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Is this smoker to good to be true at the price?


AG$
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The below offset is available at a few places at around the £250-£270 mark

CosmoGrillTM Smoker 90KG XXL Barbecue with Temperature Gauge & Charcoal Barrel https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B07DFR3J2V/ref=cm_sw_r_cp_api_i_34SmDb9FEJ8J1

Been using my Weber Kettle as a smoker for a while (snake method, minion method etc) and fancy getting a ‘proper’ smoker. Undecided between a WSM and an offset smoker.

I came across the above offset. I won’t pretend to be an expert on Offset smokers but from what I read it seems that the thickness of the steel is generally the main determining factor in the quality. The above model weighs 90kg which indicates it’s pretty thick, even if it’s a slightly bigger model. Also, not mentioned in the spec, but a few customer comments on the amazon page indicate it’s about 3-4mm thick. 

I’ve never heard of Cosmogrill...any Ideas? 

Appreciate any advice 

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From a lot of posts on this site about offset bbqs it seems that they can be really hit and miss, and some need a lot of work doing to them. The advice I generally see from the more experienced guys is it’s best to spend that money on a bullet smoker. From all accounts most of the guys at competitions use bullet smokers. Hope this helps. 

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On 7/20/2019 at 10:45 AM, markie_q said:

so the metal may be on the thin side.

That is one way of saving the build cost but then you finish up with a smoker that does not retain heat as well has a better built one.

 

19 hours ago, Simon said:

From a lot of posts on this site about offset bbqs it seems that they can be really hit and miss,

This is a good responce,  we had a new member only the other week asking the same question, from the info he got he dropped the idea of an offset and went with a ProQ bullett.

 

Ice.

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24 minutes ago, Icefever said:

That is one way of saving the build cost but then you finish up with a smoker that does not retain heat as well has a better built one.

 

This is a good responce,  we had a new member only the other week asking the same question, from the info he got he dropped the idea of an offset and went with a ProQ bullett.

 

Ice.

That was me, and this was the exact smoker I was looking at before as had a decent thickness to the steel, but absolutely dont regret choosing the proq elite over it

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I've got this smoker and it's an absolute BEAST! I only received it last monday so haven't got doing any cooks on it yet, but I have seasoned it.  I can confirm that the metal is impressively thick. 3.5mm I measured it at. This thing packs some weight! You can tell the quality of the steel just by the weight of the doors when you lift them up.

I have done a few mods to it so far - I used high temp silicone to seal where the firebox joins the side of the cooking chamber, I put smoke seal strip around the cooking chamber door and the firebox door. Due to the weight of this smoker it was very difficult to manoeuver using the handle that's on the firebox, also I didn't like the fact that you have to lift it by the firebox, so I changed the wheels over to the firebox side and now use the side table as a handle to move it around. This has made a huge difference because the weight of the firebox actually works in your favour this way and I can now move it around easily. 

There are a serious amount of grates that come with this! It's pretty much a 3 in 1. You can use it as a smoker, you can use the firebox as a small bbq, or use the main cooking chamber as a large bbq. All the grates are there to do these things.

The thermometer that comes with it is poor,  but aren't they all. I use digital thermometers anyway and I'm going to drill a hole in the side to fit a steel gland to put my probes through. 

I've attached a few photos of mine, these were taken before I switched the wheels to the firebox side. I got a mate to make me the heavy duty charcoal basket. 

 

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Edited by Stuarty84
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Thanks for the replies and advice 

@Stuarty84 thanks for the pictures- looks great! Appreciate if you could give some feedback once you have tried it out!

May I ask where you got yours from?

Also, what is the purpose of the charcoal basket? Does it just make it easier to clean up the ash?

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14 hours ago, Stuarty84 said:

I can confirm that the metal is impressively thick. 3.5mm

That's a tank you have there @Stuarty84 🤣  that's the sort of thickness you need in a smoker, holds the heat. This is the problem with the cheaper makes...but you still had to use fire tape.

14 hours ago, Stuarty84 said:

I changed the wheels over to the firebox side and now use the side table as a handle to move it around.

That was a brilliant idea, like you say weights on the other end..love the charcoal basket tell your mate he could sell those. :thumb1:

 

5 hours ago, AG$ said:

Also, what is the purpose of the charcoal basket? Does it just make it easier to clean up the ash?

Not as such, the basket keeps whatever fuel your using in one place,  so you can mound it at one end, build a snake  or minion. The ash will always fall through the bottom of the basket (unless you have a solid bottom? but then ash buildup may be a problem)... and into an ash tray, or bottom of the firebox...that makes for cleaning it easier.

 

Ice.

Edited by Icefever
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9 hours ago, AG$ said:

Thanks for the replies and advice 

@Stuarty84 thanks for the pictures- looks great! Appreciate if you could give some feedback once you have tried it out!

May I ask where you got yours from?

Also, what is the purpose of the charcoal basket? Does it just make it easier to clean up the ash?

No problem mate. The charcoal basket keeps the fuel more concentrated and makes it easier to maintain. They're very helpful. In fact, I would say they're a necessity! If you don't have a mate who can weld one for you, there's plenty of tutorials online of how to make 'no weld' versions. Check out the video on Youtube by 'Cooking with Ry'. Super simple!

