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Offset Smoker Recommendations

Creosote

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I retired a couple of years ago and have always grilled but ready and wanting to learn to smoke good old BBQ. Just the wife and I and will only be cooking a brisket and ribs at a time and/or a couple of butts and chicken, pork loin etc. I definitely want a stick burner because I have access to cutting all the red oaks, post oaks and white oaks I could ever use. I have set my purchase price at $1500.00 to $2000.00 and want as good of a heavy duty offset as I can get. I have been looking at the Horizon 20" Classic "Icon" and adding the convection plate. It seems to be heavy duty and the photos on their site make the unit look pretty dang nice. One question I have is on the thermometer probe port it states 1/2 inch threaded and I have purchased a nice port off of Amazon that is a touch over 3/4ths. Does anyone know if they will custom change something as simple as a port or not? Any and all recommendations for this smoker or any others you prefer, pros and cons, etc. will be extremely appreciated. Thanks to all in advance.
 

golfpro2301

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that budget for offset is tough. Usually get thin metal and or poor draft with stack in wrong location

for offset I would focus on following:
20-24” diameter
Stack at grate level
Stack min 4”ID
Thickness 3/16”+
correct location and appropriate size vents on FB

with that said I am not familiar with Horizon. I know a lot of people have good things say about brazos smoker and believe that is around $1500ish if can still get one. Check out FB marketplace
 

TNJAKE

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I have a custom offset from Bell Fabrications located in Tulsa. 30x48 3/8in steel. Weighs about 1000lb. High quality smoker and I paid just under 1500. Price changes with custom changes. My smoker is in the link below

Here is Craig bells contact info

I saved 900 bucks in freight shipping by picking it up in person

Several of us have smokers from him and I haven't seen anyone complain yet
Screenshot_20211205_132850.png
 
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Creosote

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Appreciate the info GolfPro and TNJake. I will give him a call and I looked at his site and what seems strange is the smoke stack is optional. TNJake , your smoker looks like a beast and I bet you can put a heck of a lot of meat on that thing. Don't know if I need 30" diameter or not, guess if I am having one built might as well.
 

TNJAKE

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Appreciate the info GolfPro and TNJake. I will give him a call and I looked at his site and what seems strange is the smoke stack is optional. TNJake , your smoker looks like a beast and I bet you can put a heck of a lot of meat on that thing. Don't know if I need 30" diameter or not, guess if I am having one built might as well.
On his site he's just listing options. Obviously you need a smoke stack lol. Give him a call and tell him what you want. Displaced Texan Displaced Texan has a 24x48. Maybe he'll chime in
 

TNJAKE

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TNJAKE

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Creosote

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Jake, I will definitely make the drive and pick it up to save the shipping. I think it's about 3 1/2-hour drive for me.
 

TNJAKE

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Jake, I will definitely make the drive and pick it up to save the shipping. I think it's about 3 1/2-hour drive for me.
Good deal. It's a heck of a smoker for the price. I drove almost 10hr one way for mine. He builds quick as well so that's a perk. You could order tomorrow and have your smoker in a few weeks. Most builders are booked for months to a year right now
 

Creosote

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I just have to figure out the size I need. It's just the wife and I so I won't be cooking much more than a brisket or a butt or two or a couple of racks of ribs at a time. Quick question on wood, I cut my own firewood and will have all the red oak and white oak I need readily available just have to cure it. Do you or can you use the dark heart wood that a lot of the oaks have in them. I know in water oaks and post oaks it can be almost black in the heart.
 

chesterinflorida

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Where about do you live? That makes a big difference. Also, check local adds like Craigslist or Facebook. Sometimes you see a 3k pit for less than 2k that are basically new. People get these and figure out they don’t have the time. Their is a nice 20x 42 Klose pit for sale near me right now that if I were in the market, I would be all over.
 

Creosote

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Where about do you live? That makes a big difference. Also, check local adds like Craigslist or Facebook. Sometimes you see a 3k pit for less than 2k that are basically new. People get these and figure out they don’t have the time. Their is a nice 20x 42 Klose pit for sale near me right now that if I were in the market, I would be all over.
I live between Pittsburg and Gilmer in East Texas.
 

chesterinflorida

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I live between Pittsburg and Gilmer in East Texas.
Well you live in the offset capital of the world then. If you have some patience, a good make will come on the used market place. Austin Smoke Works, Klose, Gator Pits, Lonestar Grillz, Pitmaker, Jambo, Pitts by JJ and many other are made all around you. These are all high quality.

One less expensive model, still made halfway local to you, but still good quality is Tejas smokers. If I were you I would start researching these different makes on this and other sites and learn all you can. You should be able to stumble on a good one.
 

1MoreFord

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..................... Do you or can you use the dark heart wood that a lot of the oaks have in them................
Absolutely. In fact if the splits are large enough for you to split out the heart into a separate split it will tend to dry faster than the outer portions of the tree. Center splits like this also light easier than the outer splits.
 

GonnaSmoke

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I just have to figure out the size I need. It's just the wife and I so I won't be cooking much more than a brisket or a butt or two or a couple of racks of ribs at a time. Quick question on wood, I cut my own firewood and will have all the red oak and white oak I need readily available just have to cure it. Do you or can you use the dark heart wood that a lot of the oaks have in them. I know in water oaks and post oaks it can be almost black in the heart.
As far as size goes, get more than you think you'll need and one day you'll say, "I should've gone bigger." For the wood, as long as it's seasoned properly, I would smoke with it. The moisture content is critical to thin blue smoke...
 

Creosote

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What is the largest you should go and still have a single lid. At 3/8th inch thick I just don't know how long the cook chamber could be and still manage a single lid, I would think it would be dang heavy. ??? 24" or maybe 30" diameter. I would like a 30" diameter but would a 36" long cooking chamber make the lid way to heavy at 30" diameter. These may be very stupid questions but I don't know much about firebox size to cooking chamber size for drafting and the heat/smoke transfer needed. What size of cooking chamber would be needed for a brisket and two racks of ribs?
 

Creosote

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Absolutely. In fact if the splits are large enough for you to split out the heart into a separate split it will tend to dry faster than the outer portions of the tree. Center splits like this also light easier than the outer splits.
The trees I cut range in 20 to 24 inch diameter so the heart would is easily large enough to take out as a split on its own. I dropped a 16" white oak yesterday and the heartwood center split out easily and was a good 2.5 to 3" diameter
 

Cody_Mack

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Regarding the thermometer connection, 1/2” NPT threads measure just over 3/4” OD, so you are fine there.

Rick
 

daspyknows

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I have the Horizon 20 inch Marshall smoker and and very happy with it. Even happier are my friends who get to eat the results.
 

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