Originally Posted by Palm Leaf Pit Masters
i have a bullet style smoker like that, that has a charcoal pan that i modified with air holes and such, but it burns terribly slow and never builds heat, almost like its not getting enough air? it will smolder at about 180degrees and smoke like a train but wont get get. im sitting here studying your pics trying to see any differences in what i can do. any suggestions?
I cut out most of the bottom of the fire pan that my vertical smoker came with and set a piece of expanded metal (cut just a little larger than the piece cut out of the pan--both with an angle grinder) in it's place, opening up the bottom a lot more than just punching additional holes would have. My smoker (a larger discontinued version of a Master Forge vertical smoker from Lowes) came with just a large hole in the bottom of the fire pan "holder" (bottom body section)...I stopped that up with a large "decor magnet" from Harbor Freight Tools and installed nipples with 3/4 inch conduits on the bottom sides instead. (Drilled one inch holes for the nipples.) I did basically the same thing as a guy working with the same model who posted YouTube videos, except that he used a Weber replacement grate instead of expanded metal, and I just use sheet magnets to close/regulate the nipple conduits. In case this might be any help, he shows what he did with the nipples in his first video, which is here:
--and he shows his fire pan mod here in part three: