Are These PID Settings Reasonable (after Auto Tune) 2nd Gen MES 40"

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Cotosoti

Newbie
Original poster
Jan 14, 2024
11
11
From the Auber factory, the P value was 7. I did a couple of tests with no food and the smoker got right up to the set temp (275F) and held within a few degrees for hours. No problems.

When cooking wings the first and second time, after initially preheating to 275, it got up to temp without issue. But when I added food for both cooks, (chicken wings on 2.5 shelves), the temp dropped from opening the door, of course. But the Auber cut the power and it cycled between 25 to 50%, even though the smoker was 50 degrees below my set temp of 275. :emoji_astonished:

So I thought the fix might be to auto-tune.

I ran Auto-Tune the first time (w/o any mass in the smoker, whoops). I think that gave me bad results when I tried to smoke some chicken for the first time (it took forever because of the low percentage power cycling while still being 40 below my set temp). There was even an occasion where it was up to temp but suddenly dropped 20 degrees but there was no wind and no one opened the door (this one still baffles me as it's happened on more than one cook).

I ran Auto-Tune a second time with a couple of 65-degree flat bricks on 3 shelves and the following pictures are the results during (graph) and after the process (PID values).

How is it possible that the cabinet temp fluctuated (red line) at the beginning of the process (not windy or opening the door) while the power stayed at 100% (green line)? I understand the change in cabinet temp later in the process when the power level cycled. That I get.

Are the new PID values reasonable? Particularly the P value. That P value seems high. The first time Auto-Tune gave me a P value of 87. Which I think was the culprit for having the power drop to 47% when it was still something like 50 degrees below the set temperature on my chicken cook. But I'm not sure about that.

I read on another post here that P value should be divided by 10. But nothing is in the manual (Note 6, pg 20) about doing that. If divided by 10, then why did a value of 7 from the factory give me such tight results on a couple of test runs without any mass load? Just because there was no mass?

I've also included pictures of my MES setup. I did not include the AMNS mailbox mod as I didn't think it pertinent (but I don't know enough at this point to be sure either). I keep the pan at the smoke entrance level empty. The shelf it sits on is about 3/4 of an inch above the heating element. Auber cabinet probe is mounted in the center, under the lowest food shelf and protected by a large-ish piece of aluminum foil placed on the top side.

And for what it's worth, I'm considering plugging up the existing vent and drilling a 3-inch hole in the top back left. But not sure that will improve smoke draw enough to justify the work. :emoji_thinking:

PID Auto Tune.png

PID Numbers.png

Inside Smoker.jpeg

Chimney.jpeg
 
This is the only chart Auber could send on PID settings and it's for the Bradley smoker so our Auber PID controllers that have the default setting P=7 the chart needs to have the P column divided by 10 to get our setting identical to the Bradley smoker ( see bottom Bradley P value at 70 so My auber is P=7, I=600 and D= 150 out of the box. Divide just the P column by ten. So I use the slow cooker no over shoot at P=4 I=0 and D=40 for yogurt and a Sous vide bath that holds to the degree. This is noted to be set at a commercial rice cooker in the first sentence on this chart but isn't out of the box so it is lousy for a smoker with a big volume of air and a vent with airflow. Auto tune is also not good and varies based on volume and airflow. Sharing parameters after trial and error is the key and is different between the Mes 30 and 40 based on volume and other same size smokers that aren't insulated. I cook at 265 and don't wait for the smoker so P mode is for me P=1, I=0 and D=0. For ramping up from 130* for sausage and fish you can try P=1, 2 or 3 and I=208 and D=210 that chopsaw chopsaw gave us for the I and D that I use. But for big loads and higher temps for anything is P mode for me.
568.JPG
 
From the Auber factory, the P value was 7. I did a couple of tests with no food and the smoker got right up to the set temp (275F) and held within a few degrees for hours. No problems.

When cooking wings the first and second time, after initially preheating to 275, it got up to temp without issue. But when I added food for both cooks, (chicken wings on 2.5 shelves), the temp dropped from opening the door, of course. But the Auber cut the power and it cycled between 25 to 50%, even though the smoker was 50 degrees below my set temp of 275. :emoji_astonished:

So I thought the fix might be to auto-tune.

