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Thread: Smokers

  1. #1
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    Anybody smoke meat?

    I'm using a weber normal grill at the moment but thinking about an upgrade for smoking - I've done ribs mostly but look forward to trying other cuts.

    What do you guys have or have you used, and what do you recommend?


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  2. #2
    Pro a.hoglen's Avatar
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    Guys at work for quick and easy set up use treagers with the screw driven wood pellet thing.

    I've got a charcoal/gas grill with a smoke box but to be honest I prefer the cheap kettle style smokers.

    My father uses an electric smoker from lowes. He cooks everything in it.

  3. #3
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    Electric just doesn't seem as cool to me. Not sure though.

  4. #4
    Pro dmitchell's Avatar
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    We do fish primarily but we've done prime rib, ribs, turkey etc. Back in the day, I built a big 2'x2'x6' smoker worked great. We currently have a Bradley and it works well but it's pretty beat up, we may build a new one soon. My wife actually wants a little chief for fish, if you get a little chief be sure and keep the original box to cover it while you are using it.

  5. #5

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    I've got a 22.5" Weber Smokey Mountain and I've been really happy with it.

  6. #6
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    Smoked ribs today on the normal weber charcoal grill, turned out good but I keep thinking the temp would be much easier to control on a dedicated smoker. Is that true?

  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by thechickencow View Post
    I keep thinking the temp would be much easier to control on a dedicated smoker. Is that true?
    Yes it seems to be. And then I got a temperature controller and it is idiot simple. Just make sure you have enough fuel in, let it stabilize for a half hour or so at startup (actually, I always ended up doing this when I played with the temp manually anyway) and it takes care of itself.

  8. #8

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    I used to smoke ribs, pork butts, and brisket on my Weber kettle and controlling the temp was a nightmare. With the Weber Smokey Mountain you fire it up and you are good to go for 12-14 hours at a consistent temp. I'm using a Maverick digital thermometer but thanks to the link Andy just posted, I'm going to be out $129 soon.

    Also, look into the Minion Method, that's how I light my smoker and I've never had problem keeping a consistent temp.

  9. #9
    Pro a.hoglen's Avatar
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    I also forgot to add that my dad also had a BGE that I love to use. I'm having it willed to me since he'll prob be dead before I get my grubby paws on it. I would buy my own but I have a hard time justifying spending the $$ on something when I really don't have the time to dedicate to cooking like that.

  10. #10
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    I guess I'm learning towards a Weber Smokey Mountain or if I decide to go big a BGE or Kamodo Joe or something like that.

    That digital controller looks awesome and would sure make it easier if I am on kid watching duty or for really long burn times.

    The minion method looks sweet too.

    I did my ribs and they turned out well yesterday, however when I added the meat my temp dropped (coincided with rain and a wind that was blowing all day dying down), then it was getting it back up to temp without getting too hot, then controlling from there. I have a hard time keeping it 200-225 or so and not fluctuating up/down with the limited venting of the normal grill.

  11. #11
    tbert is as tbert does tbert's Avatar
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    No.



    Yes.
    Stupidity angers me.
    If it weren't for the last minute, nothing would get done.
    NSOP snapshooter

  12. #12
    Worn out shutter danm's Avatar
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    i got myself a BGE recently. love it. is it worth the cost? probably not, but it makes me happy.

    relatively easy to control temps, i'm still getting the hang of getting it locked in where i want for long periods. but i am loving everything i cook on it.
    Quote Originally Posted by tbert View Post
    It's not the thrill of the shoot....It's the thrill of the chaise.
    Dan's Flickr

  13. #13

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    Quote Originally Posted by brian1971 View Post
    Also, look into the Minion Method, that's how I light my smoker and I've never had problem keeping a consistent temp.
    This is a must. The first time I did a lot of brisket at once (I think it was about 20 lb) I used the recommended method of already lit coals. It was hot, I had to wait and then it petered out and I had to keep adding which became a nightmare. The next time I did it I just filled it up, lit a small amount and let it go. It worked without any fuel playing for 18 hours. All I had to do was put wood in for smoke and foil it up at the right point. It did the rest. And just like it says, you clean out the ash and reuse the stuff left. It is brilliant.

    Oh, the only thing about the temperature controller is replace the batteries before you use it on a long run. It does have a warning light on it but every time I've started on a long run without changing batteries I've had to do it mid run and, while everything worked just fine, is an annoying run around worrying.

