Specifications - Weber Smokey Mountain 18 Charcoal Cooker
- Two 18.5-inch diameter steel cooking grates
- Total cooking area of 481 square inches
- One top and three bottom air vents
- Side mounted thermometer
- Silicon grommets for feeding temperature probes inside
- Porcelain coated lid, body, and water pan
- Total weight of 39 pounds
- Made in the US by Weber-Stephen Products Company
Full Review - Weber Smokey Mountain 18 Charcoal Smoker
The Weber Smokey Mountain Smoker has been a mainstay of barbecue since it was introduced in the early 1980s. Easy to use, able to maintain temperatures for many, many hours, and capable of producing great barbecue the Weber Smokey Mountain has been a regular on the barbecue competition circuit and so popular it has fan pages on the internet. Weber's slight modifications to this unit in no way affect how it cooks, but gives you the features most requested. The lid-mounted thermometer, larger, more intuitive front door handle, and bottom heat shield make this a better WSM for the same price.
One of the things that makes this a great smoker is the durability of the construction. I know people who travel the competition circuit with these smokers and unload, smoke and pack them up once or twice a week and you wouldn't think they had seen any more action than sitting covered on your patio. The porcelain-enamel coating on these units is highly durable and prevents rusting of the heavy gauge steel. The Weber Smokey Mountain 18 Charcoal Cooker is one smoker that you will use because it is so easy and will last because it is so well built.
The one downside, the front access door is a little flimsy so you should be careful not to bend it out of shape. The upside of this is that you can "custom" fit it so that it holds in the smoke better.
These days there is so much attention paid to pellet grills. But this smoker has been a favorite for four decades and even appears as the pit of choice for some barbecue competitors. You get authentic charcoal flavor, plenty of space for most people, and it really is easy to use. If you want temperature control consider the PitIQ control unit.