I ran Auto-Tune the first time (w/o any mass in the smoker, whoops). I think that gave me bad results when I tried to smoke some chicken for the first time (it took forever because of the low percentage power cycling while still being 40 below my set temp). There was even an occasion where it was up to temp but suddenly dropped 20 degrees but there was no wind and no one opened the door (this one still baffles me as it's happened on more than one cook).

I ran Auto-Tune a second time with a couple of 65-degree flat bricks on 3 shelves and the following pictures are the results during (graph) and after the process (PID values).

How is it possible that the cabinet temp fluctuated (red line) at the beginning of the process (not windy or opening the door) while the power stayed at 100% (green line)? I understand the change in cabinet temp later in the process when the power level cycled. That I get.

Are the new PID values reasonable? Particularly the P value. That P value seems high. The first time Auto-Tune gave me a P value of 87. Which I think was the culprit for having the power drop to 47% when it was still something like 50 degrees below the set temperature on my chicken cook. But I'm not sure about that.

I read on another post here that P value should be divided by 10. But nothing is in the manual (Note 6, pg 20) about doing that. If divided by 10, then why did a value of 7 from the factory give me such tight results on a couple of test runs without any mass load? Just because there was no mass?

I've also included pictures of my MES setup. I did not include the AMNS mailbox mod as I didn't think it pertinent (but I don't know enough at this point to be sure either). I keep the pan at the smoke entrance level empty. The shelf it sits on is about 3/4 of an inch above the heating element. Auber cabinet probe is mounted in the center, under the lowest food shelf and protected by a large-ish piece of aluminum foil placed on the top side.

And for what it's worth, I'm considering plugging up the existing vent and drilling a 3-inch hole in the top back left. But not sure that will improve smoke draw enough to justify the work. :emoji_thinking:

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Hi there and welcome!
You will be tuned up and flowing smoothly in no time :D

I'll give you some answers to your questions 1st and then add more at the end.
Q: How is it possible that the cabinet temp fluctuated (red line) at the beginning of the process (not windy or opening the door) while the power stayed at 100% (green line)? I understand the change in cabinet temp later in the process when the power level cycled. That I get.

A: The fluctuations and gradual hitting of your set temp are caused by a High "P" value. Not every PID works the exact same but I believe the Auber behaviors (like most PID) is that the "P" value will cause the the controller to feed power at full blast until the sensors reads the smoker temp getting to "P" degrees below your "Set Temp".
So with your settings the PID will go full blast until the smoker temp is at 260F (set temp) minus 57 (P value) which means full blast to 203F and then it will ramp down.
This is where the "I" value is then working to bring the smoker up to 260F and "I" usually wants to make a tight oscillation on the set temp. Your graph shows "I" working hard to get to the set temp and then finally gets there and holds the temp tight.
Often the "I" value's behavior is also affected by the "P" value setting and the current set temp. So as you can see, the tuning of these values is real to get the desired performance.
So when the smoker initially heats up or has a big loss in temp, the "P" value being lower will make it respond harder. The one issue to consider (a minor issue to me) is the initial "overshoot" as "P" is ramping up hard BUT this overshoot only happens in initial ramp up and after a door open so easy to live with as long as it isn't too big of an overshoot.

I hope this explains the initial ramp up, oscillation, and power cycling levels you were asking about :D

Q: Are the new PID values reasonable? Particularly the P value. That P value seems high. The first time Auto-Tune gave me a P value of 87. Which I think was the culprit for having the power drop to 47% when it was still something like 50 degrees below the set temperature on my chicken cook. But I'm not sure about that.


A: To me the "P" is way too high resulting in slower behavior initially and after a door opening. As explained in the 1st answer, you are correct in noticing that the power drop occurring when you got within 50F degrees below your set temp. That power drop stopped at 57F below but you really noticed it at 50 below. I'll talk about a good value after all this Q&A.


Q: I read on another post here that P value should be divided by 10. But nothing is in the manual (Note 6, pg 20) about doing that. If divided by 10, then why did a value of 7 from the factory give me such tight results on a couple of test runs without any mass load? Just because there was no mass?

