Kamado Joe Roadshow – Sunnyvale Costco – Febuary 3rd, 2017 thru February 12th, 2017

As many of my readers know I am in the market for a ceramic style smoker/grill specifically the Kamado Joe brand and I have been waiting for their Costco roadshow to make a stop in the Bay Area.   From my research online I know that Kamado Joe is releasing a 2017 model with about 7 new features as seen in the picture below and also available on Kamado Joe’s Facebook page.

Here is a link to the Facebook page:

Kamado Joe 2017 upgrades in detail

One of the main reasons for me to go to the Roadshow (2/3/2017 thru 2/12/2017) even though the 2017 model hasn’t yet been released yet is to inquire about the new model.   Carl, who is the western territorial manager, was very informative and gave me some insight into the new model’s pricing and availability.   He indicated that he should have the new models by March and that it will be $1,499 roadshow price ($300 increase over the current model $1,199) for the Big Joe 24″.

The Kamado Joe lump charcoal also received a product change. Carl told me their lump charcoal (2pk for $29.99) now comes in larger chunks and I can confirm they are significantly larger which should make for nice long burn times.

Not surprisingly, Carl told me he sold four (at least a Big Joe) even before the roadshow started, which tells you how high in demand these awesome grills are.  While I was talking to him, he must have sold at least two classics in the span of 20 minutes.  I was definitely itching to buy the “old” model but definitely wanted the latest and greatest.

One thing Carl did emphasize is there never was a “buy a Classic and you get a Joe Jr.” deal, which has been circulating on the Internet and forums.  I, too, thought that if real, was a really, really sweet deal!  He states that it is completely false and many customers refuse to take no for an answer and some have even went so far as to complain to Costco management.  I even asked him about another “promotion” circulating on the forums – if I buy a Big Joe, do I get a free bag of lump charcoal?  Of course he said that is also a fake promotion circulating on the forums.

Kamado Joe Special Event – Sunnyvale, CA – Week of Feburary 3rd, 2017

If you’re a BBQ fanatic and in the market for a ceramic smoker, I just spoke to a Kamado Rep and he said the Costco Special event for the Bay Area will be in Sunnyvale beginning Friday, February 3rd.  The date hasn’t been updated on the site but check back regularly (every two weeks is what I’ve been told).  Furthermore, I’ve been reading on the BBQ forums and the Kamado Costco roadshows have limited in stock / on hand models and once they sell out, you will need to wait for another roadshow at another location.  I believe they will be selling the three models including specifically the Big Joe 24″ that I personally am in the market for.

Here is a link to the Kamado / Costco Roadshow event schedule

Kamado Joe Costco Special Event Schedule

I will update if I hear anything different.


Yardistry – Possible new Gazebo in 12′ x 14′ to be carried at Costco?

**Update 1/4/17 – I was browsing the reviews section on Yardistrystructures.com and came up this response from the company regarding the new 12′ x 14′ gazebo:


It looks like my speculation was spot on and Costco will be carrying this larger size probably in the spring of 2017.  Should be a high demand item like the 12′ x 12′ so if you see it, don’t hesitate and just load it onto your orange flatbed cart!**

I was browsing the Yardistry site and saw they are offering a 12′ x 14′ version of their popular wood Gazebo.  We have the 12′ x 12′ and absolutely love it.  It’s beautiful and well constructed.  Not only that, the customer service for replacement parts is the best I have seen.  Kudos to Costco and Yardistry for offering a great product and great service.  I hope this larger version will make it’s way to Costco soon.

Here is a link


Week of December 18th, 2016 – What’s new at Costco on Automation Parkway, San Jose.

Saw these LED microdot lights and they could be useful for many lighting projects.  Hopefully it gets discounted soon.


Surprisingly I was looking for a Xmas snow globe for my daughter and saw that this was discounted (not sure what the original price was, though).  Anyways it is big and as a bonus it has a internal blower for blowing the snow and is LED lit.  Operates on three ‘AA’ batteries and stays active for 5 minutes until a little switch is pushed again.  My baby girl LOVES it.

I was tempted to get a set of these if I didn’t have 5 million laundry baskets already.  They had one on display and I am not sure if I was trying hard enough but it took some effort to make the baskets expand.  I couldn’t actually do it with just my hands, but I am assuming you need to step inside of it and use your body weight to hold down the bottom part and pull up on the handles.  Maybe if there is a future rebate and the price is under $10 I might pick up a set.

You know when I saw this I assumed it is electronically operated especially for the price of almost $300.  Surprisingly, it’s all mechanical, which I think is a steep price to pay especially when Costco.com does carry a full size table (not an add-on tabletop) and has a electric motor (3-stage dual motors with 225-lb capacity & 2-button controller) to lower and raise the table for around $579 (The Apex 71” X 33” Height Adjustable Table- Moonlight White Item #1034460)  Here’s a link if the product is still active

Apex 71” X 33” Height Adjustable Table- Moonlight White


Here’s a really great alternative to those space saving baskets set that I posted above.  Great value and really easy to fold up flat. I actually use them to separate folded laundry (i.e. clothes for my daughter, son, wife, bath and kitchen towels, etc.).  They used to come in only blue and green, and the red, yellow, and black were really hard to find a month or two ago,  Now it seems they are starting to stock more of these colors.  Really great to put one in each of your car if you want to load up your groceries and reduce the frequency of going back and forth out to your car.

Okay, I thought these were identical to the carts at Ikea.  I was right and wrong.  The Ikea version, the RÅSKOG, is exactly the same design with only one exception – it is 3-tier instead of 4-tier and is $2.00 more.  Of course Costco being Costco, you get more bang for less money.  Here is a pic of the Ikea RÅSKOG and a link to Ikea’s product page as well

Ikea RÅSKOG utility cart 3-tier


Frame looks identical down to the casters.  Only down side?  There is only one color choice versus several over at Ikea.

