Grillpro vs Chargriller

Discussion in 'Charcoal Smokers' started by wedge, Apr 21, 2009.

  1. wedge

    wedge Newbie

    Hi all,
    I've been lurking on the site for about a year now. I've smoked some roasts in the past on a gas grill, which surprisingly enough, worked out fairly well. Well, now I'm looking at jumping in the deep end and getting a smoker. So I'm looking for some thoughts and opinions. I'm looking at both the Chargriller Smokin Pro and the GrillPro 34040.

    From all the threads I've read, the Chargriller is a solid unit that with some mods is very effective. I've managed to source one here in Canada at Lowe's about an hours drive away for $250.

    The GrillPro I'm having a bit of difficulty finding info on. Even the manufacturer website doesn't have any info. They've got it on sale for until Thursday at a local TSC for the same price. After Thursday it's back up to $300. Has anyone used one of these before? I'm assuming that it's going to require the same modifications.

    I'm leaning towards the Chargriller but the GrillPro would save me a two hour roundtrip drive. Any help is greatly appreciated. I can't wait to do some smoking this summer.

  2. geek with fire

    geek with fire Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I can't speak to the grillpro, as I've never used one. I will say that I don't care for percelain grill grates (chargriller uses least mine does). The chargriller leaks like a funnel, so you will need to seal him up. I'm guessing, based on the picture of the grill pro and the similar hinge design, that the grill pro will have the same problem.

    All in all, the chargriller is a very good starter smoker. It's a little small, so as you progress into larger cooks, you will have to get creative, but works for me very well.
  3. wutang

    wutang Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    I have that exact same GrillPro offset smoker. I love it! I checked out a few Chargrilller smokers and they just seemed a little thin. The Grill Pro had a larger cooking area and seemed to be made of thicker metal. I have no complaints. I have not made any mods to it, so it does have a hot spot near the firebox opening but I just use it to crisp up the bacon on my abts. [​IMG] I have been meaning to make a charcoal basket for the firebox but other than that I will probably leave it alone.

    I have used it for cold smoking cheese by building a very small fire in the firebox

    Here is a pic of it loaded with little stuff to make you hungry

    Plenty of room for a couple big butts with space to spare

    I am not going to tell you what to buy. But I will say that I have no problem recommending it.
  4. coyote-1

    coyote-1 Smoking Fanatic

    The GrillPro and CGSP have the same gauge steel for the smoke chamber, and I know the CGSP's firebox has thicker steel than its smoke chamber; dunno about the GrillPro firebox, but I'd bet it too has thicker firebox steel. Perhaps the perception of thicker steel on the GrillPro occurs because its smoke chamber is 18" deep as opposed to the CGSP's 20".

    That GrillPro certainly looks like a great unit! If it's a good deal, it's worth picking up.
  5. wutang

    wutang Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Maybe it was just my perception. I was also using display models at Home Depot or Ace Hardware for my comparison- who knows what effort the minimum wage stockboy actually put into the assembly. But after checking both out I decided on the GrillPro.

    I think you will be able to turn out some fine Q with either one you choose.
  6. daddio

    daddio Meat Mopper

    the grillpro i know nothing about,the chargriller i'm on my second one and have loved them both besides the charcoal basket i've not really done any mods to them. ( i do have me a homemade after burner type set up) that is quick to unhook if i want to go back to charcoal and wood. these are good smokers and grills i can do about 5 to 6 slabs of spares using racks and 4-6 butts depending on there size. it's a good versital cooker,my next chargriller purchase would be the outlaw,a little bigger version but worth it i'm sure. my opinion anyway.[​IMG]
  7. wedge

    wedge Newbie

    Thanks for the info guys.
    It sounds like they're very similar to each other. I was wondering about the gauge of the metal, so if they're both the same, then that's one less difference to compare.
    I haven't actually had the chance to look at the CGSP but I did give the GrillPro a good look over and the only thing I noticed was the lid on the firebox didn't close tight, but that was because the curve of the lid wasn't the same as the curve of the firebox. That's easy enough to fix though I think.
    So right now I'm leaning towards the GrillPro mostly because it doesn't require a drive to another city.
    Wutang, that food looks amazing. I'm really interested in trying to cold some smoke some cheese and maybe even some salmon.
    Thanks again.
  8. rickw

    rickw Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Just curious, have you considered a WSM?
  9. I have the Chargriller pro with a couple mods and it works pretty well. It's my first one. I plugged some holes by the smoker box, did the dryer vent trick, and flipped the charcoal bed but it's pretty much ready to go right away. I threw my extra grates under the charcoal bed to try to hold the temp a little higher.... don't know if that did any good. The temp went up 30 degrees outside between smokes.... Good ol' Iowa weather
  10. wedge

    wedge Newbie

    Hi Rick,
    No I haven't. I always just kind of figured that offset was the route to go. I like how I can also double it as a regular charcoal grill if need be. But realistically I don't know how often that would happen. I have a Broil-King natural gas bbq for everyday use.
    I'm open though if you care to enlighten me.

  11. rickw

    rickw Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    With the WMS you don't have to tend to it no where near as much as an offset, it uses far less fuel and over all much easier to smoke on. With this being you first smoker I thought it was at least worth a look. That or consider a uds build.
  12. wedge

    wedge Newbie

    Thanks for the info Rick. I still think I want to go with an offset. I like to make things difficult for myself.... But I'll take a look at some when I'm out.

    I agree that porcelain isn't as good as a cast iron, or something along those lines but the only time I can think that would be an issue is if I'm trying to sear or get some grill marks. Although, how does porcelain wear?
  13. wedge

    wedge Newbie

    Just thought I'd follow up and say that I opted for the GrillPro (saving myself the drive). Putting it together was a two man operation though. So many holes didn't line up and required some "field adjustments."

    Anyways, it's together and I've got some mods underway. Managed to glue gasket on the front and the back with only a small mess and have some c-channel for the sides all ready to go. Ordered some thermometers from KCK and will be installing them whenever they arrive.

    Any ideas on how to install the dryer vent? Unlike the CGSP with the exhaust stack that comes down into the chamber a little bit, I've got nothing to attach too. I tried some 3" duct, which didn't fit, so I trimmed it to be more narrow. That just weakend it and the clamp ring squeezes it smaller and it just falls out of the stack. Maybe a piece of sheet metal pop riveted to the right size and screwed into place?

    I'm also still looking into the baffle and tuning plates.....

  14. wutang

    wutang Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

    Good luck with the mods. I look forward to seeing how it turns out for you.
  15. gaga

    gaga Fire Starter

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