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Kathleen947

Upgrading to Pellet Smoker

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Somewhat of a newbie with smoking, as I have been using a Masterbuilt Electric smoker for the past few years, and wanting to expand into something better. I dont want to break the bank (under $1,000), and have been looking at Traegers and Green Mountains. Thought I would ask in here as you all know much much more than I do regarding smokers. Any help would be appreciated. Looking for something under $1,000 which will connect to WiFi that is relatively simple to set up and use. Any help would be appreciated.

Edited by Kathleen947

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I bought a Green Mountain  about three years ago. Carried it around and didn't use it much until I was put on the sideline for about 8 weeks. It's not a quick process to cook with, but you already know that. 

Had my younger brother over for some food from it just after the purchase. He had been talking about "Smoking" for a while. He was also using an "Electric". Next thing I knew, he bought a big Traeger ( I had been wanting one for a while, but too expensive in my mind.) He loved it, but then found the double insulated near professional model which he now has.  It's not for the traveler though. Takes more than 5 men to load and unload and that's without a bag of pellets in the hopper. 

My Green Mountain is supposed to be portable. The "Davy Crockett." I can carry it, but not for a long way. It does not have wheels (yet) and the Leg's are not all that useful. I'm thinking of making a cart for it, but haven't started yet. The Treager "portable" does have wheels, is taller and easier to use (I think but haven't actually used.), and was about the same price, I found out after getting the Green Mountain. Depending on where you will keep it, how you will use it and how you will keep your pellet's dry are the biggest questions regarding a pellet grill. There is another model I recently heard about made in Yoder, Kansas. It's also heavy and has a unique "Smoking" profile so I was told. Apparently the cute smoke stacks don't promote even heating and you want one without. Good luck with your search.

 

Rod

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We bought a Green Mountain wifi version for our permanent site in the winter. Son-in-law got us interested, he wanted a Traeger so we went looking, Traeger needs its own pellets. We were interested and I started researching. Found the Green Mountain, told the son-in-law to take a look. He quickly was convinced to go with the Green Mountain. We keep our pellets in Home Depot buckets so we have a selection. Having the wifi running the GM is wonderful and would never get a smoker with out it. Well under $1000.

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Both our sons have the Green Mountain and love them, small enough to be portable but in my opinion a little awkward to carry, and you can set it up to use on your phone

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4 hours ago, SWharton said:

We bought a Green Mountain wifi version for our permanent site in the winter. Son-in-law got us interested, he wanted a Traeger so we went looking, Traeger needs its own pellets. We were interested and I started researching. Found the Green Mountain, told the son-in-law to take a look. He quickly was convinced to go with the Green Mountain. We keep our pellets in Home Depot buckets so we have a selection. Having the wifi running the GM is wonderful and would never get a smoker with out it. Well under $1000.

Didn't know the Traeger "NEEDS" it's own pellets. I use them in my Green Mountain because they are the ones I found at the local grocery store. My Mom has used Folgers coffee for years and never throws away the plastic containers. They are easily filled, use and have yet to spill. Won't pay money for a plastic home depot bucket. 

I have found the WIFI to be a nice gimmick, but it really doesn't alarm loud enough when the time is up or the unit has reached temperature. Then there is the "time out" on the phone or tablet. Takes longer to reconnect than it does to just go out and look at the display. Now if I could set it up to turn on when I leave work, be ready when I got home with something to throw on it I would certainly change my mind. My phone is my internet connection and it's always with me so it's not going to work out all that often, especially if I get set up to boon-dock anytime soon. 

Rod

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How big a smoker do you want?  I picked up a Traeger imitation, Country Smoker.  It's portable, does not have Wifi but I don't need that.  I have used it a few times, just picked it up last Christmas and so far it does a great job.  It's not light, but I can carry it.  It's not for doing big amounts of meat, but for a small group, it works great.  And, MUCH less in purchase price for doing the same job.  I also have a masterbuilt elec smoker at my SnB, it has never been very consistant smoking, have to baby sit it to keep the smoke going, probably send it to the scrap yard shortly.

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Newbie here but not new to pellet grills. After a few years of this and that, I have found Rec Tec grills to be the best bang for buck. The 340 model is what I bought for camping and it collapses down to 24" for traveling. I have two other rec tecs at house. They just work great, built well and second to none in customer service.

 

Whatever you get, enjoy and have fun.

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OK, I will weigh in on this topic. 

I have had the Traeger Junior with the folding legs. It was heavy and awkward to store. I then got a GMG Davy Crockett. I like it far better. It is more compact yet large enough to smoke or grill a fair amount of meat. As has been said the legs on it on kind of wonky but I am working on alternative to them. I built a slide out tray to load it in and out of the basement of the fiver. I recently saw the Traeger Ranger at Costco and it is very compact, however you could not cook a turkey on it. But, if you are not interested in smoking or cooking large cuts of meat it looks like it might be very nice for $399.

 

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On 6/21/2020 at 3:23 PM, lappir said:

I bought a Green Mountain  about three years ago. Carried it around and didn't use it much until I was put on the sideline for about 8 weeks. It's not a quick process to cook with, but you already know that. 

Had my younger brother over for some food from it just after the purchase. He had been talking about "Smoking" for a while. He was also using an "Electric". Next thing I knew, he bought a big Traeger ( I had been wanting one for a while, but too expensive in my mind.) He loved it, but then found the double insulated near professional model which he now has.  It's not for the traveler though. Takes more than 5 men to load and unload and that's without a bag of pellets in the hopper. 

My Green Mountain is supposed to be portable. The "Davy Crockett." I can carry it, but not for a long way. It does not have wheels (yet) and the Leg's are not all that useful. I'm thinking of making a cart for it, but haven't started yet. The Treager "portable" does have wheels, is taller and easier to use (I think but haven't actually used.), and was about the same price, I found out after getting the Green Mountain. Depending on where you will keep it, how you will use it and how you will keep your pellet's dry are the biggest questions regarding a pellet grill. There is another model I recently heard about made in Yoder, Kansas. It's also heavy and has a unique "Smoking" profile so I was told. Apparently the cute smoke stacks don't promote even heating and you want one without. Good luck with your search.

 

Rod

Great! Thank for advice.

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