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Smoke Hollow 4 in 1 vs Char Griller Trio

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

In all my research, I know this is a much asked question.  But I have a somewhat unique situation in that I live in Honduras and my options for a decent smoker for a newbie are limited. 

I have been leaning towards a Char Griller Trio and shipping it down.  I found it online for about $534 which includes a cover and when you add about $200 or so shipping it adds up quick. Not to mention ordering and shipping all the materials that I can't find here for mods.

I drove by an import store today and saw a Smoke Hollow Pro Series 4 in 1 for L11,500 HND (about $575 USD).  They did not have it assembled totally correct (typical here) but I think they have one still in the box. I would still need to get all the materials to modify.


My question is, those of you with experience with one or both, what advice would you give on shipping or buying local.  Is the Char Griller a better product and if so $200 better?  I have plans to make my own some day but as a beginner I would like to get something and get some smokin' under my belt before I decide on style and design.


Thanks for your help.

post #2 of 10
Morning , JS ...let me start by saying....I know nothing about those smokers. biggrin.gif I notice these are both multi fuel smokers....I was wondering if that was very important to you in your choice. Is fuel like wood or charcoal hard to come by? The only smoker I have hands on experience with is the weber smoky mountain. I would say its a great smoker to learn on. Also , have you considered building a UDS? Not too difficult to get a barrel and slap one of those together. Just a thought....good luck in your quest for fire. grilling_smilie.gif
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 

I have thought through those options.  At first I was planning on just making my own, and the 55 gal drum idea was top consideration as it is easy and I can get them here pretty readily(although I would need to clean it out good as they usually come with some chemicals still inside.  I can get wood (although I have to be cautious in type of wood and whether it emits undesirable fumes and smoke. The major cooking fuel here is wood in homemade stoves/ovens so I would rely on the Honduran advice with this one.) and there are an abundant of individuals that make charcoal and sell it, so charcoal is available.


I lean towards the combo mostly for the ease of my wife firing up the gas side to cook something.  I thought of just buying both but then it ends up more expensive.  Most items like these sell for 1.5 to 2 times as much as it would in the States.  I am constantly weighing the cost of paying more here vs. cheaper with shipping added there.  There is a shipping co (Rapido Cargo) that ships for about $1/lb.  Which is not bad as long as what I buy from the States has free shipping and I can ship it free to their warehouse in Miami.


All that to say I am still struggling through it.  I love the Weber grills, best charcoal grill I've ever used. In fact I have a small Smokey Joe that I have been smoking chicken and steaks on using a small smoke box with hickory or mesquite chips in and set on the charcoal.


I guess my thinking is to get the combo because of its versatility, then as I gain experience and determine the type of smoker that would work best for me...make one.


Thanks for the tips.

post #4 of 10

boy , you got a lot to ponder.....well , im way too cheap to pay all them freight charges so I would go UDS. I bet if you look hard you could find a barrel that had olive oil in it or some such , and it would clean up easy. I hear you about wanting the wife to be able to fire it up. my better half wants no part of outdoor cooking , so that wouldn't be a problem for me.

well , maybe sit down with the bride and ask her if she'd rather save the money and let you do the outdoor stuff , or if she really likes to grill , then maybe you go for the propane extra.

post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 

I know. But such is life.  The one factor I did not mention is my patience factor.  I am ready to get some meat in the smoke.  That is leaning me towards the Smoke Hollow, although I am cheap too.  I would milk it along for as long as I could.  When we moved here almost 4 yrs ago, I bought a cheap $20 ($40 here) Weber wanna be and made it last 3 yrs before we came back Stateside on our furlough. Now we are back and 6 mo without my tlc, in Honduras rain, heat, and humidity had the legs falling off and the bottom almost gone.


Thanks for your input. How cold are you there?  We are in our rainy season which runs temps as low as 65 at night.  Down right chilly.

post #6 of 10
Brother, it is frigid here right now. Below zero at night , up to about 20 degrees at noontime ,
65 would feel good ! We got 5 inches of snow a few days ago. grilling_smilie.gif
post #7 of 10
Thread Starter 

Hambone1950. Thanks for keepin' me ponderin.  I came across the Mini-WSM mod for the Smokey Joe.  I think that is the way to go to start.  I can find a gas grill for the wife and quick grills when we are in a hurry, keep my charcoal grills when I want em and add the tamale pot mod in for some good time consumin smokin'.  I am ganna start a new post on the Mini-WSM thread with progress.

Stay warm.

post #8 of 10

I have the smoke hollow pro that you mentioned. This is where I cooked,smoked my first chickens,pork butts and turkeys. It's a very versatile device and lets you do almost any type of meat or veggie cooking. I've had mine over a year and find it is still in new condition even after almost daily use. It's very robust.  It's also great for spur of the moment meals when I just want to grill some burgers,steaks, or chicken using the propane side.


I also own an electric smoker (Masterbuilt 40") for longer smokes and finer control of temps like for jerky and cheeses.


I do recommend the Smoke Hollow as I've had nothing but success with it. As it can use charcoal, wood, or gas it gives you many options and keeps on tickin, year after year.

post #9 of 10

I had the Trio and gave it away.  Trying to smoke on that was a pain in the butt.

The gas grille portion was OK.

The charcoal portion for cooking was OK, too, but it would flair up a lot more than my Weber.

The smoking portion was the worst part.  Given the choice between the two, I would choose going out to eat over smoking on the Trio.  I can do more, better with a Weber kettle.


I know there are folks who love their Trio's, but I honestly found it to be a terrible product.

post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 

I came across a thread for a Mini-WSM. Since I currently have a Smokey Joe Silver, this will be my cheapest, quickest way to get smokin'. I will buy a standalone gas grill for the quick chicken, steak and dogs.

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