Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

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oldsaintd
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Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby oldsaintd » Tue Feb 16, 2010 1:35 pm

I am looking to upgrade my Brinkman Pitmaster to a little more dependable smoker, my only problem is I have a budget of under $600. The pits at academy fit under this, the Old Country 20" is $499 and the New Braunsfels Longhorn is from $399-699. Has anyone used either one of these, the Old Country seems to have a little heavier plate but a few inches shorter, the stack is also at grate level on the Old Country and raised to the top on the Longhorn. I just want an upgrade from my $150 8 year old Pitmaster that will hold a steady temp a little longer.
Thanks
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Kenz51
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Re: Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby Kenz51 » Tue Feb 16, 2010 3:06 pm

not familiar with those, but have you thought about used heavy duty smokers? I may go that route for my trailer.... 8)
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Re: Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby 19texan69 » Tue Feb 16, 2010 5:17 pm

I have an Old Country that I bought from Academy. The reason I bought it was it seemed more "heavy duty" than anything else at Academy at the time. It is my first and only smoker and I didn't want to spend a small fortune on something I wasn't sure about. I have smoked on it about 10 times and everything has turned out fine. The only problem I have noticed is the door. Actually, I'm such a rookie at smoking, I'm not sure if it is a problem but smoke will come out the edges of the door at times. Other than that, I like it. You definitely did the right thing by asking these guys. There is lots of knowledge here in the forum. Good Luck and welcome.
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Re: Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby ChileFarmer » Tue Feb 16, 2010 5:25 pm

I have an Oklahoma Joe I got from academy. I think the name now is Horizon. Like most offset smokers it eats wood. But does do a good job on the cook. CF :D
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Re: Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby oldsaintd » Tue Feb 16, 2010 5:34 pm

Thanks for the response Pilgrim, I can't seem to find anyone that has used one of these yet. Does it keep a pretty constant temp or does it take a lot of fire babysitting to keep it at 225-275. I am not too worried about the smoke through the door problem because my Brinkman leaked smoke like a sieve all over, as long as it holds heat I'm OK.
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Re: Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby 19texan69 » Wed Feb 17, 2010 9:11 am

oldsaintd wrote:Thanks for the response Pilgrim, I can't seem to find anyone that has used one of these yet. Does it keep a pretty constant temp or does it take a lot of fire babysitting to keep it at 225-275. I am not too worried about the smoke through the door problem because my Brinkman leaked smoke like a sieve all over, as long as it holds heat I'm OK.
Thanks


I am still pretty new to smoking, and it is my first smoker so I don't have anything to compare to, but I don't recall having to babysit it. I still have a lot questions myself as for as the inlet and exhaust settings to hold a temp so I'm not sure I can give you the answers you're looking for.
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WSM

Postby oldsaintd » Wed Feb 17, 2010 1:07 pm

Now I have heck of a dilemma, I posted here and on other forums earlier about the Old Country Smoker at Academy and really only got 2 ppl that had used one, one said it worked fine but it was his first smoker and the other was from an experienced smoker and it was less than favorable. I also got a lot of suggestions about custom made but there is no way I can spend that much. I did have a lot of ppl suggest the WSM, I had my heart set on an offset but have heard good things about the WSM. Anyone have any experience w/ the 22" WSM?
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Re: Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby blackgold » Wed Feb 17, 2010 4:02 pm

I just started the hunt for a new BBQ pit a month ago.. The old country at Academy was what made me want a new pit. I gave that pit a quick once over and said ya.. it's heavy duty. I'm buying it. Went back that afternoon to actually buy it, started looking at it closely and left it there. The fit and finish was horrible... I'm pretty particular about that kind of thing and would not have been happy with it. I would have always noticed it and not been happy until I sold it and got something better. I did hit up 3 different academy's trying to find a pit with decent fit and finish. Some were so bad that the lids would not fully shut. Then I stepped up the game a bit, priced Klose pits, then found Gator, then found his budget line. I was SOLD... Talked to him and am upping it even more now. My 500 dollar new pit will probably cost me 2400ish now.. But I won't regret it ONE bit. I'd highly recommend adding a bit to your budget and trying a Gator budget line. I think it's 1000ish.. From what I see, the only difference between his higher end pits and the budget pits is the availability to modify the pit. Here's a link to them.. http://www.gatorpit.net/budgetbbqpits/budget.htm 850 for a 32" pit. I've now seen a Gator in person and there is absolutely NO comparison between the 2!
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Re: Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby oldsaintd » Wed Feb 17, 2010 4:09 pm

