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BGE or Komodo Joe

SlowmotionQue

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You’re awfully passionate about your opinion. Everyone is entitled to one. I think you make very good points. Doesn’t mean nobody else can.
Thank you ososmokeshack.

Indeed. Everyone is most certainly entitled to an opinion. However opinion tends to be a lot more helpful in response to inquiry, if reasoning and documentation can be pointed to in support of said opinion. The more the better.

To wit, we have president out there right now whose "opinions" on disinfectants, UV light and their use in patient management and treatment of Covid-19 infected individuals , are worthless, because he can offer nothing in support of that opinion.

The original poster asked a question. A lukewarm response with no outside supporting links, information or reasoning on a given position, likely does him little good.

BTW, I never said that no one else could make "good points" the other way.......Perhaps they can.

But I wonder, .....and I don't believe that I am off base by musing this. Why are we having to wait so long to see them? Why are the links on the counter opinion so hard to find?

I continue to think, that his merchant's input is going to be of great value to him. Once he knows the reasons for his merchant dropping BGE in favor of Kamado Joe, that may, and perhaps should go a ways toward helping him decide which of the two he goes with, and which of the two is "better" for him.

But as an aside to this entire discussion, I've wondered, just how Big Green Egg even stays in business, let alone maintains it's market dominance, offering just the kamado when you buy a BGE, no side shelves , no cart, and a simple single level grate setup that you can get in any Weber, and practically no innovation whatsoever.

Were they a startup, charging a premium for what amounts to a "couple of matched flower pots"... and a single solitary grate, .....they would last a year "maybe" on a business model like that before going belly up.

But the answer is, they enjoyed that uncontested 30 year run, whereby they were practically the only show in town when it came to the home consumer/backyard kamado market.

That brought them "name recognition", and a "reputation" which now precedes it. People who don't do their homework, think, "oh, Big Green Egg. I've heard of that somewhere before. Aren't they the best"?

And those who don't do their homework, will think just that. Based only on the fact that they've "heard of them before".
 
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DLP4412

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Joined Apr 18, 2020
All good points. The BGE was great never had any issues with exception of the thermometer. I didn't bother with getting a new one because I purchased a Flame Boss. Like I mentioned, I fully intended to go buy a larger BGE and was shocked to learn the store didn't carry them. When asked why, they said the KJ was a better product. This caught me off guard because they are both ceramic eggs in different colors. I do fancy the mesh gasket on the KJ. All the other accessories don't really do anything for me since I own most things that I purchased from random vendors. It is interesting that the BGE doesn't appear to have any intentions on modifying their gasket. The hardware store is willing to sell me the KJ classic II for 899 if I'm willing to pick it up in a box. I might go that route if I don't see anything in the next few days that screams don't buy a KJ.
 

SlowmotionQue

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All good points. The BGE was great never had any issues with exception of the thermometer. I didn't bother with getting a new one because I purchased a Flame Boss. Like I mentioned, I fully intended to go buy a larger BGE and was shocked to learn the store didn't carry them. When asked why, they said the KJ was a better product. This caught me off guard because they are both ceramic eggs in different colors. I do fancy the mesh gasket on the KJ. All the other accessories don't really do anything for me since I own most things that I purchased from random vendors. It is interesting that the BGE doesn't appear to have any intentions on modifying their gasket. The hardware store is willing to sell me the KJ classic II for 899 if I'm willing to pick it up in a box. I might go that route if I don't see anything in the next few days that screams don't buy a KJ.
I am not surprised at all that your merchant who used to carry BGE, told you that the KJ was a better product. They know it. I don't know your merchant, but I am sure that your merchant is likely not in business to lose money by selling inferior products and having people come back to him with a rash of complaints.

Why would he do that when he could have just kept right on selling Big Green Eggs?. He has chosen to sell Kamado Joe. Possibly because he sees the direction in which the high end consumer Kamado market is heading.

Yes, they are both ceramic Kamados. But KJ goes that extra mile trying to improve things. Because they absolutely have to. BGE doesn't. They have a boatload of loyal "Eggheads" and others who automatically think that BGE is at the top of the heap.

