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30" MES smoker is not smoking, 20070910. - Page 5

post #81 of 99

ok here are a couple of pictures of the smokerIMG_0663.JPGIMG_0664.JPG

post #82 of 99

Holy Shoot !!!

Your element covers the whole bottom of your smoker !!!

That is so much different than our digital MES 30 & MES 40s, that I can't help you, except to say, for smoke, try to get that smoke box down there to be either against or almost against the element. Other that that, try to get some guys who have that same analog MES to help. Maybe you could start a new thread in "Electric Smokers", and title it, "Need Help with MES Analog Smoker".

 

Sorry I couldn't be more help,

Bear

post #83 of 99
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bearcarver View Post




Wait a minute---MES only go to 275˚.

Sometimes one will coast up to 300˚, but never 350˚. How'd you get 350˚?

 

Bear

 


Really?  Mine reaches 400 but I installed a rope gasket.rope gasket With the ambient @50 +- I have no problem.  KK
 

 

post #84 of 99
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kielbasa Kid View Post


Really?  Mine reaches 400 but I installed a rope gasket. With the ambient @50 +- I have no problem.  KK


Yes, We figured out, since my comment you replied to, that "leonwb" has an analog MES like you have. That rope gasket wouldn't increase the heat of a digital MES, since the controls only go up to 275˚. 

Since you have an MES analog, maybe you can help answer some of leon's questions about getting it to smoke properly.

 

 

Thanks,

Bear

 

post #85 of 99

Yes, I have the same unit and I was puzzled as to why he couldn't achieve any smoke.

 

I've never had that experience.

 

As for the gasket, it holds the heat in so much better. The smoke too. No leaks around the door. It even pushes it out the analog fitting.

 

I rarely resort to the original chip container.

 

I would not advise taking the lid off as a solution. It is designed to create smoke.  I would imagine that if you removed the cover...opened the door...introduced air....you might have a flare-up?

 

I, almost always use my own smoke generator.

 

smoke generator 004.jpgsmoke generator 001.jpgsmoke generator 007.jpgsmoke generator fittings 002.jpgsmoke generator 006.jpg This drops onto the generator through the bottom hole after removing the useless drip tray.

post #86 of 99

MES analog after 3 uses-1102.jpgMES analog after 3 uses-1101.jpg

 

 

I have the same smoker you are using!  I am new to smoking meats and I am hooked on it!  I have learned so much very quickly from the kind people here that it helps a great deal.  So I will pass along my 2 cents and see if we can get you smokin'..

 

This is my analog smoker and after only 3 uses plus a seasoning round at the very beginning. I no longer have the new shiny inside walls as I see in your brand new unit.  For some unimportant reason I feel proud of the patina already building up on the inside walls but I digress....  Let's see if we can get your smoker walls golden brown...

 

Does the heating element get red hot when first turning on?  If it is try heating the unit up to 240 or so. After it is up to temp - then insert the chip box already containing a small handfull of soaked but not shiny wet chips so your not trying to open the smoldering hot chip tray lid and tossing in chips that go flying everywhere as we aren't lucky enough to have a "chip shoot".  This I have found critical as the heat loss with the door open and trying to get the chips in the little box while holding the chip tray lid open takes a lot of precious time and evacuates all the nice built up heat and is very difficult to get it back up.  So when it is up to temp. - I actually then crank up the heat on the controller, open the door - drop in the chip box shove in the meats and close it  as quick as I can.  And leave it closed for as long as possible.  And mine starts to smoke fairly quickly with a sweet smelling blue smoke.

 

Mine did heat up from the get go and did smoke the first time I added chips to the scolding hot chip box - so I must ask questions and then pass along what  I'm doing as I go because it is trial and error to perfect this art - maybe especially with this analog unit.

 

1)  Does the heating element bring the unit up to temperature?

 

2)  Does the unit recover after a short time and go back to temperature after opening and closing the door?

 

3)  Are you using an extension cord?

 

4)  Are you using wood chips or chunks and are you soaking them in water before use?

 

My learning curve thus far with this analog unit...

 

1) and 2)  My unit seems to heat up fine although surprising at first it takes some time to heat back up after opening the door and closing it.  But after all there is tremendous heat loss as you can imagine once you fling open the door!

 

3)   I do use an extension cord because I have to even though it is not recommended.  I do though use an expensive  heavy duty appliance "guage" extension cord

 

4)   I do use wood chips and I do soak them for only about 20 minutes now.

 

Because the heating element does cover the entire floor I use a drip tray to catch as much of the drippings as possible so that I am smoking the meats with wood chips instead of drippings/grease smoke and I change the tray half way through in order to keep "thin blue smoke" coming out instead of white smoke.

 

I do heat up the unit before hand now, then insert the chip tray, and my meats after it is heated.  It really only take a handful of chips (I use hickory).  I do this so I can pretty much keep the door closed for as much of the cooking time as possible.  Opening only once to add chips when I change out the drip tray.