A: P divided by 10 sounds like incorrect information, mis-explained information, or information on the behavior of a different PID controller. So I would forget all about that info and not worry about mass in your smoker at the moment. Tried, true, and sensible PID values will solve you problem :D


Ok with all that answered now lets talk PID values that make sense for you.

As dr k dr k suggested a P=1, I=0, D=0 will basically just operate hard full blast and may just work for you. At the very least you will see what basically the most base setting does and then be able to additionally dune.

You can then slightly increase P knowing that it should start affecting power output as the smoker temp is within 1F degree of your set temp. You can then get your initial ramp up and overshoot working pretty well from that point.
After that you start tuning up "I" which will work to get to and keep your smoker at set temp with tight oscillation.
Finally there is "D" which behaves based on time and temp change. So when you open your door and temps drop fast the "D" value sees that some seconds before the temp was much higher and tries to keep you from nose diving away from your set temp and/or peaking to hard over your set temp. "D" is just another scoop of ice cream on the cone to keep things moving along well.


So feel free to play with tuning and if it's too confusing or time consuming then try the following:

P=1-7 (some value in that range)
I=208
D=210


The last PID I built was a MyPIN for my brother and landed on a P=3. It's not an Auber but if I remember, it operated basically the same way so my I=210 and I never bothered setting a value for "D" on my mypin so I think D of 0-210 should work fine for you.

Like with any smoker, you are tuning up your new system. With a kettle grill you'd be figuring out dampers, and charcoal + wood amounts, etc. With this smoker it's much simpler in figuring out PID values and I see your PID probe is in a decent spot (don't move it around or else the PID values don't cause the same behavior). So you are right there about to get this knocked out for good! :D

I hope this info helps and ask any questions you got :D
 
Also, the Auber WS-1510ELPM instructions came with the P mode explained with an example at P=7, I=0 and D=0. 7 degrees below set temp = 7/7 = 1 full power, then 6 degrees below set temp pulses 6/7, 5/7, 4/7, 3/7, 2/7, 1/7 output until off at set temp 0/7. But when temp drops below set temp on the down swing 1/7 output then 2/7, then 3/7 is too little power on a down swing and recovering is several degrees below set temp. So P mode is 100% instantly directly related to your set temp and your actual temp. P=1 I=0 and D= 0 is full power one degree below set temp 1/1=1 and .5/1 at a half degree below set temp for 50% output. The display is in one degree resolution but the controller will switch for 50% power at 1/2 degree below set temp. It's this lowest setting for P mode to control the element between full power, 50% and off to maintain a wide open vent in a Mes 40 with a heavy load and/or 275* cooks. After a couple of cycles the 50% output will maintain within a couple degrees. So with the out of the box setting and any others in PID mode we aren't getting to the 7 degrees P value below set temp. I want to get to the P value in PID mode to come out of full power instantly on heat up but tha's not my Auber PID. It's coming out of full power and flashing 25-30* below set temp on heat up and has you waiting for the temp you have set because there are values in the algorithm other than zero in the I and D settings. PID mode was just a generalization in the manual. No other modes explained not the PI mode, PD mode. If a value is 0 then it's in a mode the values show 1 or higher. If P=0 no matter the other values the controller is now just an on/off controller like a standard oven or smoker with a digital or analog controller. So have a value of 1 or higher for P to get % switching as close to an on/off controller as possible in P mode. When I didn't like the out of the box setting because the chart above wasn't included, stating it's a commercial rice cooker setting, and two crap auto tunes, then I went straight to the manual and P mode made a lot of sense so I just go back to it after trying other settings. I've spoken to Auber about their manual years ago about their P mode and the chart above . It was as if I was lying to them and they had no idea about their own published manuals and charts. The last I know is it's an American based business and engineered but assembled in China. So, reading the manual before I bought the PID really helped out but even more was the sharing of settings to get everyone cooking/smoking the first day vs uuummmm what is it doing? A sticky thread on PID Auber plug and play upstart settings would be a simple sharing thread added to the MES Elec Smokers and Electric Smoker forums.
 
Hi there and welcome!
You will be tuned up and flowing smoothly in no time :D

I'll give you some answers to your questions 1st and then add more at the end.
Q: How is it possible that the cabinet temp fluctuated (red line) at the beginning of the process (not windy or opening the door) while the power stayed at 100% (green line)? I understand the change in cabinet temp later in the process when the power level cycled. That I get.

