PDA

View Full Version : Char-Griller Akorn - Is it the BGE killer?


Cabin Fever
06-08-2012, 02:25 PM
Since the Akorn has been out for a good while now and quite a few members here own one, is it still looked at as the BGE killer that some originally thought it would be? I guess a better and more fair term though would be "ceramic kamado killer" since the Akorn isn't ceramic.

I saw one at my local Gander Mountain earlier this year and it had that cheap wobbly effect that Char-Grillers have so I didn't give it a second thought. After reading reviews about the unit it turns out that's how most of the floor models are put together and it's actually pretty well made if you do it yourself.

With that said, I can't seem to find a single negative review about the Akorn. It turns out that most stores that carry them are even having a hard time keeping enough in stock. Now, I know this is gonna sound a little off, but is there any reason to spend the extra cash on a large style ceramic cooker when it sounds like the Akorn performs just as well?

I'm just looking for opinions so please try not to shoot me. :pray:

deguerre
06-08-2012, 02:39 PM
Lowes here had them at 50 dollars off over Memorial Day weekend. I'm hoping for another good sale around Labor day. A BGE will always be out of my price range and level of clumsiness, but I do like this Akorn.

TTNuge
06-08-2012, 02:41 PM
Gander Mountain here in EP, MN has them right now for $50 off. The way I look at it compared to the ceramics is that even if it's just 75% of a cooker in comparison it's about 25% of the price so that makes it a pretty darn good deal.

MemphisTrey
06-08-2012, 02:42 PM
I am going to pull the trigger on one of these is a few months. My Cousin is a manager @ Lowes, and i can get one heck of a deal on it

certified106
06-08-2012, 02:54 PM
I don't think they are a BGE killer, I mean don't get me wrong I love mine but if I would have had the money I would have gotten a BGE. The quality of the egg is definitely better than the Chargriller Kamado but for what the BGE costs it's out of my price range for a bit. It really just depends on what you are looking for and what your price range is but as for me I am happy with my Chargriller Kamado for now considering the price of the unit.

shirknwrk
06-08-2012, 02:59 PM
You won't be able to join the Cult of the Green Egg. You will spend all the money you save on meat. You will get fat. Other than that... I think you're right about the effect on Egg sales. There will always be some who are willing to pay extra for ceramic's thermal mass and weather resistance (and beauty, in the case of the Komodo Kamado) but I think that most new customers will choose the less expensive option. The number of Bretheren who have bought the Acorn demonstrates that fact. If Weber builds an insulated Kamado (There's a rumor)with the quality of their other products... and their established dealer network, people would probably be willing to pay a hundred or two more than the Acorn.

capnrob97
06-08-2012, 03:04 PM
I have one I really like it.

If you have Winn Dixie grocery stores in your area, they have them for $259.

newpower
06-08-2012, 03:06 PM
I have had mine for a couple of months. Did a few mods for it mostly to help seal it up. I have cooked steaks, chicken, pizza, butts, ribs. It is some of the best food I have had off the grill. A lot of why it is so good is I have been hanging around here and learning a ton. I cannot see where a ceramic could do a better job. Don't hit me!! they may last longer but I'm not sure about that either. Some of the rack systems I have seen for the ceramics look like a lot of trouble as well. I'm happy so far.

kennyd0118
06-08-2012, 03:54 PM
I don't think so. I have a BGE and I spent a lot of time researching it. (I'm an engineer, I have issues :wacko: ) I love that my BGE worked great out of the box and I didn't have to mod it or seal it or what ever, I love the way it looks in the yard, the ceramic is a great insulator so all night smokes in the New England Winter are no problem and there are a ton of accessories for it. At $800 for the egg, plate setter, 2 bags of BGE lump and an ash tool, the price isn't too bad either. Plus it will last a lifetime or two.
I am probably their target consumer. I make a good enough living where I can buy what I want and don't mind paying for quality and convenience.

