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MES Expert and Opinions Needed!

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

Okay so here is my question... And then my dilemma. 
1. How come I can not find any information on the Masterbuilt model # 20071814? It looks exactly like the 20070910, but the 1814 isn't listed on their website or on the list here on SMF. 

My dilemma is this.. If the 2 smokers were the price which one would you choose:

MES Electric Digital Smoker  # 20070910   OR

MES Electric Analog Smoker #20070612

I've used the search option here and really looked into both of them and honestly I can't decide if there really is any distinct advantages?
I have heard the 910 has issues with cycling and hot spots (which I'm sure all lower end smokers have) and I've seen Dave's remedy to this, but does the analog cycle? I would assume no because most analog dial heating elements on other small appliances do not, but I am not sure.


I am leaning towards the analog because of set up inside, analog has 1500 watt vs 800 watt element, and also because I've heard crappy things about the motherboards on the digital smokers, but wanted someone's opinion here.

Thank in advance

Trevor

PS Also found AMNS products at Fleet Farm today!! Didn't know they were in big box stores!

post #2 of 17

I would choose the digital all day. The element is going to cycle on any electric smoker. It does that to maintain the chamber temps. The analog cycles to maintain a range where as the digital will cycle to maintain a set point. 

 

The analog also doesn't have the temp control that that digital does. The digital can be set as low as 100 where as the analog only has low which ain't no where near that.

 

So...if they were the same price...I'd get the digital. I'd get the digital if it was more...which it normally is anyway. I've got it now, and love it!

post #3 of 17
I'd choose a digital smoker too. It just is that much easier in my humble opinion.
post #4 of 17

Agreed on the digital. I think those of us that are regulars to the site might over think any "malfunctions". We hear from MES owners when they have problems but I bet there are way more MES owner that never have problems and we never hear from them (thus skewing the perceived amount of issues with the units).

post #5 of 17

Joining the 21st century with a digital is the way to go in my opinion...I have one and love it!

 

Good luck,  John

post #6 of 17
Thread Starter 
This is precisely why i posted it haha. Then I would've been full of regret.
The people have spoken... Thanks!
post #7 of 17

Trevor I have an MES 40 Digital I had problems with the control panel, on my 3rd. The chip loader blowing hot embers onto my deck. they sent a new one of them. I decided to use the AMNPS instead of the chip loader. I have no more problems with it,it will make some great food I just have to learn how to cook. Get the extended warranty and a few good probes to monitor temps inside the CC as well as the meat. 

post #8 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by tropics View Post

Trevor I have an MES 40 Digital I had problems with the control panel, on my 3rd. The chip loader blowing hot embers onto my deck. they sent a new one of them. I decided to use the AMNPS instead of the chip loader. I have no more problems with it,it will make some great food I just have to learn how to cook. Get the extended warranty and a few good probes to monitor temps inside the CC as well as the meat. 

Did you do the mailbox mod? Or just put it in the base?
post #9 of 17

If the Digital is an MES Gen #1, I'd definitely pick that one.

 

If the Digital is an MES Gen #2, I would not pick either of those you mentioned, and I would look for a good buy on the Gen #1.

 

But these are my opinions.

 

Bear

post #10 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by usaftrevor87 View Post


Did you do the mailbox mod? Or just put it in the base?

I use it both ways 

http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/177393/keeping-the-amnps-lit

http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/165489/1st-mac-cheese-in-my-mod-mes40

 

I know my post sounds bad it isn't meant to, guess my biggest issue with it is they send you the parts.

post #11 of 17

I believe from previous research that the Masterbuilt model # 20071814 is sold only in big box stores like Cabela's, Sam's Club, Sportsman Warehouse, etc. It should have a built-in meat probe. It's a slightly redesigned Generation 1 MES 30. Masterbuilt sells these exclusively through big box store so they can more or less pretend they're giving their customers an exclusive product they can't buy anywhere else. This is why you won't see these models advertised on the Masterbulit website or on Amazon. The big box models vary: some have 6 racks, glass window in the door, wireless remote, and the meat probe. They also look cosmetically different on the outside. I just checked Cabela's and although I didn't see a model number the current MES 30 looks like the standard one.

 

Like everyone else here I recommend you go digital. I've had my MES 30 Gen 1 model # # 20070910 for about 3 years and it's been great. No control panel, controller, or heating element problems. It's your basic black model: no window, remote, or meat probe. Yeah, there are temp swings but over time they average out to your set point and a good therm like the Maverick ET-733 will keep you on track temperature-wise. The analog model's controller works differently. I believe it heats up to it's target set point and then shuts off and only turns on again when it gets down to a particular temp or something. So it doesn't constantly cycle, it's either on or off. Others here can give you more correct info about this.

 

I've done no mods of any kind but I use and swear by the A-MAZE-N Pellet Smoker (AMNPS) and the wood pellets also sold by Todd Johnson.


