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Weber Kamado or Kettle + WSM 22

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    Weber Kamado or Kettle + WSM 22

    My long time Bubba keg finally completely rusted thru. And while I have a back up bowel and lid, the rest of that parts are not far behind. In attempting the rebuild the top vent was broken. The supporting frame is almost rusted thru. So I'd like an upgrade.

    Bubba Keg was an amazing HD clearance purchase at ~300 bucks. And I used it for smoking shoulders, a brisket or two, a few other things, and general grilling.

    The 18" size was/is too small for my general needs, and when I wanted more room I pulled out my even older weber OG q.

    I'm a fan of the kamado style cooker and the Bubba keg was the primary grill. I didnt use it much once the snow fell, but it would smoke in near freezing weather.

    So now I'm looking for a replacement... A Weber Kamado would be ~1050. And similar if I got a 22 master toucher or performer with the cart. And then for smoking I'd use get the WSM. Going with the 2 units would allow me to stagger the purchase.

    One thing I loved about the Bubba Keg was on a long smoke, I'd attach the Party Q, fill it with lump/charcoal. And the thing would run for 20+ hours never running out of fuel. Very nice when doing an overnight smoke, I could go to bed and not think about it.

    Any thoughts?

    Welcome to The Pit.

    I don't know how much you need to cook at one time, but a Weber Kettle with a Slow N Sear is great for smoking unless you are smoking for a crowd.


      I have a Weber Summit Charcoal and will say it is an amazing cooker. Very efficient smoker on long cooks and great as a grill. Truly one grill that can do it all. Two zone grilling, hot and fast, kamado style smoking/indirect cooking, it is great.


        opfreak I have a Weber Performer Deluxe (22"), and also have a Slow 'N Sear Deluxe 22" kamado. I've looked at the standard 18" kamados and agree that they are pretty small. Not sure I could handle that size grate - everything like ribs or brisket would have to be cut down, or rolled up like I've seen folks do for ribs.

        If you don't expect to need to move the grill around much, and tend to stay in one house, like I have for 25 years, one of the larger ceramic kamados might be worth looking at. But the price tag is up there. The package I have from snsgrills.com is about $1399. But its all ceramic and stainless, and aside from maybe replacing the high temp felt gasket, I think it will outlast me. I wouldn't want to move a ceramic kamado around a lot, or roll it over rough terrain, as they are heavy (200-300 pounds), and can be broken if you tip it over onto concrete.

        Getting back to your choices of the Weber kamado versus the Weber Performer plus a Weber Smokey Mountain - I personally think its good to have more than one cooker. Even with the SNS Kamado, there are times I find myself smoking side dishes (smoked Mac-n-cheese or smoked baked beans) on the Weber Performer while 5-6 racks of ribs or a butt or brisket are smoking on the SNS Kamado. Having the Performer plus a separate smoker would be more flexible, AND you can smoke on the Performer. I would look at the Performer first, add a Slow 'N Sear to it for ease of smoking and searing, and add the WSM later. Even with about 1/3 of the main grate gone due to being over the SNS, I often cook these quantities on my Performer:
        • 1 17 to 20 pound brisket
        • 2 8-10 pound Boston butts
        • 5 racks of baby back or St. Louis style ribs using a rib rack
        • 3-4 chickens, usually split into halves
        • 20 pound turkey (on the Weber rotisserie)
        Accessories I have include a rotisserie, an elevated cooking grate to add more space, the Slow 'N Sear, Drip 'N Griddle and Easyspin grates from snsgrills.com, and also a set of Grillgrates from grillgrate.com. The aluminum grillgrates I use when I want one zone direct grilling for the entire cooking grate, without risk of flareups (80/20 burgers or lots of chicken). You can flip the grillgrates over and use them like a plancha or griddle (with holes for grease to drip through and smoke to come up). A plancha might be another nice kettle accessory.

        If you can find it, I highly recommend the Performer Deluxe. That propane ignition for the charcoal is a nice feature, and I use it a lot.

        I too have a PartyQ, and use it on my Performer. With a single load of the right brand charcoal (usually B&B), I can get 10-12 hours on a load of 7-8 pounds of charcoal in the SNS basket. Not what you would get out of a full bag poured into the bottom of a kamado, but very respectable and enough to let you get a good nights sleep while smoking a big cut of meat. With the PartyQ even though the kettle is single walled, you will be able to maintain smoking temps when it is below freezing outside. It just might use the charcoal a little faster.

