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Newbie debating Vison & Kamado Joe


JLP
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Hey all joining the forum as I value the forum life in other hobbies and its vast knowledge.  I'm looking at an 18" grill and the Classic Joe 1 is currently a common price ALL OVER.  The Classic Joe 2 is quite a bit more which gets a better hinge and lid on smoke tower.  I like the vision reviews I have seen on Youtube but it seems you buy a 22" which is more than double the cooking surface of the 18" (245sq in) or the Vison icon seems a bit smaller but a 214sq in cooking surface.  It's just me and the wife with a toddler.  I like the smaller because less charcoal use but I don't think the 18" Joe be all the different.  Opinoins? 

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:welcome: JLP.  The amount of charcoal consumed, IMO, should be way down on the list of factors considered when making the choice you described.  I usually cook for only 2 and my KJ Jr. gets used way more often than my big Primo XL.  On the other hand, when cooking for a group or when cooking ribs, having the real estate to cook in large quantities or to lay several racks of ribs flat is not something I want to give up.

There are plenty of differing opinions here on which size to buy.  I suggest you make a list of your needs and cooking/food preferences (with charcoal consumption way down at the bottom of the list :)) to help you decide.

Whichever way you decide, you're going to love cooking on a kamado.  Good luck.

 

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32 minutes ago, Jack. said:

:welcome: JLP.  The amount of charcoal consumed, IMO, should be way down on the list of factors considered when making the choice you described.  I usually cook for only 2 and my KJ Jr. gets used way more often than my big Primo XL.  On the other hand, when cooking for a group or when cooking ribs, having the real estate to cook in large quantities or to lay several racks of ribs flat is not something I want to give up.

There are plenty of differing opinions here on which size to buy.  I suggest you make a list of your needs and cooking/food preferences (with charcoal consumption way down at the bottom of the list :)) to help you decide.

Whichever way you decide, you're going to love cooking on a kamado.  Good luck.

 

Most kamados use little charcoal relative to other grills. 

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2 hours ago, Jack. said:

:welcome: JLP.  The amount of charcoal consumed, IMO, should be way down on the list of factors considered when making the choice you described.  I usually cook for only 2 and my KJ Jr. gets used way more often than my big Primo XL.  On the other hand, when cooking for a group or when cooking ribs, having the real estate to cook in large quantities or to lay several racks of ribs flat is not something I want to give up.

There are plenty of differing opinions here on which size to buy.  I suggest you make a list of your needs and cooking/food preferences (with charcoal consumption way down at the bottom of the list :)) to help you decide.

Whichever way you decide, you're going to love cooking on a kamado.  Good luck.

 

Yeah, as pretty much always, I agree with Jack. He has been kamado cooking for quite a while. After years and years of cooking on a Weber kettle, I started kamado cooking on a Vision Pro C with  more contemporary vents with knobs and  dials. It was a wonderful grill, but I got into the kamado zen mystic and wanted a basic or classic basic " back to the roots " kamado with a slide bottom vent. I got a large BGE which is almost the exact size and dome tapper of a Vision Classic. If I had started with the Vision Classic, I would probably still be cooking on it.  All my after market gear for the Vision fit perfectly in my new BGE and I still use it. Almost all the time I cook only for my wife and I. On holidays I cook for my extended family of 12, and usually cook a large cut like a PR or 13lb spatchcocked  turkey, Occasionally we will invite one or two couples from the neighborhood over for dinner. The 18" grate on my BGE gives me enough room and  suites how and who I   cook for just fine. An 18" should meet your present family configuration pretty well also. However, if you look down the probable road,  your toddler, could be joined by a brother or sister or maybe even both, and  eventually they  will have birthday parties, and most likely  baseball / soccer team BBQ's and so on . I would Think you have two paths; on one, you start out with an 18 and see what your needs are in the future. On the other, you figure you will need a bigger grill in the future and get one now. Neither option is a bad one. On the choice between kamado brands. both the KJ and the Vision and any of the major kamado Mfgs for that matter, are high quality grills and capable of turning out amazing cooks. Get what you like and what you think you can afford. 

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I'm pretty much settled on the Kamado Joe classic 18".  Their website says limited lifetime warranty on ceramic parts, it's a decent price in general and compared to classic 2&3.  Jack I should have made my initial comment with more thought, these dont use all that much compared to all other grills.  There is a charcoal basket on youtube with a center divider if one really wanted to say sear one steak.  Anyways priority to me is quality, always is on products bought, heck just bought a $400 toolbelt setup made in USA 1000D denier nylon....I digress.  Quality, the KJ seems to have and several online reviews of years of use and on Youtube.  Others like the Browning one (local deal for 18") and other less known brands I have found reviews with cracks to both fire-pot and main structure.  KJ firepot in pieces seems nice if one did crack easier to replace (I think).  18' I feel is the sweet spot for me, my friend does good size brisket on his 18" green egg.  And feel can't go wrong with KJ, I join the family today!  I assume a truck and liftgate will drop it off in a week or two :)

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You’ll love your KJ! I bought my Classic 3 in the Spring of last year and my only regret is that I wish I had bought one sooner. Most of my cooks are for my wife and I, but we also often host dinners where I tend to push the limits of my Classic. I’ve kept my Kettle and use it often during times like those, even when I probably could make the KJ work without the Kettle. Just reduces the stress of a crowded grill.

 

In terms of quality, the KJ is top shelf, and I’ve found their support/service excellent, too. I had a minor warranty issue with the gaskets and KJ sent new gaskets immediately.

 

Assuming Kamado cooking is new to you, check out the video below. It really helped shorten the learning curve for me. There are also plenty of resources on this site to get you ramped up quickly. I had just happened to have discovered the one below before I found this site.

 

Enjoy and I look forward to seeing some of your cooks on here!
 

 

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2 hours ago, JLP said:

There is a charcoal basket on youtube with a center divide

Congrats on the new purchase.  Got mine (same grill) a few months ago and am really enjoying it.  Whether you use a divider or not, a charcoal basket does make cleanup easier.  Of all the additional things I bought when I got the grill, that and a drip pan are what I use most often.  

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Thanks gentlemen, looking forward to being a member here.  As mentioned I value forums and IMO they have the best info when it comes to hobbies.  I bought the Classic Joe 1, IMHO for the price its a no brainer, and have already done teriyaki chicken the first night, then a brisket the next day.  And while eating brisket leftovers today I have a pulled pork in brine solution for tomm.  I missed smoking can you tell?  again thanks all!  And I watch that smoking dad bbq a lot now lol!  I want to do many of his recipes among the over the top chili. 

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