Yoder Smoker question

Discussion in 'Wood Smokers' started by tsonka, Oct 15, 2016.

  1. tsonka

    tsonka Smoke Blower

    Equipment question for you guys.

    Last spring I wanted a smoker and I told myself that I would buy a WSM and if I used it like I wanted and still wanted a stick burner later, I would put one on my to-do list. Well I am to that point. I keep a 6-month budget and about to put a offset smoker on it for spring.

    I am settled on the Yoder brand, I live in Kansas and that is a local company to me, I like them.

    My question is. I have a habit of overbuying things and I “want” the Wichita, but I think the Cheyenne would work just fine. Would like to toss out some of my thoughts and get some feedback

    Things I think are important considerations … what am I missing

    Cook size- I am single. When I cook I typically cook enough for 2-3 people. 6-10 is a very large crowd for my cooking and I really don't think I have ever had 10 at a gathering.

    Equipment size: If I am usually cooking for 2-3, there would be a lot of unused space in the Wichita to heat up which which is wasted energy and more fuel used?

    Quality- Is the Wichita better quality as in construction, build or materials? (I think they are the same) or just larger with maybe some more included options? I am huge on getting what I pay for and realize “You get what you pay for”
  2. tsonka

    tsonka Smoke Blower

    Something that would be important to me. Assuming all else equal, with a heat management plate, would a larger or smaller cooker be easier to hold even temp, or about the same?
  3. I tend to over buy as well.  I do not think you should worry too much over wasted space or fuel and go for a larger smoker if your budget permits.  I might even suggest the Kingman,  It is easy to produce a small cook on a large cooker but more difficult to pull off the reverse.  From experience, I can tell you that a larger firebox alone is helpful.  Additionally, I appreciate the ability to move things around if necessary and it's much easier to do with a larger cooker.  I have two Yoder smokers; a Durango 24 and a Frontiersman.  I can tell you that the 24" Durango becomes quite restricted when cooking large product such as whole turkeys or packer briskets as the top shelf in the horizontal chamber must be removed to accommodate these taller foods.  The Frontiersman was also recently overwhelmed by a neighborhood event.  The Yoder brand is a good one but not perfect.  Let me know if I can offer any other insight. 
  4. big swole

    big swole Newbie

    I saw go bigger.  As big as you can swing, budget wise.  You will be happier in the end and the cooks / temps will be easier.

    I bought a smaller offset first due to price and just stepped up myself to a larger one.  

    I like Yoder but I still can't figure out why they mount the stack at the top of the pipe instead in the center / grate level where  most builder say is the correct placement for heat / smoke distribution.

  5. When I ordered the Frontiersman, I was asked if I wanted the stack mounted high or lower. When I asked what the difference is I was told that they can mount the stack lower for hot & fast cooking but also that they (Yoder) do not recommend it. Apparently the firebox and stack locations are optimized for good performance and it's certainly evidenced in my pit.
  6. rogerwilco

    rogerwilco Meat Mopper

       I've known few individuals who were satisfied long term with a 16" smoker. 20" seems to be about the floor for most enthusiasts Having "just that bit more" headroom or depth can be a good advantage in cooking, whether one needs a bit of clearance for a turkey or needs to turn a couple slabs of ribs crosswise so as to make room for chickens, for example. I, along with most all my cooking buddies, tend to fill these things with more product than any of us ever visualized when purchasing these things. The fireboxes are usually able to better accommodate "standard" sized wood splits, which can be a gift that keeps on giving.

      I suggest you realign your "relative smoker size scale" by concentrating on 24" or larger models. After getting cozy with the idea of one of these, the 20" will appear to be the smaller, more practical choice, instead of being the "this is really too big" extravagance.........

    This is how I talked myself into a .416 Rigby rifle. We don't have a lot of elephants in Oklahoma, (but we do manage to fill 20" smokers more than you'd think).

      Good luck on your choice!
  7. glocksrock

    glocksrock Smoking Fanatic

    I would always opt for the larger model if possible, also it's easier to control/maintain temps with a larger smoker.

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