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New Smoker / New Member

Flashpoint

Newbie
14
8
Joined Oct 1, 2019
I have an old 30" mes analog that needs a new element so maybe it will become a PID project down the road.

I've been looking for the last 2 weeks and decided on a new MES 130P for $250(amazon)

We have all seen the new and high priced MES 430s and 440s with all the bells whistles.It's within my budget but I have an issue spending that kind of money on something without a track record. I do like the idea of the broiler and rotisserie.

That said, I went to pull the trigger on the 130P and noticed the 430s on amazon are on sale for $310 unfortunately the 440s don't have such a deep discount.

I am now thinking considering the 430s for the little difference in price and slap on a 3yr warranty so if its a dud i"m sitting good. Only true problem is I really want (not need) a 40" and not a 30".

Also on Masterbuilt website they are running a promo for a free cover ($65) with purchase but I read a few places that its not waterproof and I can't get an extended warranty thru them. I called those guys and after 40min on hold got the runaround.

My ThermoWorks Signals 4-Channel and Thermapen Mk4 have already shipped and i'm getting hungry.

Any thoughts / feedback greatly appreciated
 

gmc2003

Legendary Pitmaster
OTBS Member
8,522
2,790
Joined Sep 15, 2012
Welcome to the site, glad to have ya join up. Sorry I'm not into the electric boogaloo, but someone who is will chime in at some point.

Chris
 

sigmo

Smoking Fanatic
★ Lifetime Premier ★
470
116
Joined Jun 4, 2012
As the others have said: Welcome!

I haven't studied the new Masterbuilt units, but I've had an older model MES40 for years.

There's a lot to all of this. And folks with expertise with the new models will chime in shortly.

If you haven't already, you should consider an aftermarket smoke generator like the AMNPS to improve the smoke, and make life easier.

I use one in my old MES40, and love it.

You will also find great advice on replacing the heating elements as well as troubleshooting the connections and wiring in these smokers, so you may want to check out your existing smoker before buying anything. This might be a cheap, easy fix.

I do like having a 40 for the extra capacity, for whatever that's worth! :)
 

Bamabww

Newbie
17
8
Joined Oct 1, 2019
Flashpoint, I can't help with your questions but have been researching along the same lines. Thanks for the tip about the price on Amazon.
 

Flashpoint

Newbie
14
8
Joined Oct 1, 2019
As the others have said: Welcome!

If you haven't already, you should consider an aftermarket smoke generator like the AMNPS to improve the smoke, and make life easier.

You will also find great advice on replacing the heating elements as well as troubleshooting the connections and wiring in these smokers, so you may want to check out your existing smoker before buying anything. This might be a cheap, easy fix.

I do like having a 40 for the extra capacity, for whatever that's worth! :)
My old smoker is a quick fix but as its an analog I'd rather PID it or fix/donate to a friend. my days of that temperamental analog dial are over :)

I have been looking at AMNPS already and thanks for a great suggestion. The 400's have a seperate element and fan control just for the smoke box. If it turns out to be a gimmick the AMNPS will definitely be the game plan.

the diff between the 400 series 30/40 on amazon is $260ish for 10" and a hotter main element.
 

SmokinVOLfan

Master of the Pit
2,351
1,334
Joined Feb 27, 2018
I smoked on a masterbuilt analog for years and same thing the heating element finally went out on me. Ended up getting a MES40 Cabela's sportsman edition. Looks like they already got you covered on the AMNPS.

One suggestion is go with the 40". You will be happy you did. So much more versatile. Can do whole racks of ribs and large spatchcocked birds. Well worth the extra money!
 

Bamabww

Newbie
17
8
Joined Oct 1, 2019
One suggestion is go with the 40". You will be happy you did. So much more versatile. Can do whole racks of ribs and large spatchcocked birds. Well worth the extra money!
thank you for this suggestion. I felt like that but needed to hear someone with experience say it.
 

Flashpoint

Newbie
14
8
Joined Oct 1, 2019
I went ahead and bought the 440s (40") with 4yr warranty so when those fancy bells and whistles go ca-put I'm covered. Also picked up the broiler add-on but I didn't grab the rotisserie. Nobody that owns a 400 series commented and I really needed another smoker up in running.

After a few runs if nobody has posted a review I will.
I'm curious how well the new smoke box works. I'll be sure to compare the 440s against the thermoworks Signals 4-Channel so we can see how accurate temp is. Other than testing out the BT I have no use for such a limited range product.

Even if all the bells and whistles turn out to be crap I will still have a 40" MES that I can monitor with wifi with the Signals 4, amnps and a hard lesson learned :)
 

Flashpoint

Newbie
14
8
Joined Oct 1, 2019
Well my Thermoworks Signal 4-chan and Mk4 came in and so did the mes 440s. Went to open the box in excitement and see a couple holes in the box and a corner with some damage I cross my fingers for extra packing that has kept my new pride safe because tomorrow we smoke.....I remove the box, all the packing, etc and it looks like a half used pinata. So my weekend before my trip was unpacking and repacking to see what I almost had. Somewhere between Amazon and UPS someone had too many margaritas and thought it was cinco de mayo!

When I return home the new unit should be waiting and perhaps I will have better luck. For the rest of you that are smoking this weekend have a great one!
 

Flashpoint

Newbie
14
8
Joined Oct 1, 2019
I had a message from a member on the forum asking about my purchase and wanted to share with the forum.

I absolutely love it. I also purchased the broiler kit. While the kit basically consists of some cheap sheet metal, a few screws and a heating element it works great for caramelizing the ribs just before I pull them off the smoker. You do have to do a little rewiring and it shows you how in the manual. Took me about 30min to install.

The Bluetooth is garbage. I have had issues with the app on the phone showing the smoke box was operating and had to verify it on the smoker. Personally I don't use the app/bluetooth anymore. played with it enough to know its junk.

For the actual smoker itself? Well it maintains heat great and I haven't had any issues so far. Only time will tell. The smoke box with its own element had a break in period I would call it where I was having to babysit it first couple of times. It's recommend to use the chunks but I find putting a few chips in first helps get the chunks started.

Do keep an eye on the temp of the smoker. I did have a flareup once in the smoke box which in turn cranked up the heat in the smoker. I took care of the flareup and opened the smoker door to let the temp drop back down. This happened once and it was probably my fault loading too much in the smokebox.

The smoker for me has been a set it and forget it box. I do every 45-60 min hit the ribs with some apple juice from my spray bottle.

I did not purchase extra temp probes and don't use the one included. I use the Thermoworks Signal 4 for something like a ham or boston butt. If you can monitor your smoker with bluetooth or wifi so you can watch a game or run to the store real quick.

For the best kitchen thermometer Thermapen-Mk4

I used Keppa to try and get the best price on amazon. it has had a few price drops for both the MES30 and MES40. You want the 40.
 
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