        My Performer was made in 2007, and is still going strong. I've replaced the charcoal grate a couple times, and I used to replace the nickel plated cooking grate every couple of years due to burn through and rust, until I got the SNS Easyspin grate, which is solid 304 stainless steel.

        Anyway, my advice is go for the kettle first, add at a minimum the basic model Slow 'N Sear for aid in fire management and smoking, and see how it goes. There are lots of kettle accessories available that you can accumulate that just make cooking more fun. Add the WSM next spring or summer if you still want it then.
        Last edited by jfmorris; July 16, 2021, 01:58 PM.


        • latenight71
          latenight71 commented
          Editing a comment
          +1 to this. You can do so much with a Weber 22/ Performer and the buy-in is so much lower to allow you some extra equipment. That said, my buddy has a kamado and it's also very cool. He scored it used for under $500 from a co-worker so was a great deal. I've been on Webers for 30 years so I'm kinda burned in I guess.

        jfmorris Brings up some good points about reasons for multiple cookers. I love my WSCG, but it’s not my only grill or even my most used grill. Biggest questions are how long do you want to be able to cook without adding more charcoal, how much do you want to upgrade parts over time, and what accessories do you want?

        The Summit Kamado comes fully equipped and capable of gilling and smoking effortlessly out of the box. It has a bigger cooking grate that is already stainless steel. ATCs are nice, but it will hold dang steady for hours without one, but already has a hole drilled if you decide to use one. If you want accessories like a rotisserie, pizza kit, Santa Maria add on, etc., you’re going to spend more, have to be creative, and for some things just be out of luck. I trimmed down a big Joetisserie for my WSCG, that was easy. However, a Santa Maria add on is going to be tough with a hinged lid. I haven’t done much with pizza. The WSCG is supposed to do great as is for that too. Those types of accessories are available by multiple makers for the 22” kettles.


        • jfmorris
          jfmorris commented
          Editing a comment
          Yeah - I would be hard pressed to have only a single outdoor cooker. If I did, I've always said it would be my Performer Deluxe, mostly due to the large side table, charcoal storage, and huge number of accessories for 22" kettles. I don't think I could live with my SNS Kamado as my one and only outdoor cooker though. I would still want my flat top or gas grill at the very least.

        • Old Glory
          Old Glory commented
          Editing a comment
          Well said. If I only had one cooker it would be the WSCG. Over my XL BGE, Weber Performer, and my pellet grill. The WSCG does everything very well. I think a great duo would be the WSCG and a PK360. Both solid performers and different enough to make it fun.

        Wow thanks for all the long responses. Amazing to get so much info so fast.

        Length of smokes is important I'd love to have at least 12 hours of smoke time without worry. (Done smokes before where I smoke while I'm off at work).

        Size 18" is too small... I lived with it only because I had the bubba keg and I couldnt justify spending hundreds on anything different. I would almost always run out of space if I had guests over. The gas weber q would then fill to add capacity.

        To add to size - If I'm making a smoke- I'm not size limited. Thats normally the main course and while the meat rests I use the grill to finish things off.

        Where the 18" becomes to small is when I'm grilling, having even a few people over (5-6) and I'm out of room fast reverse sear stakes get to be a problem. A few burgers and dogs and space runs out. I love grilled corn on the cob, and that sucks up space.

        weber kamado summit @1050 is my upper limit that I could actually justify spending. With inflation its inline with what a new 'bubba' keg would cost today. If I had an unlimited budget I'd get a Kamado Joe (But IMHO I cant come up with a logical reason why).

        Do any of the weber kettles come with a port for a controller, or is it just on the summit? Because using a controller is something that is almost a must, there are times that I cannot be around to pay attention to the fire.

        As for accessories. Outside the bbq guru - and a heat deflector I dont use any.
        Last edited by opfreak; July 16, 2021, 04:04 PM.


        • jfmorris
          jfmorris commented
          Editing a comment
          I had to drill a hole in the Performer to mount the BBQ Guru fan adapter. Drilled it with a cheap 1" step bit. You just gotta be careful with where the hole goes - needs to be below the charcoal grate, and above the ash sweeps, and in between where they run. There are 3 spots that work well for it. The adapter has a silicon plug that closes it up when I'm not using the PartyQ.

