Big Green Egg - EGGhead Forum - The Ultimate Cooking Experience...
We hope everyone enjoyed their Fourth of July weekend and is excited for more warm weather grilling! This week, we’ll be making these two burgers: Stuffed Portobello Mushroom and Caribbean Chicken, and also eating lots of these Ice Cream Sandwiches in honor of National Ice Cream Month! It's time to think about getting out to one of the many #EGGfests around the country - see a list here

AR vs CGW Swing

Ok I am having a difficult time trying to determine which of these to buy.  Both are great products and obviously do the job they are meant for.  I am hoping you folks can help me determine which would be best for me and my needs.  

I am trying to expand my cooking area for larger cooks i.e. big batches of wings, Burgers,more racks of ribs etc... also I want to have a more stable raised solution.  I currently use a homemade version with 3, 6" bolts, it is inconvenient.  Also I am not a fan of using bricks to raise the grid.

I am leaning towards a woo3 (without handles) and the Swing rack. This would allow me to sear on the lower rack setting, cook indirect in a raised setting and take advantage of the swing rack.

If I go this direction what would I be missing from having a AR?   When cooking indirect are there differences between using the Platesetter and the ceramic stone by CGS?  If I raise the Swing Rack to the felt how much higher can I set the upper tier, how much clearance is there between the large gate and top?

Thanks so much for your hep!


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Comments

  • rholtrholt Posts: 354
    The AR seems more versatile.
  • I know nothing about the Woo, but I have the Swing and LOVE it... There is nothing that I have not been able to do with set ups.... And I love the actual grate, provides great surface area for searing meats!
    HOTTY TODDY!
  • FoghornFoghorn Posts: 1,496
    That's it?  Really?  We can get 100 posts in an hour arguing about charcoal, but can't get more than 2 posts on this important question?

    XL BGE, Klose BYC, ProQ Excel, Weber Kettle, Firepit, Grand Turbo gasser, and a portable Outdoor Gourmet gasser for tailgating

    San Antonio, TX

  • ScottborasjrScottborasjr Posts: 1,924
    @Foghorn, much slower then normal Sunday night due to the holiday I would assume. I have the Adjustable Rig and love it, but it seems that many are extremely happy with the Swing Rack.
    I raise my kids, cook and golf.  When work gets in the way I'm pissed, I'm pissed off 48 weeks a year.
    Inbetween Iowa and Colorado, not close to anything remotely entertaining outside of football season. 
  • CANMAN1976CANMAN1976 Posts: 1,387
    Love the AR, check out the video "bunch of chicken adjustable rig" on youtube and you will see how great it really is.
    Hows ya gettin' on, me ol cock



    Kippens.Newfoundland and Labrador. (Canada).
  • biznorkbiznork Posts: 110
    edited April 2013
    They're both pretty cool. I decided to go with the adjustable rig because it looked easier to fit more meat on the egg using indirect heat with it.
  • biznorkbiznork Posts: 110
    Also, I like having the indirect piece sitting on the spider with their drip pan on top. It makes for easier cleanup.
  • yumdingeryumdinger Posts: 171
    Thanks Canman I did watch that video.  Pretty sweet.  He seems to also be using the extender with slider.  One thing about the swing rack that concerns me is handling.  Seems the AR may be easier and safer to handle when things need to be moved, charcoal added etc...?
    These things cost a lot of money seems to me that set up in the chicken video would cost a good amount over $200.  A swing rack and Woo would also hit that mark.,...Yikes maybe i should just get a small/medium Egg to add to my large.....haha not gonna happen.....YET<
  • FoghornFoghorn Posts: 1,496
    So, since I already have a platesetter, it seems like a swing grate and 3 beer cans (or fire bricks) would give me pretty much every option I need.  Low and high direct and indirect.  Is that correct?

    XL BGE, Klose BYC, ProQ Excel, Weber Kettle, Firepit, Grand Turbo gasser, and a portable Outdoor Gourmet gasser for tailgating

    San Antonio, TX

  • yumdingeryumdinger Posts: 171
    Foghorn yes you probably are correct, and that is what I have been doing but I get tired of picking the bricks out of my coals when I need to move my grate to put wood in or whatever. 
    Plus i have a few bucks burning a hole in my pocket and my wife and family love when I spend it on my egg because they get something in return....good eats.
  • ChubbsChubbs Posts: 3,588
    I played the scenarios in my mind 100 times. I called Tom who owns CGS and talked to him about my cooks. I finally decided on the AR over Swing Rack because I think it is more versatile. Watch the videos on the website and it really is impressive. I think it will hold more meat too. I have a platesetter and a spider so Tom told me to go with R&B Combo. Had my bank account compromised so haven't gotten to order yet, but will get one soon.
    Columbia, SC --- LBGE 2011 -- MINI BGE 2013
  • Solson005Solson005 Posts: 1,841
    edited April 2013
    Sorry I had Easter dinner at my cousins so just got home. I went with the swing rack and it is the best option for myself. I wanted a second tier that the lower rack is easily accessible to flip whatever is on the bottom. I have a woo for my small and the spider for my large so I am not anti CGS by any means I just get the best thing to work with how I cook. 
    Here is a 3 pack of ribs from Sam's Club that is in the rack stand and a turkey breast on the top tier. 
    image