4 hours ago, Icefever said:

That's a tank you have there @Stuarty84 🤣  that's the sort of thickness you need in a smoker, holds the heat. This is the problem with the cheaper makes...but you still had to use fire tape.

A tank indeed! You wouldn't believe how difficult it is to lift from the firebox side. The weight is serious!

I don't know if I actually needed the fire seal tape, I never tested the smoker without it. But there's definitely no leaks now. I just wanted to be sure because the only place I want air getting in is through the vent on the firebox door and the only place I want smoke escaping is from the chimney, and that is the case! 

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3 hours ago, Icefever said:

Neat....so what's your first cook going to be???

I'm not sure yet. Tonight's test run is all about temps. I'm doing a dry run with my probes in different positions to see what's what. Also going to try a couple of different ideas for a heat deflectors. I want to get my cooking as even as possible the whole way across.

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58 minutes ago, Icefever said:

@Stuarty84 have you seen the video where the guy use small cakes to test the temp across the smoker??

This is not the one I was on about but it shows the same trick.....he starts at around 2.16...well worth it. :thumb1:

Yeah I have seen a few videos of people doing that, it's a great idea. 

I don't think we can get 'biscuits in a can' here in the UK so I've came up with the idea of using croissants. You ever see the croissants that come in a tin? They're actually gorgeous with a bit of butter and jam, but you twist the tin and it busts open exactly the same as in the video you posted, revealing enough raw pre-cut dough to make 6 croissants, all I need to do is roll them into shape. They're only 2 quid a tin or something like that. 

Will be nice to have a visual reference as well as what the temp gauges are telling me.

 

 

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On 7/21/2019 at 2:51 PM, Montyb82 said:

That was me, and this was the exact smoker I was looking at before as had a decent thickness to the steel, but absolutely dont regret choosing the proq elite over it

what made you sway more towards the ProQ in the end? I am in the exact same position right now, Pro Q Frontier or this Cosmo Grill offset... 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Offset looks awesome!

Im torn between building my offset or just buying a decent one, This looks like a good alternative  to the Oaklahoma Joe, will be digging in deep!

Most offsets will require some form of modding, in my eyes no different to rigging up a ProQ with extras and what not, so don't let that put you off.

Enjoy!

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AG$ and Stuarty84.

 

How are you getting on with this smoker?

I've also purchased one and have installed door seals, a chimney extension in the chamber and a digital thermometer.

On the first try the smoker worked a dream, using lump charcoal it stayed at 180'c which was just right.

However on the next three BBQ's I've struggled to get it above 130'c even with a roaring fire box. It does not seem to want to draw the heat into the main chamber.

I've tried various combinations with the door vent and the chimney vent. I've even turned it around to see if the wind was effecting it. 

Have you found a setting that works?

Cheers

Pete

 

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Chimney extension could be too long?

Does the fire box have a grill in it? Try turning it 90 degrees so it’s sitting off the bottom, this will help air flow I found.

I only run Webber briquettes now and these stay constant, i get it going with a full chimney and add another half and it’s good to go.

 

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The chimney extension hovers about 1 inch above the grate. I will try to lift it up a little over the weekend.

I'll also try rotating the grill in the bottom of the fire box so more air can get below it.

Thanks for the advise Nevada.

 

 

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On 8/15/2019 at 2:27 PM, Pete said:

AG$ and Stuarty84.

 

How are you getting on with this smoker?

I've also purchased one and have installed door seals, a chimney extension in the chamber and a digital thermometer.

On the first try the smoker worked a dream, using lump charcoal it stayed at 180'c which was just right.

However on the next three BBQ's I've struggled to get it above 130'c even with a roaring fire box. It does not seem to want to draw the heat into the main chamber.

I've tried various combinations with the door vent and the chimney vent. I've even turned it around to see if the wind was effecting it. 

Have you found a setting that works?

Cheers

Pete

 

Hi Pete,

I've only done one cook on mine so far and the temps held well throughout. It was only a couple of half chickens I did so obviously they weren't on for a long time. What I did notice is how quickly the fuel burns compared to my drum smoker. I was able to get 12 hours @ 250f from one basket in my drum, but i only got about 3.5 hours using the offset on this particular cook. In saying that, I did use lump wood not briquettes. 

I did a couple of test runs when I first got the smoker and the temperature difference from one side of the cooking chamber to the other was a crazy 65ft. I wasnt happy with that at all, so I've been working on evening that temp out.  For the chicken cook I used home made deflector plates (2 x £1 oven trays from Asda wrapped in foil). They did make a difference, there was only a 20f difference from one side to the other. Obviously the hotter side was the firebox side. But still I wanted more...

So I got a mate to make me a proper heat deflector with plates out of 5mm steel. Very happy with how it all turned out. For the first time ever the hotter side was the chimney side! But once the new heat deflector got hot, the temp levels evened out pretty much completely and stayed that way. See photos below. 

Haven't had a chance to cook on it since getting this but I'll make a post on here once I do!

 

 

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Edited by Stuarty84
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