I thought the same when I first saw the Old Country but I'm afraid I will come back to reallity when I look at it a second time. I think I am going to go w/ a WSM and keep my old offset for overflow and save up for a Gator budget, that $849 looks nice.
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Re: Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby txag01 » Mon Feb 22, 2010 4:15 pm

I bought the 20" Old Country offset and think it's a great value. Definitely better than the New Braunfels models they carry. The low firebox and smokestack design that originates from the middle of the end of the cooking area instead of the top of it is a smart idea. The top cooking rack is a nice feature that the New Braunfels models don't have. Firebox is welded on, unlike the NB that's bolted. You do need to inspect it and make sure the lids seat properly, doesn't have rust on it, etc. Some of them get beat up during shipping and stocking I guess, where they may be left outside, dropped and bent, etc.

Cooked on it twice, it's a very nice pit for the money. I couldn't justify paying twice as much or more for one of the high end brands, it's a better value for the recreational bbq'er like me.

http://www.bbquepits.com/ is the manufacturer's site, although I don't think they show the Academy model on their site.
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Re: Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby Konrad_Haskins » Tue Feb 23, 2010 11:51 am

oldsaintd wrote: that will hold a steady temp a little longer.
Thanks


A charcoal basket will give you a steady temp for a lot longer. Look at the smoker mods page on my website.
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Re: Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby kellyk7 » Wed Feb 24, 2010 7:37 am

I was by the local Academy this past weekend and they were dropping the prices on their in stock smokers, Yours may be the same .. If I remember right they had the longhorn for 299.00 which is 25% off

I have the wild west traditions and have only one problem with it which is more the design than the manufacture. that is with the smaller version you end up with a hot spot on the firebox side. a bigger cooking area would allow you use the cooler sections away from the fire box and not worry about the lost grate area.
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Re: Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby TXCajun » Wed Mar 10, 2010 2:07 pm

I was actually looking at one of these at one point. I think it's a fairly new line for them. I like that it is a heavier-duty smoker than the others they have carried. However, I'm now thinking about saving up for a better crafted one made here in TX.
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Re: Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby Eric » Thu Mar 11, 2010 10:55 am

I have the Oklahoma Joe's I purchased from Academy a few years ago. It is basically the Longhorn. You can do a few mods to it to make it a good smoker.

1. Extend the exhaust pipe down to the grate level to force smoke and heat through the whole smoker
2. Purchase or make a charcoal basket. I bought mine from Horizon smokers. They make one for the Longhorn specifically.
3. Purchase or make a tuning plate. I also purchased mine from Horizon smokers. They did a great job.

It is a pretty decent beginners smoker. The metal is only 3/8 and I don't really like the slideout drawer in the firebox. But it has served me well and makes great Q. I have figured it out enough that I don't need to baby sit it much
Last edited by Eric on Tue Mar 16, 2010 3:31 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Old Country and Longhorn Smokers from Academy

Postby saltfly » Thu Mar 11, 2010 1:43 pm

Blackgold, I saw the same things as you did when I went to Academy. My problem was that I went to Gator first and saw what they were making then went to Academy. There is no comparison in the quality. I went back and got the 20"x40" Budget pit and I couldn't be happier. My only complaint is that there is very little exterrior shelf space. I need to pop up a little $30 folding card table for more space any time I am cooking.

If you are looking for something to come close to Gator, you can swing by an HEB Plus and take a look at some of the Texas Pit Crafters or Lyfe Tyme pits they have on the floor. They are also better than anything at Academy, but I don't think they are as good as the Gator.

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