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Under the gun...

henapplehenapple Posts: 15,986
There's been a lot of eads and post lately complaining about BGE and comparison to others. I didn't shop around when I purchased my large. I really didn't know anything, it was more of an impulse purchase. A pleasant surprise.

Would like to hear from long time eggers and/or kamado cooks that know the history and market.

Is Bge ignoring it's base... Their input and suggestions?

Would you consider buying a different brand as your next egg.

Outside of the gasket and new polymer handle what would you change?

Do you wish Bge was more involved here on the forum?

I will say some of their choices of dealers don't make sense. Mine in town is a furniture store that knows more about refining plutonium than the egg.

Their warranty service (mothership) seems to be really good.

Every ad I see compares themselves to the green egg.

Chime in...
Green egg, dead animal and alcohol. The "Boro".. TN 


  • I hate to say it but after comparing the BGE XL and the Kamodo Joe - Big Joe, I'd give the edge to the KJ. The hinge mechanism is more functional and seems to enable a better seal at the gasket because the lid lowers straight down instead of sliding forward. The components also seem to be higher grade: teak handles/shelves, heavy duty stainless steel grate, partitioned fire box, reinforced fire box grate. All in all the KJ just seemed to be much more sturdy and well made than the BGE. 

    I still love my LBGE but when the time comes to move up in size I'll probably go with the Kamodo Joe. 

  • DredgerDredger Posts: 1,453
    We bought ours on 12/31/98. Also a sort of a whim. I worked with a guy that constantly raved about his and we were tired of refurbishing our gassers. We've had no issues at all regarding warranty. We've replaced the fire box a few times and that is basically it, so very happy. They do have an odd idea regarding the value of their lump though. Also, we will keep an extra special eye on our wooden handle. I see someone with woodworking skills getting new life breathed into their business, lol. Those new handles sure are ugly.
    Large BGE
    Greenville, SC
  • I think that the mothership oversees the fourm as far as making change I don't think anything is wrong with the designe of the Egg the problem is that people just don't like change they are use to what they have and don't want anything different my 1st Egg has the wooden handle and thats fine but even after I put 5 coats of marine grade varnish on it it has kinda weathered my 2nd Egg has the plastic handle I truly think that the plastic will remain the same don't think it will weather .As far as warranty goes the mothership is a solid company and they stand behind what they sell from my experiance everything that I had problems with they took care of in a profeshonal manner I have no complaints at all and would not change anything at all and highly recommend the BIG GREEN EGG 
    2 Large Eggs and a Mini 2 Pit Bulls and a Pork shoulder or butt nearby and 100% SICILIAN
    Long Island N.Y.
  • SkiddymarkerSkiddymarker Posts: 8,347
    edited October 2013
    I think BGE has been one of the longest players in this market and built a great reputation. Their business plan and dealer network sometimes leaves you shaking your head. For a Mothership that seems to care so much, they have some dealers that don't know and don't care, others are great. 
    I started 5 years ago with a friends KJ, great kamado and he has experienced wonderful support, albeit by long distance. I would have bought a KJ but with no local dealer, BGE was the second choice where I could feel and touch the product. I have no regrets. 
    Given we are among the best spokesmen they have, I've never understood why BGE does not have an e-mail blast list to communicate updates, changes and new products information with its customer base. 
    Delta B.C. - Move over coffee, this is job for alcohol!
  • @Skiddymarker they do have updates on the web page but have to look for them 
    2 Large Eggs and a Mini 2 Pit Bulls and a Pork shoulder or butt nearby and 100% SICILIAN
    Long Island N.Y.
  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 28,817
    edited October 2013
    Well, Ed Fisher sold out to a corporation and all the **** started.


    Caledon, ON


  • JRWhiteeJRWhitee Posts: 4,499
    I got mine in 2006 and have been very happy with it, when it cracked last month it took all but 5 days to replace the base with no questions asked. Do the other smokers have that kind of customer service? I really don't know maybe they do. I guess I don't have anything to complain about....

