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  • Steve R.
    Club Member
    • Jul 2016
    • 2452
    • Elizabethtown, KY
    • Current line-up of cookers: Weber 26" kettle w/ SnS and BBQ Guru adapter; Weber Smokey Mountain 22" w/ Guru adapter.

    #16
    Welcome to the Pit! I currently use a Weber 26" kettle and a Weber Ranch kettle for grilling and smoking, and love them both. But if I was starting from scratch, I would be all over the Masterbuilt Gravity Series, as mentioned above. Whatever you choose will only be the start, so there is really no wrong answer here.

    Comment

    • glitchy
      Club Member
      • Jul 2019
      • 834
      • Central IA
      • MAK 2 Star General
        Weber Summit Charcoal Grill
        w/ Big Joetisserie, SnS LP, and Vortex
        Weber Q1000
        Fireboard 2 Drive
        Anova Precision Sous Vide
        All the (pellet) grills I’ve loved before:
        Traeger Junior Elite^
        GMG DB
        Traeger Texas Elite
        Memphis Pro§
        Traeger Pro 575
        CampChef SmokePro STX (ugly grills need love too)
        Weber SmokeFire EX4§
        Traeger Select
        CampChef Woodwind WiFi w/SearBox^
        Weber SmokeFire EX4§

        ^ = Favorites
        § = Love/Hate Relationships

      #17
      If convenience is your driving force, a Woodwind with a SearBox or Sidekick would be a great option. Pellet grills are great for low and slow, but mediocre at best for high heat grilling in general. This is because they are designed to be indirect heat. The Weber SmokeFire redefines this, but it still has some quirks being worked through by the user base and Weber. I love burgers on the pellet grill, but they take 30-40 minutes usually versus the 10-20 they would take on a gasser/charcoal grill. You should probably read Max's review of the SmokeFire and see if maybe it's what you are after though: Weber SmokeFire EX4 and EX6 Wood Fired Pellet Grill Review.

      If you go Traeger and searing a steak is something you desire, you will likely end up supplementing it with a Kettle or Gasser. I've reverse seared many a steak by cooking to 115 internal temp on a 180-225 pellet grill then tossing it on the gasser to sear. The Woodwind w/Searbox just gets you this combo in a smaller footprint.

      I see you are trying to get this quickly:
      Traeger available everywhere
      Weber SmokeFire should be around if you have a Lowes close as well as other places
      CampChef Woodwind is available at some SportingGoods stores, they have a dealer locator on their site to see if anyone close to you carries it, I had to order mine from an online retailer

      I've had 4 Traegers, a lot of people bash them, but they are decent pellet grills with the exception of the cabinet model Costco offers. The new D2 models produce less smoke flavor than the older dial controller models from my experience. The Costco model doesn't produce any noticeable smoke flavor do the the airflow restrictions in it's design. If you don't really feel you require WiFi, you might be happier with the food results from a dial controller Pro model.

      ...and Welcome to the Pit!
      Last edited by glitchy; May 15, 2020, 07:46 AM.

      Comment

      • glitchy
        Club Member
        • Jul 2019
        • 834
        • Central IA
        • MAK 2 Star General
          Weber Summit Charcoal Grill
          w/ Big Joetisserie, SnS LP, and Vortex
          Weber Q1000
          Fireboard 2 Drive
          Anova Precision Sous Vide
          All the (pellet) grills I’ve loved before:
          Traeger Junior Elite^
          GMG DB
          Traeger Texas Elite
          Memphis Pro§
          Traeger Pro 575
          CampChef SmokePro STX (ugly grills need love too)
          Weber SmokeFire EX4§
          Traeger Select
          CampChef Woodwind WiFi w/SearBox^
          Weber SmokeFire EX4§

          ^ = Favorites
          § = Love/Hate Relationships

        #18
        Also, I missed the recommendation for the Masterbuilt Gravity series, after reading Huskee's review it's definitely worth strong consideration. It looks like it has some serious potential. If I wasn't a little overboard in the cooker department already, I'd probably be dying to try one out.

        Comment

        • Dadof3Illinois
          Club Member
          • Jul 2017
          • 934
          • Southeast Illinois

          #19
          In your situation I recommend a Weber Kettle. A 26” if you can find one but the 22’s are awesome too. A kettle is one of the most versatile cookers on the market for the money.

          Comment

          • klflowers
            Club Member
            • Sep 2015
            • 3532
            • Tennessee

            #20
            Welcome to the pit! I don't have anything to add - these posts have covered everything.

