Need help with my new MES40

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by terry colwell, Sep 15, 2011.

  1. terry colwell

    terry colwell Smoking Fanatic

    Well let me start with the info,, This is a new unit my son bought me last week, its a MES40. Did a brisket the first time with it and it turned out ok but not really good. I smoked it at 200 for hours in the beginning with water in the water pan.It stayed low in IT for a long time, bumped it up and them finally got it going, wrapped at 165, Did the tooth pick test and pulled it at 185IT, tender like I wanted but a little on the dry side. I figured it was because I cooked it to low for the first half. Or so I thought...

     Now onto the pork butt from today.Got the unit up to 250 and loaded the butt in by 8AM, ,, it took till 1 oclock to get past145, I wrapped it when it got 165 and let it go still running right at 250 at the second to the bottom rack over a empty water pan. Finally just pulled it a little before 7 pm and it was 185 IT,,, Bone would not pull out as you can imagine. Sliced it up and served it, , was on the dry side but fork tender.. NO juices on the board or serving plate at all..

    So this is two cooks so far that came out on the dry side and seem to take forever to get over the "danger zone"" So what kind of advice do you guys have for me?? I dont understand this one at all.....Thanks for the help ppl[​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    And I checked all my thermos again after the cook,, and all are spot on
    Last edited: Sep 15, 2011
  2. tjohnson

    tjohnson Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator Insider OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Hey Terry!

    My MES is off 10°+, so you really need to know the temps on the rack you're smoking on.

    The MES has a terrible hot spot in the right rear corner, so keep food away form there.

    I don't finish my pork butts in the MES.  I smoke them  and finish in the oven.

    Did you inject your Brisket or Pork Butt?

    I don't use water in the water pan, but some guys do.  I can't say I've ever had dry meat.

  3. terry colwell

    terry colwell Smoking Fanatic

    I knew from reading that the right corner was the worst, and mine is no different.The first time I checked all the thermos where close to being right, except the hot spot of course, I am gonna run a test again today since I checked all my thermos last night after the cook.

    When I set it up yesterday I had my oven thermo hanging in the right rear side of the pork and it was dead on at 250 right at the meat. Got any ideas why the meat is coming out on the dry side? I injected the pork but I didnt on the brisket..Neither one of them had any juices coming out of them, they were not DRY but not juicy either.
    Last edited: Sep 16, 2011
  4. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member


    Like Todd said, the heat varies a bit in the MES, especially the back right side.

    Some guys use tile on that side to block the heat.

    I have been using a piece of aluminum sheet metal, about 9" wide & 12 inches deep. I put it in the right side, above my empty water pan, and tilt the left side up about 1/2" to 1" higher than the right side, causing the heat to slide to the left & go up the middle of my smoker. I think I'm actually causing the left side to get a little hotter than the right, so I'm going to trim that aluminum down to maybe 8" wide, and try that awhile. This is definitely helping to get my temps more even from left to right.

    Also, 225˚/230˚ seems to work best for me on Brisket, Chuckies, Prime Rib, etc. Lower heat seems to make it take longer & longer seems to mean drier. IMO

  5. terry colwell

    terry colwell Smoking Fanatic

    Why do you guys think its taking so long to get PAST the danger zone?? Do I need to have the meat room temp to start with the MES?
  6. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    The time it would take to get it to room temp would be counted in the danger zone time, so that would only make it worse.

    I don't use water in my pan, but if I did, I would heat the water up on the stove or the microwave first, to just about boiling temp.

    Maybe you're putting cold water in your pan, and that cold water is fighting you?? Just another guess.


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