But KJ goes that extra mile. They don't have that 3 decades old grip on the market. Since 2009, they are trying to make a name for themselves by going after the big fish. The BGE. That is the reason for the better hinge and the better gasket, the better multi piece firebox and the multi level cooking grates and ceramic deflector plates, the divide and conquer system.

They want your business. Want to earn your business. BGE, based on their name, thinks that they already have your business.

Your merchant told you that KJ was a better product. In fact, and indeed, the vids I posted, effectively come out and say that as well. And after cross shopping them myself, I have arrived at the same conclusion.

$899 is a good price on the Classic II. I paid a little over $850.00 for my Classic I from BBQ Guys a couple or three yrs ago. I had a $50.00 coupon though. But my point is there has been little to no price increase

In the Classic II, you're getting the better gasket and the better hinge than I have. Plus the lid latch to give you an even better seal than I have. You're getting the divide and conquer multilevel grilling setup and SS grates, WITH the two half moon shaped ceramic deflector plates. And then there is the warranty which is the same as on the BGE. Is there any reason to mention that you're also getting the easy to assemble, two part cart and side shelves too in that $899.00 price? Probably not. You already knew that.

By all means and for your own peace of mind do look, and look hard. But I doubt you find anything which screams "don't buy a KJ".

You have the assurance of the warranty, and it also appears that you are buying locally and from a vendor whom you have done business with before.

Good luck, whichever route you take.
 
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SlowmotionQue

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For anyone else who may be interested, and in particular those who may think or may have thought my opinions biased on this matter:

 

retfr8flyr

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I have had a KJ Big Joe for several years now and I couldn't be happier with it. I went through the same BGE, or KJ you are going through now when I was deciding on my purchase. They will both make great food and it comes down to the little things. I don't know if it is still this way but the deciding factor for me was the warranty. The BGE warranty was void if you use any accessories other than the ones made by BGE. I wouldn't deal with a company like that, so for me it was BJ. You should check and see if they still have the same conditions on their warranty.
 

SlowmotionQue

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Joined Feb 6, 2019
I have had a KJ Big Joe for several years now and I couldn't be happier with it. I went through the same BGE, or KJ you are going through now when I was deciding on my purchase. They will both make great food and it comes down to the little things. I don't know if it is still this way but the deciding factor for me was the warranty. The BGE warranty was void if you use any accessories other than the ones made by BGE. I wouldn't deal with a company like that, so for me it was BJ. You should check and see if they still have the same conditions on their warranty.
Well, I found the following when searching for information about Big Green Egg warranty.


I knew about this first part. This applies to KJ too. But KJ "dealers" are seemingly everywhere. Big box stores, the major hardware chains, Lowes, Home Depot. Walmart, BBQ guys, and many other places on the internet.

But anyway, here is what I found.

".....
Big Green Eggs and related products purchased from unauthorised dealers or through unauthorised retail channels or unauthorised third parties are not covered under the warranty provisions.
Please note: If a consumer purchases from an unauthorised source, even one operating as a legitimate business offering products in unopened boxes with blank warranty cards (but is an unauthorised reseller), they are buying, by legal definition, used products. If someone buys from an unauthorised reseller or retailer, or from an unauthorised online reseller, they are almost always buying items without manufacturer’s warranties regardless of any statements or claims made by the seller. This is the published policy of many brands and companies, not just Big Green Egg......"


OK. You buy a Big Green Egg from anyone other than an authorized Big Green Egg dealer, even if it is new in the box, then it's out of warranty, since if you have to make a warranty claim, they want to know who you bought it from. Fair enough.

Now ......what I didn't know, and what I believe that retfr8flyr is referring to in his above post, follows:

".....
13. VOIDING THE WARRANTY: Any unauthorised modifications or alterations to an EGG will void the warranty. This includes drilling holes or tampering with any of the parts; using any parts inside the EGG other than authentic Big Green Egg components; or using any internal components in any way other than as intended by the manufacturer. Modifying or substituting any internal components, including the fire grate and fire ring, will void the warranty, and Big Green Egg expressly disclaims any liability for any direct, indirect, incidental or consequential damage which may result...."


