Originally Posted by Gunho
I have the same unit.Had the same problem as well.Disgaurded the water pan that came with it...like you said it was to big and the heat was trapped below the meat chamber.Saw on another post about the lava rock.Put a grate above the burner and made a box out of 3x1/4 flat bar to go around the sides to hold the lava rock in place.I left enough room in front to place a small bread pan to put my chips in.I put another grate in the bottom of the meat chamber so I could put one of those aluminum pans for water.I have no problem holding 225 after it heats up with the burnner at low.As for opening the door to replace the water I find it no problem because the water last a lot longer,6hrs plus.Hope this helps.
Was your smoker running low with the stock water pan installed and holding the heat under it? Or was it just super heating the plate and boiling off the water?
I just ran mine 1st time, stock config, and it was scorching hot, $250-270 min temp. :-/ Made it work, but now to research these lava rocks and needle valves.
Bobsled, your set-up looks good, hope you don't mind if I copy the grating! Where did you pick-up the base grate inside the smoker?
PS - bobsled I like your other hobby too...