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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > General Beer Discussion > Upgrade to electric or purchase a meat smoker?
View Poll Results: Smoker or electric system upgrade
Smoker 11 78.57%
Electric Updgrade 3 21.43%
Voters: 14. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 01-28-2013, 09:57 PM   #21
bscott1011
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My vote is smoker first. Im using a Char-Griller with side box, fairly cheap and effective. I can grill over direct heat, set up indirect heat in the main box, or go low and slow with the side box. I wish it held heat a little better but I still use it all year.

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Old 01-28-2013, 10:10 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Xpertskir View Post
I dunno why I'm asking here anyways....SWMBO will make the call. It should be interesting she loves beer AND pork.

Im leaning towards the smoker with the intention of being electric and indoors by next winter.

My friend is dead set on me getting a Big Green Egg but any product that is most expensive in its class is rarely the best. At least that is what I have learned in other purchases.

I'll likely not go with a UDS as my main concerns for my smoker purchase are temperature regulation/control and cooking maintenence intervals. Can anyone speak to the above reccomended smokers in reference to those points?
As far as smokers go, it depends on what you want to do. Big Green Eggs are awesome all purpose cookers. If you're not planning on smoking 700 things at once, this guy built a version of Alton Brown's flower pot smoker for around 100 bucks

LINK

You can buy a chargriller smoker with firebox for around 180. You never knwo what can happen.
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Old 01-28-2013, 10:13 PM   #23
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WSM holds temp great,I love mine.

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Old 01-28-2013, 10:17 PM   #24
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I used charcoal/wood smoker for 12 years and always liked the food. Must say though, got tired of keeping that heat consistent for 10 hours sometimes. I recently bought and electric smoker and LOVE it. Set it and forget it, just come back from time to time to add wood chips.

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Old 01-28-2013, 10:21 PM   #25
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I have the all stainless Masterbuilt one that Sam's or Costco was carrying a few years back. It's basically a propane fired water smoker...not super high end but it works great and holds the temps well. It kind of looks like a gym locker. The firebox is big enough to use chunks but also works well with chips. Last year a bought a cold smoke generator so I also smoke grain for smoked beers in there and occasionally cheese.

BTW, my first smoker was a Brinkman which worked ok if the weather was perfect. If there was any wind and/or it was cold outside, it couldn't hold a constant temperature. So I'd pass on the Brinkman for sure.

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Old 01-28-2013, 10:22 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bscott1011
My vote is smoker first. Im using a Char-Griller with side box, fairly cheap and effective. I can grill over direct heat, set up indirect heat in the main box, or go low and slow with the side box. I wish it held heat a little better but I still use it all year.
Have you sealed the lid? I used fiberglass fireplace rope.
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Old 01-28-2013, 11:57 PM   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jflongo View Post
I used charcoal/wood smoker for 12 years and always liked the food. Must say though, got tired of keeping that heat consistent for 10 hours sometimes. I recently bought and electric smoker and LOVE it. Set it and forget it, just come back from time to time to add wood chips.

Do you personally notice a taste difference between the electric and charcoal/wood?

I am an avid cook and know my way around meat and at first starting my research I thought electric was a no brainer due to ease and concistency in maintaining temps. There certainly does seems to be a lot of info stating that its harder(or impossible) to achieve the same taste with electric.

I'm starting to think its the same argument as aluminum vs stainless BK's.
No real difference but plenty of old school hold outs that maintain stainless is better. Disclaimer..I have a stainless BK.
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Old 01-28-2013, 11:59 PM   #28
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jflongo
I used charcoal/wood smoker for 12 years and always liked the food. Must say though, got tired of keeping that heat consistent for 10 hours sometimes. I recently bought and electric smoker and LOVE it. Set it and forget it, just come back from time to time to add wood chips.
You need to check out the Minion Method. I use it on my WSM and it works wonders. Only thing you gotta do is stir the charcoal and add wood chunks occasionally (and water once). I did a brisket for ~11 hrs and never added charcoal. Stayed at 225 the entire time.
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Old 01-29-2013, 12:41 AM   #29
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I have not tried the fireplace rope yet but will check into it. No problems holding my temps during warm months but have trouble in the winter. The metal is pretty thin. I'm hoping to get an insulated cabinet style smoker next year for cool weather months.

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Old 01-29-2013, 12:52 AM   #30
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I have a GOSM propane smoker. They can be had for under $200. I went with a propane smoker because it requires very little attention, and it works well.

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