Pellet smoker/Grill?

Discussion in 'Pellet Smokers' started by motsco, Nov 26, 2014.

  1. motsco

    motsco Fire Starter

    howdy gang,

    I'm looking into buying a pellet smoker for myself this Holliday.

    what I am looking for is a pellet I can do some low and slo smokin and some high temp steak cookin.

    any suggestions?

    I would say temps from 250 to 450+ would work.

  2. seenred

    seenred Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    Hi Tom.

    Much depends on how much you want to spend. Pellet cookers start for around $500, and go up from there to 4 Grand or more.

    If you want it to do both low and slow and high temp direct grilling, IMO, one of the best rigs for doing both is the PG500 from Fast Eddie by Cookshack, which I believe goes for around $1500. It's one of the few pellet cookers on the market that has a separate direct-flame grilling zone for high temp searing. Other pits, like my Rec Tec, can certainly sear nicely, but not without some mods or setup changes to make it work.

    Hope that helps...good luck and let us know what you choose. Thumbs Up

    motsco likes this.
  3. andycorbin

    andycorbin Newbie


    I'd definitely take a look at the Pit Boss 820 at Menards. I have had one for a few months now and love it. It goes from 190-500. Never had a problem, and as we speak I have 2 20 lb turkeys going.. you can pick it up for $500
  4. waterinholebrew

    waterinholebrew Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Red gave ya some great info, I'll just add I have a GMG Daniel Boone & it's been great but like Red said if ya wanna sear.... You'd need some mods..... Somethin like some Grill Grates, Man Grate or the like come to mind ! My GMG has rock solid temp control from 150-500* !
    motsco likes this.
  5. chef willie

    chef willie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I'm a fairly new owner of the CG Pellet Smoker from Lowes. Mine was $450 at the time and I opted for the extended 3 year Lowes warranty (circuit board COULD go sideways) for $40 bucks that kicks in after the 1 year Mfg warranty. Picked up locally so no S&H. So far, very happy with performance on long smokes. It also has a large cooking surface compared to a Traeger at half the price. If I want seared burgers or steaks I just use the charcoal grill. I also have an electric smoker so have the bases covered I think. IMO it's hard to expect one unit to do ALL things well at an affordable price. I'm glad I added the pellet smoker to the mix though......HTH, Willie
  6. motsco

    motsco Fire Starter

    thanks for the info guys,

    I have been eyeing the pg500 just can't decide I want to spend that much.

    I have been looking at GMG. They are nice looking, for those of you that own GMG how are they to clean and can you empty the hopper easily?

    the idea of using grillgrates pointed me towards the GMG, Since I already have a few GG that I use on my webber kettle.

  7. Love my Yoder 640!
  8. waterinholebrew

    waterinholebrew Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    My GMG, I pull the grates out, the drip tray & the guards (3 of em). That all takes less than 2 minutes ! Then I vacuum it out & it's done, really easy.

    To empty the hopper, I just use my hand to scoop out the pellets if I wanna change flavors !

    Let me know if I can help with anything else !

    I know there's a lot of great pellet grills out there that are awesome..... But I love my GMG !
  9. motsco

    motsco Fire Starter

    and then the yoder guy steps in :)

    the 640 i have looked at and is on my list if I decide to go with the +1000 boxes.

    and yes I really love the looks of the yoder but have not done any research but now I will.

  10. As a pg500 owner I would highly suggest that route. I replaced both my gas grill and gas smoker and couldn't be happier. Not that you really want to get it that hot to cook on, but a temp setting of 500 will get the grate over the open fire abouve 900 degrees with no problem. So no problem getting a sear.
    Last edited: Nov 28, 2014
    motsco likes this.
  11. bear55

    bear55 Master of the Pit

    I think Chef Willie gave you the best advice.  I currently own a Rec Tec and a Bradley smoker.  The Rec Tec will sear but not really effectively.  I also own a gas as well as charcoal grill that I use for searing.  I'll even smoke 1/2 chickens and before bringing inside will place them on the charcoal grill to chrisp up the skin and add another layer of flavor to the bird. 
  12. +1 on Yoders...I have a YS480 and LOVE it!!!
  13. striper

