The bottom of the cook box has a slight V to it to drain everyone to front , right under the door where I will install a valve. That keeps it away from the firebox so that it does not burn up and produce any ill flavors in the cook chamber. About three inches above the bottom is a removable, 3/16" plate that is perforated ( high dollar stuff, but had just enough laying around ) that acts somewhat like a reverse flow plate to even out the heat across the bottom, but still let's the grease drip through.
Problem with a vertical cook chamber like this is that you get a lot of drippings all in one area , especially with chicken. The firebox had to go on the back side of the cook chamber in order to get the most even heat. If I used a traditional reverse flow plate, I would have all the heat coming right at me when I opened the door, and that wouldn't be much fun when trying to turn the food. So I used the perforated plate to distribute the heat.
I'm putting four gauges on it, two on the door, top and bottom, and one on each side of the cook chamber. Once I get them on , I'll know how even it cooks.
Also, I have a couple sheets of aluminum diamond plate. Was thinking of wrapping the cook chamber in that to dress it up. I'm just not sure if the aluminum would work against me as far as keeping the heat in?