Smoker for a rookie.. Help

Discussion in 'Slicers, Grinders, Tools, Equipment' started by primate, Jul 31, 2011.

  1. primate

    primate Newbie

    I am sure you all get this question all the time but I could really use some help picking my first smoker. I have never smoked before. I have grilled for years but I am wanting to move in to smoking and holy smokes my brain hurts. Eggs, Bullets, Vaults, Horizontal, Verticle, Gas, Electric, Wood, pellets, 18 inch, 22 inch on and on oh and by the way they are all the best.

    Is there a recommended setup for someone getting started?
  2. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    [​IMG]    Glad to have you with us!

    Electric or gas are the easiest to operate.

    Smoke Vault or GOSM propane are both good.

    Masterbuilt 30 or 40 are both good electric units.
  3. I have the Master Forge dual door gas smoker and have been very happy with it. Easy to control temps etc.
  4. fpnmf

    fpnmf Smoking Guru OTBS Member

  5. I read through alot of reviews when I was tring to figure the same thing out. I ended up with an electric and could not be happier with the ease of use. Getting some great meat out of it. I got a Smoke hollow 30 and had to modify the venting. I dont know if any other brands have better venting from the factory than mine.
  6. primate

    primate Newbie

    Thanks all for the replies. I was under the impression that you should not use electric or gas for the best reults. Is this just a purest way of thinking or is there a difference in the final product from straight wood/coal and other ignition sources?
  7. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Ease into it slowly, and if you like your new hobby, go get something a little better

    I own electric smokers, and waiting for my new pellet smoker to arrive [​IMG]

    Get Started and make some Q!

  8. ellymae

    ellymae Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    There are a few things to think about.

    Do you like to sleep?

    How much room do you have for a cooker.

    How much $$ do you want to invest?

    What other things do you think you will want to cook?

    A lot of folks start out with one type of cooker and move onto something else.

    I started out with an Brinkman bullet cooker.

    Moved on to a cheap offset from Lowes.

    The onto a Bandera I got from a friend that was mofvng back to Texas.

    Then took the plunge to a Klose BYC.

    Then I found out about Big Green Eggs...

    Then I added a WSM I got from Craigslist.

    Along that journey I found out I AM A LAZY COOKER! I love the ease of the Egg and it's versatility - low and slow, high heat searing for steaks, pizza and breads...

    Had I known about the Egg before I bought my Klose I probably woud have not bought it. Don't get me wrong - it is a GREAT cooker and a work of art, but I like to sleep.

    So - good luck making your decision - I am sure I didn't help. [​IMG]
  9. striper

    striper Meat Mopper

    So did you order the Yoder?????????  Inquiring minds want to know.[​IMG]

  10. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    There is a taste difference, A pure wood burner will give you the best flavor. An electric smoker is the easiest to use. The taste difference may not be significant enough for you to choose the wood burner, since it takes more work to maintain steady temps. I had a Masterbuilt electric for a couple of years, it will produce great smoked food. It is easy to operate & you will be smoking like a pro right out of the box. It's a great smoker to start with, and even if you decide to move up to a charcoal or a wood smoker the MES will still come in very handy. I know this because I sold mine & will probably end up buying another one, even though I have both charcoal & gas smokers.
  11. roller

    roller Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    Well If you want easy to start out with and your not going whole hog I would suggest an electric one..And when you get your feet on the ground you may want to go in a different direction.
  12. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I was gonna say Weber, small and easy to operate[​IMG],and not out of price for just beginning smoking,and a chimney starter should do you good[​IMG].

    Stay here and enjoy learning to Smoke with these fine folks.

    Have fun and...
  13. meateater

    meateater Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    Start with  a watt burner, more than likely you will end up with more than one smoker anyways. [​IMG]
  14. primate

    primate Newbie

    I think I have narrowed it down between a wood/charcole Weber 721001 See Here  and an electric Masterbuilt 20070910 See Here  . Any thoughts on these? It seems that electric is the general winner for the novice but something about the wood\charcole really appeals to me.
  15. ellymae

    ellymae Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Go with the Weber, you won't be sorry.
  16. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    I agree with Elly!

    Go with the Weber, easy to use, produces great smoke flavor.

    You can also get it up to 325 for poultry.

    The MES won't go above 275.
  17. primate

    primate Newbie

    Thanks again all for the info. I decided to go with the Weber. I will be back shortly to ask 1000 or more questions once the unit arrives :D
  18. Man did you ask a loaded question.

    To thin the herd down start with what you want to smoke and cost of doing so.

    For me that got rid of 3/4 of the smokers. Next what do you want to use for heat and smoke. I want it all so i built a UDS using a Water pressure tank that was given me. A 55 gal drum is just as good. i dont weld and all is with Drill and nuts and Bolts.

    I will use Electric or gas or wood for the heat just by taking out the hot plate or gas burner or wood holder.  Also the Amazn smoker is the best idea i have seen for a long time for either pellets or sawdust or both for cold smoking.

    I made my own from a french bread loaf pan i found at a garage sale in the free box. Works great for pellets.

    Good luck and enjoy.

    By the way Mine is the Best. [​IMG]

    Last edited: Sep 22, 2011
  19. I have heard just the opposite. A gas lover tells me there is no comparison. I think it is like me putting beer or wine on the wood chips or in the water pan. For me i love it and think it give the cheese or meat a little something extra. Some others say they don't notice any difference. What ever makes you happy.

    Good luck and have fun with the Hobby.


  20. oldschoolbbq

    oldschoolbbq Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Long story Primate,I'll sit down and explain it for you if you want,or go to  the WIKI and look under instructionals and page 2 will be Stickburning 101.Then read...

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