View Full Version : New Franklin Style Smoker Build (I Know), A Few Questions

12-14-2017, 03:40 PM
I am going to be working with a welder (person, not tool) to build a 250 gallon propane tank smoker very similar to what Aaron Franklin does on his PBS show BBQ with Franklin, Episode 4: The Pits. I will also be having a trailer built for the smoker. I did have a few questions regarding some specifics, as the video is not super technical. (Note: I have used Feldon's calculator, but obviously Franklin's smokers do not follow that math to say the least. I am trying to get a Franklin style smoker, not a mathematically "correct" smoker.)

For the smokestack, I can't decide between a 6" or 8" pipe. I figure because the cook chamber is a 250 gallon propane tank, the 6" is probably the way to go, about 6 feet tall. I want a good draft, but not too strong. I have also thought about using an 8" pipe about 5 feet tall. Thoughts?

For the trailer, I'm thinking a 3500 lb axle on a 4 foot wide trailer should be sufficient. On a lot of these smaller trailer smokers, it seems like the firebox is fairly close to the ground. Does anyone have experience getting one of these over a curb or something like that?

It will have 2 doors, and I want a single cooking grate all the way across, right at the lateral center line (15", assuming the tank is 30" diameter), then 2 removable grates about 8" above the main grate, leaving about 5" vertically for the second shelf. For the main grate, I know that Franklin has his straight across and it doesn't look removable. They hose it off and everything goes down the grease drain. Am I mistaken on the removable grate part, especially with the double doors?

I'd like the grease drain to be towards the firebox, as I figure the trailer hitch will generally be the higher side.

Does anyone happen to have a picture of their baffle on this style of smoker?

Those are all of the questions I can think of for now, I'm sure there will be more. Any advice is much appreciated! Thanks!

12-16-2017, 09:00 AM
Where will the smoke exit? As I recall, I think Franklin has his exhaust at or slightly below the lower grate. My DIY offset did this and I get good flow
Good luck

One Drop
12-17-2017, 04:42 AM
Can't you adjust the trailer tongue to raise or lower the nose, to drain or change airflow?

I wouldn't want grease pooling at the firebox side if the drain blocked, I would think there is a good reason for having the drain on the opposite side?

12-17-2017, 08:25 AM
>> New Franklin Style Smoker Build (I Know), A Few Questions

I don't understand the 'I Know' part.

12-18-2017, 02:42 PM
The smokestack will be at grate level on the center line.

For the drain, yes you can adjust the tongue, I believe Franklin's smokers have the drain on the firebox side so I was going with that. Also, I could be totally wrong, but if it is very cold outside it might prevent the grease from hardening since it is closer to a heat source.

As for the (I Know), I'm just the next in a long line of Franklin fanboys so I figured some people were sick of hearing about it by now :icon_smile_tongue: