Old Country BBQ Pits Over and Under Smoker

Discussion in 'Wood Smokers' started by lesteralexander, Jan 8, 2015.

  1. Been a member for a while. I have been mostly reading and searching on here. I have found Old Country BBQ Pits Over and Under Smoker that I am thinking about. I have looked for reviews and Discussions. If anyone has used one on these, I would appreciate a review or any modifications that may need to be made for the best use of grill and Smoker.
     
  2. Check the review section. I see this is your first post. When you get a chance will you drop by roll call so everyone can give you a proper SMF welcome?

    Happy smoken.

    David
     
  3. thmoker

    thmoker Fire Starter

    Lester, I think that model is fairly new. There may not be any reviews yet. I saw it for the first time in an Academy in Jacksonville when I bought my Pecos last spring. Looks pretty well built and I was very tempted to change my mind. If you get one, please let us know what you think.
     
  4. Ive got the over/under old country smoker. Ive smoked ribs and a boston but on it. It holds its temp pretty well at 225 and usually holds it for an hour before having to put on another couple chunks of wood. Ive read many reviews on other sites where people around ga/al were debating on getting a Lang or an Old country. That says a lot, because ive used a Lang, and they are pretty remarkable smokers. But for the price, The old country is just as good, all nicely welded, and if you ask, the people at academy may let you look at other smokers in the back, just so you can look at the welds, and get the one you think is best...if your that picky. Id say its worth the money, and would recommend it to anyone smoking in their back yard, or even competitions.
     
  5. stickyfingers

    stickyfingers Smoking Fanatic

    It claims not to have any hot spots. Any opinions you're willing to share? 
     
  6. Hey stickyFingers. I have used my over/under smoker probably 10 times since december and I have placed ribs and butts in all corners of the grate, and always have them there for the same amount of time every time and all the same results. The only thing i do to ensure no hot spots, is run my wood chunks all the way across the fire box, 3 or 4 pieces across. But the way that the smoker is designed, it allows the smoke/heat to enter from one side of the fire box all the way to the other side with no blockage, plus smoke stacks on each side will attract the smoke to both sides of the smoker, instead of all the smoke rushing to one stack. I was hesitant at first to switch up my style of smoker, but now that ive gotten the hang of it, I dont regret it one bit. I'd recommend this smoker to anyone who loves to smoke meat.
     
  7. jburn244

    jburn244 Fire Starter

    Anyone else buy the Over/Under recently and care to share some opinions? I have the Pecos but this thing now is tempting me to switch. Just seems like a much more efficient design overall.
     
  8. klilley123

    klilley123 Newbie

    I just bought the over/under from Academy about 2 months ago and they allowed me to go in the back to check out the entire stock so I could pick the one I wanted. I have smoked beer butt chicken, ribs, salmon, and even shrimp. I even grilled chicken breast of the fie box side as something else was smoking. This smoker has great versatility and I really like the fact that the smoke goes into your meat evenly instead of one end of the grill getting most of the heat. If you fill up the firebox, you can fill up the grill side with meat and it will smoke evenly. This is by far the best grill I've ever had. My brother has the Green Egg and he is thinking about selling that and going with the over under because you don't get the smokey flavor with the Green Egg that you do smoking with wood. 
     
  9. packdaddy777

    packdaddy777 Newbie

    These may have been put together well when they first came out but I purchased mine in July of 2015 and the quality of the assembly must have gone down hill since then. Following is a review I did on Academy's website with pics: http://www.academy.com/webapp/wcs/s...0151_10051_1277365_-1__?DEVICE_TYPE=NONMOBILE

    Very easy to move around the yard. Cool design and provides lots of smoking space. If I can work out all the problems It will be a nice pit.

    1st problem - could not find one with all the grates. I had to pull grates from another at a different store and I am still missing a grate to go over the fire for grilling.

    2nd problem - It advertises no hotspots but the Hot spot is all along the back side of the smoker. Possibly because there is no flat iron type grate on the smoker side like on the fire side. I will be modifying it to see if I can fix it

    3rd problem - When the firebox heats up the fire box doors start to open due to the poor alignment of the welds of the door. As much as a 1/4 inch on mine. (see picture attached). When closed, the door is too close to the body. You really can't tell until you get it home and get it hot. I have been able to grind it down and lessen the gap but still have not got it all the way close when it is hot. This makes it hard to maintain temps especially in windy conditions.


     

     


    The bottom left set of ribs was an experiment with only a marinade. But on the right side you can see the ribs are cooking at different speeds. I'm thinking it's because the smoke and heat enter the the smoking side all along the back side. I will be moving the plate from the firebox to the smoker side to help dissipate the heat more evenly. And putting cast iron grills on the fire box side hopefully this will let me get her hotter when needed.
     
  10. riversmoker

    riversmoker Newbie

    Did your Old Country Over and Under Pit come with 3 grates (2 on top and 1 on bottom) or just 2? The ones I've seen at Academy lately have only had two on top, but none on bottom, and I'm thinking that someone (Academy or Old Country?) left one out.
     
  11. tobyth

    tobyth Newbie

    I have this smoker as well and find I have the exact problems you are having. I love the pit. I have found out to keep the fire at a steady heat. After get the fire hot you chop small pieces of wood to add on as you go. That is the only way I have found to keep the temp managed. Hope that helps.
    Also do you know anywhere I can get a cover for this pit?
     
  12. tobyth

    tobyth Newbie

    Does anyone know where to get a cover for this over and under?
     
  13. klang

    klang Newbie

    Newbie here. Is Academy the only place to get the Old Country over under? Local store is out and not available on the site for delivery. Need for Christmas gift for hubby.
     
