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  • NOVABONZ
    Club Member
    • Sep 2015
    • 6
    • Fairfax, VA

    Noob Checking In

    I have been lurking on this site for about a year now and finally decided to join. I Grew up in the southwest and was given charge of the grill as soon as I was tall enough (dad wanted the bbq but would rather watch the game). I eventually figured out how to make cheap cuts tasty and how to make the most of a good cuts. I grew up and went off to the Marine Corps and traveled around Asia a bit, sampling lots of wonderful foods from festivals and street vendors and such.

    I got out of the Marines and joined up with a hunting group back in Arizona made up of friends and relatives. We all shared in the bounty no matter who filled their tag, with the choice cuts going to the established members. I learned a lot about grilling meat with different levels of fat content and took up making jerky.

    I was introduced to the low and slow world by a girlfriend's uncle we went to visit for Thanksgiving in Texas. We stayed up all night drinking and carrying on while the uncle was smoking a big turkey in a small, cheap capsule smoker. The result was magical and I was hooked...

    Got my first capsule/water smoker for my birthday one year (I think it may have cost $35 at one of those dollar stores) and started experimenting with turkey and brisket.

    When that guy turned to a pile of rust, my next (and current) rig was the inexpensive Char-Griller with the side box. I have been cranking out some pretty decent BBQ with that thing for the last 12 years, replacing parts as they wear out and making little tweaks for different kinds of BBQ.

    I now live in Northern Virginia (NOVA) in a neighborhood with lots of free smoking wood! We had a tall tree die a couple of years after moving in and it turned out to be a cherry tree that I now use in the fireplace and for friends who love my cherry-smoked spareribs. Big storms are always knocking down big red oaks and the occasional hickory, so I am always very well stocked by the neighbors who know they will get some good BBQ in return.

    I am now at the point where I want to go beyond what my faithful Char-Griller can handle. The block parties, the work get-togethers, the gatherings of friends and such are getting bigger and it is tough to do more than three racks of ribs. When I do even that many, the quirky (okay, cheap) nature of of the Char-Griller really keeps me on my toes. People look at it and say "those delicious ribs came out of THAT thing?"

    I think it is time to make the investment in a serious unit. One that can really take advantage of the wonderful wood I have available, fit four racks of untrimmed spare ribs, and that won't have me desperately fanning at flames when I shut the dampers just a little too much and my fire dies. I am already narrowing the field and hope to make the plunge soon.
    Last edited by NOVABONZ; September 17, 2015, 10:18 AM.
  • Danjohnston949
    Former Member
    • Dec 2014
    • 4418
    • 1410 9th. St. N, Fargo ND

    #2
    NOVABONZ, Welcome to the Pit, The thing about Money is its not worth anything until you Spend It. May as well use it on something you Enjoy! Dan

    Comment


    • NOVABONZ
      NOVABONZ commented
      Editing a comment
      Thanks, Dan. It will be good to have a real BBQ grill.
  • Breadhead
    Banned Former Member
    • Jul 2014
    • 0

    #3
    Welcome to the Pit NOVABONZ and thank you for your service to our country.

    As far as what smoker to recommend we will have to know what your budget is.

    You can cook 4 racks of ribs on a $400 upright vertical smoker or if you want to spend some serious coinage there's the Lang smokers and many other options.

    I'm sure you're going to get lots of help on this question but having a $$$ figure you want to allocate to buying a smoker will help.

    Enjoy learning on the Pit my friend.

    Comment

    • smarkley
      Former Member
      • Jul 2014
      • 1426

      #4
      Welcome Aboard NOVABONZ

      ​Yeah give us some parameters like Breadhead suggests... we give you lots of ideas!

      Comment

      • David Parrish
        Founding Member - Pit Boss Emeritus
        • May 2014
        • 5046
        • Charlotte, NC

        #5
        Welcome NOVABONZ! We're glad you're here. Thanks for your service. Prior USAF myself. Let us know what cookers you're thinking about. We'll help you spend your money!

        Comment

        • Breadhead
          Banned Former Member
          • Jul 2014
          • 0

          #6
          NOVABONZ ...

          While allocating coinage for this smoker buy make sure to add $$$ for a good temperature controller and a meat thermometer. Those items will make your smoking journey much easier and successful.👌

          Comment

          • Jon Solberg
            Former Member
            • Jul 2014
            • 4819

            #7
            Hey Nova!