        Hello from NW Oregon.
        Traeger Pellet Grill. Ironwood or my favorite The TimberLine 850.
        Last edited by bbqLuv; July 16, 2021, 06:43 PM.


          I have owned a Weber Summit since right after they were first introduced. I got the version with the attached table, the WSCGC. It's my most versatile cooker because I can use it in kamado mode, utilizing all of the 24" grate, or in kettle mode with an SnS for quicker grilling and for smaller smokes.

          I like the sturdiness and quality of the build, the Snapjet ignition system, the attached table with lots of room for storage, and the fact that it cooks solidly, without the need for a temp controller, although there is a port for that provided.

          If you need more convincing for the Weber Summit, watch this Babyback Maniac video:



            I’m an owner of a Weber Performer Deluxe. It is by far the best value on the market. My only regret is that I purchased it just as Weber was introducing the Summit line and I didn’t realize it until after my purchase. With that said I’m still cooking on it now. Over the years I’ve replaced both grates with SS ones from https://killagrilla.square.site. They are absolute beasts! (Whatever grill you chose never again purchase OEM replacement grates.) I also own a WSM.

            Personally I would recommend the Weber Kamado. It is just slightly bigger than the Performer, and that makes more of a difference than you would think. Better insulation and temperature control. A built-in fan port. And the support of Weber behind it.

            It is the "if I only had one grill…" grill.


              Well, seeing as you’re a kamado fan already...I’d go with the Weber version.

              Like Kathryn, I also have the WSCGC. And love it. It’s incredibly versatile and can be quite amazing in its charcoal usage. It still blows my mind after a long cook to see how much is often left in there.

              The 22” WSM is a solid smoker...but my Summit replaced it. I have more options and the kamado is MUCH more efficient right out of the box. A fan controller CAN be used but isn’t strictly necessary.

              I pretty much always recommend the WSM to people looking for a smoker. I think they’re hard to beat. That said, they’re basically a one trick pony. It does that trick really well, but it’s still one trick. Versatile they are not.

              Like many others around here, I too have multiple cookers. The WSCGC is my go to for most cooks...be they short or long. If I could only have 1 cooker (shudder LOL) that would be the one I would keep.


                I echo what Kathryn touts about the WSCGC. I have had mine for four years, and although I have other grills that I use for various purposes, I use the WSCGC the most. If I could only own one grill, the WSCGC would be it!


                  One more with and for the WSCG. I have quite a variety of cookers from a 1995 Weber gasser to a new LSG offset stick burner, and if had to choose just one it would be my WSCG, hands down. In fact, I'm firing it up right for some wibs!


                    I have a WSM, 18.5, a Grilla pellet, and a Weber Genesis gasser and then a Traeger at my lake house. The Traeger turned me onto the ease of pellet smokers. My issue with the WSM was using it during cold and windy conditions for overnights. There were three times (by my count) when I had a flameout, and ended up tossing my pork shoulders because I wasn't sure how long they sat at an unsafe temp. Not worth the $7 IMHO. I like my WSM and have used in conjunction with my pellet a few times already this summer with excellent results, but will probably not use it come the fall. I still use the gasser the most too. Why just this past weekend I was able to get all my kids to play nicely together and the food turned out delicious.


                      I would say you will be happy with either the WSCG or a Weber 26” kettle. If the 18.5 inch grate is too small the 22” might be too….so why not go on up to the 26”? I have both a 22 & 26 and the larger unit gets 80% of the cooking. I’ve never cooked on a WSCG so I can’t comment on them but I’m sure they are awesome cookers. Those would be my two choices….that 26” is one of the most versatile cookers/grills/smokers I’ve ever used.


                        you guys convinced me weber e6 kamado has been ordered.
                        need to find a matching-ish side table. The Weber with table was out of budget.
                        Last edited by opfreak; July 20, 2021, 08:27 PM.


                        • CaptainMike
                          CaptainMike commented
                          Editing a comment
                          Of many decisions that many of us regret, you will not regret this one. Looking forward to seeing how your experience goes!

                        • Dadof3Illinois
                          Dadof3Illinois commented
                          Editing a comment
                          You can find some pretty inexpensive small stainless tables out on the web that would work, or build one yourself, that way you get the exact size you want.


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