To Yoder or not to Yoder?

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Finn81

Newbie
Original poster
Mar 28, 2021
4
0
Hello all,

looking for some advice on which of these 2 smokers to go with. I was smoking on a 270 cabinet smoker for the longest time and loved the bbq it produced but ultimately my lifestyle has changed and I’ve been unable to dedicate the time to it. So I sold off my 270 and am now preparing to enter the world of pellet smokers. I know the flavor won’t be the same but at this time I still have my Weber kettle to do smaller cooks. Down the road i hope to eventually be able to add in a stick burner again but for now I’m not doing any completion bbq. My main goal is producing delicious food to share with my friends and family. For this reason the pellet grill seems to be the answer for me right now. I’ve narrowed my decision down to 2 smokers the Traeger Timberline 1300 and the Yoder YS640s. Looking for any advice that can help me solidify my choice. I live in Frederick MD and like the idea I can get the Traeger local but at the same time I’ve received a lot of negative feedback from Traegers in the past. Not sure if the new lines especially at the price point have gotten better that the past. I do like the idea of the Yoder being made in the USA and is made of higher quality materials And can achieve 600 degrees for searing., I had also looked at the rec-teq RT-700 but I’m not sure if the interior has enough height to do larger turkeys or beer can chickens. What are everyone’s thoughts????
 

sandyut

Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
Feb 18, 2015
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Utah
ok first, walk away from Trager - not worth your hard earned money. Yoder is a BIG step above a Trager not the same ballpark or game.

RT-700 all the way. When I did a significant comparison before purchase it ended up being between rec teq and yoder. I went with Rec Teq for my needs and desires and its been AWESOME! if you have the budget check out the Mak 1 star. spendy but nice.

I have not had any height or space issues with my RT-700.

And welcome to SMF - you have arrived.
 

Winterrider

Smoking Guru
OTBS Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Sep 29, 2018
5,194
3,137
North Dakota
I think disco disco is a Timberline owner ( not sure if 850 or 1300 ) he may have some insight he may share with you. The newer models such as that seem to be much better than the older. Good luck with decision.
 

texomakid

Master of the Pit
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Aug 6, 2017
1,267
1,005
Lake Texoma
I can only speak for the YS640. Bought mine in 2018 & I've probably burned over a ton (yep, 2000 lbs) of pellets in it to this point. I'm fixing to do some deep maintenance on mine but that's just due to the heavy use. You'll get some rust on the top part of the door opening & the YS640 is heavy and expensive. That being said I'm very satisfied with my Yoder. Once I learned the "quirks" of this cooker I can manage any hot spots by shifting or rotating what I'm cooking & the moving baffle plate is a great way to change positions of hot spots. Mine is not the latest version but I don't plan to upgrade anything but the igniter. If you're concerned about rust the MAK is also a top shelf pellet cooker that's made from Stainless Steel and I've heard nothing but good things with them.

Good luck with your choice.
 

retfr8flyr

Smoking Fanatic
OTBS Member
May 20, 2013
613
227
Providence Forge, VA
I have the Timberline 1300 and it's been a very good grill for me. I'm sure the Yoder has improved, from when I was looking, but it had some major problems, as far as I was concerned. The first is the rust problem, second was the old type controller, I read they have a new controller now, third was the hot spots inside the grill. The guy that runs the Kamado Guru forum, John Setzler, had one and got rid of it due to the hot spots and inconsistent cooking. There are lots of happy Yoder customers out there but I liked the features my 1300 offered me. The new D2 1300 is even better than mine.
 

SmokinEdge

Smoking Guru
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
★ Lifetime Premier ★
Jan 18, 2020
5,392
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Western Colorado
Bought my ys-640 in 2017. We grill 5-6 days a week. Like an extension of the kitchen. I have very few complaints. The igniter was a thing, but they now have a porcelain upgrade. I’m running the old controller with zero issues. I live in Colorado at 6400’. The winter is long and cold, but the Yoder just rolls on. It has to like said, 5-6 days a week. This machine runs more like a pit, not so much a grill. I think most people who complain about the Yoder want a grill first and foremost. While the machine can grill just fine, it’s not the best grill in my opinion. As a low slow bbq pit it does a great job and is a work horse.
 
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ofelles

Smoking Fanatic
SMF Premier Member
Mar 16, 2019
589
908
Brentwood CA
I bought my 640 in 2018 and have had zero problems with it. The new models come with Fireboard built in and a ceramic starter. Yes the smoke profile is lighter but you can use a smoke tube to up the smoke taste. I purchased a LSG cabinet cooker in 2020 which I use alot but if I just want a quick and easy cook, it's the Yoder.
 

Alphonse

Smoke Blower
Dec 1, 2019
149
99
Gulf Coast Alabama
I have a newer Yoder and recently bought a Recteq Matador burner. My son bought a Recteq Bullseye and a Matador.

