A few months ago I went to plug in my Cookshack SM008 smoker to smoke some Pork Butt, but after about 15 minutes, I noticed there was no heat. No matter what, I couldn’t get the smoker to turn on. So here I was with 22lbs of dry rubbed pork and a smoker that just broke down. I took the cover off and found the culprit. The thermostat had seen the end of its life. Great….. what now?
Well, anything worth engineering is worth over-engineering, so I went upstairs and got a JLD612 PID temperature controller, an SSR (solid state relay) and a little power supply that just happened to be sitting around, and went to work. I disconnected the old thermostat and wired in the new controls. Plugged it in, set some parameters and the smoker sprung to life. The darn thing stayed within just a few degrees of the set-point!
I had it kind of hacked together so I could get the meat smoked, but it worked. McGuyver would be proud! A week later I borrowed a Dremel tool and cut a hole out for the new controller and wired it in. I still need to mount the SSR and heat shield everything. Here’s some pictures of what transpired: