Having used both in the past couple years, here are my findings. Both are good. Both do the job, and yield delicious food. Cowboy generally starts easier, 2 newspaper pages in the chimney vs 3 for RO. Naturally, this also means Cowboy is ready to cook sooner. RO burns hotter and longer. A full charcoal basket sees a half-hour difference. RO bag contains less useless dust than Cowboy. So I have no real complaints about Cowboy, and will continue to not hesitate to purchase it if I can't get Royal Oak. But RO's the preferred choice.