            Comment

            • NOVABONZ
              Club Member
              • Sep 2015
              • 6
              • Fairfax, VA

              #8
              Parameters:
              $1500 max budget
              Grill and smoker
              Rotisserie availability
              Room for a 20 lb turkey or four racks of untrimmed spareribs
              Lump charcoal and/or wood chunks (I chop/split the wood into butter stick sized chunks)
              Solid construction
              Easily removable ashes
              Easy to add additional charcoal
              Good airflow for the duration of a smoking session

              I don't know whether I want another sidecar smoker. I do know that I do not want any gimmicks - I enjoy tending the fire.

              Comment

              • David Parrish
                Founding Member - Pit Boss Emeritus
                • May 2014
                • 5046
                • Charlotte, NC

                #9
                Have you looked at The Good One? That's a brand name.

                Comment


                • NOVABONZ
                  NOVABONZ commented
                  Editing a comment
                  That may do the trick. Kinda looks like a big toolbox (in a good way)

                • Max Good
                  Max Good commented
                  Editing a comment
                  The Good-One makes some really terrific combo grill/smokers. They say a rotisserie may be used with their cookers, but it's not necessary because the heat is already evenly distributed and it will cit your capacity in half. TGO says, "We feel it's unnecessary. We worked hard on the design to make sure heat was even, efficient and easy to use. There are no outside dependencies aka electricity or motors that eventually will fail due to external forces of heat & grease."
                  Last edited by Max Good; September 18, 2015, 09:51 AM.
              • Spinaker
                Moderator
                • Nov 2014
                • 10842
                • Land of Tonka
                • John "J R"
                  Instagram: JRBowlsby
                  Smokin' Hound Que
                  Minnesota/ United States of America

                  ********************************************
                  Assistants
                  Dexter (Beagle mix)
                  Kinnick (American Foxhound)
                  ************************

                  Grills/Smokers/Fryers
                  Big Green Egg (Large) X3
                  Blackstone 36" Outdoor Griddle 4-Burner

                  Karubeque C-60
                  Kamado Joe Jr. (Black)
                  Lodge L410 Hibachi
                  Pit Barrel Cooker
                  Pit Barrel Cooker 2.0
                  R&V Works FF2-R-ST 4-Gallon Fryer

                  Weber Spirit Gasser
                  ******************.
                  Thermometers
                  FireBoard (Base Package)
                  Thermoworks ThermaPen (Red)
                  Thermoworks MK4 (Orange)
                  **************

                  Accessories
                  Big Green Egg Plate Setter
                  Benzomatic TS4000 Torch X 2
                  Benzomatic TS800 High Temp Torch X 2

                  Bayou Classic 44 qt Stainless Stock Pot
                  Bayou Classic 35K BTU Burner

                  Digi Q DX2 (Medium Pit Viper Fan)
                  Dragon VT 2-23 C Torch
                  Eggspander Kit X2
                  Field Skillet No. 8,10,12

                  Finex Cat Iron Line
                  FireBoard Drive
                  Lots and Lots of Griswold Cast Iron
                  Grill Grates
                  Joule Water Circulator
                  KBQ Fire Grate

                  Kick Ash Basket (KAB) X4
                  Lots of Lodge Cast Iron
                  Husky 6 Drawer BBQ Equipment Cabinet
                  Large Vortex
                  Marlin 1894 .44 Magnum
                  Marquette Castings No. 13 (First Run)
                  Smithey No. 12
                  Smokeware Chimney Cap X 3
                  Stargazer No.10, 12
                  Tool Wizard BBQ Tongs
                  Univex Duro 10" Meat Slicer
                  ********************************
                  Fuel
                  FOGO Priemium Lump Charcoal
                  Kingsford Blue and White
                  Rockwood Lump Charcoal
                  Apple, Cherry & Oak Log splits for the C-60
                  **************************

                  Cutlery
                  Buck 119 Special
                  Cuda 7' Fillet Knife

                  Dexter 12" Brisket Sword
                  Global
                  Shun
                  Wusthof
                  *******
                  Next Major Purchase
                  Lone Star Grillz 24 X 48 Offset

                #10
                Welcome to The Pit!!

