Rusty old WSM 18.5...Worth the hassle?



New member
Howdy All,

Looking to seek some guidance from the knowledgeable folks here.

I'm looking to salvage a WSM in a sorry state (Looks to have been left out for a considerable time) before I'm asked it's nothing divine or holy, just a regular, black 18" and I'd say the model before the latest (no thermo grommets , thermometer etc).

It's a bit of a drive so want to make sure it's worth the hassle.

It's missing:
Top vent
Charcoal grate
Water Pan

All easily obtainable parts?

The food grate tab/strip, looks mega rusty.* Assuming they struggle to hold the weight are they easy to replace or just a case of bolts/nuts that are drilled through to hold on to the grates?

Nuts and bolts else where look a tad rusty but I can live with that.

I'm based in sunny England.

Thanks all in advance
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Tom's correct, there are too many used WSMs out there in good shape at a good price to spend much on this one. If you can get it for free or nearly for free then it may be worthwhile as a restoration project.
If you're handy with tools, and you have a game plan in mind, which, it seems, you already do, then go with it. Other hard-core grillers and smokers have done really well restoring almost dead WSMs and kettles. Go for it, and have some fun. It's worth the hassle if you want to do it. Having said that, I'm thinking that if you're asking the question, then maybe your heart isn't in it, in which case don't do it.
It looks like you'll spend over $100 US for parts but they are easy to find. Around here I can find a used 18.5 for $150 in good condition. Free or close to free is the right price. Let us know if you get it.