WELCOME TO RIVER DAVES PLACE

So I put a deposit down on a new smoker

sintax

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figured we needed some more content in this section since @Xring01 has been doing all the heavy lifting...

After years or going back and forth, I finally took the plunge and decided I needed a stick burner. I have been researching builders all over the country, with most being from TX or the South (obviously). I was checking out Arron Franklins new pits (which are killer new tank builds), Primitive Pits (their Babe), as well as a few smaller folks like Chud's.

So while I was doing that, a local (Los Angeles) pit builder, Fatstack Smokers, who's primarily known for doing larger 500+ gal offsets decided to up their smaller backyard offering to include a new 120g and 80g pits. These are being built from NEW 1/4" tanks, so they dont rely on trying to source used propane tanks of unknown quality. The offered up some pre-order spots for these new pits so I took that opportunity to jump on it and try my hand with a real offset.

It doesnt look like they have any of them listed for sale yet on their site, but you can find some details here...


and some pics...

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240545744_1942965759211040_3526659180003439584_n.jpg
 

Xring01

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Congrats, That looks like it should get the job done.

I think they went a bit overboard on the exhaust side. Meaning they could have used smaller diameter pipe and it would still have flowed correctly. But a larger pipe is not going to cause any problems, because you can still regulate air flow from the fire box side if the lid seals tight enough. I guess they know they could have save a few dollars, but they didnt. If they take that mindset thru out the build then it appears they focus on quality products. Which is great news for the buyers. I guess we now know why they are called Fat Stack

Whats going to be the first thing you cook on it?
And what time should I arrive?

BTW I love brisket, hint hint.
 

sintax

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Congrats, That looks like it should get the job done.

I think they went a bit overboard on the exhaust side. Meaning they could have used smaller diameter pipe and it would still have flowed correctly. But a larger pipe is not going to cause any problems, because you can still regulate air flow from the fire box side if the lid seals tight enough. I guess they know they could have save a few dollars, but they didnt. If they take that mindset thru out the build then it appears they focus on quality products. Which is great news for the buyers. I guess we now know why they are called Fat Stack

Whats going to be the first thing you cook on it?
And what time should I arrive?

BTW I love brisket, hint hint.

You know, I also love me some brisket, but i've never made a good one. Its something I have to work on that, but my main "smoker" that i've been using is a 24" kamado style smoker (big green egg). Which really has limited my grill space real estate, i'd always burn the ends of my briskets since the heat would go around my ceramic plates. Long story short, brisket is a big reason i'm getting this smoker.

I'm sure my first cook will be some pork butts, thats usually my goto for trying new things. Cheap cuts of meat, and super forgiving.

So the larger exhaust stack (they have said they do use a larger dia than most), and large collector at the end of the cook chamber was done intentionally. That main benefit is to increase the convection in the chamber. These smokers are designed to more or less be designed to flow huge amounts of air to ensure a clean burn. Now if you look at the Franklin smoker, it has zero exhaust damper and zero firebox damper, so no controls anywhere. Your only two variables are cracking the door, and fire management (splits, organization of splits on the coal bed, moving coals away)

If you want to see Jermey Yoder (Mad Scientist BBQ) cook on these two new smokers, he did a show last week on Thermoworks youtube as a kind of masterclass on brisket.

 

Xring01

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You know, I also love me some brisket, but i've never made a good one. Its something I have to work on that, but my main "smoker" that i've been using is a 24" kamado style smoker (big green egg). Which really has limited my grill space real estate, i'd always burn the ends of my briskets since the heat would go around my ceramic plates. Long story short, brisket is a big reason i'm getting this smoker.

I'm sure my first cook will be some pork butts, thats usually my goto for trying new things. Cheap cuts of meat, and super forgiving.

So the larger exhaust stack (they have said they do use a larger dia than most), and large collector at the end of the cook chamber was done intentionally. That main benefit is to increase the convection in the chamber. These smokers are designed to more or less be designed to flow huge amounts of air to ensure a clean burn. Now if you look at the Franklin smoker, it has zero exhaust damper and zero firebox damper, so no controls anywhere. Your only two variables are cracking the door, and fire management (splits, organization of splits on the coal bed, moving coals away)

If you want to see Jermey Yoder (Mad Scientist BBQ) cook on these two new smokers, he did a show last week on Thermoworks youtube as a kind of masterclass on brisket.


