Revisiting this thread. I decided to try something new, actually attempt to do something BEFORE investing money in it. Got a couple of rib racks, rubbed them up and threw them on my propane grill.
Despite the many problems I faced (rack of ribs too large for my tiny gas grill, actually getting up to temp with a tiny portable propane grill) I actually enjoyed it. I have a spare half barrel keg I think I'll turn into a smoker. Thinking of a 1500w hot plate and maybe trying out the stc controller, with the probe invaded in a metal tube, or a dimmer switch. Just gotta figure out how to make a door at the bottom of a keg to remove and add chips, as I don't want to cut the bottom completely out and lift it up over the hot plate as I've seen in another build.