The Scotland-born Welshman was drawn in group B in the 69kg category and wasn’t expected to contend for a medal.
Still he produced an impressive performance to secure a clean and jerk record for Wales and finish eighth in his group.
And the 26-year-old, who won a bronze medal at last year’s Commonwealth Championships, is vowing to come back stronger following his first Olympic appearance.
“Next on the list is the Commonwealth Games in Glasgow in 2014 and that gold medal has my name on it,” he said.
Evans took the Welsh record with his opener of 153kg in the clean and jerk before going one better in his next lift of 158kg, as an earlier 130kg snatch lift took his overall score to 288kg.
And the former painter and decorator hopes he will be able to continue lifting weights full time when the next round of UK Sport funding is announced.
“I would love to. I can’t spend much more time away from my little girl, but I want to keep at it,” he said.
“I will cross that bridge when I come to it. If it comes to picking up the paint brush again then so be it.”