That said, I think the acorn sounds great and I'd love to see one. I'm sure it can cook a great product.
-Kenny

Boshizzle
06-08-2012, 04:03 PM
Lowes here had them at 50 dollars off over Memorial Day weekend. I'm hoping for another good sale around Labor day. A BGE will always be out of my price range and level of clumsiness, but I do like this Akorn.

Wish I knew that. I bought a couple for gifts. That's a great price for that cooker.

Oh, nope it's not a BGE killer. It isn't Bubba/Big Steel/Charbroil Keg killer either.

bigabyte
06-08-2012, 04:05 PM
I don't think they are going to be BGE killers any more than Lang's became Klose killers.

That said though, I would probably get an Akorn before getting a BGE, simply based on price point. If it had problems, I could probably afford another one and still save money.

Dylan's Dad
06-08-2012, 04:07 PM
I've never smoked on an egg but I know that my Akorn will sit on a temperature and stay there, and that's half the battle. Plus, it saves on lump due to how it snuffs itself out when I'm done cooking. I've done beef ribs, brisket, 2 shoulders, babybacks, tri-tip and a couple steaks on different days and I am still using the initial 20 lb bag of lump.

I never got that out of my UDS. That is probably the market that will suffer some. For the price, unless you want to mess with building a UDS just to say you've done it, an Akorn is the way to go. I think it will open up a whole new group of 1st time smokers. Even with my family and friends the price point is now very reasonable to join the fun.

Jaskew82
06-08-2012, 04:36 PM
It will not be a BGE killer. BGE is so successful because its an amazing product using a great heat conductor (ceramic) supported by great customer service. Not to mention the years of brand loyalty built up.

Both of these cookers will have their places in the market.

P.S
I paid $275 for my Large BGE in mint condition with nest, an electric lighter and a full bag of lump. They can be gotten very inexpensively if you watch craigslist or use craiglist notify - just be patient and vigilant.

cbpeck
06-08-2012, 05:02 PM
...If Weber builds an insulated Kamado (There's a rumor)with the quality of their other products... and their established dealer network, people would probably be willing to pay a hundred or two more than the Acorn.

:shock: Really?!? I had no idea, but if you're right I'd be one of those guys.

AugustusRooster
06-08-2012, 05:45 PM
That's the beauty of capitalism. A company (in this case BGE) brings a new idea to the market and commands a premium price-until someone builds a better mousetrap, or an equivalent mousetrap at a much lower price point.

BGE will probably always have its place, but it may find its margins squeezed by competitors like the Akorn. And if a company like Weber, with its brand recognition, enters the fray then BGE's margins will be further pressured.

And yes, the Akorn is a helluva good rig.

Chef Jim
06-08-2012, 05:55 PM
IMO the BGE is not better lookin than the char Griller. I have not done any mods and I still like it. That said I should go back and see what mods I should do on it.

And I have looked at some in other stores and some look like plain ole crap so check out other stores if it don't look right.

f308gt4
06-08-2012, 05:55 PM
Hopefully not a BGE killer, but a BGE improver.

I.e.- When Acura introduced the NSX to the sports car market. It didn't kill Ferrari, but forced Ferrari to really improve the quality of their cars.

With more competition, BGE will need to make improvements, perhaps adjust pricing, to compete. In the end, it will be better for us, hopefully.

Smoothsmoke
06-08-2012, 06:40 PM
Since we're comparing brands. I'd take the Primo XL over all of em.

HogFan
06-08-2012, 09:55 PM
I've never owned a BGE so please excuse my ignorance. Can they be cracked by a thrown rock from a lawnmower? Can they still be used after being cracked?

RAZORBACK JIM
06-08-2012, 10:36 PM
They are a great little grill and do a great job...at the price...you can't beat it!!!!

thirdeye
06-08-2012, 10:39 PM
The kamado design is hundreds of years old. A friend from high school has one of the early clay imports and it's still in use (for low-n-slo cooks only). Ceramic construction was a vast improvement over the clay ones, and there are many ceramic brands to choose from. The Keg and Chargriller have kept the proven design, just went another option for material.