Wow......"using any parts inside the EGG other than authentic Big Green Egg components;"

Here I was priding myself on knowing the differences between these two products, and even I didn't know this interesting tidbit.
 
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retfr8flyr

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Well, I found the following when searching for information about Big Green Egg warranty.


I knew about this first part. This applies to KJ too. But KJ "dealers" are seemingly everywhere. Big box stores, the major hardware chains, Lowes, Home Depot. Walmart, BBQ guys, and many other places on the internet.

But anywhere, here is what I found.

".....
Big Green Eggs and related products purchased from unauthorised dealers or through unauthorised retail channels or unauthorised third parties are not covered under the warranty provisions.
Please note: If a consumer purchases from an unauthorised source, even one operating as a legitimate business offering products in unopened boxes with blank warranty cards (but is an unauthorised reseller), they are buying, by legal definition, used products. If someone buys from an unauthorised reseller or retailer, or from an unauthorised online reseller, they are almost always buying items without manufacturer’s warranties regardless of any statements or claims made by the seller. This is the published policy of many brands and companies, not just Big Green Egg......"


OK. You buy a Big Green Egg from anyone other than an authorized Big Green Egg dealer, even if it is new in the box, and it's out of warranty, since if you have to make a warranty claim, they want to know who you bought it from. Fair enough.

Now ......what I didn't know, and what I believe that retfr8flyr is referring to in his above post, follows:

".....
13. VOIDING THE WARRANTY: Any unauthorised modifications or alterations to an EGG will void the warranty. This includes drilling holes or tampering with any of the parts; using any parts inside the EGG other than authentic Big Green Egg components; or using any internal components in any way other than as intended by the manufacturer. Modifying or substituting any internal components, including the fire grate and fire ring, will void the warranty, and Big Green Egg expressly disclaims any liability for any direct, indirect, incidental or consequential damage which may result...."


Wow......"using any parts inside the EGG other than authentic Big Green Egg components;"

Here I was priding myself on knowing the differences between these two products, and even I didn't know this interesting tidbit.
Yep, they haven't changed a thing. Like I said this was the reason I went with the KJ.
 

SlowmotionQue

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Joined Feb 6, 2019
Yep, they haven't changed a thing. Like I said this was the reason I went with the KJ.
Well ACE has the large Big Green Egg on “sale” if it can be called such, for $899.00.

That’s just for the grill itself with a single one level grate.

The cart or “nest” is another $164.99.

Then the side shelves and ceramic place setter plate for low and slow cooks are extra on top of that $1064.99.

A Kamado Joe Classic I, with the cart, side shelves, ceramic plates with the divide and conquer system, can be had for $749.00 at Lowe’s.

The a la cart method, up charging customers with “dealers” vs selling online? Making customers take up warranty claims through a dealer as opposed to the customer going straight to the manufacturer? In the 21st century? Well, I think that we might get to see how much longer that continues to result in a sales advantage.
 

Chickenwings

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Joined Sep 10, 2019
I have a KJ Classic III and I LOVE IT. I literally can't ask for anything else in a Kamado however I have have no complaints to share any opinions of customer service with.

I think KJ and BGE are the two premier brands and I also think that KJ offers more value for the money. I don't see a decided better quality of unit from BGE over KJ for similar money. My research also showed that I like the III's addition of the sloroller. Is it a LEAP? Nah, probably not, but it's funky enough to get my money.

Now I have another problem: I'm now stuck in Canada and my KJ is in Arizona. I'm really missing my Kamado so I'm thinking of augmenting my Arizona unit with one here but my budget won't support another KJIII so compromise it is. I'm considering a Vision Classic B this time for the same value for the money reasons that I think the KJ beats the BGE on. It's another leap, and I'd REALLY like someone else to make this decision for me but honestly, especially for the level of cook I am and who I'm serving (my family, friends and myself) and what I expect it to do, I really intellectually believe that a good quality (and I think Visions are good Kamados too) Kamado is all you need. The rest is brand pride, comfort and reputation but I highly doubt food made on one brand will be noticeably better or easier to cook on than the other.

