Hey everyone. So I thought I'd give a quick update from this weekend. And I know, no QView, never happened but I assure you that it did haha!
I got my MES going Friday night at almost midnight. Once again, 2nd gen MES, vent wide open with the 90 degree elbow hooked up to it, smoker box and chip tray completely removed, water pan removed and a muffin fan blowing into the air inlet. I got the smoker up to temp and the AMNPS burning well. I used the Pitmaster's Choice pellets which by the way seemed to produce a nice cigar-like cherry faster than the oak pellets that I was playing around with before. Anyways, I had rubbed a pork butt right before I fired up the smoker. I put the butt and the AMNPS in the smoker around 12:30am. AMNPS was placed on the slanted drip catcher above where the water pan usually sits. I set my muffin fan in an old vice I had laying around and had it sat it and the fan about four inches from the inlet hole. I then went to bed.
I woke up around 7:30am, looked outside and I saw that the AMNPS was still burning! Long story short, I waited till the AMNPS was done smoking, wrapped the butt in foil and finished it off in the oven. In total, the AMNPS burned for about 9 hours. The butt turned out awesome. Beautiful bark, juicy and a LIGHT smoke flavor.
All in all, I consider this a huge win. But I have a few questions/concerns. First, the smoke flavor of the butt was awesome but not as heavy as I'd like. I've done butts quite a few times with either hickory or pecan chips, and once mesquite, and the smoke flavor was much more noticeable. So my main question is, is this normal when using the AMNPS? Will I get lighter smoke flavors when using the AMNPS? Was it the choice of pellets that caused the light flavor? Or, and I'm REALLY wondering this, did I have the fan moving the air too fast through the smoker? Would this cause a lighter smoke flavor? If I choose to keep using the fan method I think I'm going to get a smaller CFM fan or at least a variable speed fan.
I guess I'll ask this but I feel stupid asking, when I'm looking through the glass in my smoker what should it look like? Should there be a smoke haze throughout the smoker or should the smoke be obviously moving fast through the smoker?