  14. #14
    tbert is as tbert does tbert's Avatar
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    Can you use natural lump charcoal instead of the briquettes with the minion method?
    Stupidity angers me.
    If it weren't for the last minute, nothing would get done.
    NSOP snapshooter

  15. #15

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    I would bet not for longer smokes. The key is that the briquettes take a very long time to burn compared to real charcoal. To get it to go for 12 hours you'd probably run out of fuel.

    When I first got my smoker I tried to use lump and it was really difficult to get the temps even. That's when I sought out the thermostat but at the same time I read about just using briquettes. Really, I think they work very well for smoking. I would never use them for normal grilling but for this they seem pretty ideal.

  16. #16
    Pro a.hoglen's Avatar
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    If you really want a true set and forget it, look at the treagers.

  17. #17
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    My local hardware store has BGE, Kamado Joe, Weber, Traeger, etc. Lots to look at and choose, also pricing which is good to have.

    For $300, the weber smokey mountain looks hard to beat, considering it's got more cooking surface than a $850 joe or $950 BGE. Not like I'm often cooking where I'd do both racks of something but you never know.

    I'll have to head back and look a bit closer at each of them.

    What is the advantage of a big ceramic vs. the weber? Heat retention, control, ??? Can you use a BGE as a normal grill as well? Can you use a Weber?

  18. #18
    Worn out shutter danm's Avatar
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    BGE can be used as a regular charcoal grill as well. the ceramic gives it the heat retention to act as an oven, smoker, grill. plus it looks cool.

    Kamado Joe is the same idea as the egg, they are extremely similar. the shape, style of the BGE/Kamado (the manufacturers claim) help to roll smoke over the meat to smoke deeper/faster. who knows if they are right, i sure dont.
    Quote Originally Posted by tbert View Post
    It's not the thrill of the shoot....It's the thrill of the chaise.
    Dan's Flickr

  19. #19
    Pro dmitchell's Avatar
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    Just build a pit! http://www.solelord.com/solelord/bbq2.htm This is what my kid wants.
    Dave Mitchell
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  20. #20
    Worn out shutter danm's Avatar
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    not gonna lie, that is ****ing awesome
    Quote Originally Posted by tbert View Post
    It's not the thrill of the shoot....It's the thrill of the chaise.
    Dan's Flickr

  21. #21
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    Heh, if I built a house I'd consider something like that but one of the things that appeals to me with any of these pre-manufactured ones is the large community available to help a part time smoker. Recipes, # of briquettes, etc are all very easy to come by. With homemade you'd have to kind of know what you're doing and do it on your own.

  22. #22

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    Quote Originally Posted by thechickencow View Post
    Electric just doesn't seem as cool to me. Not sure though.
    I picked up a entry level brinkmann gourmet electric smoker from the neighbor for $40. Couldn't pass it up at that price.
    It holds steady at 250, I am sure many would say that is too hot for a lot of stuff, but i have made wicked awesome chicken, ribs and pulled pork on it.

  23. #23
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    Ordered a maverick meat smoking thermometer today: $15 off w/slickdeals code.


    Also, I forgot to update here when I smoked my pork shoulder a couple weeks ago. It was sofrigginamazing.

  24. #24
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00FYV3EBW/...d_p=1990147042

    Noticed the maverick is on sale again on amazon, it's awesome, I highly recommend it.

  25. #25

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    Just bought the Maverick ET732 on Ebay for $47
    I thought about the ET733 but the features didn't excite me, so I figured I would save the $23 and maybe pickup some longer leads.

  26. #26
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    I am not really sure what the exact differences are, but you can't go wrong and as long as you have temp for two probes you're golden.

    I think future I may pick up another one for when I'm doing multiple meats at the same time - when I do two pork butts I only have a probe for one, it would be nice to know if they are both good (they are when I actually check them). Doing different meats though it would be really nice.

    I keep smoking on my weber with great results, I am excited to someday get an Egg, but it will be a while. Very hard to justify so much money when I can make good meats on what I've got.

  27. #27

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    Quote Originally Posted by thechickencow View Post
    I am not really sure what the exact differences are, but you can't go wrong and as long as you have temp for two probes you're golden.

    I think future I may pick up another one for when I'm doing multiple meats at the same time - when I do two pork butts I only have a probe for one, it would be nice to know if they are both good (they are when I actually check them). Doing different meats though it would be really nice.