These look totally farmhouse style and I am trying to find a place (read that as an excuse) to get one.  I am totally into the vintage look right now as well.

Hold on to your seats, folks.  These are being discounted at a whopping $59.97 down from $79.99 ($20 savings)!!!  However, I only saw this special discounted price at the warehouse on Automation Parkway in North San Jose.  Everywhere else is still $79.99.  Pick one up while you can!!!!  These vacuums are great and Costco is literally giving them away at this price!!!

Edit: I am speculating the price could be even lower maybe $49.97 if there is still an excess of inventory in about a month.

This is probably one of the sweetest tool sets I have seen.  In fact, it’s the only tool set that I have seen that includes a 17mm size wrench (most stop at 16mm) AND as a bonus the whole set is blacked out chrome giving it that bad ass look (hoping it is a durable finish, though).  The 17mm wrench would have been nice to have when I tried to assemble the Whalen 72″ industrial bench.  Instead I had to use an adjustable wrench in a tiny location and took like a million turns before I could tighten the bolt.  Gonna pick this set up just for that 17mm wrench and the black chrome color!

Item #707636 Whalen 72″ Metal and Wood Workbench Out-Of-Stock ONLINE!

I thought the 72″ Whalen industrial workbench was very popular and is sold out at pretty much at all Costco Warehouses in the Bay Area, and from reading online, apparently everywhere else.  What I didn’t know is that they are in such high demand that people are willing to spend the $150 S&H to order one on Costco.com! Nonetheless, even at $450 (with the S&H), I still believe this item is worth way more (at least $600) for something comparable.  I was fortunate to purchase one at the warehouse and will write up review in the next couple of days, but the quality, fit and finish is second to none and is literally a steal at $300 and even $450.  I am so happy to have received one as a gift from the wife.


Please ignore the Stephen Curry of the Golden State Warriors game at the bottom right of the screen.  Watching Warriors basketball and shopping on Costco.com – what could be better than that, right?!

Costco New Items and Discounted – Bay Area – November 30th, 2016

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$144.41 on Amazon making this a great deal for the ultimate Xbox One controller.  Found at Automation Parkway warehouse. Man I want one!!

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142 mph airflow on the spec sheet.  Hmmm…might buy one to test out how useful that claim is.

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This is actually a pretty good power station and is a steal at $20.  The LED light is super bright and has adjustable angles.  It also has a USB for charging smart phones.  Speaker quality is not too shabby for an item like this (hardly any distortion but just lacking some bass) and Bluetooth connectivity is solid for garage area.  I bought mine for $30 with a $7 instant rebate (Original price was $36.99) so this is actually a steal at almost 50% off. When Costco shows a price ending in 0.97 cents it usually means it is being discontinued and heavily discounted.  I use this power station in the garage and the biggest selling point for me is the individual on/off toggle for each of the outlets. This helps to minimize “vampire” electricity usage even from devices that are supposedly off.

4 out of 5 stars and highly recommended

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I saw this at the Gilroy Costco and I was in a rush to pick up my son from a birthday party that I didn’t have time to pick it up that day. Unfortunately it sold out and Costco said is a discontinued item. Why!!!!!!? Something like this especially the moving straps sells for $40+ on Amazon!  Big regret and now my back will suffer.

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Okay I saw this rolling (!) carry on luggage and glanced at the price and knew this would be the perfect bag to transport my DSLR, a lens or two, and plethora of other camera accessories to photoshoots.  At $30 bucks you cannot go wrong with this travel bag by Ful.  Good number of compartments and the quality is first rate making this bag very solid to handle.  Don’t spend $69.99 for the Manfrotto backpack that Costco carries for your camera; instead buy this and use it as a better camera bag.  It has rollers so if your camera, laptop, portable Bluetooth speaker, etc. weighs a ton then you can lug it long distances.  Look for a review of it in the next couple of days but in the mean time pick one up for yourself. You won’t be disappointed!

Costco Review – Item #1043254 Vacmaster Wall Mountable Wet and Dry Vac w/ Remote

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I just purchased one of these and am pretty satisfied with the suction performance (after all I do own 5 Dyson vacuums :), and am very surprised at how relatively quiet it is when operating.  I think the coolest feature is the remote starter on the hose suction end which I have never seen as a feature before.  This allows you to start and stop the vacuum without having to go to the main unit especially if its pretty far away when using the included very long hose.  Another selling point for me is the wall mount capability and we all know how valuable garage floor space is.  At $69.99 until only today (11/30/16), it is a bargain.  This unit is actually under the DuraVac brand which is the Canadian subsidiary (?) of VacMaster

Here is a link



Overall I love this shop vac.  There are other shop vac Costco carries for around the $30-$40 range but IMHO are complete crap and are louder than a jetliner on take off.  In the past I have had to return these units and was completely unsatisfied with them (Kubota and Stanley).  However, the Vacmaster is a very good value for the money in term of all it’s features, plus you get Costco’s legendary return policy if something ever goes wrong.

Pros: Remote on/off (MUST HAVE!), lightweight, wall mountable (YES!), powerful suction (BONUS!), relatively less noise than other vacs in the 4-5hp category, lots of included accessories, very long hose extension, and excellent performance to value rating especially at the sale price of $69.99

Cons: None

Main uses: Attic clean up (lightweight and ease of transport), garage clean up and woodworking (saw dust), and possible use as a car vacuum.

My rating 5/5

As always call your nearest local Costco,  press option 1 and give them the item number to check on store inventory in and around your local warehouses.