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Considering a BGE - Advice?

edited 11:23AM in EggHead Forum
Hi all!

First off, apologies if this gets asked a lot. I tried to search back a few pages, but my internet is soooo slow (.13mbps) I gave up on page 5 and figured I'd just ask here.

I'm from Lynnwood, WA. I've been wanting to do my own smoking, and my mom has sort of caught my passion (I'm a college student at WWU who is home for the summer). After doing a ton of research, the BGE is probably our first choice because it has a good reputation and a lot of versatility (our grill is broken, we don't have an oven... no, we're not poor, we just moved into a fixer-upper a few months ago).

But we have a few questions, and I figured some eggheads could help us with them.

1.) Do any of you wish you'd gotten a SMALLER size? We wanted a medium for the price, but after going and looking at it in person, we think the medium is borderline. We'd probably never cook for more than 5-6 people, but the large looks much bigger, and the medium might not work well for small crowds.

2.) What accessories do you all feel are "must haves"? My mother wants a lighter, I kind of like the "Guru" (gotta find out the price though, I decided if it was cheap I'd buy it for her), and at some point we want the pizza plate. Are there any I am missing that are must haves? Approximate price would be great too - if we get the large, we're pushing our price limit so can't spend too much on accessories, but I want to make sure when I leave for school in September my mother has enough to comfortably cook when I'm gone.

3.) Dumb, probably... but if anyone has a large BGE, what did you all pay? The one place I've found that has gotten back to me is US$794 for just the egg. the store we went to has a reputation as over-priced though, so trying to figure out what a good price would be.

4.) Dumb, assuredly.... What is the method for mixing the lump charcoal with the wood? We have a ton of apple/cherry wood on hand, but I'm not entirely sure the best way to go about lighting the BGE if (more likely, when) we get one.

Any related or unrelated advice would be appreciated, and apologies if this topic has been overdone. Such an active forum 5 pages back only took me a few days back.

Comments

  • BoomerBoomer Posts: 115
    I seen the BGE years ago @ BBQ's galore, I laughed @ it and said, I will never buy that thing, no way no how, here we are years later and WISHED I woulda bought one YEARS ago.
    I will advise to get the Large, medium is ok for 2 people IMO, however its easy to get the Large started and ready to grill in 15mins or less, I use the weber starters the ones that look like white wax, work awesome. one cube to begin the party...

    Boomer...
  • I recommend trying to make the Seattle Eggfest this weekend you would likely get a good deal on a demo
    and learn a lot more about what the Egg can do. If the medium seems border line and you regularly feed 5-6 and entertain on occasion, I would go with the large hands down. A large here runs about $750 plus $100 for the nest but you are on left coast. I would guess they cost a bit more there but just a guess. While they can be a bit pricey compare it to a high end gasser that would have to be replaced in 10 years. A plate setter would be a must have for you which would turn your Egg into a smoker/oven.
  • Here a few opinions:

    1.) Do any of you wish you'd gotten a SMALLER size? We wanted a medium for the price, but after going and looking at it in person, we think the medium is borderline. We'd probably never cook for more than 5-6 people, but the large looks much bigger, and the medium might not work well for small crowds.


    Nobody I've ever seen post here that had a large has ever wished they had got a smaller one. Most often they want a smaller on as well as the large. Get the large you will not regret it.

    2.) What accessories do you all feel are "must haves"? My mother wants a lighter, I kind of like the "Guru" (gotta find out the price though, I decided if it was cheap I'd buy it for her), and at some point we want the pizza plate. Are there any I am missing that are must haves? Approximate price would be great too - if we get the large, we're pushing our price limit so can't spend too much on accessories, but I want to make sure when I leave for school in September my mother has enough to comfortably cook when I'm gone.


    Definately a plate setter to enable indirect cooks. That and an an ash tool to clean up is all I started with. Oh and you'll want some way to hold the egg up, a table or a nest.

    3.) Dumb, probably... but if anyone has a large BGE, what did you all pay? The one place I've found that has gotten back to me is US$794 for just the egg. the store we went to has a reputation as over-priced though, so trying to figure out what a good price would be.


    As far as I know around 700 to 750 is what they go for down there although I have heard of a sale that put them on for 599. One thing you might want to do is get to the Seattle Eggfest which is right away I think, as I understand it you might get one of the eggs that has been cooked on at the fest for a good price. Someone who knows better could probably clarify this.

    4.) Dumb, assuredly.... What is the method for mixing the lump charcoal with the wood? We have a ton of apple/cherry wood on hand, but I'm not entirely sure the best way to go about lighting the BGE if (more likely, when) we get one.

    2 or 3 larger lumps of the smoking wood mixed in seems to be the best for hot smoking.

    You have several lighting options the ones I've used are a paper towel with a little oil on it the rolled up and put under some coals works well and mineral oil just 1 tbsp or so in two or three spots lights the egg fast with no nasty smells or smoke. The glod standard is a Mapp torch but in my opinion these methods work well enough.

    Any related or unrelated advice would be appreciated, and apologies if this topic has been overdone. Such an active forum 5 pages back only took me a few days back.

