Chargriller with side fire box vs a MES

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by gargra03, Dec 23, 2009.

  1. gargra03

    gargra03 Fire Starter

    I have a question for all you vet smokers out there. At the moment I have a small brinkman charcoal smoker that I love to use. I also bought a chargriller smoker/grill with the side fire box that is at the moment over kill for my needs. I am considering selling the chargriller and getting a masterbuilt electric . What are your thoughts ? Are the masterbuilts reliable and do they smoke well or will it require alot of modifications ?

    Thanks for all the great advice ,
  2. mossymo

    mossymo Master of the Pit OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I own both, right tool for the right job.....

    I prefer to use the Chargriller, especially for brisket, ribs, etc., but I find myself using my MES's far more often. It is great to be able to work on other projects and not have to monitor the fuel and temperature. MES is a reasonable priced electric for the insulation and thermostat features.

    I would suggest adding a MES to your arsenal. If it isn't financially practical right now, keep the Chargriller and save up for a MES; in the long run you will be happy you kept the Chargriller option and besides that, a used Chargriller may not bring much to put toward a MES.
  3. fishawn

    fishawn Smoking Fanatic

    I have a MES that I've had for 2 years. It has required to be repaired 2 times. Both times the terminals that connect to the heating element fried. It is (or was) a pretty common repair & you can find threads on the repair process in here. Lots of people have done it. That said, I love it & use it at least once a weak. For the money, I think its the best electric out there. I paid $170 for mine & if it totally breaks, I will buy another one, no problem. I did buy the 30" which is OK for me, but if I do get another one, I will go with the 40" so I can put more sausage in it. [​IMG] Like Mossy said though, I would like to have a side firebox stick burner some day to play with, but really don't have a lot of time to tend a fire right now.
  4. gargra03

    gargra03 Fire Starter

    thanks for all the input guys I am going to look at a masterbuilt tommorow and see what I think.

  5. rstr hunter

    rstr hunter Smoking Fanatic

    I think this is more of a charcoal vs electric question. I own a chargriller and have had several electric meals. I personally think the Char-griller gives a nice taste to my ribs, chicken, pulled pork, and brisket due to the charcoal fuel mixed with wood. If I had my choice of meals, I would eat from that. However I like my little electric for fish, snack sticks, hotdogs, etc. That said, my chargriller isn't much use if the outside temp is less than 60 as it is tough to get to cooking temp. I agree with MossyMo that I'd keep the Chargriller and save for the MES. You'll like having both options depending on the circumstances.
  6. I own both and I love both. The Chargriller with SFB is great during the warmer months (I live in NY) because it is tough to keep the temp up even with the mods I did. I use the MES in the winter religiously - if it's too cold i toss a blanket over it and it keeps temp fairly well. The bonus to the chargriller is the fact that it's actually a good sized grill too for those times when you - gasp - don't want to smoke.

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