Thought I'd share my experience with my 30" MES... Like most other folks, I discovered that the basic design is inherently flawed- no call for heat = no smoke. NO good. Especially in the warmer months. So I bought the AMNPS- great product, but it just doesn't work as well as it should in this application. I had to keep relighting it, obviously starved for oxygen in there. AMNPS says to remove the chip loader, and open the drawer. Well, then most of the heat from the element goes out the hole where the chip loader goes. And the AMNPS is below the fresh air inlet, which simply won't work well.
So, knowing I wouldn't be using the MES chip burner ever again, I set out to come up with something that would (should!) work.
That being said, I'm sure this voids any & every warranty, UL listing, blah, blah, blah.... Too bad, I need TBS!!
Here's what I did, and it seems to be working perfectly:
I removed the entire chip drawer assembly, and the wire rack support, and moved the wire rack up to allow for air to come in underneath the AMNPS.
Then I made a heat/grease shield to protect the burner, and and screwed that to the back wall (only on the far right side as the wiring for the element is in there.)
I also wanted a grease shield for the AMNPS, as the water pan would not be covering the back left corner, so I made a small triangular piece to cover that.
I've noticed that once the draft gets going, it pretty much went up the back wall, and out the vent, so I made a small baffle up there that will hopefully allow the smoke to spend some more quality time with the meat-
Then, I capped off the opening for the old chip loader.
Now, I had to come up with a new air inlet. Not knowing how much air would be required for the AMNPS, I kinda winged it. I was going to order a rotary-type adjustable damper online, but I need to do a pork butt tomorrow. (On sale @ Rainbow for $.99/ lb!!), So, I went through my junk & found a 2000# stainless ball valve, (which is probably worth more than the smoker), and installed that to the front of the AMNPS, hoping to avoid too much draft right into it.
I'm doing a dry run right now, and I've had perfect TBS for 2 hours, w/o having to relight. Ball valve all the way open, so perhaps it needs a 11/2" instead of the 1"- Not sure if the smoke is visible, but it's there-
Will post more pics tomorrow as the Pork gets happier!!