Yoder 640 vs Blazin' Grills Grid Iron - Help Please.

Discussion in 'Pellet Smokers' started by rdalemercer, May 31, 2015.

  1. rdalemercer

    rdalemercer Newbie

    Hi - 

    Long time charcoal griller and both electric and stick burner smoker here looking for some advice between the two Pellet Grills listed in the Title. I've read about (most) of the pellet grills on the market (MAK, GMG, CG, Louisiana, Memphis, Rec Tec and a few others) and tapped at my keyboard searching for information on the web regarding the various pellet grills and manufacturers -- and *think* that I've narrowed it down to these two. Why? Based mostly on the information that I've read on this and other forums....and there's LOTS of reading (and differing opinions) out there!! wow! ... so I had to draw the line somewhere and the quality of construction, service (after the purchase) and (mostly) positive comments left these two at the top of my list!

    So about my experience: I've owned a side fire box smoker, MES (30), The Good One and a Brinkman Professional (that I've rebuilt twice). I used to smoke 40~50 chickens every quarter for my team lunch and ribs/shoulders on the odd months just to see the smiles on their faces! That being said, I've never owned - or even used - a pellet grill ... which is why I'm here bothering you fine people and asking for your input!

    The two Pellet Grills listed above seem to be *about* the same price with all of the accessories that I would want: Cover, internal second shelf, external front + side shelf and a grilling grate. The controls both seem to be digital and will hold the temps between +/- 5 degrees (according to their published propaganda/brochures).

    The Grid Iron has a better (?) method to dump the remaining ash + the front & side shelfs' are solid tops that fold down for putting on the cover. The burn pot is in the middle which would suggest that there would be more even heat distribution. The auger is round wire instead of square reducing the tendency to get pellets stuck in the pellet feed system. The cover is ill-fitting.

    The Yoder appears to be heavier construction and has ports on the right side for temperature probes. There was some comments about the heat deflector plate warping under high heat if the grilling grate was not used. The fire grate has been improved to eliminate warping of that piece. The 2nd shelf is an optional item. The front & side shelfs' also appear to be 'fixed' and do not fold for covering. The cover is custom fit.

    I'm open to reading any direct (or indirect) experience with either of these two pellet grills .... I'm planning on making a purchase in the following 2 weeks so any input is welcomed!

    Thanks in advance for reading my drivel...

  2. seenred

    seenred Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    Hi Dale...first off, welcome to SMF!

    Now, to begin...you mention that you've never used a pellet cooker before. Have you at least eaten food cooked on one? I ask because some folks who are used to meat smoked on a stick burner are a little disappointed with the subtle smoke flavor produced by a pellet grill. So, before you lay down nearly $2K for a new Yoder or BGW, you might want to make sure you'd be happy with the product they produce first.

    If you've already sampled pellet-smoked foods and like what you had, then you're looking at 2 excellent pits. I don't have any direct cooking experience with either, but I've looked at the Yoder YS640 up close...it's a very well made pit. I understand that the Grid Iron is very comparable in construction and quality. Maybe some guys who own one or the other will weigh in...but IMO you can't go wrong with either of these pits. So my best advice, if you have narrowed it down to these 2, go with the one you can get the best deal on...I bet you'll be happy with whichever one you choose.

    Good luck! Be sure to let us know which way you go... Thumbs Up

  3. loock28

    loock28 Fire Starter

    i have a grand slam and I love it. the reason i went with the grand slam was because of the burnpot clean out and the shelves that are not an added expense on top of the price of the cooker. Mine also has the insulated lid for winter cooks I have not got to try this out yet. i think either way you go you will be happy with the cooker as long as you realize that the flavor will be different. you have to great choices let us know which one you choose.
  4. rdalemercer

    rdalemercer Newbie

    Thanks SeenRed and Loock28.

    I really appreciate the input and time to answer my post! The ease of cleaning the burn pot was one advantage of the Blazin Grill - especially on long cooks like brisket or a shoulder.

    I have had food (ribs and brisket) cooked on a Pellet grill and while the smoke was lighter than what I am used to, I know that there are ways to add smoke while cooking so that is less of an issue for me.

    My wife's concern was the difficulty of cooking with a pellet grill vs charcoal (not that she uses the Brinkman that much now) . I explained the process of starting the pellet grill vs the charcoal grill and I think that she is satisfied that it should be easier.

