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I have a new Smoke Hollow 4-1 that I'm assembling.  I've read about the mods and am going to try and do some this weekend I posted this in the 4-1 thread but thought I'd put it here to more fews and hopefully more assistance.  I appreciate all the info I'v gotten here so far and look forward to reading the forum for a long time to come.


1. I bought the Nomex gasket to seal the smoker and fire box, but keep thinking it might be easier to use a caulk type substance. I thought I'd seen some instructions where someone had used Rutland High Temp Sealant or Gasket Maker or something and I think they said they'd put a bead around then put a thin strip of wax paper on top of it and closed the lid to flatten. Is that as effective as the Nomex and how exactly would I do that. Also, where can I get the material to do that if it works well? that sounds easier to me than the Nomex and I'm thinking might be significantly cheaper. I was also worried about the sealant sticking to the lid and basically glueing it shut. If someone could give me some details (and even maybe pics) that would be a great help.


2. You mention the disposable aluminum pan. I'd read about the deflector plate and was concerned about the cost of it as well as a permanence of it as I plan to use the charcoal grill aspect of this as well as learning to smoke. With the disposable aluminum pan it doesn't sound like it'd be expensive and maybe wouldn't take much to put it in and take it out. How exactly did you do this and can you just quickly and easily pop it out? Has it made a pretty significant difference? Any pics?


3. I'm also curious about sealing the corners. Most of the stuff I've found online makes it sound like there are signfiicant gaps in the conrners of the chambers, as well holes between the charcoal and gas chambers. I see the holes between the charcoal and gas side but it appears there plates welded into the corners of the smoker chamber and I don't really see any open seams. It does look like the plates are just spot welded so maybe each side of the plate is where I should seal? Also, a lot of people suggest JB Weld as the sealnt, but would the Rutland (or other brand) high temp sealant/gasket makeer work just as well and be easier with no mixing? Also how do I seal the holes between charcoal and gas sides, they're probably 1/2 and inch to an inch square (I'm not great at estimating and haven't looked since last weekend so could be way off).


4. Do I need to seal the firebox and if so what do I need to seal? I've read that you need to and also that you shouldn't as it cuts back on airflow and am a bit confused. Opinions?


I appreciate your help and am really enjoying this forum. I may copy this and post as a thread in the general charcoal smoker forum as well to try and get more views as I'm clueless and can use all the help I can get. Thanks again and have a great weekend.