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Weird Experience Yesterday

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 

I own a MES Digital 30 Gen 1 which I love but yesterday was a nightmare with it. I set out to smoke my first Chuckie with a 235* set point and using the AMNPS filled with two rows of mesquite pellets. I also use the Maverick ET-733 to monitor Food and BBQ temps. Anyway, the smoker temp kept going up and hit 295* which is wild since the top temp limit for the MES is 275* but I saw 295* on my calibrated ET-733.

 

Some people complain that their AMNPS won't stay lit. I had the opposite problem yesterday with the pellets burning out after an hour, no matter how many times I refilled the AMNPS. Instead of TBS I saw large amounts of smoke coming out of the top vent. I tried a blend of wood pellets to try to slow down the burning but it didn't work. I even set the MES temp to 100* but it only went down to about 286*. This all happened over a 7-hour period.

 

Today, I cleaned both the temp sensor and the high limit switch inside the MES and put the Chuckie back in (it never reached the IT I was shooting for) and now the MES is back to normal. Still getting temp swings but that's normal. I have the MES temp set point at 245* and per the ET-733 the temp is swinging between 262 to 270. That was higher than I wanted so I just cut it back to 235* on the MES. The smoke out of the top vent is still more than TBS but some of the smoke coming out of the top vent is from grease and deposits inside the MES, not just from the wood pellets.

 

So, I learned something new about my MES and how to fix the problem. I'd advise all of you with Gen 1 MES smokers to clean at least two those components on the inside rear wall periodically since they both will get caked with deposits which can cause the problem I had yesterday.

post #2 of 13

I would bet your AMNPS problem was caused by over filling and jumping rowsth_dunno-1[1].gif.

Happy smoken.

David

post #3 of 13

You could be right David - but if it is  not jumping then I would be a little concerned about the quality of the pellets. They are burning way too fast.

post #4 of 13

Here's another one most don't know:

 

"daRicksta" had to clean his MES30 sensor to get the heat to work right. I clean mine after every few smokes.

 

However for those of you who have the window in your MES door, during the Fall, Winter, and Spring you should either face your MES toward the North, or lean something against the glass so the sun doesn't shine through the glass and onto the sensor. Having the Sun on your sensor can cause your control to think it's warmer in the smoker than it is, and shut the element off at the wrong smoker temp.

This generally happens when smoking at lower temps, but it can really confuse you when it happens.

 

Here's more about it:

http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/101749/mes-with-window-heads-up

 

 

Bear

post #5 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bearcarver View Post
 

Here's another one most don't know:

 

"daRicksta" had to clean his MES30 sensor to get the heat to work right. I clean mine after every few smokes.

 

However for those of you who have the window in your MES door, during the Fall, Winter, and Spring you should either face your MES toward the North, or lean something against the glass so the sun doesn't shine through the glass and onto the sensor. Having the Sun on your sensor can cause your control to think it's warmer in the smoker than it is, and shut the element off at the wrong smoker temp.

This generally happens when smoking at lower temps, but it can really confuse you when it happens.

 

Here's more about it:

http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/101749/mes-with-window-heads-up

 

 

Bear

I hadn't thought about the sun being a issue. I guess that's because my MES 40 is inside my shop. Thanks for the input Bear.

Happy smoken.

David

post #6 of 13

Maybe I need to clean my temp sensor.

 

I had about 100 degree swings last time I used it.

post #7 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by c farmer View Post
 

Maybe I need to clean my temp sensor.

 

I had about 100 degree swings last time I used it.

 

That could be, Adam!!!  Give it a try.

 

If you look close at some pics in my Step by Steps, you'll see a shiny clean metal circle around my heat sensor on the back wall.:biggrin:

 

 

Bear

post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bearcarver View Post
 

 

That could be, Adam!!!  Give it a try.

 

If you look close at some pics in my Step by Steps, you'll see a shiny clean metal circle around my heat sensor on the back wall.:biggrin:

 

 

Bear

 

 

I have had my mes 30 for maybe 10 years and never cleaned it.

post #9 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by c farmer View Post
 

 

 

I have had my mes 30 for maybe 10 years and never cleaned it.

 

Adam,

Is your sensor at the same place as the newer Gen #1 MES units???

 

Note the clean circle visible just under the front edge of the grill, to the right of center on my back wall.

The sensor is in the middle of that clean circle.

DSC02770.JPG
 
 
post #10 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by themule69 View Post
 

I would bet your AMNPS problem was caused by over filling and jumping rowsth_dunno-1[1].gif.

Happy smoken.

David


On the contrary, I never overfill the rows in my AMNPS; I'm very methodical with that due to the advice I've received. However, when I refilled two rows with pellets, both rows had beds of hot ash so at that point I had two rows of pellets smoking and burning at the same time. This, though, was after the interior temp had climbed sky high.

post #11 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bearcarver View Post
 

 

Adam,

Is your sensor at the same place as the newer Gen #1 MES units???

 

Note the clean circle visible just under the front edge of the grill, to the right of center on my back wall.

The sensor is in the middle of that clean circle.

DSC02770.JPG
 
 

 

 

I think it is the same area, just on the left side.

post #12 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Wade View Post
 

You could be right David - but if it is  not jumping then I would be a little concerned about the quality of the pellets. They are burning way too fast.


As I told David, the rows were not overfilled originally. However, after the temp had climbed I did fill two rows with pellets and both rows had beds of hot ash so I had two rows of pellets smoking at the same time.

 

The wood pellets are top quality. I got them from Todd Johnson who makes sure the pellets are top quality. They were both mesquite pellets and his Pitmaster's Choice pellets. I've never before had a problem with his wood pellets burning out too quickly.

post #13 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by c farmer View Post
 

Maybe I need to clean my temp sensor.

 

I had about 100 degree swings last time I used it.


Follow Bear's cleaning instructions. I cleaned both the temp sensor (on the Gen 1 it looks like toggle switch sticking straight out) and the round high limit switch and with a set point of 245* yesterday my temp swings were maybe 5 degrees plus and minus around 255 degrees (my MES 30 temp display shows anywhere from 10-30 degrees below what my Maverick ET-733 shows as the true ambient temp.

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