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Not many ceramics it seems?

chp

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Joined Sep 30, 2020
Retiring my WSM. It's served me well but time to rest it. I've been concentrating on ceramics like the Egg or Vision Icon, but reading the threads, it seems like most here don't use them. Anyone inform me as to why not?
Does an insulated vertical cabinet smoker fill the same needs? It seems like they would be very fuel efficient with long burn times. The advantage to a cabinet smoker is that you can feed the fire during the cook. Maybe that means you can get better smoke flavor as well?
 

FowlAntics

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Joined Dec 22, 2020
Insulated cabinet smokers are better than a kamado when it comes to a dedicated smoker. They hold way more food, are more or less as efficient, and as you mentioned you can easily add to the charcoal tray if needed. But that’s about all they can do.

The kamado is kind of a do-it-all cooker. It’ll smoke, bake and grill all with very good results. But they don’t hold near as much as a cabinet smoker will.
 

bill1

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I have a bit of a fear of breakage with the ceramic cookers. Does anyone want to talk me off the ledge?

I recently broke my wife's prize pie dish after cooking at just 350F. No warning on the dish...but the manufacture's site did say to not use over 325, a fact my wife didn't know either so she might have set me up after having done a few fatigue cycles herself! But it was a reminder that it's hard to beat cast iron and steel for heat resistance.

I tend to like to move my cookers around a bit depending on size of party etc. I would think repetitive thermal stress, combined with the vibration and shock of transport, may not add up to a long ceramic cooker life. Does anyone take a BGE camping? Or to a tailgate party?

And what about thermal shock? What happens if it starts to rain (or a sprinkler's out of adjustment) when these are at full temp?

And I definitely shed more tears over expensive broken things than cheap ones. I replaced my wife's pie plate with an $8 Pyrex pan...I won't mind replacing that a few times.
 

912smoker

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Price is the obsticle here too. My BIL attends Memphis in May each yr. Not for the great food and cooking, but for the 1/2 price BGE that have only been used at the event. He takes a trailer and usually bring 6 or 7 home to resell to friends and neighbors. I think around $700
 

retfr8flyr

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I have a bit of a fear of breakage with the ceramic cookers. Does anyone want to talk me off the ledge?

I recently broke my wife's prize pie dish after cooking at just 350F. No warning on the dish...but the manufacture's site did say to not use over 325, a fact my wife didn't know either so she might have set me up after having done a few fatigue cycles herself! But it was a reminder that it's hard to beat cast iron and steel for heat resistance.

I tend to like to move my cookers around a bit depending on size of party etc. I would think repetitive thermal stress, combined with the vibration and shock of transport, may not add up to a long ceramic cooker life. Does anyone take a BGE camping? Or to a tailgate party?

And what about thermal shock? What happens if it starts to rain (or a sprinkler's out of adjustment) when these are at full temp?

And I definitely shed more tears over expensive broken things than cheap ones. I replaced my wife's pie plate with an $8 Pyrex pan...I won't mind replacing that a few times.


I have cooked on my Big Joe in 0° temps, snow and rain. I have just finished a cook and had it start freezing rain. I have never had any problem with thermal shock, I really don't think you have to worry about this. A ceramic grill is really a lifetime investment and once you get over the price shock, when you amortize it over 20 years it doesn't seem so expensive.
 

IMAVGAN

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Joined Jul 29, 2020
I have cooked on my Big Joe in 0° temps, snow and rain. I have just finished a cook and had it start freezing rain. I have never had any problem with thermal shock, I really don't think you have to worry about this. A ceramic grill is really a lifetime investment and once you get over the price shock, when you amortize it over 20 years it doesn't seem so expensive.

Yeah, but how many here can wait 20 years before buying their next grill or smoker?
 

Inscrutable

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Joined Apr 4, 2019
I have a bit of a fear of breakage with the ceramic cookers. Does anyone want to talk me off the ledge?

I recently broke my wife's prize pie dish after cooking at just 350F. No warning on the dish...but the manufacture's site did say to not use over 325, a fact my wife didn't know either so she might have set me up after having done a few fatigue cycles herself! But it was a reminder that it's hard to beat cast iron and steel for heat resistance.

I tend to like to move my cookers around a bit depending on size of party etc. I would think repetitive thermal stress, combined with the vibration and shock of transport, may not add up to a long ceramic cooker life. Does anyone take a BGE camping? Or to a tailgate party?

And what about thermal shock? What happens if it starts to rain (or a sprinkler's out of adjustment) when these are at full temp?

And I definitely shed more tears over expensive broken things than cheap ones. I replaced my wife's pie plate with an $8 Pyrex pan...I won't mind replacing that a few times.
Bill,
I‘ve had my BGE for almost 10 years. It has now lived at 3 houses and survived each move. I’ve rolled it around on deck and stone patio. But it does stay at home, would not consider these beasts ‘portable’ for tailgating. I’ve cooked at both long/low and high temps. It has seen rain and snow (albeit not often and generally don’t cook in inclement weather).
I guess others have had worse conditions and/or luck, but I’ve had no fear or experience with cracking/breakage.

I‘ve found I don’t use much now that I have and loving my Smokin-It (bigger grates and so easy peasy), and have agreed to sell to a friend in the mountains ... so it has one more (long) trip to make. But honestly, starting to have sellers remorse already.
 

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