    I have contacted Blazin' Grills but not Yoder - to better understand the final delivered pricing with close to the same configuration..I guess I'll see what each of them answer and make a final decision.

    I'll update this thread with what I decide.

  5. rdalemercer

    rdalemercer Newbie

    Hi guys!

    I ended up with the Yoder YS640. Attached below (I hope) is a picture of it on my patio. They loaded it into the bed of my Brother-in-laws pickup with a forklift and for the next 1.5 hours, we discussed how to off-load the thing once we got it home. Lucky for me, the neighbors had a moving truck and the 3 young men were taking a break when we drove up. I offered to pay them to put it on my patio -- and in about 5 minutes they each had $10 and were back to moving in my neighbor! 

    Price wise they were almost equal (except for the YS640 Comp model that I drooled over on the showroom floor), so it came down to what I read on the forums. If it was based on the guys at Yoder that responded to my emails, I would have bought the Blazin' Grill. Too bad really. Oh well, life goes on. 

    Anyway, I seasoned it Saturday night when I got it home and my first cook was two very healthy chickens that were rubbed with an herb mix that I came up with. Lots of garlic to fend off the nasties with. They came off the grill in about 4 hours and were juicy and nicely smoked. I'm certain that we will enjoy many more meals out of the YS640!

    Thanks again for your input!

  6. seenred

    seenred Smoking Guru Group Lead OTBS Member

    Congrats on the new Yoder, Dale! I bet you'll be very happy with it. Looking forward to seeing some of your Qview! Thumbs Up

  7. fracmeister

    fracmeister Newbie

    Also a big Yoder fan. Love mine.
  8. mrad

    mrad Smoke Blower

    I have been following this thread hoping for some more responses. I am in the same position. At this time I am considering the Blazin Grills "Grid Iron" Along with the Yoder YS 640.  The Rec the Rec Tec is still on the radar, however, once I get them equally accesorized and delivered, the Rec Ted would only be about $200 less.

    I did find a dealer about 50 miles from me that carries the Yoders. I stopped and looked today at a 640 today. It's just like everyone says, "Built like a tank"  He has a shipment coming in next Tuesday and has one 640 that is not yet spoken for. With front and side wire racks, inside shelf, and 1 port I could get it for $1749 (plus tax) delivered to my house.

    The same setup in the blazin (minus the ports) would be $1600 delivered.I could get the competition kit with the Blazin and still be under the price of the Yoder.

    Would be interested to hear from anyone who has been able to look at both of them and give opinions.

  9. rdalemercer

    rdalemercer Newbie

    Hi Mike.
    As you can read from the posts above, I decided on the Yoder640 after seeing it in person. I really wish that I could have compared the top 2 contenders side x side, but it didn't happen.

    I've had several cooks on it since getting it home and am happy with my decision.

    One word of caution - if you pick it up, have 2 or more people to help you off load it as this is one heavy cooker!

    Good luck in your decision making process!
  10. mrad

    mrad Smoke Blower

    The dealer in my area said he would deliver it for free if I bought the yoder. At this time I am leaning slightly towards the Blazin for reasons that may be insignificant. First is that I was not able to talk to anyone at yoder with much knowledge of the product. They had someone in marketing talk to me and I repeatedly got the answer "I'm not sure". The second is the meat probe on the Blazin. Blaze will also let me choose my color.

    I also liked that the owner of Blazin is the on Uighur talked to on the phone. He spent 30-40 minutes with me. Sounds like he helps build each grill also.

  11. I have seen the owner of Yoder smokers answer several Question about the Yoders on the yoder ys pellet grills facebook page.  He takes pride in his products.  I have had my 640 now for I think 3 years...losing track...but i really love it...cooks great and I have had no problems with it.  I use it only for bbq not grilling and it had done a great job on what ever i throw on it.  There are some rules to play by though to get the most out of it..biggest is to clean fire pot after each use, probably the biggest pain of the whole system.
  12. loock28

    loock28 Fire Starter

    thats one of the great things about the blazin is the pull out firepot. I love mine and don't need to empty it after every cook.
  13. I've had my 640 for 3 years now. We use it many times a week. I have never looked back or missed my stick burner.  Their customer service is the best I've ever run across.

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