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originally posted by: Flyingclaydisk
a reply to: Bloodworth
I don't see that brand at HD or Lowes. Are you sure you didn't mean Pit Boss, or something else? Is it electric or wood fired?
Masterbuilt is a good bang for the buck.
Here's some things to look for if you're considering electric..
1. Make sure whatever you get is insulated (like a refrigerator). The small smokers are heavily influenced by outside air temperature and wind. Insulation helps greatly with this issue.
2. Look at the wattage of the heating element. Try to get 1500W or 1800W. Many of them are down around 1100W and won't smoke if it's the slightest bit cool outside. They want 75-80 ambient to work properly. It's a stupid "safety" thing.
If you're going to get into wood/charcoal fired, the list of things to look for is very long indeed (especially for side fire box models). And just to give you an idea, I bought one once and wound up giving it away because it did not work well at all despite numerous attempts to modify it (expensive mistake). You could forge steel in that thing, but it wouldn't smoke worth a damn. I'd probably stick with a vertical smoker to start out, something like a Weber Bullet.
If propane, I can't really help as I've never used one. All I can tell you is one of the byproducts of burning propane is water vapor/steam, and water vapor can be problematic with smoking. You want to be 'smoking' your food, not 'steaming' it.