To my dismay I discovered that Recteq's control of social media is dishonest to say the least. I tried to join a couple of the Facebook groups to gain some insights and my posts were never approved. I dug deeper into the issue and discovered that they are well known for sanitizing reviews and throwing people off their Facebook groups if they bring up anything negative. My experience with them is they do have great customer service which neutralizes their poor Chinese product issues that float to the surface. But at the end of the day, I believe they are dishonest.

If you use Facebook, join this Group and do your research before you make your decision. This Group was formed for those banned from the Recteq controlled Groups (yes, plural because they have more than one.)
https://www.facebook.com/groups/784738541708442
 

kstone113

Meat Mopper
May 24, 2019
173
59
I have a newer Yoder and recently bought a Recteq Matador burner. My son bought a Recteq Bullseye and a Matador.

To my dismay I discovered that Recteq's control of social media is dishonest to say the least. I tried to join a couple of the Facebook groups to gain some insights and my posts were never approved. I dug deeper into the issue and discovered that they are well known for sanitizing reviews and throwing people off their Facebook groups if they bring up anything negative. My experience with them is they do have great customer service which neutralizes their poor Chinese product issues that float to the surface. But at the end of the day, I believe they are dishonest.

If you use Facebook, join this Group and do your research before you make your decision. This Group was formed for those banned from the Recteq controlled Groups (yes, plural because they have more than one.)
https://www.facebook.com/groups/784738541708442

Just a different perspective to this however respect your perspective and understand it.

First though, between a Yoder and Traeger....Traeger is not even in the same ballpark. Yoder all the way. Not even close....

I am a RecTeq Bull owner and Bullseye owner. So in some eyes, a RecTeq fanboy. Getting that out of the way, when I did my research, I did find just like you that RecTeq overall and their groups scrub negative content. I'm a big researcher so when I started to realize that, I dug deeper on forums like this and others just to find negative content which I was able to find. So actually finding some negative content was a relief....it wasn't too good to be true b/c no company or product is perfect.

As far as the facebook groups, I will agree with you. I'm not really on facebook anymore for various reasons but one thing I do miss is those RecTeq facebook groups. I've heard and seen the EXACT same type of negative comments being removed from Traeger groups, Gorilla grills groups, and others. So in my opinion that is a moot point from my extensive research. Perhaps Yoder groups aren't like that but I'm not sure about that but others certainly are. I think one different is RecTeq staff though they don't control the groups, they are active in them and will answer questions. And staff even monitor them(you could see that as a bad thing but hear me out) and will even call customers without them even reaching out to customer service to make sure all is well. I've seen that so many times.

The height on the Bull at least can be an issue but really hasn't been for me. Other smokers grills may have more clearance so you should do your measurements. RecTeq's website has all that info.

So from my perspective from a researcher to diving into buying the Bull and then Bullseye, RecTeq's customer service is probably the best company I've ever worked with. They do all in the power to make issues right. I have seen times where it just hasn't worked out for customers and read their story and understood. Because also at the end of the day, the products(except like the chuck wagon and maybe another which are made in the USA) are made in China so yeah....it isn't as good as made in the USA. When I compared Yoder to RecTeq, the price was a good amount lower on RecTeq side for what you get. If money isn't super tight, even as a RecTeq owner of almost 2 years and still loving my grills/smokers, I would still never discourage anyone from Yoder. One thing I didn't like is it will rust. That's just a fact. And to me, with Yoder costing more(hundreds of dollars more) and the fact it will rust and knowing I do not have a covered area for it and mine would be in the elements(I do have covers of course), I really liked the idea of stainless steel. Looking back, I no doubt feel I made the right decision for my situation. However, everyone's situation is different a lot of factors go into buying a smoker/grill.

So while I encourage you to look at RecTeq, if you are still convinced between Traeger and Yoder.....Yoder....absolute no brainer.
 

Finn81

Newbie
Original poster
Thread starter
Mar 28, 2021
4
0
I really like the Yoder but I’ve not been able to find a local distributor. Looks like I’d have to go through a website like atbbq.com but they’re charging me almost $400.00 to ship the unit. That being said as much as I like it I’m not sure if I can bring myself to to paying that much just to ship it to me. I definitely want a premium pellet smoker, something that will keep even temps and have a solid build quality. I do live in Maryland so we do experience cold weather and I would like to be able to use this year round especially around the holidays. Any other recommendations I’m all ears
 

Johnny Ray

Smoking Fanatic
Jun 22, 2019
428
396
Western, KY
I’ve owned all three brands. Yoder, Traeger and Rec Teq.
Currently I have a Rec Teq bull and bullseye.
After owning all three and cooking on all three if I was in the market for a new pellet grill I would buy a Rec Teq.
it’s just a very good pellet cooker in my opinion. My interactions with their customer service has been second to none.

Johnny Ray
 

JWFokker

Smoking Fanatic
Mar 5, 2019
513
173
If you have the budget for a Yoder or Traeger you should be looking at MAK and Cookshack.
 

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