• Some of the links on this forum allow SMF, at no cost to you, to earn a small commission when you click through and make a purchase. Let me know if you have any questions about this.

Just got a new smoker.. need advise

husker3in4

Meat Mopper
212
21
Joined Feb 24, 2015
Hi all, I have had 2 MES that have served me well, but both are dying. My buddy, being the cool dude he is, bought me an MES Adventure Series 140S for $249 at Cabelas. It is a 40" which is what I really need (my old ones were 30"). It looks like this:
canvas.png


The one I really have been looking at is the MES 40" with bluetooth (model 20075315 ), but unfortunatly I have only seen it on sams club website (and I dont have a sams membership.) Its only about $50 more at $299. It looks like this:
0009442827053_B.jpg


I should just be happy I got a nice 40" smoker as a gift, and I am happy.. but part of me wants to try to figure out how to trade in the gifted smoker for the one I really want at Sams. there are 2 problems tho:
He used Cabelas gift cards to offset the cost of the gifted smoker, so if I were to return it, I would likely get cabelas gift cards that I cant use at sams.. problem 2 is im going to be smoking a brisket for fridays game in it, and the one from sams is online only and wont arrive until early December.

Lastly, if I keep the gifted smoker, what does one do for a break in? Fire it up for a couple hours at 275 to burn off whatever factory funk might be in it?
 

SmokinVOLfan

Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
4,937
3,787
Joined Feb 27, 2018
I would keep the gifted smoker and give it a go! You aren't going to tell a ton of difference as long as its a 40". Would look into getting an AMNPS if you don't have one. If my memory serves me right for break in I think its 275 for 3 hours and adding wood the last hour to get it seasoned but check out the instructions when you get it. Look forward to seeing it in action and the brisket pics!
 

SecondHandSmoker

Master of the Pit
★ Lifetime Premier ★
2,232
1,104
Joined Jun 30, 2018
I, too, would keep the gifted smoker given the constraints you listed above. Everything VOL said above is spot on.

With that said, I wish I had a good friend who would gift me a WSM 22! :emoji_laughing::emoji_laughing:
 

mooncusser

Meat Mopper
206
121
Joined May 25, 2019
I'd agree with keeping the gifted one. If the Bluetooth is what caught your eye on the other one, I can tell you it's not that great a feature. My experience with my MES 30 is the Bluetooth range is very limited and I use a remote thermometer for monitoring temps anyway.
 

husker3in4

Meat Mopper
212
21
Joined Feb 24, 2015
actually I do have the AMNPS tray, but I havent had alot of success with it. Ive tried it in the smoker, and also in a mailbox mod. I can never seem to keep the pellets lit, if Im lucky it will burn 1 row, but most of the time it goes out about halfway thru the first row. Ive nuked the pellets before hand, baked them etc.

I was wanting the other smoker because of the blue tooth and because I like the smoke exhaust on the opposite side of the smoking tray.. But yeah, I guess I will just use the gifted one.

I would keep the gifted smoker and give it a go! You aren't going to tell a ton of difference as long as its a 40". Would look into getting an AMNPS if you don't have one. If my memory serves me right for break in I think its 275 for 3 hours and adding wood the last hour to get it seasoned but check out the instructions when you get it. Look forward to seeing it in action and the brisket pics!
 

levithan9

Fire Starter
33
26
Joined Nov 7, 2016
1574709483985.png

This is the one i have. It's from Sams. I bought it a few years ago on clearance for $149.
I does have the Bluetooth, and iv'e used it MAYBE 4-5 times. The app is straight up trash. It's like their budget for the app was $2,000, and it definitely shows. Drops connection randomly, and that's sitting in the garage with the door open and the smoker being 15-30 feet away. It's more of a burden than something that's supposed to help. You're absolutely not missing anything not having the bluetooth option.

I also have the AMPS tray, and i finally learned to remove the wood-chip dispenser in order to keep the pellets lit. Before, i'd get maybe 1-2 hours of smoke, let it ride all night, and come out and see that 3/4 of the tray didn't burn. If you keep the chip dispenser in, it starves off oxygen. I put mine on the lower rack, close to the hole where the dispenser usually is. Make a foil tent to go over the AMPS, so dripping grease won't put the pellets out, ot cause a fire. And yes, i've done it.