                Comment


                • NOVABONZ
                  NOVABONZ commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Thanks, Spin
              • LA Pork Butt
                Charter Member
                • Dec 2014
                • 5574
                • Grew up in New Orleans, lived in Texas for 20 years, lived in Mandeville, LA for 22 years. I now liv

                #11
                I'm a Big Green Egg guy. You can do four racks of ribs, and I have done 40# of Boston Butt on my large BGE ( not with the ribs ). You wouldn't be burning the wood, but rather using lump charcoal and wood chunks for for smoke. For me the great thing about the BGE on a long slow cooks is the ability to set it and forget it and sleep through the night. Good luck on your search! All the guys on this site can make their cookers cook. Maybe if they weigh in on what they like most about their cooker it will help you decide.

                Comment


                • Breadhead
                  Breadhead commented
                  Editing a comment
                  LA Pork Butt ...

                  I just did a 16 hour brisket cook on my large BGE. I started the fire and installed my DigiQ Dx2 and set it to cook at 225°. I put the brisket on and went to bed.

                  I woke up 8 hours later and the BGE was chugging along at exactly 225°. I went and had breakfast with some friends and did some errands and when I got home it was at exactly 225°.

                  The larger BGE and the DigiQ Dx2 combination is a blessing from the BBQ gods!

                • NOVABONZ
                  NOVABONZ commented
                  Editing a comment
                  Thanks, LA. I'll definitely look into it.
              • Huskee
                Administrator
                • May 2014
                • 15417
                • central MI, USA
                • Follow me on Instagram, huskeesbarbecue

                  Want a free bottle of whiskey? Check out my link to Flaviar.com, you join with it, we both get a $50 bottle free.

                  Smokers / Grills
                  • Yoder loaded Wichita offset smoker
                  • PBC
                  • Grilla Silverbac pellet grill
                  • Slow 'N Sear Deluxe Kamado (SnSK)
                  • Dyna-Glo XL Premium dual chamber charcoal grill
                  • Weber 22" Original Kettle Premium (copper)
                  • Weber 26" Original Kettle Premium (black)
                  • Weber Jumbo Joe Gold (18.5")
                  • Weber Smokey Joe Silver (14.5")
                  • Brinkmann cabinet charcoal smoker (repurposed)

                  Thermometers
                  • (3) Maverick XR-50: 4-probe Wireless Thermometers
                  • (7) Maverick ET-732s
                  • (1) Maverick ET-735 Bluetooth (in box)
                  • (1) Smoke by ThermoWorks
                  • (1) Signals by ThermoWorks
                  • Thermapen MkII, orange
                  • ThermoPop, yellow
                  • ThermoWorks ChefAlarm
                  • Morpilot 6-probe wireless
                  • ThermoWorks Infrared IRK2
                  • ThermoWorks fridge & freezer therms as well

                  Accessories
                  • Instant Pot 6qt
                  • Anova Bluetooth SV
                  • Kitchen Aide mixer & meat grinder attachment
                  • Kindling Cracker King (XL)
                  • BBQ Dragon
                  • Weber full & half chimneys, Char-Broil Half Time chimney
                  • Weber grill topper
                  • Slow 'N Sear Original, XL, and SnS Charcoal Basket (for Jumbo Joe)
                  • Drip 'N Griddle Pan, 22' Easy Spin Grate, and Elevated Cooking grate, by ABCbarbecue
                  • Pittsburgh Digital Moisture Meter

                  Beverages
                  • Favorite summer beer: Leinenkugels Summer & Grapefruit Shandy, Hamm's, Michelob Ultra Pure Gold
                  • Fav other beer: DAB, Sam Adams regular, Third Shift amber or Coors Batch 19, Stella Artois
                  • Fav cheap beers: Pabst, High Life, Hamm's & Stroh's
                  • Most favorite beer: The one in your fridge
                  • Wine: Red- big, bold, tannic & peppery- Petite Sirah, Zinfandel, Cabernet Sauv, Sangiovese, Syrah, etc
                  • Whiskey: Buffalo Trace, Eagle Rare, E.H. Taylor, Blanton's, Old Forester 1870, Elijah Craig, Basil Hayden's. Neat please.
                  • Scotch: Current favorite- The Arran (anything by them), Glenmorangie 12yr Lasanta, sherry cask finished. The Balvenie Double Wood, also like Oban 18yr, and The Glenlivet Nadurra (Oloroso sherry cask finished) among others. Neat please.