Let me know when your ready to tackle a brisket. I will walk you thru how I do them, I have never had a complaint on my briskets.

I used to go on a smoking forum called smokering. That site was a bunch of dudes building custom smokers for the most part. With details on flow calculations of all the details of the firebox size to the ratio of the smoke stack etc etc etc. To get a smoker to flow.

So Fat stacks claim of a larger stack helps in convection makes some sense to me. But air flow will be dictacted by the volume of air that come in/out. Thats regulated by the vents on the fire box and the exhaust. One can control the other in a "sealed" environment. For example if the fire box vent is fully open, but the exhaust vent is fully closed, then there is no flow, meaning the fire will go out.

Where am I headed. You have to have air flow for a fire to burn, that flow is regulated by the intake and exhausts vents. PERIOD.... You have to have a stack to get a smoker to flow properly. If its to small, then the smoker doesnt burn correct. But I see no advantages for one thats to big. You need the correct size, but to big is just wasting the materials and rising your costs in manufacturing. A larger stack in my opinion is not going to help if either vent is 1/8 or 1/4 open, which is where the vast majority of a stick burners. Unless you are burning very small wood chunks and adding them very frequently. Which is not a good idea from a time management stand point.

My stick burner. Exhaust Vent is always fully open and I regulate the smoker temperature with the intake vent, which is typically 1/8 - 1/4 open. Its never fully open.

Honestly I just cant see why a Fat stack brings any advantages. FLOW IS REGULATED VENTS. A fatter stack is still limited to the vent openings. I never operate my smoker with both vents wide open.

But I am not smoker builder, just idiot from Texas who has been operating offset smokers since I was kid. I just turned 50 the other day.

This smoker will work, and it should work great, I just don;t see how a fatter stack helps... thats all I am saying.
 

ONE-A-DAY

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Are the Traeger knockoffs at Home Depot, Lowes and Walmart any decent? They look pretty stout, comparable to Traegers at about half the price. Im not hard core, maybe at Glamis toss a few things in, nothing major.
 

sintax

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Are the Traeger knockoffs at Home Depot, Lowes and Walmart any decent? They look pretty stout, comparable to Traegers at about half the price. Im not hard core, maybe at Glamis toss a few things in, nothing major.

I've never really looked too closely at them honestly. I think if I was looking for a cheaper pellet smoker I'd look at a Green Mountain Grill. They seem to have pretty good support, and still have a lot of features that Treager has (they had wifi before traeger honestly)

So the biggest issue with a cheap pellet smoker is the electronics. Once that shit goes south you have a $300 piece of scrap metal, you likely cant get spare parts, and you cant even pour charcoal in there and use it as a regular grill :)
 

ONE-A-DAY

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I've never really looked too closely at them honestly. I think if I was looking for a cheaper pellet smoker I'd look at a Green Mountain Grill. They seem to have pretty good support, and still have a lot of features that Treager has (they had wifi before traeger honestly)

So the biggest issue with a cheap pellet smoker is the electronics. Once that shit goes south you have a $300 piece of scrap metal, you likely cant get spare parts, and you cant even pour charcoal in there and use it as a regular grill :)
Thanks, I need a small one for our RV in glamis, the little traeger just doesnt look like it has a big enough hopper to leave for several hours while out in the dunes.
 

Gelcoater

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Let me know when you need help moving it into place.👍
It will cost ya a beer though😎
 
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sintax

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Let me know when you need help moving it into place.👍
It will cost ya a beer though😎

haha man... i'm always down for a beer, you just let me know.

I bet that thing will be every bit of 600 lbs
 

sintax

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Thanks, I need a small one for our RV in glamis, the little traeger just doesnt look like it has a big enough hopper to leave for several hours while out in the dunes.

So my dad has one of those smaller model that they're calling the Ranger now, but his is an earlier model, I think they called it the Scout?

Its just OK. Honestly the biggest problem is not the hopper size, you can easily crank out a 3-4 hr smoke with that hopper. The problem has had is temp control, the thing almost burnt his house down honestly. I dont know how much is his doing, but its never run right. They've sent him new probes, and tried fixing it but its only so so.
 

FishSniper

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figured we needed some more content in this section since @Xring01 has been doing all the heavy lifting...

After years or going back and forth, I finally took the plunge and decided I needed a stick burner. I have been researching builders all over the country, with most being from TX or the South (obviously). I was checking out Arron Franklins new pits (which are killer new tank builds), Primitive Pits (their Babe), as well as a few smaller folks like Chud's.