    Large BGE 2006, Mini Max 2014, 36" Blackstone, Anova Sous Vide
    Green Man Group 
    Johns Creek, Georgia
  • All the reviews I read and my online research pointed to the BGE. Best warranty, abundance of eggsessories, and overall universal abilities of the Egg were things that I liked. I did not consider any other type of Kamado and have never regretted my decision. If I had to do it all over again, knowing what I know now, I would buy the BGE without hesitation.
    Clarendon Hills, IL
  • minniemohminniemoh Posts: 2,101
    I think you raise an excellent point here @henapple. I had only looked at a Primo and a BGE and I really love my eggs. Haven't even had to ask for warranty support. The performance of the product has been excellent. Yes, a gasket needs to be replaced now and then. The accessories are definitely sold at a PREMIUM price but there are more alternatives coming all the time. 

    I would love to have a Mini or a Small that I could travel with but they are both pricey options. I have not personally looked at the Kamado Joe but they seem to be a nice product that is increasing the value of their package and design. I just noticed their Lil Joe that is launching this Fall/Winter and it looks really good when compared on price and features. The Lil Joe is said to retail for $259 and have nearly the cook surface of the Small BGE. This is only one example from the entire product line, but it happens to be the one that I spent some time yesterday learning about. 

    I only ended up stumbling onto the KJ Facebook page from the BGE forum post with the guy spamming his Egg-barrow! Talk about guerrilla marketing! 
    L x2, M, S, Mini and a Blackstone 36. She says I have enough now....
    eggAddict from MN!
  • I narrowed my list between the Primo and LBGE. I chose to go with BGE due to the LIFETIME warranty and the feedback from others who have used the egg. I do wish it was oval at times and that the hinge had a better design. I did have an issue with the dome and they sent me a new one no questions asked. I am very pleased but just wish it had a bit more versatility like the Primo and such. 
  • Little StevenLittle Steven Posts: 28,817
    I really like the large oval. Still have to decide when I see the Cdn price on the XXL.


    Caledon, ON


  • Wanted to add that even though dealers will throw in some accessories as a "package", they shouldn't have to. KJ gives you all that extra stuff as standard. 
  • CANMAN1976CANMAN1976 Posts: 1,590
    I love my egg but I wish the hinge band assembly was a little stronger and easier to get perfectly sealed  and torqued without having an over or under bite.Now mind you its probably just my lack of assembly skills but Id like to try out other ceramic cookers to test there hardware as well.No regrets though...I still luv my egg!!!
    Hows ya gettin' on, me ol ****? 

    Kippens.Newfoundland and Labrador. (Canada).
  • queuedqueued Posts: 50
    I love my egg.  Some of the decisions, though, do seem questionable.  Instead of addressing long-standing concerns, like the hinge mechanism, they swap the handle from wood to plastic.  I'm still trying to understand the customer demand for that.  

    I do wish they would adopt some of the really nice 3rd party add-ons that many seem to like, like the smokeware stainless steel cap, the high-que stainless steel charcoal grate, a better gasket, or a hinged grate to make adding charcoal.  It sometimes feels like BGE is standing still while their competitors are innovating and improving.

    That said, it isn't like an egg isn't a good value.  Maybe not as good a deal as their competitors today, and perhaps even worse moving forward.