 

I do run it at 300* for chickens to render out some of the fat in the skin to get it a little thinner and crispy.  I have though been very proud to see juice and grease flowing everywhere and white smoke pummeling out but have since learned that the white smoke is bad - very bad and not what we are looking for.  The addition of the drip tray and covering the bottom of the unit with foil underneath the heating element has greatly and I do mean greatly made a significant improvement in how this unit operates. (Be sure to poke a hole in the foil lined floor where the drip hole is....)

 

Having done all of this...I am receiving the AMNS unit on Tuesday because it seems a better way to get the "TBS" than the way this chip tray is functioning - but still, I am new at it so I could probably perfect the use of it to make it smoke the way I want it to instead of the way it wants too...

 

I think all in all if the heating element is getting hot the problem may be that the heat loss when opening the door long enough to get the chips into the chip box.  It happened to me on my first attempt, I added chips half way through the cooking time and they never got hot enough to smoke...trial and error.  I have read about heat loss problems and heating recovery with other units so I try to minimize this heat loss occurence as much as possible.  And cranking up the controller just before opening the door kind of re-sets it so it goes in to heating up mode again...

 

This could be a weak point on this analog smoker - the chip box  and also i wish I could control the venting instead of having  zero adjustment and a tiny whole at the top - but what do I know?  maybe a tiny hole at the top is just what it should be....

post #87 of 99

Woow! great idea for a rope gasket.  Where do I get a rope gasket and how did you attach it?  I think if I used a cotton cord rope I would introduce a new cotton type of smoke chip!drool.gif

post #88 of 99

The smoke generator fascinates me.  I see that it is a pressure cooker with some mods and maybe an aquarium air pump...Got any more details on how you make it work?

 

Thanks,

 

Garry

post #89 of 99

OK leonwb i am not Trying to be funny can we go to basic.

in your photos it does not look like  the element got hot ever

1.check your electrical socket

2. check your element if it get hot you can put a piece of paper (a Small one )if it catch a light it gets hot,if not or no juice or the element or the thermostat are faulty

3. if it get hot but not enough to light you wood chips maybe your thermostat or the element is faulty.

if one of them is faulty  send it back.

I hope it will help you

post #90 of 99
Quote:
Originally Posted by gw101 View Post

Woow! great idea for a rope gasket.  Where do I get a rope gasket and how did you attach it?  I think if I used a cotton cord rope I would introduce a new cotton type of smoke chip!drool.gif


The rope is fiberglass. A store that sells woodstoves has them in different thickness. Get the very thin and attach it with a tube of gasket cement.

 

NEXT: Buy this size pump. Not smaller. Start charcoal fire in colander, outside of pot..then add wood...when it catches...heap it in and with the pump pumping, close the lid and you are good for 10-12 hours. I give it a rattle every half hour or so.

 

The colander allows air to circulate. Yours may have to be modified to accomodate fittings. Mine did.

 

Discard original gasket and cement in a rope gasket.

 

Remove vent under handle and plug opening with a nut, bolt and washer.

 

The rest is as you see it.

 

I use a baking pan for water/cider/whatever. Line it with foil for clean-up. You can get one that fits perfectly on the rails. Drippings go into the pan and not on the element or base.

 

An alternative is a foil lined cookie sheet. You can get one that fits perfectly.

 

n.b. for photographic purpose, I did not line them with foil.
 

Another improvement is for hanging sausage in the wasted upper space. Take your two lower grates and prop them on the upper grate. Hold in place with notched dowels like the ones for the sausage. I bought 2 extra grates.

 

BTW I use refrigerator storage containers to catch the condensed steam that runs down the door and legs.sausage bars 001.jpgsausage bars 002.jpgsmoke generator 001.jpgsmoke generator 007.jpgsmoke generator 004.jpgsmoke generator fittings 002.jpgsmoke generator 006.jpg

 

drip pans 001.jpgdrip pans 010.jpg

post #91 of 99

africanmeat

 the unit gets hot, i have checked it with a externat temperature guage inserted on the rack to see if the front temp guage and the inside guage were alike and i know for sure it will go to 350 degrees reading on both guages. i plug directly into the electrical outlet on the outside of the house. what i haven't been doing in reading the posts is letting the unit get hot all the way before inserting the meat or putting in the chips in after the unit is entirely where you want it to be when cooking. i will give that a try. i have also soaked and not smoked the chips and they are small chips not chunks. it seems to me that if i want anytype of smoke at all i have to be cooking to at least 250 degrees, nothing happens at 200 degrees so if you wanted to smoke something slow how do you do it. this is the first time i have attempted to use a smoker. have used both gas and charcoal grills forever and been very succesfull doing at it. i am determined to get this down also. so any help is very much appreciated. thanks

post #92 of 99
Quote:
Originally Posted by leonwb View Post

africanmeat

 the unit gets hot, i have checked it with a externat temperature guage inserted on the rack to see if the front temp guage and the inside guage were alike and i know for sure it will go to 350 degrees reading on both guages. i plug directly into the electrical outlet on the outside of the house. what i haven't been doing in reading the posts is letting the unit get hot all the way before inserting the meat or putting in the chips in after the unit is entirely where you want it to be when cooking. i will give that a try. i have also soaked and not smoked the chips and they are small chips not chunks. it seems to me that if i want anytype of smoke at all i have to be cooking to at least 250 degrees, nothing happens at 200 degrees so if you wanted to smoke something slow how do you do it. this is the first time i have attempted to use a smoker. have used both gas and charcoal grills forever and been very succesfull doing at it. i am determined to get this down also. so any help is very much appreciated. thanks


Leon,

I'll let the guys who know more about your Analog MES help you try to get that thing smoking properly, because I doubt if it is only meant to smoke from 250˚ and above.