A: The fluctuations and gradual hitting of your set temp are caused by a High "P" value. Not every PID works the exact same but I believe the Auber behaviors (like most PID) is that the "P" value will cause the the controller to feed power at full blast until the sensors reads the smoker temp getting to "P" degrees below your "Set Temp".
So with your settings the PID will go full blast until the smoker temp is at 260F (set temp) minus 57 (P value) which means full blast to 203F and then it will ramp down.
This is where the "I" value is then working to bring the smoker up to 260F and "I" usually wants to make a tight oscillation on the set temp. Your graph shows "I" working hard to get to the set temp and then finally gets there and holds the temp tight.
Often the "I" value's behavior is also affected by the "P" value setting and the current set temp. So as you can see, the tuning of these values is real to get the desired performance.
So when the smoker initially heats up or has a big loss in temp, the "P" value being lower will make it respond harder. The one issue to consider (a minor issue to me) is the initial "overshoot" as "P" is ramping up hard BUT this overshoot only happens in initial ramp up and after a door open so easy to live with as long as it isn't too big of an overshoot.

I hope this explains the initial ramp up, oscillation, and power cycling levels you were asking about :D

Q: Are the new PID values reasonable? Particularly the P value. That P value seems high. The first time Auto-Tune gave me a P value of 87. Which I think was the culprit for having the power drop to 47% when it was still something like 50 degrees below the set temperature on my chicken cook. But I'm not sure about that.


A: To me the "P" is way too high resulting in slower behavior initially and after a door opening. As explained in the 1st answer, you are correct in noticing that the power drop occurring when you got within 50F degrees below your set temp. That power drop stopped at 57F below but you really noticed it at 50 below. I'll talk about a good value after all this Q&A.


Q: I read on another post here that P value should be divided by 10. But nothing is in the manual (Note 6, pg 20) about doing that. If divided by 10, then why did a value of 7 from the factory give me such tight results on a couple of test runs without any mass load? Just because there was no mass?

A: P divided by 10 sounds like incorrect information, mis-explained information, or information on the behavior of a different PID controller. So I would forget all about that info and not worry about mass in your smoker at the moment. Tried, true, and sensible PID values will solve you problem :D


Ok with all that answered now lets talk PID values that make sense for you.

As dr k dr k suggested a P=1, I=0, D=0 will basically just operate hard full blast and may just work for you. At the very least you will see what basically the most base setting does and then be able to additionally dune.

You can then slightly increase P knowing that it should start affecting power output as the smoker temp is within 1F degree of your set temp. You can then get your initial ramp up and overshoot working pretty well from that point.
After that you start tuning up "I" which will work to get to and keep your smoker at set temp with tight oscillation.
Finally there is "D" which behaves based on time and temp change. So when you open your door and temps drop fast the "D" value sees that some seconds before the temp was much higher and tries to keep you from nose diving away from your set temp and/or peaking to hard over your set temp. "D" is just another scoop of ice cream on the cone to keep things moving along well.


So feel free to play with tuning and if it's too confusing or time consuming then try the following:

P=1-7 (some value in that range)
I=208
D=210


The last PID I built was a MyPIN for my brother and landed on a P=3. It's not an Auber but if I remember, it operated basically the same way so my I=210 and I never bothered setting a value for "D" on my mypin so I think D of 0-210 should work fine for you.

Like with any smoker, you are tuning up your new system. With a kettle grill you'd be figuring out dampers, and charcoal + wood amounts, etc. With this smoker it's much simpler in figuring out PID values and I see your PID probe is in a decent spot (don't move it around or else the PID values don't cause the same behavior). So you are right there about to get this knocked out for good! :D

I hope this info helps and ask any questions you got :D
I'll Have to try your PI mode 3 and 210 since it's basically operated like the Auber. See how it works for salt/sugar dry brined Salmon.
 
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Excuse me please for being ignorant but what is the purpose for this thing?
 