    Easy to get to from multiple sides you can swing it into the egg or out of the egg so when doing 10 lbs of wings at the same time it makes it easy to turn them. 
    image

    If you want to sear steaks the carbon steel can give you great sear marks. 
    image

    You can fit tall things on the top and the bottom, there is even a shaft kit that will allow even more adjustments. 
    image  
    Burgers and Sweet potato fries
    image

    I love my swing rack and will be buying one for the small when they are released. Like I have said before you are not going to hurt my feelings if you go with the AR. My setup works best for what I cook and I would go the same route if I had to again. You just need to find eggcessories that work best for you. 
    Large & Small BGE, CGW Two-Tier Swing Rack for BOTH EGGS, Spider for the Wok, eggCARTen & and Cedar Pergola my Eggs call home in Edmond, OK. 
  • Solson005Solson005 Posts: 1,841
    @Foghorn that is what I do (with bricks) and it works great! 
    Large & Small BGE, CGW Two-Tier Swing Rack for BOTH EGGS, Spider for the Wok, eggCARTen & and Cedar Pergola my Eggs call home in Edmond, OK. 
  • yumdingeryumdinger Posts: 171
    Solson thank you that is why I come on this site.  Great info and I know I will get unbiased information from both sides.    
    I think these are both great products but for the money I just want to get the one that will work best for me considering the investment. what do you do to elevate yours for raised direct cooks?
  • yumdingeryumdinger Posts: 171
    does anyone have pictures of firebricks in place?  I have used several different options and none have balanced in my egg very good.
  • Solson005Solson005 Posts: 1,841
    image

    image

    3 works better than 4 to take the wobble out. 
    Large & Small BGE, CGW Two-Tier Swing Rack for BOTH EGGS, Spider for the Wok, eggCARTen & and Cedar Pergola my Eggs call home in Edmond, OK. 
  • yumdingeryumdinger Posts: 171
    Ah the wobble that is what I want to eliminate all together.  By the way I have a loose spot on my gasket too! Do they stay if/when you need to toss wood in?
  • Solson005Solson005 Posts: 1,841
    edited April 2013
    I usually don't take it off during the cook but they stay in place when I take it out to light it the next time. I found a couple sweet spots that seem to work better than others. It is the weirdest thing the gasket came loose and is shrinking but still the same width I need to get a new gasket from BGE but I haven't gotten around to it yet. It still works good though. 
    Large & Small BGE, CGW Two-Tier Swing Rack for BOTH EGGS, Spider for the Wok, eggCARTen & and Cedar Pergola my Eggs call home in Edmond, OK. 
  • I decided on the AR and the reason is because I like to cook raised direct.  Before I had the AR, I used bricks to raise the grid and I always thought "What if a brick fell?  Will it break the fire box or base?"  I didn't want to cook with bricks anymore so AR won.

    ........................................................................................

    Flint, Michigan.  Named the most dangerous city in America by the F.B.I. three years running.

  • JerkChickenJerkChicken Posts: 549
    I went with th AR because I felt it offered a little more versatility with the integration of the spider, slide grids, and extender. Being able to use my Wok on it is also huge. Pricey set up but there ain't much I can't cook on it, and when considering ill probably have it 10+ years, it's a good value.
    image.jpg
    1936 x 2592 - 2M
    LBGE, Weber OTG w/ Rotisserie, Weber Genesis S-330, Chargriller Duo, AR-15, AK-47
  • Solson005Solson005 Posts: 1,841
    I also use a spider when using my wok or if I want to sear steaks down low I can use my top tier on the spider instead of buying a cast iron piece. 
    image


    I don't think you will be disappointed either way you decide to go. 
    Large & Small BGE, CGW Two-Tier Swing Rack for BOTH EGGS, Spider for the Wok, eggCARTen & and Cedar Pergola my Eggs call home in Edmond, OK. 
  • jfm0830jfm0830 Posts: 873
    edited April 2013
    @yumdinger I think I may "hate" you. You may have solved my problem (same one you have) and I feel stupid for not thinking of it sooner. Most of the way through this thread I was undecided. Then you joked about getting a second small or medium. Well I did get a second Egg, but is was a Large. I priced it out and for me the second Large was cheaper than a small with the Eggcesories I'd need to buy again. Suddenly I was still undecided, but you made me realize I had a Choice C: All of the Above.

    If I may I do have a question for Swing Rack owners. The first time I saw it, I was "put off" by the wide bars. They looked like they might give too much sear. Sometimes you can have too much of a good thing. Anyone care to comment? TIA.

