Pros: Easily modified :)
Cons: too expensive for something that requires a $170 PID and an extra burner
I started with a OBS which I used for 5 years smoking salmon trout and ribs...then while cleaning the brick feeder I shorted it out...Bradley was supporting me 100% on exactly how to fix it for a few bucks...but my wife put the smoker on the lawn with a free sign yes im serious....it was gone in 10 minute she said lol -
Soo thinking digital is better I purchased the 6 rack DBS - I smoked a few racks of ribs and started to notice that 1) The sensor was tripping off way early and 2) If this unit was plugged into a circuit that was feeding it anything less than 120v it would take forever to reach temp (empty) and when full I would have to add another hour of cooking time to compensate. I long extension cord was enough to cause this issue too. If the unit was plugged into a dedicated outlet even with one burner it would temp up much better but we are still talking 45 min to an hour to temp up and if it was loaded with ribs --- zzzzzz. So the hands off cooking feature of load it and forget it...I cant say the factory equipment allows for this.
So I called Bradley and they replaced it... The next unit was fairly accurate from a sensor perspective but also lacked enough heat to get to temp fast enough. I smoked on that for a year and then today decided that I would add the second element. That cost me $24 for an element and $15 for wire. I opted for a parallel wiring approach. The mod went off without a hitch and I can now reach 225F in 16 minutes with the vents wide open. If I want a stable 225 I leave it on 230 and it manages between 223 and 227. I also ordered the dual probe PID - I ordered this for two reasons 1) I wanted more accurate control without risking the factory controller which was designed for only 500 watts - and 2) I liked the concept of controlling my shut off my both oven temp and internal food temp or having other ptions and stages to cook at. The Bradley simply doesnt offer that.
The DBS is suggested in n many forums to work just fine with a dual element and its own sensory and controller. My initial testing seems to confirm that too. No blown fuses..no fires...just fast heat and relatively accurate control. It would be nice if this worked to temp in anything but mid summer weather without modification but adding a second element was fun in a "tool time w/ Tim" kind of way. (whuh whuh whuh) :)
Tomorrow im going to do Jerky, chicken and ribs :)