I am always reminded about the first really (only actually) big (to me) budget stereo set up I bought and in researching sound quality I learned that many high end units produce gains in sound quality only measurable or detectable by machinery not by your ears.....chasing the highest quality can sometimes only be an exercise in feeling good.

Whew....thanks for the rant....now what have you decided?
 

SlowmotionQue

Smoking Fanatic
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192
Joined Feb 6, 2019
I have a KJ Classic III and I LOVE IT. I literally can't ask for anything else in a Kamado however I have have no complaints to share any opinions of customer service with.

I think KJ and BGE are the two premier brands and I also think that KJ offers more value for the money. I don't see a decided better quality of unit from BGE over KJ for similar money. My research also showed that I like the III's addition of the sloroller. Is it a LEAP? Nah, probably not, but it's funky enough to get my money.

Now I have another problem: I'm now stuck in Canada and my KJ is in Arizona. I'm really missing my Kamado so I'm thinking of augmenting my Arizona unit with one here but my budget won't support another KJIII so compromise it is. I'm considering a Vision Classic B this time for the same value for the money reasons that I think the KJ beats the BGE on. It's another leap, and I'd REALLY like someone else to make this decision for me but honestly, especially for the level of cook I am and who I'm serving (my family, friends and myself) and what I expect it to do, I really intellectually believe that a good quality (and I think Visions are good Kamados too) Kamado is all you need. The rest is brand pride, comfort and reputation but I highly doubt food made on one brand will be noticeably better or easier to cook on than the other.

I am always reminded about the first really (only actually) big (to me) budget stereo set up I bought and in researching sound quality I learned that many high end units produce gains in sound quality only measurable or detectable by machinery not by your ears.....chasing the highest quality can sometimes only be an exercise in feeling good.

Whew....thanks for the rant....now what have you decided?
I would encourage you to do some research on air leaks with regard to Vision kamados as a practical part of making your purchasing decision.

Good luck.
 

Chickenwings

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I have and thats why the Classic B. It's the one that looks much like a KJ and doesn't have the big removable panel in front.

Thanks SQ! BTW...I still haven't decided :emoji_neutral_face:
 

nomad_archer

Smoke Blower
83
76
Joined Oct 21, 2019
I was about to jump on the KJ bandwagon pre covid. But I've been following along with a KJ Facebook group and it appears KJ customer service and warranty turn around and impossible to non-existent right now. Just more food for thought. I heard in the past customer service was great but it is not currently and warranty replacement parts are slow coming. I'm looking at the BGE to see if they are having similar issues before I do anything.
 

DLP4412

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3
Joined Apr 18, 2020
I ended up buying a KJ and I had a terrible experience. I think the local vendor was the primary problem, but when I took it to KJ they were useless. I found someone that was willing to buy the KJ in its condition on the secondary market and parted ways with the KJ. Never again.
 

Chickenwings

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Joined Sep 10, 2019
Wow...I have heard rumblings about KJ Customer Service lately but I didn't think it was that bad. I'm REALLY sorry to hear that and it's giving me MORE to think about! Thank you for the update.
 

lowcountrygamecock

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173
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Joined Feb 4, 2009
They delivered my warranty parts recently without issue but it took 2.5 months to get them. They replied to the email within 3 days and said they would send tracking info when it shipped. I never got tracking info but got a call from the trucking company the day before. It worked out and fortunately my cracks weren’t bad enough that I couldn’t use it while I waited.
 

Chickenwings

Fire Starter
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Joined Sep 10, 2019
There's been a few reporting lately that the warranties are being honored but it's taking a LONG time.

After all my waffling back and forth and trying to do this on a really tight budget I THINK it's looking like a KJII after all.

Thanks for the update Low Country
 

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