    Jim
    BBQ Website: grillin' & smokin'

    Middlesex County, MA
    Two Large BGE's & Too Many Eggcessories to Count
  • Solson005Solson005 Posts: 1,841
    @jfm0830 I'm not a need to see sear marks on my steaks guy, I had some thick steaks and it works well for that but it is just for show. 

    I recently read Adam Perry Lang's book Charred and Scruffed he talks about one of the worst steaks he ever ate had beautiful sear marks and the best one he has ever made had none. He is a fan of the "hot potato" method flipping often to get a more even center. I did his Rib roast done like a steak and followed the recipe exact (except I had a boneless london broil) and it turned out fantastic. So you can get the wide sear marks but for regular cooking it doesn't really show up unless you want it too. I know you are into photography as much as cooking so for the perfect shot you might not like the wider marks but the food coming off of mine is pretty tasty! 
    Large & Small BGE, CGW Two-Tier Swing Rack for BOTH EGGS, Spider for the Wok, eggCARTen & and Cedar Pergola my Eggs call home in Edmond, OK. 
  • CANMAN1976CANMAN1976 Posts: 1,387
    So jerk chicken how do you like your oval grids especially on top of the extender did you consider the 16 inch sliding d grid. I can't decide between the oval grid or the D grid I like ribs but i also Cook chicken alot.do you think the oval grid sacrifices much surface area compared to the D grid??
    Hows ya gettin' on, me ol cock



    Kippens.Newfoundland and Labrador. (Canada).
  • JerkChickenJerkChicken Posts: 549
    So jerk chicken how do you like your oval grids especially on top of the extender did you consider the 16 inch sliding d grid. I can't decide between the oval grid or the D grid I like ribs but i also Cook chicken alot.do you think the oval grid sacrifices much surface area compared to the D grid??
    I was concerned about losing a little grid space with the ovals, but it is very marginal. What you lose with the oval shapes, isn't as crucial considering you now have 2+ grids. Besides for me, the determining factor was being able to interchange both grids. Being that one grid is always higher in the dome, the grids will inevitably be two different temps. Having both oval grids I just use two grid-grippers and swap 'em out halfway through cooks. I will say I was a little put off by how the top grid just sort of balances atop the extender, it's not very secure (other than gravity) but it hasn't really been an issue. As someone previously mentioned (and always does in these threads) you can't really go wrong with any of the aforementioned tier solutions.
    LBGE, Weber OTG w/ Rotisserie, Weber Genesis S-330, Chargriller Duo, AR-15, AK-47
  • CANMAN1976CANMAN1976 Posts: 1,387
    So jerk chicken how do you like your oval grids especially on top of the extender did you consider the 16 inch sliding d grid. I can't decide between the oval grid or the D grid I like ribs but i also Cook chicken alot.do you think the oval grid sacrifices much surface area compared to the D grid??
    I was concerned about losing a little grid space with the ovals, but it is very marginal. What you lose with the oval shapes, isn't as crucial considering you now have 2+ grids. Besides for me, the determining factor was being able to interchange both grids. Being that one grid is always higher in the dome, the grids will inevitably be two different temps. Having both oval grids I just use two grid-grippers and swap 'em out halfway through cooks. I will say I was a little put off by how the top grid just sort of balances atop the extender, it's not very secure (other than gravity) but it hasn't really been an issue. As someone previously mentioned (and always does in these threads) you can't really go wrong with any of the aforementioned tier solutions.
    Thanks for that JerkChicken that helped....the ability to rotate grids its a nice option along with the fact that you can lay four slabs of ribs flat too.The D grate has metal wing-like sides that extend down to prevent it from sliding of to the sides which is a nice feature tho.Decisions decisions maybe Ill just get both grids and be done with it...lol!!!!
    Hows ya gettin' on, me ol cock



    Kippens.Newfoundland and Labrador. (Canada).
  • Both great pieces of equip. I have the AR oval combo with extender. When I get my 2nd large here shortly, I'll probably do a swing rack so I can have the best of both and swap them out etc. Love my AR though. Could just as easily do 2 of those and the combos would be endless. You won't worry about the cost after your first cook. They are indispensable once you start using them. Just like your egg, you'll wonder why you waited so long.

     

  • billyraybillyray Posts: 1,115
    Since I'm spending my kids inheritance, before I die, I got both. The AR oval combo with the slider and extender and the swing rack. Best of both worlds. Unlimited combinations for a wide variety of cooks and different quanities.
    Felton, Ca. 2-LBGE, 1-Small and waiting on a mini
  • ChubbsChubbs Posts: 3,588
    billyray said:

    Since I'm spending my kids inheritance, before I die, I got both. The AR oval combo with the slider and extender and the swing rack. Best of both worlds. Unlimited combinations for a wide variety of cooks and different quanities.

    Which gets more use?
    Columbia, SC --- LBGE 2011 -- MINI BGE 2013
  • billyraybillyray Posts: 1,115
    Diffinitely the AR.
    Felton, Ca. 2-LBGE, 1-Small and waiting on a mini
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