            Comment

            • Greygoose
              Club Member
              • May 2019
              • 694
              • South Shore,MA

              #21
              Welcome to the Pit
              Have walked a few miles in ur shoes
              Teaching the youngins how to grill,bbq and cook is great entertainment and engages them with fun stuff to learn
              A Weber 22” kettle and maybe a Pit Barrel cooker would give you some good options

              Comment

              • RichardCullip
                Club Member
                • Feb 2020
                • 145
                • Poway, CA

                #22
                You can start small and relatively cheap with a 22" Weber Kettle and add stuff to it later on. When I first started low&slow smoking I used the fuse technique (sometimes called the snake) to lay out the charcoal in a ring around the outside edge of the charcoal grate and lit a couple of coals on one end. Put the meat (pork butt is my favorite) in the middle of the cooking grate and fiddle with the vents to get a nice 225F temperature going. You can get a nice long burn (perhaps up to 8 hours) this way.

                I have since added a Slow&Sear which made life easier. Finally I added a FireBoard controller with a Pit Viper fan this year and upped my smoking game. Still just using my old 22" Weber Kettle and haven't felt the need to acquire anymore cookers yet.

                Comment

                • ofelles
                  Club Member
                  • Jun 2018
                  • 2404
                  • Brentwood CA
                  • Yoder YS640 on Comp cart
                    Klose 20x42 Charcoal Grill
                    LSG Insulated Cabinet
                    Jumbo Joe
                    VacMaster Pro 380 sealer
                    FireBoard and Pit Bull fan
                    Thermoworks Signal
                    Thermoworks Dot
                    Thermopen Mk4

                  #23
                  Welcome from the California Delta. Plenty of good advise above.

                  Comment

                  • troymeister
                    Charter Member
                    • Aug 2014
                    • 1515
                    • Forest Park Il
                    • Weber 26

                      Weber Performer 22.5, Weber 18.5, WSM 18.5, Smokey Joe

                      2 Slow N Sears, Charcoal Rotisserie, Kettle Pizza for Weber 22.5, Vortex, Grill Grates

                      Smoke Thermometer, Igrill, Thermapen, Thermapop,Maverick 2 probe
                      I love cooking with wine. Sometimes I put it in my food.

                      One cannot have too many grills.

                    #24
                    Welcome from the Chicago area.. The Weber Kettle for me is one of the most versatile grills out there. Even more versatile with the SnS and the Vortex. I have to agree with many of the above posters. The Weber Kettle for starters. Everything else after is an enhancement.

                    Comment

                    • Richard Chrz
                      Club Member
                      • Mar 2019
                      • 1221
                      • La Crosse, Wi

                      #25
                      Personally for me, cost all considered, It is hard to beat a Weber Kettle, I run my 22 as a daily driver, and have smoked some really good food on it as well, without a slow and sear, just with snake method and a water pan. I think the 26 is less efficient then the 22 for basic cooks, but the 26 offers larger smoking space in comparrison, With the 26 I may suggest a vortex, as is a bit bigger and takes a bit more fuel (coal) then I would like to use for small cooks, it may help reduce the extra fuel needs, I also have a 22 wsm, and I am sure the bottom section of it could be used as a grill, so if you preferred every weekend long smokes, I would go with an 18 wsm or a 22wsm. With a kettle, I do think a table, whether from Weber, or custom built, is a must for outdoor cooking With a 22 you can buy a table built on. 26 you would need to have one made. As important as grilling, I would get a good temp probe system, that helps you set your grill / smoker more then anything. You will learn to set and forget a weber as well, and they build beautiful bark once you learn to harness there abilities. I can't speak to efficiencies and cost of other styles.
                      Last edited by Richard Chrz; May 17, 2020, 03:48 PM.

                      Comment


                      • Dadof3Illinois
                        Dadof3Illinois commented
                        Editing a comment
                        IMO a Weber Kettle and Pit Barrel Cooker are really one of the best combinations you can have and not break the bank. Throw in a leave in thermometer system and your golden. Heck if you shop around you can get all these and the cost will still be in the 3 figures.

                      • Richard Chrz
                        Richard Chrz commented
                        Editing a comment
                        Dadof3Illinois I have no experience with pit barrel, but, have only heard super positive reviews on it. But I agree, this can be done on the cheap if wanted, but a temp system, it is best to purchase the best you can afford in a temp system, more then the cooker. You can learn to run anything if you know how it behaves.
                    • surfdog
                      Club Member
                      • Mar 2016
                      • 1193
                      • Sunny SoCal
                      • Cooking gadgets
                        Weber Summit Charcoal Grill Center
                        Weber Summit Platinum D6
                        Blue Rhino Razor
                        Dyna-Glo XL Premium Dual Chamber
                        Camp Chef Somerset IV along with their Artisan Pizza Oven 90
                        Anova WiFi

                        Thermometers
                        Thermapen Mk4 - ThermaQ High Temp Kit - ThermaQ Meathead Kit - ThermaQ WiFi - ThermoWorks IR-GUN-S - ThermoWorks Signals & Billows - ThermoPop -ThermoWorks ProNeedle - ThermoWorks TimeStick Trio x2 - and a Christopher Kimball timer - NO, I do not work for ThermoWorks...I just like their products.

