I have a few smokes on my MES 30 now and have some questions. I did some searches but couldn't find what I was looking for. This is my first "smoker" though I've used a weber charcoal grill to smoke some ribs casually over the years with minor success. I can't get a handle on how to make the best smoke with this smoker. Some folks complain they can't get electric smokers to smoke. Looking at internet pictures there must be several evolutions of the MES30 smoker, I think I have the latest. I don't have that issue...I add wood and it smokes! I followed the instructions on some chicken breasts and ribs and kept the top closed, the chicken came out horribly bitter, the ribs not too bad but should have done them slower. When opening the door mid-smoke I got a full face of the most acrid smoke I ever smelled, it almost blinded me!!! I then tried catfish... so smokey and bitter it would gag a maggot So I did some research and everyone said to smoke with the top vent open to avoid Creosote... Creosote, what a novel idea it never occurred to me. So I smoked some burgers with the top vent open and used a lot fewer chips than I did at first, they turned out OK. I smoked some pork chops today and when checking on them (with the top vent open) I got a ton of acrid smoke when I checked shortly after opening the box. I then "started over" by opening the door so it was latched but the latch was open until the smoke wasn't acrid (smelled better), and then closed the door and smoked the ribs.. the problem is after I let the wood "burn up" a little I hardly got any more smoke out of that load. When I pulled the tray later there was nothing but ash. The chops came out good, not too smokey, with the sauce I could barely taste the smoke. watching video's of charcoal / wood smokers they go for a blue smoke.. I have yet to see that on my MES30. it goes from white smoke to no smoke very quickly. So after all that rambling.. I need some help. If I close the top vent or add too much chips the smoke lasts a long time but is acrid and ruins the food. Not good. If I open the door and let the acrid smoke vent I don't have much smoke left to finish the meat (it burns up quick). So what's the best with the MES30? Just let that top vent open and let that smoke stay in there? Is it more in how much wood I use? Is less wood more often better or more wood, vent it, then seal it for smoking? not having charcoal under the wood with that super-high heat doesn't seem to let me get that ideal "blue" smoke.