    Grampas Grub posts an amazing collection of advice like this: http://www.eggheadforum.com/index.php?option=com_simpleboard&func=view&id=473952&catid=1

    Good Luck

    Doug
  • You could maybe even win one at the Eggfest! :woohoo:
  • Here is some more info for you.
    http://www.pnweggfest.com/

    Demo Eggs will be available to take home after the Egg Fest at a reduced price of $765 (Over $250 below retail). Demo Egg Package includes: Large Egg, Egg Mate, Ash Tool, Large Egg Nest, Grill Gripper and a bag of charcoal (you get to take the charcoal home that the cook doesn't use). This is a good deal even here in the South.
  • PharmeggistPharmeggist Posts: 1,191
    1) Buy a Large Egg B)
    2) Get a Plate Setter & Pizza Stone ;)
    3)Cost?? Around 800 dollars with nest,Plate setter and ash tool :whistle:
    4)Add Wood just prior to putting platesetter in.... you don'[t have to soak the wood chunks the slow temp translates to a slow burn of wood :woohoo:

    Check out www.nakedwhiz.com and you will learn to egg very fast not to mention use this forum to ask questions :) :)

    Happy Egging, Pharmeggist
  • Call Monroe Fireplace and Stove. Avoid Aquaquip. Go to eggfest in Renton.

    But in the end, get a large. If your going to smoke pork/beef/ribs, the bigger 18-inch grate will give you more options. its better to be too big than too small.

    I live in Snoqualmie. Hit me up if you have any questions...
  • RipnemRipnem Posts: 5,511
    So what's your cut Eddie? :laugh: :laugh: :laugh:

    I do the same thing :)

    I just wish I had known about the Egg 20 years ago. Although I probably wouldn't be in the construction industry if I had. :ermm: :huh: :unsure: :ohmy: :)
  • Grandpas GrubGrandpas Grub Posts: 14,226
    1. Get the large if you can at all afford it. A lot of people will get smaller eggs. There are 2 of us and at times we cook for the entire family of 24 (adults to infants). Over 2 years I have purchased a Large, Medium, Small and Mini. If I were doing it all over again. 1st a large, then a mini and then another large.

    It nice to have multiple eggs so different foods can be cooked at different temperatures, but it isn’t at all necessary.

    One can always cook for less people on a large.

    2. Don’t get all concerned about what accessories you need right off. Get the egg, lump, ash tool and either a plate setter or an Adjustable Rig and Spider. Pizza stone next but don’t get or use a Pampered Chef pizza stone.

    A Guru (DigiQ2) is a great accessory, but very nice and at some point in time you most likely will end up getting a Powered Vent System. For long cooks I would at least pick up a Maverick ET-73 Redi Check. This thermometer has a remote, dual probe (meat and pit) with alarms for over or under pit temperature and meat thermometer.

    3. It might be too late but look a few posts down for posts by smittythesmoker. Maybe you can pick up a demo (used once for an eggfest). I paid $1,150 for the ‘eggfest setup’. I didn’t know where to get any type of discount/deal. I don‘t regret it.

    The only thing I can add is get the egg and use it. Get on the forum and ask questions. The rest will come.

    Like most will say, I wish I would have gotten an egg many, many years ago.

    GG
  • Seattle ToddSeattle Todd Posts: 227
    Funny. I live not too far away in SE Everett and am a WWU dropout. Just couldn't stand Hellingbham, although it's better than Pullman. :laugh:

    I own 3 BGE's at the moment, two large and one medium. Go for the Large. Worth the extra dough.

    3rd Annnual and unfortunately due to work I didn't know if I could attend. I'm attending but can't cook because all the demo's are taken.

    All your questions here will be answered in person and you can check out it out in person.

    Go to the PNW Eggfest at the top of the forum and register ASAP. Bring your Mother too. You'll both love it, well except for the drive from Lynnwood to Kent.

    If you register for the Fest and don't have a ride send me an email at mikantodd@msn.com before 8am tomorrow and I could possibly give you and/if your Mother a ride down.

    Or just email me if you can't make it tomorrow and you and your Mother would like to come by my place and check out the BGE experience. My 'oldest' child I've had for ~10 years now so I'm well seasoned on cooking on them.
  • :laugh: It looks like he is only 20-25 minutes away from an Eggfest tomorrow and there is no better time to learn and pick up a new Egg for a decent price with some extra goodies. :)
  • Wow thanks for the help everyone!

    I think you've all convinced me to push for the large. :) My mom wants this to be "the last barbecue she ever buys" and might as well get one that will for sure work for her.

    I'll check out Grandpa's thread as soon as I finish this. Did a quick looksie and it looks great.

    I can't make Eggfest, I saw the link right after I posted my original message and checked it out. I work tomorrow, and my mother is going to the family reunion I'm supposed to be going to. Might cause a bit of a stir if we both bail.

    Sno - actually have a lot of family in Snoqualmie, my Aunt/Uncle/Cousin and paternal grandparents live in the area.

    Seattle Todd - I might take you up on that last offer :). I'm working on the mother to get the grill earlier, she wants to wait until we get some foundation work done in the house (lot of people going through the area we want to plop the BGE at).

