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Do any/all KJ Classic owners wish theyd gotten the BJ?

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On 9/25/2017 at 2:08 PM, JaxxQ said:

I have all 3 and love them all and the Big Joe gets most of the work, the Classic is a close second and the Jr. is for camping. If I was only get one it would definitely be the Big Joe, The biggest reason is because most of my cooks are 2 zone which pretty much cuts your cooking area in half 

^^^^THIS^^^

 

If all you do are meats then a classic may be all you need.

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On 10/9/2017 at 6:53 AM, Lumpy_Coal said:

... The only reason I bought the Classic first was the true words uttered by my wise wife. "Just get the Classic now that you can afford, rather then wait for the Big Joe which you know you will get later as well."

Wise woman!

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I have a BJ and love it.  I primarily cook packer briskets and found that 18" grills were really not big enough for me given most briskets are somewhere between 20"-24".  Can you fit one on an 18" grill, yes, but it is usually a tight fit for the first few hours until the meat shrinks.

 

I believe others have mentioned the amount of charcoal required every time you fire it, and the BJ takes a little longer for temp to  stabilize. 

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Ok, I had a couple 18 inch kamado for a couple years BC n BSK.  I got the Big Joe back in early spring. It was my go to every day kooker and was big enough for events where I had folks over. I now own a classic 18 inch Joe as well.  It has become my go to everyday kooker. However it won't be enough on its own if I have folks over. The Big Joe could take care of both every day cooks and larger gatherings. I'm glad I got it first. Had I not stumbled upon a great deal on the classic I would be happily cooking on Big Joe every night. As I got an awesome deal the quicker start up speed and 2017 upgrades make me happy. But again I must say, if you are on the fence, and want just 1 kamado....go as big as you can. You part with a few more bucks, you will forget about that in 2 weeks. But you won't ever wish you had gone bigger. 

Now if you cook for like 2 folks and never have peeps visit...maybe keep it reeled in a bit.

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My first kamado was a Big Joe that I got a year and a half ago.  I have never regretted starting with the big one first since I sometimes cook for a lot of people.  Now I have been wishing for a second (smaller) one.  Maybe not as much for the size, but because sometimes I want to cook at different temperatures, more space for sides, etc.  I have been thinking about the classic or the JR, and have changed my mind a dozen times on which one to get.  I think I will eventually end up with all 3.  My situation is that I almost never cook for a medium amount of people.  It usually either just me and my wife, or 8-16+ people.  Joe Jr. would be perfect for when it is just the 2 of us, and I can put it up under the porch when the weather is bad.  On the other hand, i'd like a classic so I could do like a rotisserie on one while doing burgers or steaks on the other, or sides on the classic.  What to do, what to do.

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On 03/10/2017 at 8:48 PM, UTVol said:

 

I was waiting for the comment and I should have known Josephine would be the one to make it.  You never disappoint!!  :rofl:

 

Glad you enjoyed it - it earned me a 90 day ban (I think) :-D :-D

 

Gonna have to really pull my head in from now on, but if I disappear without warning, you'll know I've been booted permanently :oops:

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Great discussion.  I’m on an NC teacher salary, so let’s just say I had to go 3 years with no grill at all (gasser died) to save up.  Then I had to get it at the Costco road show.  I went all in with the big joe.  Perfect for cooking pizzas that are the same size as your typical large restaurant pizza.  Yeah, it’s little big if I’m low and slow on a pork butt, but perfect to cook 2 or 3.  Perfect size for a brisket or racks of ribs laid flat. Perfect for 8 burgers direct, then indirect for cheese melting w/o burning your burger.  In a perfect world I’d have all 3.  If I could sneak a joe Jr into the car without the wife seeing, that would be my next purchase.  That would nice to have for those small cooks when you just don’t want to fire up the Big Joe.  Jonesing for a Jr.  Does the Big Joe use that much more charcoal?  Meh, I can deal with it for the versatility.  I just couldn’t spend the money on a classic and find out that it was too small after the fact.  You could add accessories to get similar amounts of food on the Classic, but then you just spent the same $ that you would have on the Big Joe.

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I have the classic.  I am glad I did not get the BJ, but I do wish the classic was slightly bigger joe.

 

The racks of ribs and full briskets I get from costco are often about 1 inch too long.   If the Classic is 18", then I think 20" would be perfect.

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I just picked up the classic (my first kamato!) at the Costco roadshow today and I'm still debating if I've make a mistake and should have gone with the BJ. I tried really hard to be the first one there for the demo deal (I was second by a second but the first person didn't ask) of the BJ and Jr.  but the rep told me he'd already sold it to someone over the phone yesterday (super grumpy he made a deal with someone for all three demos who wasn't even there, BEFORE the show even started...grrr) and the BJ was the top of my budget. I usually cook for 3 but often cook extra for the 2 hungry guys and up to 10ish when company is over so I wanted the space of the BJ but worried it would be wasteful for weeknights when it's just a few of us. Ideally I would have gotten the BJ and the Jr. regardless of the deal but $1900 wasn't an option for me at this time so I went with the classic telling myself that this way I could get some addons like the joetisserie and a pizza stone now instead of having to wait. Time will tell but I have a feeling I'll be back next roadshow picking up a BJ if I end up loving the classic (as I assume I will).

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I think there will be times when you want more space.  I sure did on my Akorn,  But before you buy a second kamado (...I say that even though I have the akorn and the Big Joe) you may want to try the expander.  

https://www.amazon.com/Kamado-Joe-KJ-SCS-Stainless-Expander/dp/B003EV6MIG/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&qid=1523538689&sr=8-4&keywords=kamado+joe+expander

 

I even have a second rack for my Big Joe and I use it probably 20% of the time.  That won't help with a large brisket, but it will allow you to do a lot of ribs, and it will also work nicely for putting a drip pan under a pork butt.  

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I’m new to kamado but fancy myself as an accomplished pit master.  I bought one of the new Acorn ceremac model but it had a fatal flaw with the ash drawer not closing correctly. Also the day I got we had a little rain overnight and there were some rusty rain drops on the shelf hangers that seemed like surface rust which on top of the flaw was a turn off and I returned it to Loews. That same weekend KJ had a road show event at Costco. I looked them over and was really impressed with the features. On the KJ website I noticed their HQ was less than an hour from my home and I learned they sell their refurbs every Friday 1 to 4 pm, cash and carry. I got the latest model, the BJ 2 that been used twice and returned, full lifetime factory warranty, no sales tax,  saved over $825, more than enough to buy a classic or Jr if I so desire.  There’s a learning curve but so far my ribs are almost perfect, and the heat control is excellent. I prefer the larger surface ares. As I like the split system combined with the grill extender, I have plenty of capacity. I never smoke a small amount of anything.  My big joe is perfect!

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