".......... Auto tune is also not good and varies based on volume and airflow. Sharing parameters after trial and error is the key and is different between the Mes 30 and 40 based on volume and other same size smokers that aren't insulated. I cook at 265 and don't wait for the smoker so P mode is for me P=1, I=0 and D=0. For ramping up from 130* for sausage and fish you can try P=1, 2 or 3 and I=208 and D=210 that chopsaw chopsaw gave us for the I and D that I use. But for big loads and higher temps for anything is P mode for me.
Thank you for this info, I'd like to do some sausage in the future as well once I get the basics kind of settled and working.
 
Hi there and welcome!
You will be tuned up and flowing smoothly in no time :D

I'll give you some answers to your questions 1st and then add more at the end.
Q: How is it possible that the cabinet temp fluctuated (red line) at the beginning of the process (not windy or opening the door) while the power stayed at 100% (green line)? I understand the change in cabinet temp later in the process when the power level cycled. That I get.

A: The fluctuations and gradual hitting of your set temp are caused by a High "P" value. Not every PID works the exact same but I believe the Auber behaviors (like most PID) is that the "P" value will cause the the controller to feed power at full blast until the sensors reads the smoker temp getting to "P" degrees below your "Set Temp".
So with your settings the PID will go full blast until the smoker temp is at 260F (set temp) minus 57 (P value) which means full blast to 203F and then it will ramp down.
This is where the "I" value is then working to bring the smoker up to 260F and "I" usually wants to make a tight oscillation on the set temp. Your graph shows "I" working hard to get to the set temp and then finally gets there and holds the temp tight.
Often the "I" value's behavior is also affected by the "P" value setting and the current set temp. So as you can see, the tuning of these values is real to get the desired performance.
So when the smoker initially heats up or has a big loss in temp, the "P" value being lower will make it respond harder. The one issue to consider (a minor issue to me) is the initial "overshoot" as "P" is ramping up hard BUT this overshoot only happens in initial ramp up and after a door open so easy to live with as long as it isn't too big of an overshoot.

I hope this explains the initial ramp up, oscillation, and power cycling levels you were asking about :D

Q: Are the new PID values reasonable? Particularly the P value. That P value seems high. The first time Auto-Tune gave me a P value of 87. Which I think was the culprit for having the power drop to 47% when it was still something like 50 degrees below the set temperature on my chicken cook. But I'm not sure about that.


A: To me the "P" is way too high resulting in slower behavior initially and after a door opening. As explained in the 1st answer, you are correct in noticing that the power drop occurring when you got within 50F degrees below your set temp. That power drop stopped at 57F below but you really noticed it at 50 below. I'll talk about a good value after all this Q&A.


Q: I read on another post here that P value should be divided by 10. But nothing is in the manual (Note 6, pg 20) about doing that. If divided by 10, then why did a value of 7 from the factory give me such tight results on a couple of test runs without any mass load? Just because there was no mass?

A: P divided by 10 sounds like incorrect information, mis-explained information, or information on the behavior of a different PID controller. So I would forget all about that info and not worry about mass in your smoker at the moment. Tried, true, and sensible PID values will solve you problem :D


Ok with all that answered now lets talk PID values that make sense for you.

As dr k dr k suggested a P=1, I=0, D=0 will basically just operate hard full blast and may just work for you. At the very least you will see what basically the most base setting does and then be able to additionally dune.

You can then slightly increase P knowing that it should start affecting power output as the smoker temp is within 1F degree of your set temp. You can then get your initial ramp up and overshoot working pretty well from that point.
After that you start tuning up "I" which will work to get to and keep your smoker at set temp with tight oscillation.
Finally there is "D" which behaves based on time and temp change. So when you open your door and temps drop fast the "D" value sees that some seconds before the temp was much higher and tries to keep you from nose diving away from your set temp and/or peaking to hard over your set temp. "D" is just another scoop of ice cream on the cone to keep things moving along well.


So feel free to play with tuning and if it's too confusing or time consuming then try the following:

P=1-7 (some value in that range)
I=208
D=210


The last PID I built was a MyPIN for my brother and landed on a P=3. It's not an Auber but if I remember, it operated basically the same way so my I=210 and I never bothered setting a value for "D" on my mypin so I think D of 0-210 should work fine for you.

