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Get a FEC 100 and try it for a month. If you don't like it, CS will take it back. I bet that doesn't happen too often! The versatility & convenience compared to a stick burner are fantastic! Some call it "cheating" but they are just jealous! If a horse & buggy were so great, we'd all still be riding around in them! Wink
I've seen some guys haul their small CS on the circuits,because it is easy to cook with,cook their other meals,etc.

I know one cook that switched to a stickburner,because it fit his particular needs-but still kept his FECs.

Have you considered what a short season you would have in your winters with a large offset.Lotta warm weather chopping and splitting logs to feed the stick every 20-30 mins.

I know one guy that makes an offset that can handle that weather and still enjoy a cook,but he starts well above 12K,if you don't get the bells and whistles.

You might consider going out with someone that has one, around New Year's, and see if you really want to keep a steady fire in one and what it costs.Might make an FEC seem cheap over a couple years.
Last edited by tom
probably $1800 with shipping, which is a huge part. I'm not looking for a trailer type .. something in the lines of a LANG 36" delux patio. From what I'm been reading though you have to chain yourself to the smoker to feed it wood. I do not plan on getting rid of the sm025 as it's great in our Buffalo winters and just plain easy. I was just wondering if others maintain both types for possibly different reasons.
Unless you're planning to venture out on the competition circuit, I'd consider an Amerique, or an FEC100, assuming your wife can be brought on board. The AQ will double your capacity and has some great features lacking in the 025. I owned one before moving up to the FEC100 (which I dearly love)

I began BBQ life with a $200 Brinkman offset. The drawbacks were maintaining an even temp, having to maintain a supply of wood (they chew thru a LOT) and as you say, you're chained to it. Overnight smokes? Plan on getting up every other hour.

You can find stick burners that are economical on wood use and maintain even temps. Jambo makes one that will fit your budget. Klose is another manufacturer that comes to mind. I would also consider gravity feed charcoal smokers such as Stumps or the Backwoods wood/charcoal burner. For the kind of money you'd spend on either of those, you're close to the cost of an FEC.

Whichever way you decide to go, talk to owners and do your homework.
Jamie Geer is the offset I had in mind.Don't know if Max has checked out the price,lately.Shipping would be about what you say your budget is.It would be rare for someone not to drive down to Jamie's and haul it home inside a U-Haul.Not cheap either.

The economy model would be the cheapest you would consider to do what you wish.

Thinking $7,500 plus tax and personally hauling home,motels,food,etc.Might get by for $10K.
looking at the Klose and Jamie smokers I realize there are a lot of (expensive) options. Most out of my price range at the moment. wonder if it would make sense to pickup a low end unit to see how I like dealing with the offset smokers? Saw a few on craiglist.... since I doubt I would use it much this winter per Tom's point .. I'll probable put it off until next spring.

thanks for the input
Yoder and Horizon are both in that price point, but are you dead set on a stick burner?
Weber Smokey Mountains are very good charcoal smokers, as are the Good-One line. Ron Goodwin is back selling them as The Smoker by Goodwin Industries. They are considered a reverse flow offset and can be run on wood although designed to burn charcoal. UDS smokers are also quite popular as a charcoal smoker.
Lots of options out there.
i ended up buying a Lang 36" patio. That with my cs025 should do fine. The lang's build quality and price far out paced the others. It's 1/4" stainless steel and price was good. Again, this is a patio smoker, not a trailer competition setup. total cost with SS grates and shipping ~ $1800 (550 for shipping ! 608 lbs). It's a patio sized smoker but professional build. It can burn lump charcoal but wood is a lot cheaper. I am sure I will use the CS for overnights (butts, maybe large briskets) but have another tool to use.
Lang builds a good smoker for what you say you intend to use it for.

I know a lot of folks that have had Lang's and they can produce a good product.They can produce fine tasting meats and for the occasional cook they can be a lot of fun.The cooks we know that have had them,still compliment the taste of the product it produced.

Keep us up with how your two cookers work together for you.
Remember,your CS can also do a great job of holding your cooked meats,or reheating .

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