I do ike the guarantee that comes with most ceramic cookers and there is a certain following and confidence that comes with them too. That said, Even though I'm a 9 or 10 year Egg user, I would like to actually cook on one of the metal skin kamados before saying anything bad about them.

I know two guys that are looking close at them.

RedPig
06-08-2012, 11:42 PM
I have not seen the akorn, but I have over 10 years of bbq bliss with my BGE. It's pricey, but consider the $$ I've saved over that time span because of its efficiency. The customer service is great and it has a lifetime warranty to the original purchaser. The firebox bowl insert on mine cracked and they sent me a new one, no prob, just paid shipping. They have an excellent egghead forum and a legion of dedicated eggheads. Can't see anything 'killing' the BGE. So, if you consider the savings, warranty, year round all weather cooking you will enjoy and just the overall quality of the egg, hands down the BGE wins IMO. I'm not speaking ill of bubba kegs, akorns or other similar kamado style cookers, to each his own, but I am saying I would not consider buying anything other than a Green Egg, regardless of price. It pretty much does it all.

Hankdad1
06-09-2012, 12:09 AM
I've never owned a BGE so please excuse my ignorance. Can they be cracked by a thrown rock from a lawnmower? Can they still be used after being cracked?

I have to laugh at this. Years back I was employed as a delivery driver for a lumber yard. I was carrying a 4x8 piece of plywood into a customers house when a lawntractor in their front yard kicked a large rock into my kidney, dropping me to my hands and knees in pain. The lady of the house ran out saying "OH MY GOD, OH MY GOD,---- IF YOU HADN'T BEEN THERE THAT ROCK WOULD HAVE GONE RIGHT THROUGH MY PICTURE WINDOW, OH MY GOD!"

I doubt that this is a BGE killer. and don't think one is needed. I haven't cooked with a BGE, but as a grill for my wife and I the Akorn has been great. I'm almost ashamed to admit that my beloved Performer has not been used since I got t!he Akorn back in March. The only upgrades I've made is buying a 16" pizza pan for a diffuser and a grate to hold it.

deepsouth
06-09-2012, 02:32 PM
:shock: Really?!? I had no idea, but if you're right I'd be one of those guys.


:blabla::blabla::blah::blah::rolleyes::rolleyes:

cirk
06-09-2012, 04:05 PM
The reason I had no problem shelling out the money for the egg was due to a friend who has had his since the 70s and still cooks on it every week. I saw the akorn grill at Lowes and I don't see it lasting that long.

coastrat
06-09-2012, 04:25 PM
The reason I had no problem shelling out the money for the egg was due to a friend who has had his since the 70s and still cooks on it every week. I saw the akorn grill at Lowes and I don't see it lasting that long.

BGE was established in the mid 90s.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

cookingdude555
06-09-2012, 05:05 PM
BGE was established in the mid 90s.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Nope, 1974:

http://www.biggreenegg.com/about-us/

cirk
06-09-2012, 05:11 PM
What he said :grin:

BBQ Grail
06-09-2012, 05:19 PM
I think Thermapens work better on Big Green Eggs...

I'm interested in getting me one of those Acorns. But it will have to wait until I get a BGE.

deguerre
06-09-2012, 05:50 PM
The reason I had no problem shelling out the money for the egg was due to a friend who has had his since the 70s and still cooks on it every week. I saw the akorn grill at Lowes and I don't see it lasting that long.

Um, the Akorn will last longer at my house. I'd have that Egg shattered within a year I'm thinkin'...:shock::roll:

Larry's met me. He can attest. He saw me trip over NOTHING on a flat, clean, parking lot once...

BBQ Grail
06-09-2012, 06:18 PM
Um, the Akorn will last longer at my house. I'd have that Egg shattered within a year I'm thinkin'...:shock::roll:

Larry's met me. He can attest. He saw me trip over NOTHING on a flat, clean, parking lot once...

