll put out Q that rivals anything else.

You gotta believe. Not a big stretch seeing how many of us here swear by it. If you need help, that's fine. There are a lot of little things that make a HUGE difference in quality.

WSM is a quality product, but many don't use the water pan. Somewhat of a learning curve there too. Just gotta pick a cooker and learn to use it right. Once you learn to use your drum, it practically runs itself. I can easily do overnight cooks up to 18-20 hours, and have outstanding results. Super fuel efficient and fun to cook on.

Good luck, and don't give up!
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Unread 02-27-2010, 07:55 PM   #8
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Today I ate for the first time from somebody else's smoker,it was a BGE.
I ate turkey,it was nice n moist....something I probably could accomplish on my UDS as well....just saying.

BTW...if your food tasted like charcoal you should consider looking for a better brand.
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Unread 02-27-2010, 07:57 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tntjz3 View Post
I smoked 2 pork shoulders, 1 on the UDS, and 1 on the Offset. I had people over and did a taste test, all but 1 picked the Offset (out of 20). To me the UDS doesnt make the meat as tender or as tasty as the Offset. So, who owns both (WSM & UDS) and can compare the 2?
Please don't think I'm being smart, but it's never the smoker it's always the cook.

I use both and I use both quite often. There is absolutely no difference in tenderness between the UDS and WSM.

It appears to be, based on very limited information, that you just need to use the UDS more. I suspect you will face the same frustration on a WSM as the UDS if you are not willing to cook until you learn the cooker and get it seasoned like it needs to be.

Just for the record I had an offset for years and hated it...

(And let me add there is was never any difference in tenderness between my offset and my UDS or my WSM. If you cook it correctly it's tender.)
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Unread 02-27-2010, 08:13 PM   #10
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I have three UDS cookers and I have cooked several times on a WSM. The UDS like all cookers has a learning curve. In a UDS the fat will render down directly on the coals and give you that old school Carolina style type of pit flavor. Donnie T once refereed to it as a "grease fog". That may be a flavor profile you don't care for.

A WSM is a water cooker and will not produce the same results as the fat is going into the water pan rather than directly on the coals. Both are great cookers as I am sure your stick burner is. I would suggest giving it a bit more time but if it is not what you like that's OK.

I like the UDS because of the long burn time. It just holds more charcoal than a WSM does. All three of mine cook different. It was just took time to learn the quirks of each one.

A UDS is not my preferred rib cooker as the direct heat puts too much color on the ribs. As far as are brisket, butts and chicken I love them. A UDS is one heck of a chicken cooker. That's where that old school flavor profile really stands out to me. The product has so much moisture that my UDS cookers have moisture running down the out side under the lid so I don't see the water pan as a requirement.

IMHO: UDS Pros:

Long burn time
Decent cooking space
Great flavor
Can run steady for a long period of time if you pay attention
Cheap and fun to make

UDS Cons:

A huge PITA to clean
Can flare up
Temps can run wild if not attended to (make small adjustments)

WSM Pros:

Not that expensive (cost effective)
Water pan deflects direct heat
Decent cooking space
Very portable and easy to clean

WSM Cons:

Multi part construction
Uses a water pan
Bottom door can fall off when you are asleep
Does not have a very large fuel basket area

They are both proven cookers and both have their fan base. See if you can find someone with a WSM and cook on it. If not for the relatively small price tag you can't go wrong with one.

Again just MHO. YMMV.
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Unread 02-27-2010, 08:14 PM   #11
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I have to agree with Larry.
I've been using the UDS for two years now and my offset just sits there.

I feel that I get a much better tasting product without all the hassle of tending the fire
every hour or so. There is a learning curve with any smoker but, that curve is shorter with a UDS.

Give it a chance, you won't be sorry.

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Unread 02-27-2010, 08:21 PM   #12
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One more thing,

I light my UDS (Minnion method) at least an hour before I put the product on. I only use a few chucks of wood even for very long cooks. I want thin blue smoke before I put on product. Makes a huge difference.

Nothing worse than that bitter astray taste from a young fire and too much smoke. I also have better taste results using lump charcoal.
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Unread 02-27-2010, 09:05 PM   #13
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If you took out the water pan (which I fill with sand) of a WSM, you would basically have a UDS. It could very well be that you just don't like the taste of drippings falling on the hot coals without a diffuser.
You might want to dry some sort of diffuser on your UDS and see if that is the issue. There are so many variables in BBQ that trying to eliminate the "flavor just sucks" result can be difficult.
The only advice I can give is to remove one variable at a time. If you change charcoal, change your wood, add a diffuser, change your temps, change your rub/brine/sauce, etc. next time and it comes out great, you'll have no idea which change resulted in a product you liked. I'd start with a diffuser of some sort and eliminate that variable first.
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Unread 02-27-2010, 09:20 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tntjz3 View Post
I have made a UDS, and I do not like it. I read alot of folks lovin their WSM. (UDS also) But my question is: isn't the UDS the same idea as the WSM, minus the water pan? I like the way the UDS holds the heat, but the flavor just sux to me. I have an offset stick burner I love, but it takes a bit of baby sitting. Before I shell out the cash for a WSM, I would like to hear from someone who owns both. Would the WSM be just like the uds, flavor wise? Thanks.
Quote:
Originally Posted by tntjz3 View Post
I smoked 2 pork shoulders, 1 on the UDS, and 1 on the Offset. I had people over and did a taste test, all but 1 picked the Offset (out of 20). To me the UDS doesn't make the meat as tender or as tasty as the Offset. So, who owns both (WSM & UDS) and can compare the 2?
I own both and can honestly tell you there is NO DIFFERENCE in the taste from both...BUT...I use a drip pan/heat shield above the charcoal basket in my UDS. I too do not care for the taste given off by the meat dripping on the coals. Do yourself a favor and invest in a large flower pot bottom from Home Depot to use as a drip pan/heat shield before giving up on your drum. Just be sure to foil it before smokin'...

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Unread 02-27-2010, 09:51 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by JD McGee View Post
I own both and can honestly tell you there is NO DIFFERENCE in the taste from both...BUT...I use a drip pan/heat shield above the charcoal basket in my UDS. I too do not care for the taste given off by the meat dripping on the coals. Do yourself a favor and invest in a large flower pot bottom from Home Depot to use as a drip pan/heat shield before giving up on your drum. Just be sure to foil it before smokin'...

How far up from the bottom of the drum do you have that? Thanks for all the input.
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