Jumped the gun

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by gonzo219, May 2, 2016.

  1. gonzo219

    gonzo219 Newbie

    Hey guys, think I may have jumped the gun and ordered an upright drum smoker from pitbarrelcookers. It's my first smoker and I haven't evern received it yet but after looking at different smokers and doing some research on smoking I'm not sure this was a good choice. There's not thermometer or temp control and with the charcoal basket looks like the only setup is for direct hear. Am I over reacting or should I look into returning it for something else
  2. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    Those work fine once you learn them but have limits. With that cooker...It is over priced for what you get. Even buying a Drum online, with a little skill and a Drill you can gather parts and make a larger drum smoker, 55 Gallon, for Half that price. Without a water pan or diffuser of some style that system is going to be hotter closer to the fire from radiant Infrared heat. The bottom of the hanging meat will be done or burnt faster than the top is going to cook. Hanging is very limited. Great for Ribs and Sausage but most stuff goes on Racks. Yes there is one included but it has to sit close the fire, way hot, and the rest of the space is wasted.

    For $300 you can get a Weber Smokey Mountain 18 inch that is a similar size, will be much, MUCH easier to control, has two racks and a water pan that can be used with water or filled with sand for great heat diffusion. You are going to want to purchase a separate Thermometer to monitor Meat and Smoker Temp anyway as very few mounted Therms are accurate or fail in short order. There are also Electric and Propane Smokers in that price range. I would cancel the order and spend some time looking around here at the options...JJ
    Last edited: May 2, 2016
  3. krj

    krj Fire Starter

    I got my PBC about a month ago. I love it. There is no tinkering with air flow, exhaust, and whatnot. And while I do enjoy doing those things while running a larger smoker, it's nice just to be able to fire the coals throw in the meat, and then kick back and relax. A bigger 55 gallon UDS would definitely be cheaper, and give more versatilty/space. Even more so versatile would be going to an offset or a pellet or a electric, the list goes on. But the 33 gallon PBC is nice for those small jobs, those family holiday get-to-gethers, the Sunday family dinner; that you don't want to spend all day tending to a smoker and miss out on everything else around you. Again, I'm not saying tinkering and such isn't enjoyable. I'm just saying every different smoker has it's advantages, and the PBC's in my honest opinions is simplicity with quality.
  4. gonzo219

    gonzo219 Newbie

    I don't think bigger is much of an option. I'm in the military and a convenient size is pretty important considering I move a lot and most places I'm not even guaranteed a yard. I guess the only concern I have no is the rack being to close to the heat. I was most looking forward to doing pulled pork on the rack.
  5. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

    With the rack so close, you can make a smaller fire using the Minion Method. Best of luck with your choice. Thanks for your Service...JJ
  6. lancep

    lancep Master of the Pit

    Hey Gonzo, I wouldn't worry about it too much. As with any pursuit the coals will always be hotter on the other side of the grate. Being your first smoker, you will probably love it. Most do. According to most user reviews I have read, expert and novice alike, following the directions and recipes that come with it yield great results. Also, being active duty, it's probably a perfect fit for you. Most base housing areas allow for at least a small gas or charcoal grill and the pic would fall into that easily. It's designed and tested to run on Kinsford blue bag which is readily available at most commissaries so you shouldn't have to worry about sourcing fuel. Good luck with it and enjoy it.

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