Is the Cook Shack smoker worth it?

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by cmayna, Oct 11, 2015.

  1. cmayna

    cmayna Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I have a fishing buddy who like me shares a lot of his smoked product when we go fishing.  He recently gave me a small chunk of smoked salmon which was pretty oily as compared to my dry salmon but I still liked it.  Asked him what type of smoker he has and it is apparently a Cook Shack SM045 which runs around $1200.   Seriously?     I've done some research here and there doesn't seem to be too much chatter about this brand (Well duh!, how many of us could afford one?).   Yes, I see they are double walled, well insulated with an electronic controller on top.   Interesting that the only vent hole is a tiny one on top designed really for the probe wire.  So how does the smoke vent out soon enough without becoming stale in the smoker?   Where's the intake vent?

    Just wonder if anyone has experience with these units.

  2. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    It's simple, they use very little wood and less power, I figure over time they will pay for themselves.  I have two.

    Last edited: Oct 11, 2015
  3. ka3mgh

    ka3mgh Newbie

    I don't have any personal experience with a Cook Shack but believe I have learned a few things from my own research and various forums about that type of smoker.  There are 3 similarly designed stainless, double walled smokers.  The Smokin-It, Smokin-Tex, and the Cook Shack.  I have the Smokin-Tex 1400.  I was going to order the Smokin-It but found the Tex at a local store so bought it instead.  I have never seen or used a Cook Shack but it is my understanding it is the top of line unit of the three.

    My understanding is that the price of the units increases from the Smokin-It to the Cook Shack.  I understand that the Smokin-It and Tex use analog controls and the Cook Shack units use a digital controls which add some additional cost but if you believe that controlling the temperature withing a couple of degrees versus having a +/- 15-30 degree swing in temps is important you want the digital controls.

    Some searching on this forum and the web in general will give you some additional info and some other similar units to compare to the Cook Shack.  I think you will find loyal users of all the brands, not just those 3.

    Hope that helps a little.
  4. old sarge

    old sarge Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I own the CookShack Amerique/066.  Never a problem. Very pricey, but they do offer re-furbished/scratch and dent units from time to time which is what I purchased. Of the other smokers which Ka3mgh mentions, the SI units are the least expensive.  My brother has the SI3 and it is a very solid unit and produces very good smoked food with no problems.   If one compares the SI and ST smokers solely on the information on their respective websites to include comments, SI provides more bang for the buck. If you visit the SI Facebook page, there is a social store that will give you a discount.  That is not a knock on SmokinTex. They have been around a long time have a strong following. I just have no experience with ST.  All of these smokers are double walled and fully insulated except for the floorpan. 

    You cannot go wrong with any of the smokers. 
    Last edited: Oct 11, 2015
  5. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Craig,  Do not worry about stale smoke, there is plenty of air-flow in these units.   The air inlet is a 5/8" hole in the bottom, above the grease pan and it also acts as a drain hole.  These smaller holes attribute to the ability to use much less wood than what may be used in other units.
  6. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Just from conversing with Old Sarge and doing some independent research it looks like the CS smokers are of outstanding quality. Being made in the USA they will cost considerably more than the imported from China electric smokers. I bought my Masterbuilt MES 30 Generation 1 smoker because I couldn't afford an electric smoker like a CS. Still, my cheap little electric smoker has produced some great Q.
  7. I have a Cookshack 025 and a PG500. They are excellent quality and their customer service is top notch.
  8. old sarge

    old sarge Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Through convection, the air drafts in and up through the grease hole in the smoker's floor and out through a similarly sized hole in the top. The CS and SI and ST do not employ dampers. Very efficient smoking.

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