    I did consider different brands.  I liked a lot that Primo had to offer, but their dealer network in the area was poor.  KJ was a strong candidate as well.
    Raleigh, NC
  • TerrebanditTerrebandit Posts: 1,718
    I didn't even look at the other options. I had been smoking foods on a gasser and decided that i wanted to try something else. I Just bought the egg because my friends recommended it. I'm satisfied and seriously, I wouldn't mind having the nylon handle. It will last longer and look better over time.
    Dave - Austin, TX
  • Seanr7Seanr7 Posts: 207
    I looked at the others, read pros and cons, really did my reasarch. The main factors for me, in no order, were reputation, how long the BGE has been around, lifetime warranty, satisfaction owners had when they did have warranty issues and products/after market stuff available. It seemed to me BGE won on every one of those issues.
    XL BGE
  • henapplehenapple Posts: 15,986
    I walked in to get replacement parts for the gasser,... Bge on sale. Wife hot new dining room set the year before... I got the egg. We spent a Helluva lot more on the dining room and use the egg more than 3 times a year.
    Green egg, dead animal and alcohol. The "Boro".. TN 
  • Ragtop99Ragtop99 Posts: 1,560
    Semi-impulse thing here.  I had seen eggs at a local hardware store and thought they looked interesting.  After talking with a friend, I just decided I was going to try it.  Unlike most $1k purchases, not a lot of research before purchase.  I looked at the Komodo and loved the tile work but couldn't imagine asking my wife about spending that much on a BBQ.  So I got an XL egg. 
    Cooking on an XL and Medium in Bethesda, MD.
  • EggcelsiorEggcelsior Posts: 14,015
    I researched a lot for my dad's XL. The biggest thing for me was dealer access. The fact that we could look at the egg. No one else offered the access BGE does. Plus, at the time, BGE was one of the only ones with a lifetime warranty.

    In terms of accessories, I think BGE is being pragmatic in what 3-party options are available. They could obviously buy them out but they know eggers are a inventive bunch. Look at all the accessories that have been created by consumers and even full businesses built because of the egg. No other manufacturer can claim that. Hell, most other manufacturers are making product because of the egg and the thought that they can make something better. The egg remains the benchmark.

    Most importantly, No manufacturer of any grill besides Weber can offer what this site does(because of eggers - no wonder they took it over). The other forums severely lack what people can get here. Hell, we've bought and shared competing cookers on this site and there has been no repercussions. I couldn't care less about the handles. Yeah, the hinge could be stainless but it works quite
    well. In looking at what came before, I can't see why they won't adapt to market challenges.
  • stlcharcoalstlcharcoal Posts: 3,078

    I learned to cook on a BGE 20 yrs ago, and now have three of my own (Med, Large, and XL.)

    I've seen the decline in customer service over the last few years, all while prices have risen.  They have really gotten into to pushing the "Big Green Egg" brand / lifestyle, vs. just the cooker itself.  Back in the day, we were a "cult", now it's a "lifestyle."

    I page through the magazine vs. my old literature; and I look the receipt for my dad's first Medium in the early 90's for $299 (WITH all the Eggsessories.)  It's very obvious Egg got bought by private equity or VCs......and that's not necessarily a bad thing.

    I've played with Grill Domes, Safires, Primos, Kamodo Kookers, Akorns; but the only one that I think is a real threat to BGE is the Kamado Joe.  That's a great unit for the money.  Thicker ceramic, come with all the accessories, much better stand and side tables, and all for $200 less.  I think they'll keep BGE honest when it comes to pricing themselves out of the market.  Grill Dome makes a very heavy duty unit, but it's pricey, and there are not many accessories on the market.

    Not knocking the BGE at all, I love my three and have no reason to switch.  But if they spontaneously combusted tomorrow and I had insurance money to spend--I might buy the KJ instead.

  • U_tardedU_tarded Posts: 1,562
    edited October 2013
    Good question, I lived in Texas and my boss had a medium egg. Loved it, but I had my weber kettle. Local dealer had eggs and primos, I liked the oval primo. Then I moved to Utah, found the local egg dealer, but I wasn't ready to buy. They also were from Texas, so I liked them. Then I met my wife and eventually she got tired of hearing about it and bought me an egg. She about **** when she saw the nest, plate setter and pizza stone nearly doubled the price. Then I mentioned building a table etc. Seriously if there were other options around things may be different. I mean none of our kitchen appliances are the same brand it's totally what we liked at the time. We are your typical Americans swayed by how it looks, what someone else will think, then price. Basically through total luck my dealer got 2 eggs sold to me, rubs and wood on a monthly basis, and he does nothing but installs gas islands and I walk in and spend coin.
  • SkiddymarkerSkiddymarker Posts: 8,347
    @stlcharcoal - so true, when it goes from a cult to lifestyle the price rises with a significant decrease in support. I agree that based on the hardware and value, the classic KJ appears to me to be the equal to or better than a LBGE. 
    Delta B.C. - Move over coffee, this is job for alcohol!
  • KennyLeeKennyLee Posts: 784
    stlcharcoal said:  That's a great unit for the money.  Thicker ceramic, come with all the accessories, much better stand and side tables, and all for $200 less. 

