Help me make my first smoker buy!

Discussion in 'Propane Smokers' started by chief squeegy, Mar 29, 2013.

  1. After perusing the website for the better part of a week I have decided to get a gas smoker. I had several concerns I wanted addressed before I made the buy, however:

    - I had heard that propane smokers have problems keeping the temp LOW enough for a good smoke.  Has anyone had any experience with this issue?

    - Another concern I had was size (wait, this is the smoking website?!?!). I really wanted to be able to do a good sized brisket, and in most vertical smokers (in my price range of $200-$250) there doesn't seem to be room to lay it down. I had heard it needs to be smoked with the fat up, so would it be heretical of me to take out the racks in my smoker and hang the meat? Or I was looking at the GOSM Big Block which seems to have the required width, but the lack of a fire door makes it not too sexy imo. Has anyone had issue with this?

    - And finally, I had heard that these smoker models you can get at HD or Lowe's need some extra tinkering, insulation, etc. to get the best out of them. I am not a very handy person - otherwise I would have built a $250 setup that could smoke a whole hog! - so what are some things I can purchase to make any adjustments I may need, or seal any gaps, without introducing chemicals that will kill me - or worse yet, mess with my flavor profile! - and how do I use them?

    Thanks Que-mmunity!

  2. s2k9k

    s2k9k AMNPS Test Group

    Hi Alan, I don't think you are going to find the perfect smoker in your price range but all the smokers in that range can be modded very easily to make work very well.
    I have a GOSM 3405BGW, it's not the Big Block but it is a widebody and I can fit a full packer brisket or full racks of ribs in it. I did have a problem keeping it under 250* when I first got it but adding a needle valve helped a lot. I wanted to start doing jerky so I wanted to go a lot lower so I took the side burner off my gas grill and put in it and now I can maintain 135* with no problem. Dumping the water in the pan and filling it with sand really stabilizes the temps.

    Fat up...Fat down... that's an argument that will never end...heck I just trim all the fat off so the rub gets to the meat since I will throw the fat away anyway!

    With the addition of an AMNTS the fire door is mute since you can get 5 hours of perfect smoke with it and don't have to open any door!

    You can get high temp RTV silicone made by Permatex that is perfectly safe to seal any leaks you might have.
  3. animal54

    animal54 Fire Starter

    Hello Alan......the best thing to do is go with what you think will work, and play with it. I have a Masterbuilt electric and tomorrow I am getting a Smoke Hollow propane.  You do not need to be "handy" to get anything to work. Buy it, try it and give us your thoughts and I am will find an answer some where in this site......SUPER SITE!!!!!  Good Luck and let us know!!!
  4. Thanks all...will let you know what I decide to go with and what I smoke first! xD
  5. bob bramlett

    bob bramlett Fire Starter

    i just got the MASTERBUILT XL gasser at BPS - only $179 bucks and it is huge!!!!!
  6. ballagh

    ballagh Smoking Fanatic

    I have the smokey mountain series XL propane from BPS. I live in iowa and it works outside in -15 degrees to 110 degrees. It sits at 225 degrees no problem. I get around 3-4 hours of smoke with chips and chunks in the provided cast iron box. You can everything but the whole hog on it easily. I have not done any mods to it. You can expect about 3-4 smokes per lp tank.

    I do fat cap up so it renders down into the meat :)

    Good luck

    Sent from my LT30at using Tapatalk 2
  7.   So I had it researched, picked out, and ordered. A Smoke Hollow 44" on the way, 2 day shipping...and Amazon sends it to the wrong address!  Had I mentioned I upgraded to 2 day shipping for it to be in time for my week of vacation I have? So hey, Amazon, order me a new one, right? Wrong! Item on Back Order! Check back in a few weeks! 

      Needless to say my enthusiasm got a hard "Where my money!" pimp slap to the face. Keeping my spirits high, but gonna wait to delve deeper into the forums and just get myself worked up till my new one gets here :(

  8. mhchops

    mhchops Smoke Blower

    Chief squeegy sorry to here about your smoker not arriving i have the smoke hollow #7 its the 38" two door model which is 20" wide and have no problem getting full racks of ribs in it, its still a pretty large smoker (not as big as the 44") but so far i love it done a littke modification on the chip box and now use chunks i done a two butts last weekend and the turned out wonderful and finished with soflaquers finishing sauce it was awesome (thanks so much for the recipes soflaquer) so i really love the smoke hollow but as stated above all the gas smokers appear to work the same hope you get your smoker soon if not they have tgem at gander mountain (If you have one close) and for the 229.00 i paid for mine it was money well spent imho

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