Made my first ever purchase from Craig's List - and I think I did pretty well. This is a pretty darn new smoker - I was told it was only used about 6 times and was purchased at the end of Oct 2007. So it should be only 5-6 months old. With the optional "temperature package" (which is just a decent thermometer) is would run about $300 list before tax. I got it for $100. The guy is moving to Arizona and into an apartment, so he couldn't see dragging it all the way over there just to have to put it in storage. His loss is my gain.
From the fellers at CBBQA and the BBQ Brethren, I was pointed to the "Bandera 101" document for tips on modifications (or mods as they are known in BBQ lingo) to make these units work better. I am happy to report that at least one of the mods is now standard on the unit - the exhaust pipe is down all the way to the grate level, keeping more smoke in the chamber.
I need to build a basket for wood/coals, and see what I can do to weather-proof the doors to cut down on drafts. Might think about adding wheels on the two legs that don't have them as well.
Other than that she should be good to go.
Here is mascot Wallace with the new smoker:
Just waiting for fire:
Detail of the low pipe design:
If you have any tips or tricks related to using one of these type units, please feel free to share. I am also looking for tips related to building a basket with no welding.