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MES sausage upgrade

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
The MES is a pretty good little smoker, especially for what it is and how much it costs. But because it is on the small side, those racks can get filled pretty quickly. While wandering through Lowe's the other day, my eyes landed on some steel and the long-awaited light bulb went off in my head. I grabbed a 4 ft. stick of 1/2 x 1/8 angle iron, took it home and got out the chop saw. I found that the perfect length is 14 7/8", leaving a little play but not short enough to risk slipping off the side rails. Finally, I gave them a good washing.

I loaded the sticks up with 14-16 links each of yesterday's polska kielbasa and put them in the MES, staggering them, two on the top rail and one in between them on the second rail. That amounts to 46 links, and I had enough to put the remaining ones on a rack underneath. I'm betting that they'll be a lot easier to clean than the racks, too!

Note the mesquite and hickory chunks on top, just waiting to go in...

post #2 of 11
Good tip! I was thinking about going and getting some dowel sticks to do the smae thing but that looks like a better idea cus they would roll like the sticks would PDT_Armataz_01_37.gif
post #3 of 11
I've used the wooden dowels with no problems of them rolling. The side rails have a "notch down" on the rail that allows the dowel to rest in there...unfortunately no picture as I'm at work, but if you look at yours you'll see what I'm referring to. The only drawback is that you're limited to placing the dowels only in that spot.
post #4 of 11
Well I always say in a pinch use what you got. It works and it looks like they wil hold a pretty good amount of weight also. I just used some hooks that I had laying around and they work really good too.
post #5 of 11
Good ideas.

What is temperature range of a MES?
post #6 of 11
Thread Starter 
The stated range is 100 - 270 F. However, many of the thermometers are off, and tend to read low. I recommend using your won digital therm withthe probe run down through the exhaust until you get a feel for how well your display tracks real temperatures in the MES. It has it's flaws, but I love mine nonetheless.
post #7 of 11
I have often wondered if I caould trick the MES temp probe in order to make it run hotter.
Perhaps putting a resister POT in series with it, then calibrate with my own thermometer. This could allow me to run hotter than 270 I think.
post #8 of 11
Wouldn't doing that tend to shorten the heating element life?icon_frown.gif
post #9 of 11
This sounds like trouble and could possibly be hazardest. I would not try this.
post #10 of 11
I use dowels all I did was grind a flat spot on the ends and then you can place them where you want on the side rails.
post #11 of 11
From an electrical point of view, the element is either on or off.
It only consumes 650 watts while on. So worst case you are running the element longer. But not making it run at excessive wattage.

Think of it like running with the door slightly open, the controller will run the element longer to keep the internal temp up.
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