I bought my Bradley last August because of all the hype on them. When I got it I was super excited as I bought their biggest and best Model the 6 rack digital. I have used it twice. The first time we took the pork butts out of it after about 10 hours because we couldn't get the cabinet temp up over 198º and finished them in the oven.
The second smoke we decided to see how long it would take to complete in the smoker and after 23 hours we got the pork butts to 189º or there about. I have never been able to get cabinet temp above 200º.
I contacted Bradley and their great customer service said it must be the Temp sensor and they mailed me a new one that I could install myself
. So much for a Warranty. Then I decided to start reading every post on their forum and began to notice that everyone was either adding a second element or a PID or some other fix so that the thing would get to proper temps. Also having to by Bubba Pucks in order to use the last three pucks in the feeder.
I started reading all the posts at the Bradley Forum and should have before buying one. An awful lot of buyers have problems with their units... Read every post carefully before buying one of them to see if you really want to get into redesigning an brand new smoker...http://forum.bradleysmoker.com/index.php
I also noticed that the majority of those liking them smoked Cheese, Fish, Sausage and things not needing long smokes or higher temps.
I also noticed a lot of complaints about not getting up to temps leading to the threads on how to over come that problem by adding the items to the smoker listed above.
I bought a new Bradley Digital 6 rack last fall and have used it 2 times. It is worthless in my opinion. I plan on selling it on Craig's list and taking my loss.
I bought the MES
40" at Sam's Club and got the 3 year warranty with it for an additional $39.. and LOVE IT... It is easy to use and works like a champ. you can use whatever type of wood you want sawdust, chips, chunks and get them for anywhere from Free to a few Dollars.Check out My Comparison of Bradley vs MES
Bradley 6 Rack Digital
* Dimensions: Inside 15”W x 11.5”D x 33”HT Must Cut a Slab of Ribs in Half to Fit on Rack
* Dimensions: Outside: 17”W x 14”D x 39”HT - 24"W with Generator on side* Internal Heater: 500 watt cooking element / 125 watt smoking element
* Bradley Price: $599.00
* 1 yr Factory Warranty (They Send You The Parts You Install Them, Some Warranty!!!)
* Must use Proprietary Pucks Bradley Smoker Bisquettes 48 Pack - HICKORY $16,99 From Yard and Pool
* Bubba Pucks Needed to Feed Last Three Wood Pucks
* Bubba Pucks - Bradley Smoker Woodsaver - Set of Three $25.95 From Yard and Pool
* Sam's Item #:
* Dimensions: 41" x 20" x 24-7/8 Will hold full slab of ribs without cutting in half* MES Price at Sam's: $299.00
* 3Yr Extended Warranty: $39.00* MES has 1200 Watt Heating Element* Uses Common Wood Chips or Chunks Which Can Be Found Anyplace Cheap. Can Even Make Your Own.
Which would you buy after comparing side by side? The cost of operating the Bradley skyrockets once you get past their original hype. The original cost alone is a $160.00 more than the cost of the MES
+ the 3yr Warranty from Sam's. If It Breaks Just Take It Back and Get Another One!!!
And the MES
There are many MES
users here and ALL are Extremely Satisfied with them.
The MES doesn't have the problems Bradley smokers do with recovery times. Heating problems and a lot of other problems found on the Bradley.
I would highly recommenced getting one if you are looking for a good electric smoker.
I would also recommend getting an A-MAZE-N-SMOKER to go with what ever smoker you decide on. They ad a great versatility to smoking with or without cold smoke.