Like with any smoker, you are tuning up your new system. With a kettle grill you'd be figuring out dampers, and charcoal + wood amounts, etc. With this smoker it's much simpler in figuring out PID values and I see your PID probe is in a decent spot (don't move it around or else the PID values don't cause the same behavior). So you are right there about to get this knocked out for good! :D

I hope this info helps and ask any questions you got :D
I've now experienced the reason why I keep seeing a lot of posts tagging you for your knowledge. But it's not just that, it's how well you explain it to make it understandable to someone without much background in the subject. Well done. And thank you very much. I believe you have set me up for success, along with the information from dr k dr k
 
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Also, the Auber WS-1510ELPM instructions came with the P mode explained with an example at P=7, I=0 and D=0. 7 degrees below set temp = 7/7 = 1 full power, then 6 degrees below set temp pulses 6/7, 5/7, 4/7, 3/7, 2/7, 1/7 output until off at set temp 0/7. But when temp drops below set temp on the down swing 1/7 output then 2/7, then 3/7 is too little power on a down swing and recovering is several degrees below set temp. So P mode is 100% instantly directly related to your set temp and your actual temp. P=1 I=0 and D= 0 is full power one degree below set temp 1/1=1 and .5/1 at a half degree below set temp for 50% output. The display is in one degree resolution but the controller will switch for 50% power at 1/2 degree below set temp. It's this lowest setting for P mode to control the element between full power, 50% and off to maintain a wide open vent in a Mes 40 with a heavy load and/or 275* cooks. After a couple of cycles the 50% output will maintain within a couple degrees. So with the out of the box setting and any others in PID mode we aren't getting to the 7 degrees P value below set temp. I want to get to the P value in PID mode to come out of full power instantly on heat up but tha's not my Auber PID. It's coming out of full power and flashing 25-30* below set temp on heat up and has you waiting for the temp you have set because there are values in the algorithm other than zero in the I and D settings. PID mode was just a generalization in the manual. No other modes explained not the PI mode, PD mode. If a value is 0 then it's in a mode the values show 1 or higher. If P=0 no matter the other values the controller is now just an on/off controller like a standard oven or smoker with a digital or analog controller. So have a value of 1 or higher for P to get % switching as close to an on/off controller as possible in P mode. When I didn't like the out of the box setting because the chart above wasn't included, stating it's a commercial rice cooker setting, and two crap auto tunes, then I went straight to the manual and P mode made a lot of sense so I just go back to it after trying other settings. I've spoken to Auber about their manual years ago about their P mode and the chart above . It was as if I was lying to them and they had no idea about their own published manuals and charts. The last I know is it's an American based business and engineered but assembled in China. So, reading the manual before I bought the PID really helped out but even more was the sharing of settings to get everyone cooking/smoking the first day vs uuummmm what is it doing? A sticky thread on PID Auber plug and play upstart settings would be a simple sharing thread added to the MES Elec Smokers and Electric Smoker forums.
Thanks for the detailed info. There is more to the PID than I realized.

And I too agree that having a "sticky thread" on PID would be helpful. I was surprised not to see one when I first joined TBH.

I also think it would be nice to have a Sticky for MES mods. Each post would contain pics and a list of parts (with a description of said part) and a link to the part. That would have helped me in the beginning find what I needed faster.
 