                        Other useful bits...
                        KitchenAid 7-qt Pro Line stand mixer
                        A Black & Decker food processor that I can't seem to murder
                        A couple of immersion blenders, one a "consumer" model & the other a "high end" Italian thing. Yes, the Italian one is a bit better, but only marginally
                        Instant Pot Duo Evo Plus 8-qt + accessories like egg-bite & egg holders
                        All-Clad pots & pans, along with some cast iron...everything from 7" Skookie pans to 8.5qt Dutch ovens
                        Weber GBS griddle, pizza stone, and wok
                        Knives range from Mercer to F. Dick to "You spent how much for one knife? One knife?!" LOL

                      #26
                      A kettle would be a fine choice. Incredibly versatile without breaking the bank.

                      Accessories like the Vortex, and SNS, can be added later as “needed.” (Read: wanted) No accessories are strictly necessary for it to preform well...they just make things more convenient or simplify getting the desired results. And the Weber kettle has countless accessories available for it.

                      Personally, I would probably opt for the performer series as I like the added table. Though there never seems to be enough table space for my liking...thus my current search for a decent table. Those grills are available just about everywhere so you could have one at home this afternoon.

                      I wouldn't discount a gasser either. While most are not great for smoking, they’re great for quick items like burgers & dogs. I smoked for years on my Summit gasser before I purchased my first true smoker. It requires a little finesse but it was, and is, still capable.

                      A good instant read thermometer is a must IMO...with a leave in added if it’s in the budget.

                      And welcome aboard from sunny SoCal.

                      Comment

                      • Murdy
                        Club Member
                        • May 2018
                        • 465
                        • North-Central Illinois

                        #27
                        Is your Weber a kettle or a gas grill? I smoke a lot on my kettle. And it comes out great. Add a fan controller for ease, but honestly, I don't really have to fuss with mine that much in most conditions. As I understand, a weber kettle will produce a heavier smoke flavor than a pellet grill and will sear better.

                        Comment

                        • ColonialDawg
                          Club Member
                          • Oct 2017
                          • 492
                          • Coastal VA

                          #28
                          I have a Weber 26 inch kettle, SNS, Fireboard, and Guru PitViper fan. Add a Vortex knockoff on the cheap from Amazon and you can cook just about anything.

                          Comment


                          • Dadof3Illinois
                            Dadof3Illinois commented
                            Editing a comment
                            This is the same set up I have and it can cook just about everything a person needs.
                        • Rick Triviski
                          Former Member
                          • May 2020
                          • 2

                          #29
                          so you can make quick hotdogs or burgers on a pellet grill? Are there other reputable brands of pellet grills?

                          Comment

                          • tenphases
                            Club Member
                            • Nov 2016
                            • 294
                            • Jersey City NJ
                            • Fast Eddy's Cook Shack PG 1000
                              Humphrey's Pint with Fireboard + Pit Viper
                              Hasty-Bake 256 Gourmet Dual Finish
                              Camp Chef DLX pellet pooper/sear burner/jerky rack
                              Broil King Keg Kamado
                              Charbroil Kamander
                              Original Pit Barrel Cooker
                              Barrel House Cooker
                              Akorn Kamado with cart
                              WSM 22 with Flame Boss
                              WSM 18.5 with Flame Boss
                              Weber Kettle Performer (with Slow n Sear/Drip n Griddle)
                              Weber Jumbo Joe
                              Weber Smokey Joe
                              Weber Q gasser with stand
                              Blackstone Griddle 22 with stand and lid
                              Blackstone Griddle 36
                              Akorn Kamado jr

                            #30
                            You have to have a fire with kids! Get some sort of weber kettle for the dogs and burgers. As far as a smoker, I have a bunch and some of them are really expensive. The truth is that all the money and all the fancy is great but there is nothing that I cant do with a stock weber kettle. Here is a bonus. After your done grilling throw a couple of wood chunk on the fire, leave the lid off and toast marshmallows.

                            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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                            Meat-Up in Memphis

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

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                            Griddle And Deep Fryer In One

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                            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.

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                            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.

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                            Delta by Nuke,
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                            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.

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                            Finally, A Great Portable Pellet Smoker

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