    Thanks so much everyone!
    Kyle
  • If you want one of those demo Eggs fronm the Eggfest I would try to call tomorrow and reserve one if they are any left. They may take a CC# over the phone. That is a great price with the basic accesories you would need.
    Good luck! :)
  • Seattle ToddSeattle Todd Posts: 227
    Trust me on this. It'll be the last barbecue you'll ever own. If I got another it'd probably be a custom made Klose. That would be a toy not because I'm unhappy with with the BGE's performance. I'm just stupid about toys. :)

    You're missing out on the Eggfest though. Bet you'll be there next year. I've only known one other WWU student that actually bothered to get a Summer job other than me and you. :P

    You and Mom are missing out on a great ride down, though. BMW M3 but now I can drive down tomorrow morning like I don't when I have passengers. :evil:

    Keep in touch Kyle. Always like to inform NW folks on the BGE since our BBQ up here is at best ... meh.

    Todd
  • danny285danny285 Posts: 360
    I would suggest the Large BGE, you wont be sorry except when the gasket falls off on the 2nd cook but after you recover from that you will be very happy with your purchase from then on. you will need an ash tool and you can make a wiggle rod from a coat hangar. as far as adding the wood chunks you only need 1 or 2 to attain the smoked flavor that you are looking for. the other acc you can pick up on ebay or other places later when you discover the dif cooks with the BGE.

    good luck with your purchase
    you will LOVE it.
  • Sounds like another happy customer!

    Hey Kyle, I have owned my large for 13 years. I never had any eggsessories til just last year! You can improvise alot of them yourself. Just keep reading the forum and use the search box to look up specific questions. There is a wealth of knowledge here. Good luck to you and your mom!

    Faith
    Tampa, FL
    Happily egging on my original large BGE since 1996... now the owner of 6 eggs. Call me crazy, everyone else does!
     
    3 Large, 2 Smalls, 1 well-used Mini
  • stikestike Posts: 15,597
    1.) conventional wisdom is to get as large as you can afford. most seem to gravitate toward the large.
    2.) no accessories are "must have"s. you can do all the cooks here without anything extra. but the extras can make your life easier. took me a year to buy an ash tool. i use it to stir the lump/ash, and to clean it out. i advocates no wires and fans until you try a few overnight cooks the old fashioned way. the egg can be pegged to a temperature like a bat to a barn door. it won't move. all that's required is a little minor skill (not much, either) building a fire. fires have gone out under the best conditions, even with powered draft units. they aren't insurance, but they are peace of mind.
    3.) bought my egg long enough ago that price is irrelevant. i think they are around 700 without the nest, etc.
    4.)i mix chips/chunks in the center, vertically, for a long cook. if i just want some smoke flavor, i toss it right into the center (fire). i light it with two paper napkins, drizzled (LIGHTLY) with veggie or olive oil (whatever's handy). twist in the middle to make bow tight ties. light, and bridge some lump across the two of them. fastest thing i have found (other than a weedburner)
    ed egli avea del cul fatto trombetta -Dante
  • RaeboRaebo Posts: 47
    My advice is go as big as you can afford.
    There is no such thing as having to much horse power, or grilling cubic inches.
    If you are concerned you may use more lump than actually needed, go to
    a lump reducer for smaller shorter cooks. see ceramicsgrillstore.com
    I bought a XL way more than I thought I needed, but as you get deeper into this sport you try more and more foods and set ups and you will I'm sure appreciate having the larger size.
    The extra food goes to my three boys who are pavers working 12 hour days in the heat burning up lots of calories.
    They are stopping by after work a lot these days.
    The Green Egg and its versatility allows me to cook for my boys even though they left home years ago.
    I think Big Green Eggs help keep families close, and thats a good thing.
  • Hey Rae. I'm having a big big BBQ at my place tonight, Butts and Spatchcock. Please feel free to stop by and have a taste.
    Email me for address.

    Doug
  • EggRacerEggRacer Posts: 400
    A large is the most versatile and what I would recommend. As to extras, a plate setter for indirect cooks is essential. Later on when money isn't as big an issue there are other add-ons that make the egg more versatile as a cooker. Although a guru/digiQ is nice it isn't essential.
    XLBGE & LBGE
    North Richland Hills, TX
  • Still reading these, though I think I've gained enough for my first big decision - gotta get a large :). Made a recommendation to the head honcho (read: Mother) for a large, but we have people working on the foundation of our house for the next two weeks, so we'll probably get one right after?

    Looks like 794 is the price - which would've made a Demo-Egg great, but my mom hates how the "Nest" looks. *sigh* Still would've been worth it solo if we hadn't been booked.

    Turns out we have a fair amount of Apple and Cherry wood lying around, that was going to be firewood! Gotta figure out what to start with once we get it :-D. Next couple of weeks will be HARD waiting for it.

    Thanks everyone for the advice! Any recommendations for a good first meat to try smoking, once I get my egg?

    P.S. Todd, don't tell everyone on .Net I use smile's and stuff. I got a reputation to keep =)
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