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Opinions on Pellet grills

Discussion in 'Pellet Smokers' started by Ed Hernandez, Apr 14, 2019.

  1. Ed Hernandez

    Ed Hernandez Newbie

    Evening guys and gals! I’m writing this to get yalls professional and experienced opinion over a pellet grill. In a few weeks I’ll have saved enough money to buy a nice pellet smoker, I’ve always wanted a Yoder YS640 or 480 but then Traeger dropped the Ironwood series. I know Yoder has been around awhile, I know their awesomely made in the good ol US of A and their all around tanks, but I’ve also heard a lot of rust being an issue on them even though Yoder provides paint for it I was dissapointed a 1000+ Dollar American smoker would rust. Also I’ve been a fan of traeger and the Ironwood looks good especially with that awesome WiFire technology they released that i for one think is badass, i do hear for the price traeger doesn’t hold up from YouTube comments with many people saying a Pit Boss holds its own with it for half the price. Before my post gets anymore lengthy does anyone own a Yoder? What do you love about it? Was it worth the price tag? What about a Traeger? Any Ironwood owners? Any pros and cons on both? Any other smoker suggestions? I’ve heard of Pit Boss, Rec Tec, and the Green mountain smoker to name a few. This would be a at home pit, for family, friends and gatherings. I don’t do competition cooking but may in the future. Also want something where I could throw in multiple racks of ribs, pork Butts, brisket, etc and not worry about temp. Any and all opinion, info, help is greatly appreciated! Smoke on!
    Winterrider likes this.
  2. Jabiru

    Jabiru Meat Mopper

    I recently grabbed a GMG Prime Jim Bowie, very versatile, plenty of room and easy to pull off great feeds. I am really happy I moved to a pellet smoker.

    There’s heaps of choices and most of the models are damn good.

    Only thing i can suggest is do your research and go with what you like and will suit your budget.
  3. The cost of pellet grills in my opinion is super inflated especially offshore made units.
    The Rec Tec seems to have the nest materials (304 stainless) but I also like Pellet Pro but no wifi (yeah I am wifi needy person). I looked at the GMG Primer series I see people are complaining about peeling paint which is a shame for the cost. Yoder may rust but I am guessing it would be 20 years before a perforations due to rust in that thick gauge steel would happen but again, options on the unit puts the Yoder out of the range of cost I am considering.
    Grilla Grills Silver Back in another nice looking unit but options that should be standard are not and adding them on puts the price more expensive then Red Tec. Lastly, I like the looks of the new Traeger Timberline models but man, the price is literally stupid. The Traeger $1800 timberline would be a buy for me if the price was more reasonable, let's say $1199.
  4. jake0531

    jake0531 Meat Mopper

    I bought a GMG Daniel Boone in November during their Black Friday sales. I can’t say enough good things about it. I’ve done plenty of pork shoulders, ribs, wings, cookies, fish, steak, all have turned out fantastic. I haven’t had any issues with it the 6 months I’ve owned. I keep mine in my garage, don’t use it in wet weather and haven’t had any issues with paint or rust. Try to remember there’s always a few bad apples on a good tree. I got the non WiFi, as I didn’t see the need for it. If I’m going to use it I want to be home where I can monitor it if anything goes wrong. I did do the heat shield mod to it so I can adjust the diffuser side to side and I get pretty spot on temps across the grates. It’s pretty much set and forget. I start it about 30 minutes before I want to put food on, it comes up to temp and I adjust heat shield if one side is hotter than the other, put food on and forget til I have to tend to the food. When I put the probe it I turn the screen to the food so I can see temp from the house, but I just ordered an Inkbird IBT-4XS primarily for more probes, but that is Bluetooth so I won’t even have to go outside to check food anymore if I don’t want
  5. dubob

    dubob Smoke Blower

    I bought the Camp Chef Woodwind SG w/Sear box in late February and I'm very pleased with the results of all me cooks so far. Just did St Louis cut ribs yesterday and they were melt in your mouth delicious. I'm in the "Don't need/want wifi" camp as I too plan to be at home while cooking. I did add an RF connected IT monitor (Ink Bird IRF-4S) so I don't have to constantly run outside every little bit to check the IT temps of a cook. The remote keeps me apprised of the IT all the time while inside the house.

