While we were on our trip to Arizona back in May, our son-in-law Kenny cooked a couple of great meals for us on his Traeger pellet smoker, including this delicious pork roast.
We have had an Orion charcoal convection smoker for years and have always been pleased with the food it puts out, but the more we researched pellet smokers, the more we thought we might get a lot of use out of one.
Kenny told us that another good brand was the Pit Boss line of smoker grills and that they cost considerably less than the Traegers. Back home in Florida, we stopped at Lowe’s in Titusville, which carries the Pit Boss smokers, and then went to a nearby Ace Hardware that carries the Traegers. Wow, there was a big difference in price! For not much more than the basic Traeger model, with my 10% veterans discount I could buy a Pit Boss Pro Series with all the bells and whistles at Lowe’s that had an additional gas grill and a propane side burner along with the smoker grill, and it appeared to be much more heavy duty.
While I was trying to decide which way to go, an off-duty police officer and I got to talking, and he said that he had been using smokers for many years. I told him I was trying to decide which brand to go with, and he said, “You can walk across the store and buy a Yeti Tundra cooler for about $275 or a Coleman for $50. Guess what? They both keep things cold.”
Enough said, we went back to Lowe’s and bought the Pit Boss Pro Series. I’m sure glad there were a couple of helpful employees on duty to help us get the big box into the back of the van!
They said they could sell us the floor model or assemble one for us for free, but after looking at the display model, with lots of screws missing and things not aligned very well, Terry said we would just do it ourselves at home.
This thing is big! Once it was unboxed and partially assembled, we stood it on end, and it was almost as tall as Terry. And that’s before the extra propane side burner was installed!
If you know my amazing wife, you know she loves a challenge, and there is absolutely nothing she can’t do once she sets her mind on it. And if you know me, you are well aware that I have absolutely no business messing around with tools of any kind. Terry told me to just stay out of the way and let her do her thing, and that’s what I did for the most part, except for occasionally holding pieces in place while she bolted them on.
One of the first steps was installing the legs, and we had a bit of confusion there because we got two of them in the wrong places because the instructions were not all that clear. It took a few minutes to move them around to the correct locations.
Once we solved that, the next step was putting the bottom shelf on, then installing the wheels.
Then we ran into a problem because it had to be lowered down into a horizontal position, and the thing weighs somewhere around 230 pounds. The two of us tried, but the wheels kept wanting to slide around too much, so I called on our friend Jesse Bolton for help. I figured that with the three of us, it wouldn’t be too bad, but I was wrong. Instead, Jesse just put it down the way it belonged all by himself! He said he learned a thing or two back when he used to deliver furniture and appliances.
It took a couple of days to do the whole job, but we finished yesterday afternoon, and we are pleased with how solid and sturdy the unit is. Much better than the display model they had at Lowe’s.
Terry said that overall it wasn’t that hard, although it was intimidating because there were so many pieces, and some of the line drawings with the instruction manual left a bit to be desired.
I told Terry I hoped she doesn’t get sick and have to go to a doctor anytime soon because in the process of sticking her arms inside the grill to attach screws in hard-to-reach places, she is bruised up and looks like a battered woman.
The next step is to season the smoker, as you would with a cast iron skillet, and then it will be time to start smoking! I see brisket, pulled pork, ribs, and smoked turkey breast in our future. My mouth is watering just thinking about it.
And finally, here’s a chuckle to start your day from the collection of funny signs we see in our travels and that our readers share with us.
It’s Thursday, so it’s time for a new Free Drawing. This week’s prize is an audiobook of Big Lake, the first book in my Big Lake mystery series. To enter, click on this Free Drawing link or the tab at the top of this page and enter your name (first and last) in the comments section at the bottom of that page (not this one). Only one entry per person per drawing please, and you must enter with your real name. To prevent spam or multiple entries, the names of cartoon or movie characters are not allowed. The winner will be drawn Sunday evening. Note: Due to the high the shipping cost of printed books and Amazon restrictions on e-books to foreign countries, only entries with US addresses and e-mail addresses are allowed.
Thought For The Day – All progress takes place outside the comfort zone.