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Excuse me please for being ignorant but what is the purpose for this thing?
Imagine you're cooking in an electric smoker. You want to maintain a steady temperature throughout the cooking process to ensure your food is cooked perfectly. Here's where controllers come into play:
  1. Temperature Controller: A basic temperature controller works like a simple thermostat. You set the desired temperature, and it turns the heating element on when the temperature falls below that setpoint and off when it rises above it. It's like turning the heater on when your room gets cold and off when it's warm enough.
  2. PID Controller: PID stands for Proportional, Integral, Derivative. It's a more advanced type of controller commonly used in industrial and complex systems. Here's what each component does:
    • Proportional (P): This part reacts to the current error, which is the difference between the desired temperature and the actual temperature. It adjusts the power supplied to the heating element based on how far off the current temperature is from the setpoint. For example, if the temperature is way below what you want, it will supply more power to heat things up faster.
    • Integral (I): This part looks at the history of errors. It helps to eliminate any long-term steady-state error. In cooking terms, it's like considering how long the temperature has been consistently off and adjusting the power to compensate for it. For instance, if the temperature consistently falls short, it will gradually increase the power to make up for this deviation over time.
    • Derivative (D): This component predicts future errors based on the current rate of change. It helps to prevent overshoots or undershoots by anticipating temperature changes. If the temperature is rising too quickly, it might reduce power slightly to prevent overshooting the desired temperature.
Why use a PID controller over a basic temperature controller in a consumer electric smoker?
  • Precision: PID controllers offer much finer control over the heating element, resulting in more stable and precise temperature regulation. This precision is especially crucial for cooking tasks where slight temperature fluctuations can affect the outcome significantly, such as smoking meat.
  • Faster Response: PID controllers can react more quickly to changes in temperature, which means they can adjust the heating element faster to maintain the desired temperature, reducing fluctuations and ensuring a more consistent cooking environment.
  • Adaptability: PID controllers can adapt to different conditions and loads more effectively. They continuously adjust their parameters based on the current situation, providing more reliable performance across various cooking scenarios.
In essence, while a basic temperature controller can maintain a relatively stable temperature, a PID controller offers greater precision, responsiveness, and adaptability, ensuring better cooking results, especially in applications like smoking where temperature control is critical for achieving the desired flavor and texture in the food.

I was intrigued by what ChatGPT might come up with, and I thought it was good enough to post here. :emoji_laughing:
 
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Excuse me please for being ignorant but what is the purpose for this thing?
Cotosoti Cotosoti provided lots of info and details for the purpose of a PID controller and what it does.

To add on. In short, the stock MES controller will do a big peak/valley style of heating. Where you set the smoker to something like 250F smoker temp and the MES controller will give you an average of 250F.
It will peak at like 275F and then valley down to 225F or so. Sometimes even bigger swings.

This is a problem for doing things like sausage and bacon. If the temperature goes too high for too long with sausage or bacon, the fat will melt into straight liquid and run out of the meat. This will ruin the sausage leaving nothing but dry gritty meat surrounded by liquid fat.

So a PID controller will hit the set smoker temp and hold dead on or within 1-3F degrees around the set temp.

Also another reason you will read about us talking about PID controllers is if the stock MES controller or circuitry components fail. There are few to no replacement options.
Doing a simple rewire to bypass all the MES electronics allows for someone to slap on a PID controller and get there MES running again. Not only running again but running like 50x better then anything Masterbuilt builds and sells brand new! So it really is creating a new better smoker when the old one died.

These are the main purposes and reasons you will see us discuss PID controllers for MES units.

I've now experienced the reason why I keep seeing a lot of posts tagging you for your knowledge. But it's not just that, it's how well you explain it to make it understandable to someone without much background in the subject. Well done. And thank you very much. I believe you have set me up for success, along with the information from dr k dr k
Thanks!
I have been in your shoes and am glad I can offer a little help. This is a good community and everyone here will do what they can to get you going and achieving good BBQ success :D
I'm looking forward to seeing what you smoke with it and a report back on when you have it all behaving properly :D
 
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...... Also another reason you will read about us talking about PID controllers is if the stock MES controller or circuitry components fail. There are few to no replacement options.
This is exactly what happened to me. The MES controller on my 2007 unit went bad. It would hold the temp at some random temperature 20 to 35 degrees below the set point. Then after 30 min to an hour later, it would change by 10 to 15 degrees. Rinse, repeat, infinity. 😠

Thanks again for everyone's help.
 
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the temp dropped from opening the door, of course. But the Auber cut the power and it cycled between 25 to 50%, even though the smoker was 50 degrees below my set temp of 275.

This is expected behavior. When you opened the door, the temp dropped significantly. When you closed the door, the temperature shoots up rapidly, as the air is being heated by not only the element, but everything else that is already hot. The PID sees the very rapid rise in temperature, consults the d (derivative) value and says to itself... "holy ****, this thing is going to overshoot by a mile" and cuts the power back. Once things stabilize for a few minutes, the temperature will creep back up to where is set.

The purpose of the d value is to slow things down so that bad things don't happen.
 
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