    The Woodwind I bought is still on sale for $899 direct from CC. And the CC Support team has been great to deal with so far. I've had a couple of very minor problems with my grill and they have quickly and efficiently provided solutions. I think CC has better features than do the Traegers and cost less for similar models. But the Traeger grills are good products according to all my friends and neighbors that have them.
  6. Without really knowing much about pellet grills, I bought a Traeger Pro22. All I knew is that I was done with charcoal and electric smoking. Three of my neighbors had Traegers, all made great food, and they couldn't say enough about how much they enjoyed having them.

    Six months and many cooks later, I am getting a handle on pellet grilling/smoking. With what I know now, it would be harder to make a decision. Basic nuts/bolts, and applying heat to meat, it would be hard for me to pass on a Pit Boss for the price. The price/size is very attractive. You could add a fancy PID controller and still be under what I paid for the Traeger, let alone a US built rig.

    1/4" plate steel construction and bull horn things are glitzy, but really doesn't make the meat. It's a tough call to make.
  7. jlud

    jlud Smoke Blower

    As you can see most are happy with what they pick which is a great thing for us consumers! I just got a Yoder YS640 a couple weeks back. All the materials are very heavy duty, it will outlast me even if I have to touch up paint. Most of the rust I see is people letting grease run down the front and sit there without cleaning it or leaving out in rain.

    I’ve done grilling a couple times and very happy with how it turned out, and smoked ribs twice and brisket with good results. The temp on surface does vary from probe a bit so in my mind you want a separate device to see temps across the different cooking areas. I wanted a solid smoker and solid WiFi thermometer so I bought what I felt were the best of each. I could have saved money buying lesser expensive combo units but I have just felt in past experience that they usually don’t work as well and when part of it goes you throw the whole thing out, that’s just my personal take, ymmv.

    Good luck, lots of great units and people that love them!
  8. metsfan2152

    metsfan2152 Smoke Blower

    I think there are many of good pellet grills out there. Also depends on what you want to spend a on the grill. Do you want WIFI connections? I got my Rec Tec RT-590 a couple of weeks ago and love it. Built really nice and the customer service is some of the best i ever had. Also has 4 year warranty which is great. I was in the same boat as you a couple of months ago. Heard a lot of good things about yoder but it was out of my price range as i was stretching as it is.
  9. sandyut

    sandyut Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    I am new to pellet grill and studied them for entirely too long and made many decisions I didnt pull the trigger on. finally threw down on a Rec Tec RT-700 and love it. but that is a common story across many brands. its hard to compare with only one on my deck as took many years to find the coin to buy one. Look at features, constructions, reviews, warranty, etc.
  10. SlowmotionQue

    SlowmotionQue Smoking Fanatic

    I’m a Rec Tec Stampede owner as well.

    For what you get, the build quality, construction materials, WiFi, warranty, customer service, Rec Tecs pellet grill line is tough to beat at their price points.

    WiFi is a must for me. As well as a PID controller. Bin capacity a priority as well.

