So I have had some work done by TQ and have shown the transformations here on the forum in other places, but have not done a review on the performance of the pit. ***Just to be clear the original pit was built by another builder and had a shoddy frame and a very thin firebox in which Paul fixed both of those problems, but the cook chamber is still original not built by TQ, FYI his are built much better.***Friday I was asked to cook for my son's church camp out, did the same cook last year too. Well I started the pit at 10AM with 20lbs of charcoal that I put in the XXLbasket that I had Jeff (yokeup) make for me last year. I start that up with my torch and let it go until it gets to 300deg. and then let the stoker take over. I know the stoker is overkill, you don't need it on offset, learn how to manage a fire, and the rest of the arguments, but it makes comp life easier for me so I do it. Anyway after about 20 to 25min the smoker is up to temp.
Recently TQ put on a new double insulated firebox and warmer on my smoker and the trailer that he built for me. I will say that I have cooked on this thing several times since bringing it home and wow what a difference it has made. Getting to and maintaining temps are a breeze with it, with and without the stoker. The other day I re seasoned it after a clean out and just loaded it up with charcoal and and let it run and for 4+ hours on 20lbs of charcoal it held 300deg without the stoker and after 6 hours it was still holding at around 230 to 240. Fuel consumption has been significantly reduced since putting in the insulated box and using the XXL Basket from Jeff. The cooker is built like a tank and pulls like a dream. If you are at all interested in a custom quality pit and an excellent person to work with give Paul (TQ) a shout. He was always upfront about cost and time frames and the quality of work is second to none. Anyway here are a couple of pics of the pit in action. I cooked 12 slabs of spares and a 12lb brisket. You can also see on the pic of the thermometer that Paul put in a grommet for my probes to run through so that they wont get pinched in the doors anymore.
Thermo and grommet
Double insulated firebox and door with warmer
XXL Basket in action with Stoker air pipe underneath
Stoker Fan piped in through the back of firebox
Brisket Pic (sorry didn't get pics of the ribs)