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$134 is not a few dollars, it's a huge amount for a meat probe. The last time I used it I left it in the smoker and it came to rest on the top of the fire box and the plastic melted just about off of it. truthfully I have not tried to use it but with what it looks like I doubt it will work but for a $134 I guess I should try. It's only 7 months old first reaction was to see if I could buy one, figuring it would be about $10
You are right on the amount of money, I was meaning the difference between black market and on what CS charges.

I have the 020, so I've not had the pleasure/agony of burning one of those wires,but have done 2 Taylor probes like that. My last one I was able to salvage. I used some black/electrical tape on it. I would guess if yours still works, you might be able to use some electric shrink wrap to seal it back up. You can find that at the parts store, use a Bic lighter to shrink/seal it up.

How much do you use the probe itself for probe cooking? If you don't use it all the time, then yes you could use just a remote probe for a lot less money. They won't control the smoker, but they can provide you the information, that might be better (like a ET732 which can transmit up to 300')

If the issue is why is it so much, it's because it's not a taylor or some cheap probe, but one that needs to be able to handle the smoker environment.

I know it's high, but CS sets that price based upon what they find to be the right probe for the smoker. If you think the price is high, just contact them direct and tell them of your concerns. They DO listen and if enough people tell them, maybe they make a change.

If you're looking for an alternative, I'm not sure asking in their forum for an alternative is fair (since they sell them).
I bought a probe when I bought my FEC100. The first time I used it, the fire went out on an all night smoke. I bought the Maverick ET-732 ($59) which transmits smoker and food temps with a HI/LO alarm. I haven't used the probe since. Also, if you are cooking more than one piece of meat, the probe only tracks one. The other pieces can be over or under done.

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