                  About me
                  Real name: Aaron
                  Location: Farwell, Michigan- near Clare. (dead center of lower peninsula)

                  Occupation:
                  • Healthcare- Licensed & Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT) for MidMichigan Health, a University of Michigan Health System.

                #12
                Belated welcome to The Pit NOVABONZ! Nice intro post, glad you're with us.

                Since this is your first post, please check out our homework assignment post for new members, it contains a few how-tos and please-dos.

                Also, it's very important that you add the domain AmazingRibs.com to your email safe list in case you are ever drawn as our monthly Gold Medal Giveaway winner!

                Hope to hear & see more from you!

                Comment

                • NOVABONZ
                  Club Member
                  • Sep 2015
                  • 6
                  • Fairfax, VA

                  #13
                  I finally pulled the trigger on purchasing a new grill. I bought the Good-One Open Range from FireCraft. I would definitely recommend them for their great service and thoughtful advice.They even threw in a bag of lump charcoal so I could get it properly seasoned before the first smoke. Iam doing a pork butt tomorrow using the tested recipe.
                  Has anyone ever tried a low temperature smoke on the Good-One? I was thinking of doing some smoked fish when it gets colder.

                  Comment

                  • Bob Benhardt
                    Club Member
                    • Jun 2016
                    • 58
                    • Burbs outside The Lou

                    #14
                    Welcome to the Pit and thanks for your service! Check out HBT Smokers via Google and Facebook.

                    Comment

                    • Mr. Bones
                      Charter Member
                      • Sep 2016
                      • 9836
                      • Kansas Territory
                      • Grills / Smokers
                        *********************************************

                        Kingsford 24" grill (Free) 'Billy'
                        Brinkmann Smoke n Grill
                        Oklahoma Joe Highland, gaskets, LavaLock baffle / tuning plate. 'Big Joe'
                        Weber 18" Kettle ($30 CL) 'Lil' Feller'
                        Weber Smokey Joe ($25 CL) 'Lil' Brother'
                        Weber 22.5 Master Touch '93 P Code Blue($85) from fellow WKC member Bmitch 'Elwood'
                        Weber 22.5 Bar-B-Q Kettle '69-'70 "Patent Pending" Red ($80) from fellow WKC member dwnthehatch 'Maureen'
                        Weber 22.5 OTS DD Code Black ($40 CL) 'DeeDee'
                        Weber 22.5 OTS DO Code Black ($15 CL)
                        Weber 22.5 OTS E Code Black ($20 CL
                        Weber 22.5 OTS EE Code Black ($20 CL

                        Weber "C" Code 18.5" WSM '81 ($50 CL) 8-0!!!
                        Weber "H" Code 18.5" WSM '86 ($75 CL)
                        Weber " " Code 18.5" WSM

                        Weber 26.75, $199 NFM clearance !!!
                        Weber SJS AH 'Lil' Brother'
                        Weber SJS AT 'Lil' Sister'
                        Weber SJS DE Code (FREE) 'Lil' Helper'
                        Weber SJG M Code 'Lil Traveller'
                        Weber SJS AH Code 'Kermit'
                        (Lime Green)
                        Horizon 20" Classic, w/baffle/tuning plate (FREE)
                        Good One Open Range, (FREE), Monthly Prize from AR giveaway!!!!



                        Thermometers:
                        *********************************************
                        Ol' Skool Bi-metal probe pocket thermo, that has checked / served ~ 1,000,000 meals in my possession, easily...
                        Maverick ET-732, (Black)
                        Thermopops, (Red, Yellow, Green)
                        ThermaPen Mk4 (Black), THANKS!!! to jgjeske1
                        Blue ThermaPen Mk4
                        Orange Thermapen Mk4
                        Pink Thermapen Mk4
                        ThermoWorks IR-GUN-S
                        ThermoWorks Smoke
                        ThermoWorks Open Box Smoke
                        4 Pro Series cable extensions
                        Smoke Gateway

                        Accessories:
                        *********************************************
                        2 Slow 'N Sears, Slow 'N Sear XL, Grill 'N Griddle
                        BBQ Vortex, 2 Hovergrills, Top Deck
                        Warming shelf
                        MyWeigh KD-8000Kitchen Scale
                        Backyard Grill marinade injector
                        Acoustic Guitars/Electric Guitars/Basses/1928 National Duolian/Harmonicas/Banjo Washboard, Spoons, kazoos, pocket comb with wax paper, egg shakers ;-)
                        Bear Paws
                        Meat Rakes
                        BBQ Dragon/Chimley of Insanity, Dragon Wing Shelves (x2 ea.)



