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After nearly 10 years of faithful service, my SM008 appears to have given up the ghost. I tried to smoke some pork belly a couple days ago, and it wouldn't heat up past 114 degrees. Today, it won't heat up at all. Aside from no heating, the only "symptom" is that the unit makes a faint clicking sound as I turn the temperature control knob past the ambient temperature in the box; to me, this sounds like the thermostat is at least trying to operate.

I assume I will be able to fix it with a new thermostat or heating element. Does anyone have advice on how to figure out what part is broken? I have a multimeter so I can test resistance, current flow, etc.
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I took it apart and found that the connection from the power cord to the heating element had rusted through. I unscrewed the connection, cleaned it up, stripped some bare wire, and reattached the wire. Now it works fine again.

One thing I learned is that you don't need to take off the top to remove the back, and you'll have access to service any part that's likely to need replacing just by removing the back. Plus the back is just four screws; the top is ten screws and removing the top vent.

Having seen the inside of the unit, I'm even more impressed with the quality of the build of this unit. There is some rust, but I've always kept the smoker outside and uncovered. I should have gotten the all-stainless model in the first place.
I had a used SM008 I got on eBay from a restaurant supply house. Actually I think the old girl had never been used but sat next to a stovetop in a restaurant. Inside was clean as a cat's ass. But the electrical cord was very brittle and looked real old. Called Cookshack, got a new wire and some stainless steel shelves, jerky rods and a new vent tube. Took just the back off and doggone it is so well built. In no time that baby was good as new. About a month later I found a used SM150 and stepped up to that. GAVE THE SM008 to my neighbor who is always fixing something for us here for free. He's crazy about it... That's the original Cookshack Butt Smoker right ?? The SM008... a real tank of a unit.
Last edited by bigmikeinnj

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