First foray into offset smoking

Discussion in 'Roll Call' started by handsomeswede, Feb 18, 2009.

  1. handsomeswede

    handsomeswede Newbie

    Hello all.

    I have smoked for years on a self-made pit of concrete blocks and racks in my backyard. Last year I competed in a rib competition with a drum cut in half.

    For convenience I purchased a cheap Brinkman Smoke N Grill last summer, made some modifications and it is killer for butts and picnics.

    However, the Brinkman has little room for racks of ribs and thus I am considering an offset.

    After much research I have narrowed it down to three choices: Char-Griller Smokin Pro, BBQs Galore Bar-B-Chef and Royal Oaks Heavy Duty.

    I was wondering if anyone could weigh in on the above. They each seem to have their pluses and minuses.

    The Char-Griller is the cheapest but looks as though it would need many mods to function as truly desired. The Bar-B-Chef is not sold anywhere near me so shipping is costly. The Royal Oaks is the dark horse. Lowes will soon be carrying them and I cannot find specs, reviews or even a manufacturer's site.

    I look forward to your responses.

    Upstate, NY
  2. azrocker

    azrocker Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    I love my 100 dollar craigslist!
  3. handsomeswede

    handsomeswede Newbie

    Craigslist was actually one of my first stops and amazingly not a thing in my area.
  4. fired up

    fired up Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Welcome aboard! Lots of people with good advice on here.
  5. richoso1

    richoso1 Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Welcome to the SMF. I'm sure you'll have plenty of feedback in a short time. Good luck my friend.
  6. azrocker

    azrocker Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Worked well for me. Had to make some mods but I really like it. Took me a year to find it though.
  7. cowgirl

    cowgirl Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I can't help you with the smoker, but wanted to say welcome to the forum!
  8. graybeard

    graybeard Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    I dito CL. Give it a week or so and maybe expand your looking area. I spot great deals everyday but my search has expanded nation wide!
    Good LUck and welcome to SMF.[​IMG]

  9. forluvofsmoke

    forluvofsmoke Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    I just did a 4 slab spares smoke on my Brinkmann SNP LPG conversion a couple months back...the post was lost when the server crashed. I think my SNP mods thread got lost, too. Darn...well, other than the gas burner, the other mod was just to flip over the coal grate in the cook chamber and use it as a baffle/tuning plate. No biggie.

    My spares smoke was with 2 slabs on the main grate and the other 2 on the warmer, temps were pretty even through-out the rig. I've got lots of therms to monitor with.

    Here's a couple for ya, found my pics on hard drive:


    Happy smoker hunting & good many smokers to choose from!

  10. ncdodave

    ncdodave Smoking Fanatic

    i love my smokin pro with the mods an awesome first timers offset. since it didnt coat me much for the smoker i had no problem spending a little more to make it better. total mod cost was around $60.00
    oops welcome to a great place by the way!
  11. bassman

    bassman Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I can't help you with your choice of smoker, but welcome to the forum. Just make sure whatever you end up with, that you take lots of pics of your smoking creations. We do like Qview!
  12. jdt

    jdt Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    I was told the royal oaks smokers were good at first but then went to cheaper ones later, maybe the Heavy duty will be the thicker 11 or 12 gauge again, here is an old post about a couple of the RO sfb from walmart last summer
  13. txbbqman

    txbbqman Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    Welcome to the SMF family, I don't know anything about the ones you mentioned, maybe some one will come along that does.

    Not sure what kind of money you are wanting to spend but have you looked at Oklahoma Joe, Lang, and Klose

    The Lang web Site

    The Klose web site

    Oklahoma Joe @ Academy

    Hope this helps

    EDIT : I Love my Oklahoma Joe
  14. handsomeswede

    handsomeswede Newbie

    Thanks for all the replies so far, keep 'em coming!

    I do not know if WalMart is going to be carrying them this season or not but I do know that some Lowes will have them, that's how I happened upon it and also why I am so interested in specs.

    Lowes tells me the unit will retail for $319 which makes it pricier than the other two units I am looking at, however, by the time you figure in shipping for the Bar-B-Chef they should be comparable. The Bar-B-Chef sounds like the best unit in the price range but if the Royal Oak has a similar 12 gauge steel I think that would be way I would go given a copious amount of Lowes coupons and gift cards.

    So basically, what it comes down to is the '09 version of the Bar-B-Chef that wouldn't really need mods or the new Royal Oaks with heavier gauge steel and what looks like a larger cooking area.
  15. handsomeswede

    handsomeswede Newbie

    I am trying to keep total cost under $400.
  16. handsomeswede

    handsomeswede Newbie

    Txbbqman has given us our first clue! I clicked on the Oklahoma Joe's link and, lo and behold, the OJ Longhorn appears to be a larger version of the smoker offered by Royal Oaks.

    While the gauge steel is not listed, do you know if it is thicker than what you would find on the retail Char-Griller or Char-Broil?
  17. jdt

    jdt Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    yes, there is a near 50 page thread about the longhorns, they have been reported to be 11 and 12 gauge steel, I was almost going to go get one until I found out I can get a larger (24 x 36) and thicker (5/16 wall) unit in Tulsa OK for the same $450. At $319 the RO might not be a bad deal especially since you are so far away from any builders.
  18. I have the Chargriller pro. I have done the dryer vent mod, flipped teh charcoal tray to use as a baffle, and added an expandable rack in the firebox. Totaled like $40 of mods. Great smoker for the money.
  19. bandcollector

    bandcollector Master of the Pit OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Welcome from Pittsburgh, PA........Keep looking, your dream smoker will show up eventually.
  20. irishteabear

    irishteabear Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Welcome to SMF. This is a great place to be. [​IMG]

    Whereabout's in upstate NY are you? I'm from Syracuse.

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