                        Cookware:
                        Probably a ton of cast iron, mostly very old...still cookin'
                        G'Ma's Piqua skillet, :-)( They went out of business in 1934~)
                        '60's Revere Ware (Mom's), + others found elsewhere
                        60's CorningWare 10-cup percolator (Mom's) Daily driver
                        50's CorningWare 10-cup percolator (G'Ma's), for a backup! ;-)
                        Carpy Wally World stock pots, in approx 2 gal/3gal sizes, blue speckledty-porcelain enameled
                        Tramontina 6.5 qt Dutch Oven

                        Cutlery, etc.:
                        Shi*-ton of kitchen/chef knives, most sharper than my straight-razors are. (Better steel!) Chicago Cutlery, Old Hickory, various, including some nice German stuff ;-)
                        Dexter 12" slicing knife, 6" Sani-Safe boning knife
                        Smith's Tri-Hone Natural Arkansas Knife Sharpening System
                        Multiple steels, from all over the planet
                        Crock sticks
                        Diamond stones, various
                        Lansky Sharpening System

                        Tableware
                        Daily driver:Washington Forge Mardi Gras, Navy / Cobalt Blue
                        Dinner: Guests: Washington Forge, Town and Country
                        Fancy / Formal: Family silverware

                      #15
                      Welcome Aboard, NOVABONZ !!! Dang glad yer here!
                      Thank you for your service!

                      "Semper Fi, Teufelshund!"!!!
                      >Ol' Air Det Seabee<

                      Comment

                      Announcement

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                      Meat-Up in Memphis 2021

                      SOLD OUT! Secure your spot on our waitlist now. First-come, first-served!
                      Click here for details. (https://amazingribs.com/memphis)
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                      See less
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                      Meat-Up in Memphis

                      Spotlight

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                      Use our links when you buy things

                      Many merchants pay us a small referral fee when you click our links and purchase from them. On Amazon it works on everything from grills to diapers, they never tell us what you bought, it has zero impact on the price you pay, but has a major impact on our ability to improve this site! If you like AmazingRibs.com, please save this link and use it every time you go to Amazon

                      If you have a Weber Kettle, you need the Slow 'N' Sear

                      slow n sear
                      The Slow 'N' Sear turns your grill into a first class smoker and also creates an extremely hot sear zone you can use to create steakhouse steaks.

                      Click here for our article on this breakthrough tool


                      The Good-One Is A Superb Grill And A Superb Smoker All In One

                      the good one grill
                      The Good-One Open Range is dramatically different from a traditional offset smoker. By placing the heat source behind and under the smokebox instead of off to the side, Open Range produces even temperature from left to right, something almost impossible to achieve with a standard barrel shaped offset.

                      Click here to read our complete review


                      Griddle And Deep Fryer In One

                      Pit Barrel Cooker Smoker
                      The flat top does the burgers and the fryer does the fries. Use the griddle for bacon, eggs, and home fries. Or pancakes, fajitas, grilled cheese, you name it. Why stink up the house deep frying and spatter all over? Do your fried chicken and calamari outside. Blackstone's Rangetop Combo With Deep Fryer does it all!

                      Click here to read our detailed review and to order


                      The Pit Barrel Cooker May Be Too Easy

                      Pit Barrel Cooker Smoker
                      The PBC has a rabid cult following for good reason. It is absolutely positively without a doubt the best bargain on a smoker in the world. Period. This baby will cook circles around the cheap offset sideways barrel smokers because temperature control is so much easier.

                      Click here to read our detailed review and the raves from people who own them


                      The Undisputed Champion!

                      thermapen
                      The Thermoworks Thermapen MK4 is considered by the pros, and our team, to be the single best instant read thermometer. The MK4 includes features that are common on high-end instruments: automatic backlight and rotating display. Don't accept cheap substitutes.

