Bought a Gen 2: Why the hate?

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by each, Dec 17, 2015.

  1. each

    each Newbie

    I uncharacteristically made a rash purchase of a Gen 2 based solely on Amazon reviews.  Afterward, I started to read up on MES and see a lot of hate for the Gen 2.  I see mention of the smaller water pan.  Is this just bad because of the need to refill more frequently?  What are the other commonly cited drawbacks of the Gen 2?
    Last edited: Dec 17, 2015
  2. old sarge

    old sarge Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Doesn't seem like any MES owners are going to help you. And I don't know if what I say will be of much help.  From what I have read over the last year or so, it is a reliability issue. The Generation 1 apparently is more temperature stable and outlasts it's warranty. The Generation 2 per many posts is problematic. Some are heating issues, some are controller issues. And some had wiring issues. Not being a MES owner,  I don't know if the wiring problem is related to the heating or the controller. I would think that by now the problems have been worked out, but I cannot qualify that that thought.

    I don't know about the water pan size being a problem. I never use a water pan on any of my smokes (Cookshack) and neither does my brother (Smokin-it).  Regardless of what you have (GEN 1, 2, etc), the AMNPS from AMAZEN is used by many (most?) to generate smoke rather than relying on the built in chip holder.  The chip holder needs to be reloaded every 20 minutes or so.  The AMNPS will smoke for hours on one loading. 

    If you use the search bar at the top for MES or Masterbuilt you should get some good information both pro and con on the various models of the MES. No electric smoker is going to be perfect; some just better than others and less of a headache. But as I stated earlier, the GEN 1 seems to be the one to go with. They have a Blue tooth model but I haven't seen too much on it.

    Good luck.
  3. each

    each Newbie

    Thank you for the reply. My AMNPS is on it's way! Hopefully I don't run into the issues that gave the Gen 2 a bad reputation.
  4. old sarge

    old sarge Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Good luck and happy smoking!
  5. chef jimmyj

    chef jimmyj Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Group Lead OTBS Member

  6. each

    each Newbie

    Thanks JJ. I hadn't heard that the Gen 2's had a design tweak. The mailbox mod is on the to-do list.
  7. old sarge

    old sarge Master of the Pit ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Good to see J.J. jump in on this to help.  If you list the model and serial number, it should help narrow down the specifics of what you own and when it was made.Maybe some other MES owners will chime in.  Although I prefer the Cookshack and Smokin-it smokers over any other electric, I do not like seeing anyone struggle with smoking food or not learning how to use what they have.   Again, good luck.
  8. mr t 59874

    mr t 59874 Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    I (another Cookshack owner) fully agree with sarge and JJ.  Your AMNPS will be a benefit but, also take the time to learn what your smoker can do on it's own.  Not all products need a long smoke, which would make the chip tray come into play.

    Enjoy your new smoker and have fun.

  9. lancer

    lancer Smoking Fanatic

    Hello each.  I've got a Cookshack Smokette (the smallest one).  Two of our sons have 40" Gen 2 MESs and I have one still in the box from a Black Friday Bass Pro sale.  The older of the son's MESs is about two years old the other one came from the same sale as mine.  Neither of them have had issues with the MESs and none of us use the water pans in electric smokers.

    As far as using an AMPS my experience with the lads MESs (one was here for a year before he closed on his new house and the other is in the garage with part of a 38 pound batch of buckboard bacon smoking) has been with both hot and cold/cool smoking.  If I loosen the threaded door latch until the gasket just contacts the cabinet the AMPS stays lit just fine.  I slide the chip loader doodad out a bit too.  The smoker has no problem keeping the set temp (as good as anything without a PID does).

    I have a new mailbox and the galvanized duct for the mailbox mod but unless I decide to cold smoke cheese on a warmish day I don't think I'll need it.

    Right now it is headed into the teens and the BBB is in at 70 degrees to keep it from freezing.  The AMPS is going fine.

    Where do you live?

  10. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Sorry it took me awhile---I just bumped into this Thread:

    Here are the answers you're looking for:

    Water in the pan has nothing to do with it, as we don't add water to an MES water pan.

    Last edited: Dec 19, 2015
  11. I have had the MES gen2 for over a year, yes originally it had problems with the controller, and MES replaced itt, works great now, plus I use the cold smoker attachment from MES, for me it works like a charm,just last week I had to replace the heating element because it kept tripping the gfi that it was plugged into, MES sent me a replacement element for 20 bucks. A lot of people bash the MES 30 gen 2 , for me it does a great job, yah had to go the cold smoker attachment vs the amps, for me it works just fine, great ribs, awesome brisket, and great turkey.
  12. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    No Bashing---Just facts, after testing heat balance from left to right in the MES 40 Gen #1, Gen #2, and Gen #2.5.

    Here's my results again:

    It's possible the MES 30 Gen #2 doesn't have the same problem with the slanted drip plate trapping heat on the right side, because it isn't near as wide as the MES 40.

  13. Great post Bear,somehow i missed it along the way,when my gen2 gives up the goast i wiil know what model i will need.
    One item that i found out by accident,is that the mes gen2 temperature controler does not like low voltage,iwas on a a/c extension cord with a surge protector on a 15 amp circiut,had the mes with cold smoker going along with a small patio fridge,the set temp was 225 type k thermocouple in center rack was only reading 190, plugged into a dedicated 20 amp circuit and low and behold the temps agreed after about 15 minutes,so just a heads up.

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