I've been reading this forum on and off for awhile and finally joined. There is a lot of great information here, and alot of very friendly folks.
I'm in Colorado Springs, CO. I've been smoking on a Brinkmann Gourmet Charcoal Smoker that my work gave me as an anniversary gift a couple years ago, and man, what a pita. You spend more time tending to the temperature than anything.
A couple months ago I picked up a Members Mark Professional Stainless Steel Propane Smoker on a too good too pass up deal, it is made by Grand Hall, it is insulated and big, too big if you ask my wife. It has a tendency to run hot after everything heats up, so I've made quite a few mods to it.
So far I've reworked the burner to put out less flame, modified the chip drawers as almost 1/4 of them weren't even over the flame, I've also made some covers for them, previously the chips/chunks would just ignite and burn out quickly, now I get a decent amount of good smoke time from them. My latest mod is I installed a needle valve in the propane line, and man, talk about temperature control, so much nicer to control the temp, and now I can get it nice and low.
I've been reading up on the sand vs water lately and I may try that just for consistency sake. I was going to install some plumbing so I didn't have open the door to refill my water pan, but I think I'll fill it with sand, and still put a water pan under the meat so I can use the drippings if need be, and since the water pan will be farther from the flame, I shouldn't need to refill it but every 3-4 hours, if at all.
I've also been eyeing the AMNPS too, I think that would definately come in handy for overnight smokes, not to mention cold smoking, I do love me some smoked cheese. :-)
I enjoy cooking, inside or outside, and really enjoy having other folks enjoy the fruits of my labor. I have 3 small kids, and the last time they had my ribs, they all 3 just loved them, which is a rare thing, so hopefully they will go on the menu regularly now.
Happy smoking all, and see you on the boards.
Robert (aka Bluto)