    We are extremely happy with ours.
    Last edited: Apr 15, 2019
  11. retfr8flyr

    retfr8flyr Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I have the Timberline 1300 and it's been a great grill so far. I think the new Traeger lineup is hard to beat. They have added a new brushless auger motor and improved the controller. I don't think you could go wrong with them.
    theoldmonkey likes this.
  12. Winterrider

    Winterrider Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    $1999 in my town. Seems like a bunch. I do know they are built better and have upgraded from the past models.
  13. txgunlover

    txgunlover Fire Starter

    I have two Rec-Tec's and love them both!
  14. Bru

    Bru Newbie

    Do you have some BBQ shops near you? I was shopping for a new traeger last week. Local BBQ shop offered to sell me a Timberline 1300 that had only had the burn in done for $1,500. Went to a different local smoker/outdoor fireplace business and they offered me a pro series 34 assembled with the front shelf brand new never turned on for $600. I didn’t need the WiFire capabilities and couldn’t really justify the price difference (I tried but just couldn’t). You never know what kind of pricing you can get until you do some shopping around. Good luck with your hunt for the right smoker!
  15. retfr8flyr

    retfr8flyr Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Ed, all pellet grills are basically the same, an auger to deliver the pellets to the fire pot, a controller to tell the auger what to do and the grill shape itself. What you are paying for with the higher cost grills is the cost of better materials and better electronics in the controller. The best thing is to decide what your budget is for your grill and then find the one that is within your budget, with the features you want. A pellet grill will last a long time, if you take care of it, so I always think of the purchase cost over a 10 year time frame. A $500 dollar difference in cost doesn't seem so large that way. One thing I would point out is Traeger offers a big discount with a friends and family coupon, if you know anyone that could get you one.
    Pelagic likes this.
  16. Ed Hernandez

    Ed Hernandez Newbie

    A lot of awesome replies, and some definite useful info so I definitely appreciate that guys! I'm actually going to go to a "local" BBQ shop this weekend. I'm definitely happy with the fact that everyone has different pellet smokers but are very pleased with their choice. I'll probably end up getting a Yoder since I'm pretty stickler about keeping my pit clean (I have a stick burner) so hopefully the rust will be minimal but I've seen videos were Yoder will actually send paint since the chamber has a 10 year warranty. Malcom Reed also has said whether I get a Traeger or Yoder I'll be very pleased with the selection. I'll definitely check out the GMG, I'm glad Rec Tec seems to be very dependable but I cant get over the chrome horns on it, but thats just me :emoji_laughing: definitely let yall know what I end up getting!
  17. Wow, I was starting to think I was the only one not into the horn thing.....
    If you have some experience, it's hard to argue with the Yoder decision. When I wear this Traeger out, a Yoder would be top 2 or 3 on my list. Good luck let us know what you decide.
  18. sandyut

    sandyut Smoking Fanatic SMF Premier Member

    I think the horns look bad a**. I also get a lot of people commenting on how cool they look.

    a handle design seems insignificant to the quality, features and value. IMO of course...
  19. SlowmotionQue

    SlowmotionQue Smoking Fanatic

    I’m with you. I love the horns. Appearance wise, to me, they set the Rec Tecs apart from the rest.

    Years ago, at a rib contest, I saw a custom smoker made in the shape of a pig.

    When you shut the lid, smoke would come out of the pigs ears, snout, mouth, rear end or all four depending on how you had the vents set.

    Gimmicky and an tongue in cheek sort of thing, it was. And the appearance not to be taken over seriously. An inside joke of sorts.

    That’s sort of how I look at the Rec Tec horns thing.
  20. I bought a Traeger Elite 34 last year. It's worked great and has pumped out some awesome product but I made the mistake of selling my Weber Spirit to cover some of the cost. Now I feel like I'm missing the high quality searing even though a steak has never touched it and I'm not really buying into the whole GrillGrate add on (they are awesome when I had them for my Weber) producing a good sear. I definitely would like one piece of equipment that can do it all but the more research I do, the more confused I get. I'm down to Traeger Ironwood, Yoder YS640, Camp Chef SmokePro 36 SGX w/ Sear Box, and the Pitts & Spitts Maverick 1250.

    I'm leaning more towards the Camp Chef due to the sear box and it's high rating on AmazingRibs.com. I think my 2nd choice would be the Pitts & Spitts based off of reviews I've read. I was hooked on the Yoder for a while but they're pretty pricey and chew through pellets.