Edited by daRicksta - 3/13/15 at 11:23am
post #12 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by daRicksta View Post

I believe from previous research that the Masterbuilt model # 20071814 is sold only in big box stores like Cabela's, Sam's Club, Sportsman Warehouse, etc. It should have a built-in meat probe. It's a slightly redesigned Generation 1 MES 30. Masterbuilt sells these exclusively through big box store so they can more or less pretend they're giving their customers an exclusive product they can't buy anywhere else. This is why you won't see these models advertised on the Masterbulit website or on Amazon. The big box models vary: some have 6 racks, glass window in the door, wireless remote, and the meat probe. They also look cosmetically different on the outside. I just checked Cabela's and although I didn't see a model number the current MES 30 looks like the standard one.

Like everyone else here I recommend you go digital. I've had my MES 30 Gen 1 for about 3 years and it's been great. No control panel, controller, or heating element problems. It's your basic black model: no window, remote, or meat probe. Yeah, there are temp swings but over time they average out to your set point and a good therm like the Maverick ET-733 will keep you on track temperature-wise. The analog model's controller works differently. I believe it heats up to it's target set point and then shuts off and only turns on again when it gets down to a particular temp or something. So it doesn't constantly cycle, it's either on or off. Others here can give you more correct info about this.

I've done no mods of any kind but I use and swear by the A-MAZE-N Pellet Smoker (AMNPS) and the wood pellets also sold by Todd Johnson.

I just got an email back from Masterbuilt & you are correct. The 1814 is exactly the same as the 0910 except for the built in probe.
I have actually decided to go with the MES digital 30. Its stainless, with a window, Gen 1 i found used on craigslist for pretty cheap. Where do you put the AMNPS if you did no mods? It says "do not put adjacent to heat source" but couldn't you just put it on the bottom on the smoker?
I will post some pictures Saturday.
post #13 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by usaftrevor87 View Post


I just got an email back from Masterbuilt & you are correct. The 1814 is exactly the same as the 0910 except for the built in probe.
I have actually decided to go with the MES digital 30. Its stainless, with a window, Gen 1 i found used on craigslist for pretty cheap. Where do you put the AMNPS if you did no mods? It says "do not put adjacent to heat source" but couldn't you just put it on the bottom on the smoker?
I will post some pictures Saturday.

The gen 1 has 2 bars on the side of the heating element , from post I've seen it should go there.I have a gen 2 so I use the mailbox or put it on the floor.

post #14 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by usaftrevor87 View Post


I just got an email back from Masterbuilt & you are correct. The 1814 is exactly the same as the 0910 except for the built in probe.
I have actually decided to go with the MES digital 30. Its stainless, with a window, Gen 1 i found used on craigslist for pretty cheap. Where do you put the AMNPS if you did no mods? It says "do not put adjacent to heat source" but couldn't you just put it on the bottom on the smoker?
I will post some pictures Saturday.

 

Like Tropics said-----put it on the little support rods to the left of the chip burning assembly. The AMNPS was actually designed to fit there perfectly.

I think it's too high to fit on the floor of the smoker, and if it did fit, there wouldn't be enough air flow on the floor. That's why it was designed to fit between the chip burner & the left wall.

 

Bear

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by tropics View Post
 

The gen 1 has 2 bars on the side of the heating element , from post I've seen it should go there.I have a gen 2 so I use the mailbox or put it on the floor.

post #15 of 17
Thread Starter 
Sounds like a plan!
post #16 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by usaftrevor87 View Post


I just got an email back from Masterbuilt & you are correct. The 1814 is exactly the same as the 0910 except for the built in probe.
I have actually decided to go with the MES digital 30. Its stainless, with a window, Gen 1 i found used on craigslist for pretty cheap. Where do you put the AMNPS if you did no mods? It says "do not put adjacent to heat source" but couldn't you just put it on the bottom on the smoker?
I will post some pictures Saturday.


First, be careful about buying an electric smoker on craigslist because there might be undisclosed electrical problems with the used machine. If you're fortunate the person is selling it for other personal reasons and the smoker's in good shape.

 

On the Gen 1, the AMNPS is place on top of the two rails to the left of the wood chip holder. Inserted is a photo of a slightly remodeled MES 40 Gen 1 (notice the different control panel) showing

 

those two rails. That's where you place the AMNPS.   The only difference between an MES 30 and the MES 40 is the relative sizes of each and the heating element wattage. Otherwise the design is the same.

 

You can also read and download Todd Johnson's lighting instructions here: http://www.amazenproducts.com/Articles.asp?ID=238

 

I've chosen to insert the AMNPS lit end first because I think the airflow is better in the rear of the smoker than in the front. With the relatively short time (4-6 hours) that I spend on a smoke the wood pellets at the rear will be the ones burning. My thought is that on longer smokes when the pellets burn towards the front end of the AMNPS the heat will create a strong enough draft to keep the pellets lit as the smouldering continues on towards the back of the smoker again. So far, I've been right which is why I've done no mods to my MES 30.

 

Happy smoking!

post #17 of 17

                                                                                                                        MES Expert and Opinions Needed! 

 

 

You asked for it , I am not a expert but I will show you a picture and tell you I don't disagree with any one. Here is a shot of the AMNPS on the bars.

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