  14. dwhite1031

    dwhite1031 Smoke Blower

    Yes, they are exclusive to Academy even though some of their offset models are available on the Old Country BBQ web site. Academy is now carrying a huge Old Country vertical that isnt available directly from their Uvalde facility either.
     
  15. dwhite1031

    dwhite1031 Smoke Blower

    Tobyth, I have searched for one that will fit my Old Country O & U with no luck. I'm going to have to go with a custom made cover.
     
    Last edited: Nov 30, 2015
  16. packdaddy777

    packdaddy777 Newbie

    I ended up trading my over and under in for Old Country Wrangler. It a thicker metal offset. This is something I'm more accustom to. However while I was at Academy I noticed they have tried to correct the problem with the  the warping doors on the Over and Under. They now roll the ends over. I'm not sure if it will seal but I was not willing to give it another try as there was not much even cooking going on as they had advertised. 

    I never found a good cover either had to use a blue tarp and bungees.

    Getting grates was a problem too. It came with one, I found another at a different store and used it for the top rack and the fire box side when needed.  
     
  17. dwhite1031

    dwhite1031 Smoke Blower

    I saw the new door design at Academy recently. I got mine in November & it has braces welded on the underside of both lids. There were 2 in the store at that time, one had the braces & one didn't, & as mentioned I got the braced lid model. I've cooked on it nearly evey weekend & haven't had any warping of the doors.
     
    Last edited: Jan 9, 2016
  18. smokingweasel

    smokingweasel Fire Starter

    I have gotten my over under recently and it has the wrap around doors which I'm happy about. The only time smoke leaks is when I close the stacks too much. I'm very picky about my smoke so a good balance in the stacks can prevent leaking. I prefer the blue smoke instead of the white heavy bitter smoke that bark and high temp wood burn can get immediately after adding wood on the fire. I have a theory that there is higher temps near the back of the chamber. The surface probes are only measuring the air up front but I suspect it's hotter close to the firebox. This was after smoking a 8 lb butt in only 8 hrs at 220 supposed temp. I move the butt near the front my second cook and it cooked for my expected 10-12. I'm thinking of drilling and adding a probe on the back of the chamber above the firebox just to keep a watchful eye. Also maybe adding some Insulated seal like in your household oven doors to seal better. Has anyone thoufht of adding a water pan in the bottom of the chamber....?
     
  19. big swole

    big swole Newbie

    Subscribed for any new info and pics.
     
  20. I bought my Old Country BBQ Pits "Over and Under" just before Labor Day. I did a lot of research of a lot of different brands and types of wood-burning smokers. We have an Old Country BBQ Pits "Wrangler" at work and it looked well made. What intrigued about the "Over and Under" was it's unusual design, having a full-length firebox behind and belowe the main chamber. In theory it seemed to make sense and looked like a good solution to the temp variances that offset style smokers tend to have.
    The doors wrap around the sides of the body on both the fire box and meat chamber. So far, I haven't had any issues with warpage or excessive leaks. The only quality issue so far has been the angle iron that supports the left side of the main grate in the meat chamber. The welds broke during my seasoning process. It's an easy fix and not a major concern. As a couple others have mentioned, take the time to look at all of the units they have in the store before buying. They had 6-8 in stock and were widely varied in the quality control department. My smoker came with 2 grates. One full sized one for the bottom shelf of the main chamber and 1 half size one that can be used in the fire box or as a 2nd shelf in the main chamber.
    I haven't made any modifications yet, with the exception of a water pan and a catch can for the grease drippings. The catch can is just a small (unused) paint can I picked up from the local big box hardware store. The water pan is just a 9x11 cake pan that I set in the bottom of the meat chamber, covering the slot that connects to the fire box. Seems to prevent a hot spot in the middle since I only build a fire in the middle of the fire box. So far, so good.
    I've done several racks of ribs, some pork butts, some sausages and some fatties. As far as the temps go, I use a digital probe in the middle of the grate near the food and I've noticed that it is about 20-25 degrees hotter than the reading on the dial gauges in the lid. The first time I smoked spare ribs, I had them sitting at an angle with the small bones towards the back and noticed the ends were cooked a bit more. I suppose there is a hot spot near the back wall. I assume it's radiant heat from the steel where the chambers are connected. One solution that seems to help is I keep my fire away from the back of the fire box and closer to the lid and dampers.
    As far as the dampers go, there are three of them and I find them mostly ineffective for regulating the fire. Instead, I keep the middle one closed (directly under my fire), I half close the other two and I leave them alone for the rest of the cook. I use the clean-out door to adjust my airflow. Usually, leaving it cracked open 1-2 inches works the best.
    It has 2 fairly large stacks on top. I keep them half open to retain some smoke.
    Running at 225°, I use about 1-2 sticks an hour, depending on what kind of wood I'm using (10-14 inches long, 1.5 to 3 inches in diameter). I ran it at 275° for a big pork butt to speed it up a bit (11.7 lbs, who has that kind of time?) and went through 2 sticks every 40 minutes. All in all, with practice, it's easier and easier to keep the temps steady.
    Clean out is a cinch. The firebox has a slotted tray for building your fire. It's easily removable and the bottom of the fire box is flat, allowing you to push your ashes out of the clean out door. I found that a basic garden hoe through the clean out door does the trick of pulling the ashes out. In the meat chamber, I just scrape towards the grease drip hole and then scoop out any chunks. Again, the bottom is mostly flat, so a basic paint scraper makes quick work of it.
    Overall, I'm very satisfied with the smoker. At $599, I felt that it was a good buy and would recommend it to anyone in the market.
     
    Last edited: Oct 14, 2016

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