So while I was doing that, a local (Los Angeles) pit builder, Fatstack Smokers, who's primarily known for doing larger 500+ gal offsets decided to up their smaller backyard offering to include a new 120g and 80g pits. These are being built from NEW 1/4" tanks, so they dont rely on trying to source used propane tanks of unknown quality. The offered up some pre-order spots for these new pits so I took that opportunity to jump on it and try my hand with a real offset.

It doesnt look like they have any of them listed for sale yet on their site, but you can find some details here...


and some pics...

View attachment 1047629

View attachment 1047630
Those look great. I eventually want to get into something like that. They give you any idea on timeline ?
 

BigDaddyOC

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in that last video he mentions they are offering a discount for the first 200 pre orders. Looks like the retail on the 80 is starting at $3500....can you share what your discount was? I've really been thinking of stepping up to an offset, and I'd rather do it once with quality but $3500 for a backyard smoker is going to be a tough sell to the wife, since she already loves what comes out of the WSM now.
 

TimeBandit

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I always thought if I got a stick burner I would want a reverse flow... Like a Lang?

this one does not check that box.

But it looks VERY well made.
 

TPC

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If I had the production need I'd get the Fat Stack or Franklin. But with all the kids gone and the wife a veggie,,,
 

sintax

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in that last video he mentions they are offering a discount for the first 200 pre orders. Looks like the retail on the 80 is starting at $3500....can you share what your discount was? I've really been thinking of stepping up to an offset, and I'd rather do it once with quality but $3500 for a backyard smoker is going to be a tough sell to the wife, since she already loves what comes out of the WSM now.

So the 80 was 2500 and the 120 was 3500.

Just gotta sell it like “if you think the wsm good, imagine what a true wood smoked brisket or dino ribs could be”
 

sintax

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I always thought if I got a stick burner I would want a reverse flow... Like a Lang?

this one does not check that box.

But it looks VERY well made.

There’s certainly nothing wrong with a reverse flow, I know some guys turn out some good bbq on them.

honestly for a smaller pit, they tend to work very well. You can have a smaller chamber without roasting your meat. On an offset, you really can’t use that first 1/4 of the cook chamber often since the heat is much more intense there, with the reverse that is mitigated, but the downside is you have that plate cooking the meat from below, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

Lang also makes a great smoker, I don’t think you’d be bummed at all. It is nice not to have to spend the $600-800 to ship these out from Georgia though!
 

sintax

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Gonna send them an email and see about getting on the list. Think I will order the smaller of the two. Which one did u go with ?

I got the smaller as well, I don’t really entertain enough to warrant the big dog. This one will be a huge size improvement already, and it does have that second rack which is nice.

I feel like I could comfortably do 2 full briskets and 2-3 pork butts on the lower grate. The guys say you can do 3 briskets on the FS80, not that I’d have any idea what to do with that much hah
 

dave29

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Had a Yoder offset stick burner. Great quality. Bought a Myron Mixon, Jack's Old South, insulated gravity feed. Never looked back! Especially good up here in the Co. winters.
 

TeamGreene

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I'd love to have a 120 but I'll stick with my Old Country Pecos for now
 

FishSniper

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for the 2500? at that price and putting 500 down and waiting 8 months I'm really thinking about it
Yea. You only have two options really to add basically a cart with larger wheels etc and then if you want to upgrade to the petina finish. The cart option was 500 and the petina 300. I’m not gonna expect it to be ready till early 2023.
 

sintax

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I spotted these specs in the comments of the youtube vid, dont know how accurate they are.

80 gallon - Length: 82″
Width (shelf up): 38″
Width (shelf down): 32″
Height: 78.75″
Weight: 750 lbs
Main grate: 36″Lx23″W
Top grate: 28″Lx17″W


120 gallon - Length: 110″
Width (shelf up): 38″
Width (shelf down): 32″
Height: 90.75″
Weight: 975 lbs
Main grate: 48″Lx23″W
Top grate: 48″Lx17″W
 
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sintax

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Finally got a proper review from Mad scientist BBQ
 

sintax

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Couldnt watch it, reminded me of a infomercial… about 40 seconds into frying pans, turned that crap off.

Oh yea, that’s such bs. I hate they all do these 3rd party sponsor shit. I just skip through it, but I know what you mean.
 
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