Hello, I'm from Southern Illinois, Near Salem, IL.
Last summer I bought a lil electric smoker at an auction for $10, was a "Big Chief" and we have nearly wore it out!! I don't think it had been used much when we first got it, but we have used it over and over. Its mostly what you would call a 'cold smoker' the element gets to 165` and we get the meat to around 130` and finish it off either on the grill or in the oven.
Later last summer we also bought a front load Brinkmann charcoal smoker. Found it at a yard sale, it was a little worn out when we got it, but we have made good use of it. The Brinkmann will get upwards o 250` easily maintained around 220` and we tend to use it more and more. It is just limited with the small rack space.
I have been reading over a lot of the threads here and hope to have my Wooden Smoker Build started soon!!