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bjunge

One cook and scheduled to be returned

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First time convert from gas.... After a good deal of the usual research and talking with friends with the BGE and Vision Classic, I opted for the Bayou - most reviews were decent enough based on construction, materials, etc.  

 

Had it delivered Saturday, but was unable to fire it up until last night - lit fine, and running wide open had her up to 650 in about 10 minutes, so I was happy.  Immediately realized the top-vent-won't-stay-open-when-you-open the-lid problem everyone talks about wasn't going to be fun, but figured I'd work it out as I went along.  After 20 minutes she was still at 650, so dialed back the vents a touch (was doing quick-sear steaks).

 

She settled around 600 and I I put 'em on.  After a few seconds I noticed smoke coming from the vent cap - around the vent cap, as well as through the opening.    Then I noticed smoke coming from the thermometer, the lower vent sides, the left side of the lid/base gaskets, and the back of the grill as well.

 

When I opened the grill to flip the steaks, both of the gaskets came peeling off and fell into the fire.   Grabbed 'em, threw 'em out, finished the steaks in 5 more minutes and shut it down.   Thanks to the gaskets being gone and all the other obvious leaks, the coals burned until about 5am and they're now pretty much ash.   

 

Looked it over this morning, and noticed just how loose the thermometer is, and the fact that the cap has no gasket and also is loose as can be.   Considered putting the spare gasket on, or ordering a Nomex and then getting high-temp sealant for the bottom vent and maybe even the thermometer and vent cap, but decided there's no reason I should be doing this kind of work on something that was so crappily done to begin with.   I'm seriously disappointed.

 

Am now considering the Vision, as I'm familiar with it and should've probably gone that route in the first place, hindsight being what it is.   Doing the research now on diffusers and other comparatives to the KJ and BGE to determine if I want to save the $300 or not...

 

Bummed out, but looking forward to a replacement that works better, because MAN those steaks were good.  :)

 

 -B

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All the guys in the local grill store I use.....who have sold and set up thousands of BGE, KJ & Primo kamados all suggest the same thing........run your first couple of cooks slow and low in order to set the bonding agent on the gaskets.

 

Sorry it went poorly for you.

 

 

Kamados do take a bit of research and learning to get the most from them.  It's not hard....just different than what many are accustomed to using.

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All the guys in the local grill store I use.....who have sold and set up thousands of BGE, KJ & Primo kamados all suggest the same thing........run your first couple of cooks slow and low in order to set the bonding agent on the gaskets.

 

Sorry it went poorly for you.

 

 

Kamados do take a bit of research and learning to get the most from them.  It's not hard....just different than what many are accustomed to using.

while I agree this is not a bad idea, certain brands don't require it.  and if they do, it should be in the manual!

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Sorry you had such a bad experience. If you opt for a Vision, I don't think you'll be disappointed. Got mine earlier this summer, and am quite impressed by the quality. Added a lava stone a couple of weeks ago, and am liking it so far.

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bjunge - sorry you had a rough start. This too shall pass. The Vision is a good kamado. I was at Sam's Club this evening and stopped to take a look. It's listed for $569 if I remember correctly. My first impressions are that is seemed like a solidly built kamado. I talked to a sales associate about the Vision and he seemed to know what he was talking about. He said that Sam's moves a good number of Vision kamados and he hasn't seen one come back thru the door. You can certainly do a lot worse.

You're right, the Kamado Joe is more expensive and I think for good reason. To me, the Kamado Joe is a very versatile and well conceived system. It's a high quality build and as you can read here, customer service is unparalleled. If I were looking for another mass-market kamado, I think I'd buy as big a Kamado Joe as I could afford. (Yeah, you guys read that right! Mr. Primo would buy a Kamado Joe!) I think the Kamado Joe's overall value puts it at the top of the heap right now given what's included in the purchase price.

Sorry you had such a bad experience right out of the chute. That said, these things generally work out for the best. No matter which kamado you settle on, you'll create some wonderful food! Here's to many great cooks!

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Bummed out, but looking forward to a replacement that works better, because MAN those steaks were good.   :)

 

 -B

 

I hate that your first cook didn't turn out as expected with the grill.  At least the food was good!

 

Rule #1:  You should be satisfied with your grill.

 

If you are not, then you won't enjoy cooking on it.  There are a lot of options out there.  You mentioned the Vision and there are a LOT of Vision owners on this forum who are quite happy with their grills.  

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All the guys in the local grill store I use.....who have sold and set up thousands of BGE, KJ & Primo kamados all suggest the same thing........run your first couple of cooks slow and low in order to set the bonding agent on the gaskets.

 

Sorry it went poorly for you.

 

 

Kamados do take a bit of research and learning to get the most from them.  It's not hard....just different than what many are accustomed to using.

while I agree this is not a bad idea, certain brands don't require it.  and if they do, it should be in the manual!

 

 

 

 

These are guys who sell and deliver $1,200 kamados all the time.  They each own 2-3 themselves.  Their store is a hub of return business as they carry lots of great rubs, sauces and accessories and teach weekly kamado classes.  That's a lot of exposure to these grills.....a lot of contact with customers.....and tons of experience with gasket replacements.

 

 

They also have 3-4 kamados set up in their shop they they cook on daily. 

 

 

I tend to listen when they recommend techniques and tips.

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Yes, they're picking it up tomorrow, Freddyj - came from Lowe's and I know the store manager (thankfully), but it's been a smooth process thus far.

 

Just picked up the Vision from Sam's and it's in the back of the SUV for assembly tonight by me - so any issues after that are on me.  I was able to look one over in the store and am by FAR more impressed with the builld quality and sealing properties on all parts.   I'm anxious to get home and put it together for a run on Thursday.

 

Thanks all - I look forward to many exchanges and successful cooks going forward!

 

Cheers!

 -B

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I'm sorry you had such a bad experience with your BC. I have had mine since April and I love it to death. 

I will say this however: I did a lot of reading on the various grills before I purchased and I knew that I would need to do the following:

 

1 - season the grill with a couple of lower temp cooks (I kept it to 400 and under for the first 3 cooks)

2 - silicone seal around the ash door, the thermometer, and the vent cap

3 - eventually replace the gasket with something a little more beefy and solid

 

Now, I totally get that there are people who will say that they shouldn't have to do this for a $700 grill and I respect that 100%. However, I looked at it as this: Yes, it's a $700 grill, but it's still the lower end of that type of grill - so although it's a lot of money for a grill overall, it's still a relative figure to the $1300 or more I'd have paid for a KJ or a BGE or something like that. 

 

I figure I put in an hours worth of work and spent maybe $100, and have a kamado that I do believe is solid and of good quality. 

 

Again, I realize that some people don't find that acceptable and I respect that. I just wanted to provide a slightly different point of view. 

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