Meanwhile, the AMNS will give you what you want, more consistently, even if you get your MES working properly. Then you can sit back & relax.

 

Bear

 

post #93 of 99

Leon -

 

Mine did smoke great right off the bat when I seasoned it.  Even when I seasoned it my clean shiny interior walls started to turn color so I can see that your not getting any smoke.  I have grilled for years too and have that down so making my analog smoker work the way I read these posts became a project from he get go because I wasn't exactly  getting perfect results.

 

Does your heating element get red hot?  Even at the lower temps?  How long is it taking to get up to 240?  If you put water in the water tray does it evaporate in a "normal amount of time? It could be the plug in thermostat since you are plugged direct with the cord and no extension cord.  I can see in your photo it is getting hot.  Maybe I crank mine way up and peel it back - maybe that's how I set my chips to getting to smokin'

 

How many chips are you putting in at the start?  Are they fresh out of the soak and shiny wet when you put them in the chip box?  I start to soak mine when I plug my unit in and begin to heat it up.(With the chip tray out of the unit) I heat it up to 300 and when ready paper towel off water from a small handful of chips put them in the tray and head for the smoker with chip tray and meat.  Put it all in as carefully and as quick as I can close the door and crank the thermostat up even further!  Then when after loading it all up and seeing the temp guage climbing slowly back to 240-280 (as it drops severely to about 200) I re adjust the thermostat to 250 or as close as it'll guess.  I get smoke within 2 to 3 minutes.

 

Maybe this is a weakness for this chip tray and heating element for this unit and like a bull in a china closet I stumbled upon an all unknowing work around.

 

But I am getting my AMNS tomorrow and it is because I haven't figured how to get the chip tray perfect in this unit.  Trial and somewhat failure a bit.  But my food has been outrageous so not a total loss...

 

Thanks to Kielbassa Kid for the smoke injector tutorial!!!  Gotta get to work on that - seems killer - another brother who dealt with the possible chip box deficiency.

 

And BearCarver is right order the AMNS asap!!!

 

Best of luck -

 

Garry

post #94 of 99

Kielbasa Kid -

 

Great photos and instructions!  I notice the 4 support legs for the unit set in some containers -  I have paper towels folded just right under mine but I will be changing to what I see in your photos! I've had steam vapor and juice running all over the place from the legs but adding a drip tray really really cleaned that up a lot! I see you got rid of the chip box and water tray arrangement and replaced with a drip tray/water-cider tray and or pan.  I'll adopt that too I think and buy two more shelves for the sausage.....

 

Thanks for the insight!

 

Garry

post #95 of 99

i want to thank everyone on the smoker problem i was having with the 30" 20070210 not smoking. Bass Pro let me take the thing back and i upgraded to the 20070910 and did the initial breakin smoke today and had plenty of smoke. can't wait to try it out with real food. don't know what to smoke first. thanks guys appreciate this site. so what should i smoke first?  

post #96 of 99
Quote:
Originally Posted by leonwb View Post

i want to thank everyone on the smoker problem i was having with the 30" 20070210 not smoking. Bass Pro let me take the thing back and i upgraded to the 20070910 and did the initial breakin smoke today and had plenty of smoke. can't wait to try it out with real food. don't know what to smoke first. thanks guys appreciate this site. so what should i smoke first?  


Congrats Leon !

 

You'll love it !

 

If that one has trouble smoking below 180˚, don't get upset. That could be one of the ones that needs the FREE retro-fix.

Either way, you will still want to get an AMNS---It just makes life soooo much easier!

 

Bear

 

post #97 of 99

it came with the wider smoker box, so i am assuming it has the fix, although it has the half barrel loader 

post #98 of 99
Quote:
Originally Posted by leonwb View Post

it came with the wider smoker box, so i am assuming it has the fix, although it has the half barrel loader 


Sounds to me like they are putting the good one in at the factory now!

 

You should be good to go.

 

If that half barrel chip dumper bothers you, I noticed a few guys took a dremel to it, and made it a full barrel.

 

 

Bear

 

post #99 of 99

Grind out the spot welds like Bear said.

Just because you have a larger chip loader, DOES NOT mean you should fill it up.  All you'll do is create too much smoke and creosote.

Remember to add only a small hand full of chips, chunks or pellets at a time.

 

Todd

 

 

No Creosote! A-Maze-N Smokers

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