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Cabinet style trailer build

 
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toddster



Joined: 07 Apr 2010
Posts: 12
Location: Pig's Eye, MN

PostPosted: Tue Jul 23 13 5:21 am    Post subject: Cabinet style trailer build Reply with quote

I just ordered my torsion axles (2000 pound max) for a cabinet style smoker build. My last smoker was too big of a pain in the rear to load in my pickup.
So I sold it and will build a trailer smoker. I just don't how to place the axle to I end up with the right amount of tongue weight.
Any insights or help is appreciated. Thanks Todd
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k.a.m.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23 13 6:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Todd, what is the trailer dimensions?
What are the cooker dimensions?
How much does or will the cooker weigh?
The answers to these questions will help. Very Happy
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toddster



Joined: 07 Apr 2010
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Location: Pig's Eye, MN

PostPosted: Tue Jul 23 13 9:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The trailer will only be 4 feet by 4 feet and it will just be the cooker. Height will be 6 feet.
It will somewhat resemble a Spicewine Ironworks cooker.
My best guess on the weight will be around 1200 pounds.

I was thinking of using a 3/8" steel plate for the bottom and welding the torsion axles and tongue directly to it.

Thanks Todd
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k.a.m.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23 13 10:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Todd, I can tell you a cooker that tall on a 4' square foot print is going to be very dangerous at highway speeds.
At the least I would go with a 60" wide frame and make the trailer body at least 8' to 10' long.
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toddster



Joined: 07 Apr 2010
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Location: Pig's Eye, MN

PostPosted: Tue Jul 23 13 10:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I never thought of how it would handle at the speeds I like to drive.

Embarassed

I was thinking something like this would be easier to move.
http://spicewineironworks.com/our-trailer-smokers/

Thanks Todd
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k.a.m.
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23 13 10:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Todd, that trailer is more in line with what I was saying. Total length is 120" that puts the body around 8' just guessing. I would also imagine it is a 60" wide axle but I could be wrong.
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4xAggie
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Joined: 16 May 2013
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Location: Katy, TX

PostPosted: Tue Jul 23 13 10:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

For the weight distribution, you really need to do a "sum of the moments" and "sum of the forces" on your trailer--i.e. high school physics types of stuff. You need to know the weight and location of all of the major components that you want to put on the trailer (relative to a reference point).

Basically, balanced the sum of the vertical forces. You basically have the weight of the cooker and trailer (and anything on it) that is supported by 1) the weight on the axle and 2) the weight on the tongue.
So, Cooker + Trailer = Axle + Tongue


Then, you have to take the moment balance around any point in relation to the trailer. This is somewhat confusing until you just get it--but it's the equivalent of saying the torque clockwise equals the torque counterclockwise. Let's pick the hitch/tongue as the point in which to take moments from. You'll basically multiply the force (weight) by the distance from this point (the tongue) to the center of weight--and repeat for EACH component (trailer, cooker, axle, tongue).
Simplifying, and moving some terms around so it's easier to understand, This would look something like this:
(Cooker*Distance to center of cooker from tongue) + (Trailer*Distance to center of trailer) = (Tongue*Distance from tongue to tongue--note that this equals 0) + (Axle*Distance from axle to the tongue)

Once you get the axle weight from the second equation, you can calculate the tongue weight in the first equation. This is the basic concept, but you can expand it to account for anything else you want to put on the trailer. The more precise you want/need to be, the more components you break down. Ultimately, you want the weight balanced to about 10-15% on the tongue and 85-90% on the axle, though some would vary and may provide some different opinions.


I will say this though, balancing a cabinet style smoker is going to be very sensitive because the weight of the smoker is concentrated over a pretty small footprint. Calculations are fairly easy, but the potential for error is fairly large.

I'll also say I don't like using a plate for a deck like you suggested at all. Strength comes from getting structural components away from an axis. Since that probably doesn't make sense, think about a regular 2x4. Place it between 2 supports both flat and vertically--and tell me which sags more when you step on it. The vertical position is much stronger. Your plate is essentially the flat 2x4--only flattened even more (take a 1x4 and you'll have even more sag--which is what you've got). You'd be much better off framing a base out of rectangular tubing or channel.

Hope this helps--I think you should just proceed with caution.
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Alien BBQ
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 23 13 1:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think you need to rethink this. Not only do you have a tipping problem but a cooker that has no flex or give as a part of the integrated trailer is asking for tweaked doors and a short usable life.
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toddster



Joined: 07 Apr 2010
Posts: 12
Location: Pig's Eye, MN

PostPosted: Tue Jul 23 13 9:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks guys, I will need to research what I need to do here.

I really thought I could go with a narrower and shorter design. My experience with the fuel oil grill I had rented a few times to cook on led me to that conclusion.

Todd
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Bedlam BBQ
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Joined: 31 Aug 2006
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Location: Broken Arrow, OK

PostPosted: Tue Jul 30 13 5:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Todd - it sounds like your smoker will be similar in size to mine. I had it on one of those little trailers from Harbor Freight -- for a little while. That sucker was really top heavy and scared us pulling it on the highway. I had to add "outriggers" so it would not flip backwards when not hooked to my truck.

Here's what it looked on that little trailer and you can see the outriggers.



The outriggers did make it very sturdy when it was just sitting.



I now have it on a 4' x 8' trailer and I'm much happier -- and now it has a roof over it too.
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