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Help with versatility!


Joined Jan 2, 2016
Been stalking and soaking up all the great info here for awhile without posting. I have a MES30 I have been having a great time with, but it's having electrical issues and I am starting to think bigger. I want to know what the most versatile type of smoker you'd recommend? I want easy and no fuss, $500-700, and something that can do it all! Too much to ask? I'm leaning toward pellet grill, but I'm a noob! I'll keep the mes for cold smoking so don't have to worry about that. I need help and suggestions. Thanks.


SMF Hall of Fame Pitmaster
Staff member
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Joined Jun 22, 2009
Welcome to SMF!

I'd recommend a Weber Smokey Mountain.

Holds temps well, well built & ready to go right out of the box. You could get a couple of them with your budget.

Since this is your first post, would you swing by Roll Call & introduce yourself.

Then we can all give you a proper welcome!



Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
Joined Dec 29, 2013
As long as you start with a small fire you will have no problems


Epic Pitmaster
OTBS Member
Joined Oct 4, 2012
By versatile what do you mean? A question for you is how do you want to cook?

The WSM's are a great smoker if you aren't looking for a mega stick burner. If you remove the body and place the grate on the base you can also use them as a grill. Works excellent for reverse sear. Heck we even use the base of the 18.5 as a fire pit when camping after we're done cooking.

I have the 14.5", 18.5" and four homemade Mini-WSM's. All are rock solid temp wise and produce excellent BBQ. They are as efficient as you can get for solid fuel smokers.

The only thing I don't care for on the WSM's is the charcoal baskets. I wish the sides and the bottom were attached. It would make shaking the ash out of the spent coals easier.

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