    I keep smoking on my weber with great results, I am excited to someday get an Egg, but it will be a while. Very hard to justify so much money when I can make good meats on what I've got.
    I saw these at menards the other day.... "Big Red Kamodo' $299
    I'm sure it's as good as the Kamado joe and the BGE.....
    http://www.menards.com/main/spring-f.../p-1509794.htm

  28. #28
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    **** Menards and their absolute **** quality.

  29. #29

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    That was suppose to be teh funnay!

    Anyone have issues getting their Maverick's to sync? I have read the instructions over and over and cannot get them to sync.
    The only thing I have yet to try is putting in a new set of batteries. The transmitter works, it shows the smoker's temp and meat, but the receiver will not show anything but blinking dashes.
    I am hoping it is just a battery issue.

  30. #30
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    You just have to start them both at the same time or within a second or two of each other. Did you try that?

    The resync button doesn't work like you'd think it would.

  31. #31

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    Quote Originally Posted by thechickencow View Post
    You just have to start them both at the same time or within a second or two of each other. Did you try that?

    The resync button doesn't work like you'd think it would.
    I tried a handful of times with them sitting right next to each other. Reset button wasn't successful either.

  32. #32
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    Could be defective then, I have had issues but usually turning them on together works.

  33. #33

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    Quote Originally Posted by thechickencow View Post
    Could be defective then, I have had issues but usually turning them on together works.
    Yeah, I bought on Ebay. I will try new batteries and if that doesn't work, I will try returning to seller and if that doesn't work, I will ship into Maverick.

    I did smoke about 8-10lbs of Brown Sugar Salmon on Applewood yesterday. It turned out pretty good for my first try.

  34. #34

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    I called Maverick and they said to send it in for a replacement.

  35. #35
    tbert is as tbert does tbert's Avatar
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    Stupidity angers me.
    If it weren't for the last minute, nothing would get done.
    NSOP snapshooter

  36. #36
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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  37. #37

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  38. #38
    tbert is as tbert does tbert's Avatar
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    I still like mine with the thumbs up to Shawn for getting a replacement.
    Stupidity angers me.
    If it weren't for the last minute, nothing would get done.
    NSOP snapshooter

  39. #39

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    HA!!

  40. #40

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    replacement 732 arrived and works great.

  41. #41
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    Nice!

  42. #42

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    Smoked a chicken yesterday, it turned out amazing.
    Going to smoke some bone in turkey breasts tonight and make some smoked turkey chili tomorrow.

  43. #43
    tbert is as tbert does tbert's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by thomps6s View Post
    replacement 732 arrived and works great.
    You knew it was coming!































    Stupidity angers me.
    If it weren't for the last minute, nothing would get done.
    NSOP snapshooter

  44. #44

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  45. #45
    tbert is as tbert does tbert's Avatar
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    Stupidity angers me.
    If it weren't for the last minute, nothing would get done.
    NSOP snapshooter

  46. #46
    the anti-surl thechickencow's Avatar
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    Ben this may be your new thread.

  47. #47

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    Great deal at Amazon today on a Maverick 733 wireless thermometer. $50 usually $70

    Maverick ET-733 Long Range Wireless Thermometer for $69.99 - $20 w/ coupon code 5EUBTJ62 = $49.99. Shipping is Free
    http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00...14&sdsrc=staff

  48. #48

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    I don't know if I got it from here or not but this website is great for recipes and general knowledge.

    And I may be in the market for a new smoker this year. Last summer about 3-4 times I tried to smoke a lot of something (brisket, pork) and it just was a pain fighting with the coals. It is great for short times (let's say under 6 hours) but longer than that with a heavy load it just runs out of steam and becomes hard to control.

    And I never did do anything about an infrared grill last year.

  49. #49

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    Anyone feel like a heart attack?
    https://youtu.be/Hq2kmbI_1EA

  50. #50

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    Quote Originally Posted by Andy View Post
    I don't know if I got it from here or not but this website is great for recipes and general knowledge.

    And I may be in the market for a new smoker this year. Last summer about 3-4 times I tried to smoke a lot of something (brisket, pork) and it just was a pain fighting with the coals. It is great for short times (let's say under 6 hours) but longer than that with a heavy load it just runs out of steam and becomes hard to control.

    And I never did do anything about an infrared grill last year.
    Thanks for the link, this is also a great site with a good newsletter/recipies
    http://www.smoking-meat.com/

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