Times they are a Changin'

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PrairiePitBBQ

Newbie
Original poster
May 15, 2024
4
7
Hello from eastern Nebraska. I've been practicing the dark arts most of my life, grew up helping dad and uncles and now dabble plenty on my own. Smoking meat runs in my family and has for generations. I primarily process my own wild game into jerky, summer sausage, sticks, etc. I also enjoy smoking salmon and bacon and other sausage experiments.

I've been running a Bradley Digital 6-rack for the last 5 years. It has finally met its demise and I'm in the market for something new. I've been researching a number of options and would prefer something pellet-fueled. If anyone has any suggestions or threads to look at I greatly appreciate it. My instinct says a pellet vertical is the next progression but maybe a pellet grill with smoke tubes is a better option. Let me know what you think!
 
Welcome! Lots of opinions. Budget plays a factor. A Weber Kettle makes a great smoker and grill for burgers and such. May not be the best for sticks and summer sausage. That is where an electric shines.
 
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Welcome from Ohio. You are on a slippery slope. IMO nothing beats real fire for BBQ. Take a look at my sig line. Weber grill is in there, electric for jerky, sausage. Use the search function it is your friend.

RG
 
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Greetings, and welcome to the community from New Mexico.

As B BigW. said, budget is important in the decision making process.

For vertical or grill, since you do a lot of jerky and sausages, vertical may be a better choice for you.
I have a CampChef vertical pellet smoker that I use for jerky and cheese.
My LSG pellet grill gets the big stuff - brisket, ribs, pork shoulders, turkey, etc.
 
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Welcome from Kentucky!

A pellet grill is sort of a do everything outfit, but like most things, it doesn't them all well.

I have a stick burner, pellet grill, and an ancient electric Brinkman.

My pellet grill sees far more use than my stick burner, mainly out of not having (or wanting to spend the time) to babysit the fire, but the tradeoff is a somewhat lack of flavor compared to the real wood fire.
 
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Welcome from Hawaii! Never used a pellet so no help there but this site will have all the info you need!
 
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Welcome, from Colorado. I don't have a pellet myself, but I'm sure you'll get plenty of suggestions from those that do.
 
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Welcome to SMF from North Texas!
I have little experience with a pellet smoker, but there are a ton of folks on here that have a lot of experience.

- Jason
 
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I have both a Lang stick burner and a Yoder 640S pellet smoker. I tend to use the Yoder more frequently due to the convenience of not having to baby sit it and set and forget. It will give you some good eats and gets hot enough to cook wood fired pizzas too. That being said, the Lang produces better que and have to have a wood source. My personal opinion is to stay away from Traeger.
 
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Hello from RI.

What exactly is the issue with the Bradley that it met its demise?The reason I ask is that it could be brought back to life with the addition of a PID controller,the Auber contoller(s) is truly plug and play with the Bradley.
 
I think gold standard answer on pellet grill / smoker is either a Recteq or Yoder if budget allows. Lower cost I would look at Pit Boss. Before you settle in on pellet I'd also strongly consider a Masterbuilt Gravity Feeds. Convenience of set and forget temp with the fuel source being a chute full of charcoal and wood chunks. Results are truly hard to tell from stick burner.
 
Greetings, and welcome to the community from New Mexico.

As B BigW. said, budget is important in the decision making process.

For vertical or grill, since you do a lot of jerky and sausages, vertical may be a better choice for you.
I have a CampChef vertical pellet smoker that I use for jerky and cheese.
My LSG pellet grill gets the big stuff - brisket, ribs, pork shoulders, turkey, etc.
I'd prefer staying under $1,500. Ideally more pit boss range. Which CampChef do you have? I've seen the XXL Pro looks intriguing but I thought I saw they might be making some changes in a new version.
 
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I think gold standard answer on pellet grill / smoker is either a Recteq or Yoder if budget allows. Lower cost I would look at Pit Boss. Before you settle in on pellet I'd also strongly consider a Masterbuilt Gravity Feeds. Convenience of set and forget temp with the fuel source being a chute full of charcoal and wood chunks. Results are truly hard to tell from stick burner.
A Yoder would be ideal but out of my budget. I've been looking at the Pit Boss Sportsman vertical and recently eyeing a few Recteqs if I were to go pellet grill. Do you have any experience with the MB Gravity? I used an early version and wasn't impressed with build quality. I know the newer versions are supposed to be better now.
 
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I'd prefer staying under $1,500. Ideally more pit boss range. Which CampChef do you have? I've seen the XXL Pro looks intriguing but I thought I saw they might be making some changes in a new version.
It is the XXL Pro.
Don't know how they are now, but mine came with a 7 racks (I think) - 3 for meats, 3 for
jerky/cheese, and one with hooks for hanging sausage, bacon, or...
Lot of gaps for smoke to leak out. New ones may be different. Don't know.
Did replace the controller with a Savannah Stoker (more stable and has a fan only mode).

All in all, I'm happy with it.
 
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A Yoder would be ideal but out of my budget. I've been looking at the Pit Boss Sportsman vertical and recently eyeing a few Recteqs if I were to go pellet grill. Do you have any experience with the MB Gravity? I used an early version and wasn't impressed with build quality. I know the newer versions are supposed to be better now.
I think their latest iteration is supposed to be a heavier duty build. That said my buddy has an original 1050 that's a few years old with zero issues in form or function. The results are phenomenal. Your $1500 or less budget easily puts you on a nice Recteq as well. Pretty rare to hear complaints on them and everyone loves their customer service.
 
Hello from RI.

What exactly is the issue with the Bradley that it met its demise?The reason I ask is that it could be brought back to life with the addition of a PID controller,the Auber contoller(s) is truly plug and play with the Bradley.
Haha tragic story, I keep it on a cart and it fell victim to 60mph wind. Completely avoidable and dumb mistake. I'm getting an E1 error now. I contacted Bradley and they have the replacement components available if I want to start tearing into it. I picked it up used for $100 about 5 years ago. I've spent plenty of time already tinkering with it. I'm taking this as an opportunity to upgrade! I'll definitely check out the Auber controllers though! My dad has a Bradley original and this might be a great add-on for him.
 
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