And sober too!

Beerbecue
06-09-2012, 08:21 PM
The Chargriller kamado killed my lust for a BGE. I saved big bucks and I think I got a more versatile cooker. I love this thing.
http://i130.photobucket.com/albums/p265/armedgardener/3-12-12014.jpg

toddrod
06-09-2012, 08:44 PM
After doing an all day cook on mine today, I love mine. I sealed up the vent with RTV caulk and it was easy to control the temps after that. I can not wait until I connect my Ique 110 to it.

RedPig
06-09-2012, 11:31 PM
I've seen some posters here that seem concerned about how fragile the BGE is because of the ceramics. They will break of course, but they are durable IMO. As long as they are set up securely to prevent tipping I don't see a problem. They are made really well.

schlickenmeyer
06-09-2012, 11:57 PM
No complaints with mine. No mods. First run was ribs, my first ever. held 225 without a twitch, even if the vent was almost closed down on top. Turned out great.
Did some mac and cheese last weekend, same thing.
Only issues I have had a the same with all of that style, if you let the temps run away, you have a hard time bringing them down.

Fantastic grill. Bought for the cabin to have kinda a cheap all in one solution. Gonna have a heck of a hard time leaving it up there now.

drbbq
06-10-2012, 09:57 AM
Since we're comparing brands. I'd take the Primo XL over all of em.

Wasn't that the first BGE killer? There have been a few but I don't think BGE got the memo.

Braddog
06-10-2012, 10:31 AM
The Chargriller kamado killed my lust for a BGE. I saved big bucks and I think I got a more versatile cooker.

How exactly is it "more versatile"?

hcj3rd
06-11-2012, 03:08 PM
I have had mine for a couple of months now. I just love it. I have only cooked low and slow once on it but it did very well. I have grilled on it about 12-15 times now. If I need to smoke I usually just use my UDS since it has more space. If I want to do 1 pork butt, brisket flat or pork tenderloinsI'd fire up the Acorn. It is just so effecient on fuel and easy to control temps

1FUNVET
06-11-2012, 04:42 PM
Um, the Akorn will last longer at my house. I'd have that Egg shattered within a year I'm thinkin'...:shock::roll:

Larry's met me. He can attest. He saw me trip over NOTHING on a flat, clean, parking lot once...

I've been known to screw up an anvil with a feather :becky:

Cabin Fever
06-11-2012, 05:18 PM
I've really enjoyed reading everyone's opinions thus far on the CGK. I finally stopped by Lowes yesterday to take a look at one in person and I was surprised at the size of the thing. It's pretty big and built better than I thought it would be (or at least built better than any other Char-Griller smoker or grill that I've seen or owned).

The floor model was actually put together pretty well as only one of the bolts in the lid hinge were loose. From the pics I had seen online I hadn't noticed that there's three hooks on both side tables and a little clip to hang the grate remover. Call me easy to please, but I find little things like that to be pretty dang cool on a cooker this cheap.

I've never been a Char-Griller fan, but I think they finally hit it out of the park with the CGK. Also, I no it's not ceramic, but I don't see why it wouldn't last as long as any other cooker as long as it's taken care of. BTW, are there any differences in overall build quality from when they were first released and called the King Griller?

I know that I originally passed on one at Gander Mountain a few months back because it looked like it was gonna fall apart. In hindsight I now realize that it was probably due to the poor rush job of the guy who threw it together. Oh well. I think I'll grab one sooner than later to replace the Weber OTG. :wink:

capnrob97
06-11-2012, 06:51 PM
One thing I noticed on my CGK was I took the metal sleeve insert out (the one the charcoal grate sits in at the very bottom), and the bottom of it had 3 or 4 spots the enamel was missing and starting to rust. I sanded it and hit with some high temp grill paint.

Something to check if you own one, that was the first time I had removed it.

pueblo
06-11-2012, 06:53 PM
Since we're comparing brands. I'd take the Primo XL over all of em.

Why?