                      Click here to read our comprehensive Platinum Medal review


                      Grilla Pellet Smoker proves good things come in small packages

                      Grilla pellet smoker
                      We always liked Grilla. The small 31.5" x 29.5" footprint makes it ideal for use where BBQ space is limited, as on a condo patio.

                      Click here for our review on this unique smoker


                      Delta by Nuke,
                      Stylish and Affordable
                      Gaucho Grill

                      Weber Genesis Grill
                      Delta by Nuke burns wood or charcoal and comes with an adjustable height grill grate. This Argentinian grill will get your flame on!

                      Click here to read our complete review


                      Genesis II E-335
                      A Versatile Gasser That Does It All!

                      Weber Genesis Grill
                      Webers Genesis line has long been one of the most popular choices for gas grillers. The new Genesis II E-335 offers solid performance, a sear burner for sizzling heat and an excellent warranty.

                      Click here to read our complete review


                      GrillGrates Take Gas Grills To The Infrared Zone

                      grill grates
                      GrillGrates(TM) amplify heat, prevent flareups, make flipping foods easier, kill hotspots, flip over to make a fine griddle, and can be easily rmoved from one grill to another. You can even throw wood chips, pellets, or sawdust between the rails and deliver a quick burst of smoke.

                      Click here for more about what makes these grates so special


                      Is This Superb Charcoal Grill A Kamado Killer?

                      PK 360 grill
                      The PK-360, with 360 square inches of cooking space, this rust free, cast aluminum charcoal grill is durable and easy to use. Four-way venting means it's easy to set up for two zone cooking with more control than single vent Kamado grills. It is beautifully designed, completely portable, and much easier to set up for 2-zone cooking than any round kamado.

                      Click here to read our detailed review of the PK 360

                      Click here to order directly and get an exclusive AmazingRibs.com deal


                      Our Favorite Backyard Smoker

                      kareubequ bbq smoker

                      The amazing Karubecue is the most innovative smoker in the world. The quality of meat from this machine is astonishing. At its crux is a patented firebox that burns logs above the cooking chamber and sucks heat and extremely clean blue smoke into the thermostat controlled oven. It is our favorite smoker, period.

                      Click here for our review of this superb smoker


                      Masterbuilt MPS 340/G ThermoTemp XL Propane Smoker

                      masterbuilt gas smoker
                      This is the first propane smoker with a thermostat, making this baby foolproof. Set ThermoTemp's dial from 175? to 350?F and the thermostat inside will adjust the burner just like an indoor kitchen oven. All you need to do is add wood to the tray above the burner to start smokin'.

                      Click here to read our detailed review


                      Digital Thermometers Are Your Most Valuable Tool And Here's A Great Buy!

                      maverick PT55 thermometer
                      A good digital thermometer keeps you from serving dry overcooked food or dangerously undercooked food. They are much faster and much more accurate than dial thermometers. YOU NEED ONE!

                      Click here to read our complete review


                      Track Up To Six Temperatures At Once

                      Grilla pellet smoker
                      FireBoard Drive 2 is an updated version of a well-received product that sets the standard for performance and functionality in the wireless food thermometer/thermostatic controller class.

                      Click here for our review of this unique device


                      The Cool Kettle With The Hinged Hood We Always Wanted

                      NK-22-Ck Grill
                      Napoleon's NK22CK-C Charcoal Kettle Grill puts a few spins on the familiar kettle design. In fact, the hinged lid with a handle on the front, spins in a rotary motion 180 degrees. It's hard to beat a Weber kettle, but Napoleon holds its own and adds some unique features to make the NK22CK-C a viable alternative.

                      Click here for more about what makes this grill special


                      Finally, A Great Portable Pellet Smoker

                      Green Mountain Davey Crockett Grill
                      Green Mountain's portable Davy Crockett Pellet Smoker is one mean tailgating and picnic machine. But it's also gaining popularity with people who want to add a small, set it and forget it pellet smoker to their backyard arsenal. And with their WiFi capabilities you can control and monitor Davy Crocket from your smart phone or laptop.

                      Click here to read our detailed review and to order