Speaking as a grandfather I would love it if a grandson wanted to build a smoker for me with me. I vote for a WSM that you both plan and build together.
Jim - Another transplanted Texan
Former KCBS CBJ
Large and Medium Big Green Eggs , Black 18.5" WSM, Blue Weber Performer - Stainless, Green Weber OTG Kettle , Brinkmann SnP Pro, and a Stainless UDS. One retired Portable Kitchen grill.
Red Thermapen, Maverick ET-732, EdgePro Apex Sharpener.
Avatar is the original 1951 Weber Kettle