    Have KJ's gotten cheaper?

    I know when I looked at the two when I bought mine last year, they were almost identical in price and in fact found a much better deal on my BGE than I could get on a KJ. 


    Cedar table w/granite top

    Ceramic Grillworks two-tier swing rack

    Perpetual cooler of ice-cold beer

  • henapplehenapple Posts: 15,986
    Might depend on the area...
    Green egg, dead animal and alcohol. The "Boro".. TN 
  • calikingcaliking Posts: 11,130
    I first cooked on an egg several years ago and immediately noted the difference between my carpy gasser and charcoal. Began to lust after an egg about 7 years ago. Found Weber kettles in the meantime and learned how to cook on charcoal. Started researching ceramic cookers and looked at BGE and the Primo XL. Really liked the Primo for its split firebox to set set up 2 zones, and Amazon Prime would deliver it free to my door. Briefly considered the Kamado Joe, but without being able to see one up close, I didn't give it much thought. 

    Then I found out that one of the dealers (Bering's Hardware) has 20% off sales a few times during the year. I had read good things about customer support, and the online community (including this forum) seemed like a great resource. So when they had their Xmas sale, I pulled the trigger after saving up some $$. Then I bought another one (small). And then I bought yet another one (mini). SWMBO was swooning over how great the egg was, so I had to strike while the iron was hot and get the other eggs pronto! :)

    I'm still interested in  a split firebox for my large since I'm not a fan of dealing with moving hot parts during a cook. There is an accessory available that I might try, but I'm saving up for an AR first

    #1 LBGE December 2012 • #2 SBGE February  2013 • #3 Mini May 2013
    A happy BGE family in Houston, TX.
  • stlcharcoalstlcharcoal Posts: 3,078
    @stlcharcoal - so true, when it goes from a cult to lifestyle the price rises with a significant decrease in support. I agree that based on the hardware and value, the classic KJ appears to me to be the equal to or better than a LBGE. 

    The KJ Classic (Large) is $899 MSRP.  It comes with the stand, bamboo side tables, grill lifter, ash tool,  and daisy wheel top.  Then it's $50 for a "plate setter" that also double as a pizza stone, or a grill lifter.  They can commonly be had for $800 or less in the off season.

    You might be able to find a Large BGE at that price, but it will more than likely, not include the accessories.  Sam's had some black market BGE last month in STL--$899 with the stand and DFMT.

    Again, not knocking the Egg......both great units.  I just think Kamado Joe is going to give Egg a run for their money.  They are going to be the thorn in Egg's side that will keep them from getting to crazy on the prices.  It will force them to come up with some new innovations rather than just putting their logo on someone else's product.



  • KennyLeeKennyLee Posts: 784

    @stlcharcoal My experience was just the opposite.  The "package" was about the same (KJ-$849/BGE-$799) with the stand/nest, ash tool, etc.  What tipped the scales for me was that I was able to find a couple of BGE dealers who would sell just the Egg without all the stuff I didn't need, like an ash tool and nest.  All of the KJ dealers and some of the Egg dealers would sell the package only. 

    I was able to get the large Egg for $640 unassembled and the plate setter for $65 and built my own table.  They also threw a bag of BGE lump in as well.   Couldn't find anything remotely close to that with the KJ.  Although it's a good thing for the consumer that there is quality competition out there without a doubt.


    Cedar table w/granite top

    Ceramic Grillworks two-tier swing rack

    Perpetual cooler of ice-cold beer

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