    striper Meat Mopper

    Another vote for the Yoder.  I've had a YS 640 for 3 years now and it does it all.  Just need to get the Grill Grates with it for Searing Steaks.
    motsco likes this.
  14. joshc

    joshc Newbie

    Two of my good friends cook on pellet grills (one has a Mak and one has a Traeger) so I decided to take the plunge a couple months ago to get a pellet grill I did an enormous amount of research and finally went with a GMG Daniel Boone. Dollar for dollar it is absolutely the best deal out there. Here's my reasoning why I went with GMG.

    Digital temp control is just vastly superior to the Trager. I have pure control from 150-500 degrees. My buddy with the Traeger has far less control over his temps. I can get to 500 degrees, he can't. I can control mine by 5 degree increments and he can't. He also mentioned something about the fact that after 375, it will just jump to 425 and he has no way of regulating it between those two temp ranges. There's also just a clear cut difference in the quality of the grills with the little things. GMG has built in temp probe, nicer wheels, low pellet alarm, wifi, etc...

    Certainly the Yoder and Mak are built with better quality steel and also have a better warranty. They also have some minor things that are better than the GMG. If they were equivalent price, I would buy one of them. I just couldn't find much other than they are built better and have a better warranty to justify spending another $700+ for either.

    Hope that helps :)
    mlstanley1956 likes this.
  15. motsco

    motsco Fire Starter

    thanks all,

    ok here is where I'm at.

    Rec Tec. they have a best offer deal, comes with some enticing stuff, pellets, GG, cover, extra shelf and some other little thing, free shipping. but no on board temp prob.

    GMG. WIFI or no wifi. from what I read that I can get the remote control option for the non wifi model? but it has built in temp. prob. but no deals on options like rec Tec offers, free pellets, front shelf, cover, shipping. once I add these goodies it puts me over the cost of rec Tec .

    then the yoder? I have always had my eye on the yoder 640. is the yoder really worth over 1500 + accessories and shipping and no built in prob?
    don't get me wrong I have more probs in my house the maverick has. it's just a simple minded thought of having a meat prob. built in, it's just one less device to have hanging around the grill.

    Im thinking I'm going to go RT, but I like the GG. but then yoder.

    my search continues

  16. JMO, but yes!
  17. motsco

    motsco Fire Starter

    ok gang I just found out that I may be able to get a MAK 1 star with the starter kit for the same price as the best deal REC TEC. do anyone here know anything about the MAK 1 star? and is that a good deal?

  18. chef willie

    chef willie Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Hmmmm, I priced out the MAK's and it was outside my budget but I gave it a hard look. Made up here in the PNW by Americans and my understanding is is it's a top notch set-up. I believe NEPAS has one and, again, my understanding is it's all good. Perhaps a PM to him for a personal response on performance? I personally would go with Rec Tec over GMG after seeing GMG's on display....again, my opinion only. If you can get a MAK for the same as a RT, I'd go that of luck with the decision......Willie
  19. seenred

    seenred Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    Hey Tom...all I know about MAKs is what I've read in forums and seen in YouTube vids, but it's my understanding they are very good rigs. If I were going to upgrade to a more expensive cooker, the MAK 2 Star would definitely be on my short list. I understand they've designed a direct flame insert in their grease/heat diffuser that makes them a much better searing machine.

    If you can buy a MAK for the same price as a RT, that sounds like a nice deal.

  20. waterinholebrew

    waterinholebrew Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Hey Tom,
    I don't know anything on the Mak ! I know there's a bunch of pellet grills.... I think most are good depending on the $$$ ya wanna spend.... Red's got his Rec Tec and to my understanding likes it... Chef Willie has a Char Griller & to my understanding, likes it, & myself I have the GMG DB & I love it ! Chef Willie doesn't like GMG & hurts my feelings ! :th_crybaby2: LOL ! Just razzin ya a little Chef, to each their own ! I think they'd all kick out good Q ! JMHO ! Good luck with your decision Tom !


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