Cooking a brisket, you better set that thing to 245-250. If you do 225, you'll find out first hand what a 24-26 hours is like making a brisket. I usually start my brisket around 6-7pm. I use a wireless thermometer set to go off at 168, after the stall. I'll wake up (usually between 3 or 5am), take the brisket out, wrap in butcher paper, put back in. And set the probe alarm for 203 degrees. And try and go back to asleep. At 203, i"ll take a metal skewer, and start probing the brisket for tenderness. If it's not ready, re-check every 30 minutes.

You've got a good smoker. And like everything else in life, new stuff has a learning curve to it in order to get good at it.
 

husker3in4

Meat Mopper
212
21
Joined Feb 24, 2015
Ive tried taking the chip loader out for air, but it didnt help the tray in the previous smoker. Maybe this one has a better air flow. Do you use the tube or the tray?

I think I usually let it run at 235 for brisket, but if its a big one I will probably go 250. I want to allow for about 12-15 hours for it to smoke.
 

levithan9

Fire Starter
33
26
Joined Nov 7, 2016
I have the tray. It has 3 channels for the pellets to burn in. I also tried it when i had my 30" model, and it always snuffed out the coals for the pellets. I went so far as to buy the Masterbuilt cold smoker attachment, but that was a joke. I had to buy 2 dryer vent attachments, and a flexible dryer tube in order to cold smoke something, because this thing would dump so much smoke into the chamber, that food was bitter.

At 250, by brisket cooks took me about 14-16 hours. Add another 2-4 hours letting it rest, and you've got a solid 20 hours before you eat.
 

SmokinVOLfan

Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
4,937
3,787
Joined Feb 27, 2018
I light my pellets with a torch and let them burn for a good 10-15 minutes and get a nice red ember on the end before I blow them out and put the tray in the smoker. Chip dumper half way out in the dump position. I place mine in the lower left corner of the MES40 under the water pan(I have a Cabelas sportsman edition) and set it on the sausage hanging rack in came with so its getting air up underneath too. Sometimes I will put foil on the rack above to divert the smoke and keep whatever drippings out of it too.
 

husker3in4

Meat Mopper
212
21
Joined Feb 24, 2015
do u put water in your pan? or just cover with foil? I had sand in my last pan, and covered that with foil.
 

SmokinVOLfan

Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
4,937
3,787
Joined Feb 27, 2018
do u put water in your pan? or just cover with foil? I had sand in my last pan, and covered that with foil.
I never put water in the pan. The smoker is so well insulated its not needed plus the moisture helps put pellets out. I've heard lave rock covered in foil works as a good heat sink so your recovery time is shorter when you have to open the door. Heard sand is good too though never tried either!
 

smokerjim

Master of the Pit
OTBS Member
SMF Premier Member
4,714
1,991
Joined Jan 14, 2014
agree with everyone above, as for the amnps tray I have a mes 30 and have to use the mailbox mod to keep it lit, as smokinvol said make sure to let it burn for a good 10-15 minutes, I do microwave mine for about 2 minutes, don't use any water plenty enough moisture in these already, make sure top vent is wide open, you may have to put another hole or two into the mailbox for more air, are the holes in your tray blocked on the bottom, try and raise it up so it's not sitting directly on the tray. just some thoughts
 

a g k

Fire Starter
74
15
Joined Nov 3, 2014
agree with everyone above, as for the amnps tray I have a mes 30 and have to use the mailbox mod to keep it lit, as smokinvol said make sure to let it burn for a good 10-15 minutes, I do microwave mine for about 2 minutes, don't use any water plenty enough moisture in these already, make sure top vent is wide open, you may have to put another hole or two into the mailbox for more air, are the holes in your tray blocked on the bottom, try and raise it up so it's not sitting directly on the tray. just some thoughts
 

Latest posts

Hot Threads

Top Bottom
  AdBlock Detected

We noticed that you're using an ad-blocker, which could block some critical website features. For the best possible site experience please take a moment to disable your AdBlocker.