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New and need advice on smoker choice

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
Hey everyone. I have been lurking around for awhile and I am finally going to get a smoker now. I'm having trouble picking it out though. I have decided on either a GOSM or Masterbuilt electric. I know they are different sides of the spectrum. I like the ease of use the Masterbuilt seems to offer, however I like concept of having a flame involved in my smoking. Any advice you can offer would be greatly appreciated.
post #2 of 21
Being all of my smokers are charcoal, the only thing I can add is that most of the electrics have no temp controls. You can mod them though. Atleast with propane, you do have a temp control. If I was too choose one, I would go propane.
post #3 of 21
I got the Masterbuilt 7 in 1 smoker, Stainless when I got started smoking about a year ago. I love it. I use charcoal but if it gets too cold, etc, I can add the porpane heat. Or, you can go straight propane. When you're just starting the propane hleps to regulate the heat unitl you get a feel for how much charcoal, burn times, etc.

It has 2 levels or you can use just one, etc. Here's the link to Masterbuilt although I actually got mine from Cabelas.


Hope that helps.
post #4 of 21
I have the GOSM ( just got it for christmas ) and I have used it a bunch of times already in some pretty nasty freezing weather and have had no trouble getting the temp where I want it and keeping it there. I love this smoker. I have never used an electric so I can't help you there, I also use a Brinkman charcoal smoker and it is a good smoker, I have made alot of good food on that smoker, but the propane GOSM is the way to go. Hope that helps. Good Luck!!!
post #5 of 21
I've got an MES. It works well for me because my schedule can sometimes change with little advance notice. The MES has a thermostat that you can set and it usually maintains the temp fairly well (as long as you don't keep opening the door ;) ), so it doesn't require a lot of babysitting to control the temp. That allows me to turn things over to my wife or daughter for an hour or two if I get called into work.
post #6 of 21
Welcome to the SMF.
post #7 of 21
Welcome Demon, I have a GOSM and use it every week and twice on sunday. My .02 is do your research and get what you want and what suites you best. Go as large as your budget will allow because once you start smokeing you will whish you had a larger cooker.
post #8 of 21
Agree 100% with the above statement. I added a propane kit to my Charboil and love it....I think a little fire is good for your meat!!
post #9 of 21
Welcome tot he SMF, hope you enjoy this site. A GOSM gasser has a proven reputation, as does the MES. The MES does require electricity, so it might get touchy in bad weather or in a blckout. I'm sure you'll make the right choice. Until then... research.
post #10 of 21
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the replies and advice. I think I am going to go ahead and pick up the GOSM this weekend.
post #11 of 21
I agree the GOSm is a great smoker for lazy Q. i have one and use it too smoke pork shoulders exclusively. You might want to look into the Camp Chef Smoke Vault also. I also have the 24 inch wide model of this smoker and I use it to cook ribs. the CC is a heavier gauge metal than the GOSM, and I think the thermometer is more accurate IMHO. It is a little more expensive than the GOSM, but you get what you pay for. Camp chef customer service is top notch too. The chip/chunk tray is also bigger in the Camp Chef. It also comes in an 18 inch wide version. It may be worth you looking into.
post #12 of 21
If I was going to buy a smoker it would be an off- set. I build all of my smoker since I teach welding and have all the modern tools. feeding wood to the smoker and having a night cook is one of the reason I enjoy BBQ.
post #13 of 21
Welcome to the site...........Both are great smokers..........
post #14 of 21
Demon not to long ago I was faced with the same questions and I narrowed it down to the same two units. One thing I found out by doing a lot of searching is both camps are happy with their choice so you really need to find between the two what suits your needs the best. I ended up with the GOSM mostly because of the size and popularity of them. You mention flame and that too helped with my choice.When I first saw the Masterbuilt I was shocked on how small it actually is.
post #15 of 21
Hey Welder,
Would taking a course in welding at a Tech college be useful for what I want to do, mainly learn to make a smoker, deer stands, etc. Any good suggestions?
post #16 of 21
welcome to the smf. Check out the 5 day course.
post #17 of 21
I am currently building an all electric smoker. Using an old 50's enamel lined fridge for the box, will have both cold smoke and hot smoke thermostat's and Using a dryer heating element for the cook and a hot plate element for the smoke chamber (thinking smoke chamber will be remote). Hope to get some more work done on it this afternoon.

Had a SS gas unit before (it grew legs and learned to walk!) and liked it alot. This one will now reside in my garage, thus the all electric. I have had small electrics before and the temperature was hard to control as was the smoke. With proper modification nearly all those drawbacks can be fixed. It is going to boil down to personal taste (pun not intended, but hey it works!).

Show us some pictures of what you decide on and q-view!
post #18 of 21
Do you have any updates on your project? I recently threw out an old fridge, think a Wilcox or Wilcolator or something, but I have a freezer that's from the 1980's about 12 cf vertical that works but frosts up after a week or so, it has a bad door seal and was thinking of turning it into a smoker since I bought a new freezer to replace it. Have no idea where to start! You have a link for your project?
post #19 of 21
once you get started and learn times and temps then electric is the most controllable in slow cooks all goes by wattage and size of smoker last one i built for work is a small cooker with a 875 watt element runs 225* rain or shine
post #20 of 21
Welcome. I have a MES and I like it. Set the temp and I can do other things or if I get called leave the wife some instructions and she can man it for a little while. When I'm done, the parts that need cleanign go in the dishwasher.
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