Another AMNPS-MES Question

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by travisb, May 23, 2013.

  1. tamathumper

    tamathumper Newbie

    First time today trying the AMNPS in my MES 30. I opened a new bag of Lumberjack pellets, filled it halfway around the track (and just short of full to the brim) and hit it with a propane micro torch for 30 seconds. I blew on it for maybe a minute until it was on fire, then blew the flame out and put it into the MES on top of the chip burning chamber with the water tray empty on top of it as a shield and with the top vent open and the chip tray and loader fully in place. It made a lot of smoke (three or four times more than the MES would) and burned for about 2 hours. There's just ash left in the AMNPS.
     
  2. putcz

    putcz Fire Starter

    I have read all three pages of suggestions and what I cannot understand why more of you MES owners don't use their cold smoke attachment. I have had mine ever since they came out with it with no problems at all. Fill it with chips and press a button, sit back, smoke and have a beer.
     
  3. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Well boys, I got a 6 lb. brisket in my MES 20 1st Gen. I followed Bear's advice and gave the AMNPS 20 minutes to burn (actually closer to 30), letting the flame go for the first 10 minutes and then blowing it out. I blew on the smouldering pellets to get a good cherry going but kept re-igniting the flame but I'd still blow on the pellets a few more times to get that cherry going before blowing out the flame and inserting the AMNPS into my smoker. Oh yeah--NO WATER IN THE PAN!!!! I covered it with heavy duty aluminum foil and I tented the AMNPS with the same stuff.

    I decided to leave the fat cap on--hope that's not a big mistake but I've seen recipes with it trimmed and left intact--and I've got the smoker temp at 250 degrees instead of the 235 recommended by Ray Lampe “Dr. BBQ” in one of his cookbooks. I'm hoping to finish that puppy off in about 5 hours but I may be in fantasyland. I will wrap it in foil for the last part of the cooking process. I've read recipes that say wrap it when the meat hits 160 degree internal temp or 170-175. Which one is the preferred temp. I do know I'm supposed to keep it wrapped until the internal temp reaches 190 degrees.

    I chose to forego the Q View at the start because I wanted to concentrate on getting that AMNPS permanently fired up. I'll take some photos during and after the smoking is finished. Meanwhile, I'll be checking the top air vent for continuous TBS. [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2013
  4. tjohnson

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

    Crossing my fingers!
    Post a pic of where you placed it in your MES
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2013
  5. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Sounds like you got it going pretty good. I don't think we mentioned---Don't tent it too close & smother it.

    I usually foil a Brisket at 165*--170*, but a small flat may stay more moist if you foil it at 160*.

    Bear
     
  6. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Hey Todd and Bear---over two hours in and the AMNPS is still fully operational! Gettin' that nice TBS wafting up through the air vent. This is glorious. Thank you both so much for your advice. What I didn't need to do was pull the wood chip loader out an inch or two (as Bear advised I wouldn't need to) and I didn't nuke the pellets or anything. I used a combo of year-old oak pellets and hickory pellets that are just a couple of months old--both are from Todd. I just lit the crap out of the pellets for 20-30 minutes as Bear advised and kept water out of the water pan as Todd advised.

    I plan to take a pic when I'm ready to wrap the brisket in foil. I made sure the tent over the AMNPS wasn't too close but was ample enough to shelter it from dripping juices.

    I've got the brisket on the bottom rack where the water pan hangs just underneath. As I wrote, the water pan is lined with foil. The AMNPS is in its customary spot on the two rails to the left of the wood chips/heating element box (you'll see the pic). I always push the AMNPS as far as it can go in. This proves that your theory that I had too much moisture in the smoker was correct.

    Fellas, I feel like you gave my smoker and my AMNPS back to me. Smoking is fun and stress-free again. I really love the MES 30; it's second only to my Weber 22.5" One Touch Silver Kettle Charcoal Grill as my favorite backyard cooking "venue" shall we say.
     
  7. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Sounds like you're now doing about everything I do.

    Don't think it matters much, but I avoid using the bottom grill, because of being a little close to the heat.

    Also I try to center the 8" AMNPS (front to back) to allow air flow in the back. Don't know how important that is, because I always do it that way.

    Bear
     
  8. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    The internal temp hit 160* and that's when I foiled it. The internal temp is back down to 156-158* but climbing. I figure another hour or two until I'm at 190*--or do you recommend 195*?
     
  9. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    I thought about both of the things you mentioned. I read someplace about how someone had placed a brisket or something on the bottom rack--something I never do--so I tried it. I typically have placed meat on the 2nd and/or 3rd racks. The meat looked fine and exactly how I wanted it to look just before I foiled it up.I thought about centering the pellet smoker before I pushed it back but I didn't want to change too much this time around. Next time I will center it as long as the door can still close but it may not make any difference. I'm getting plenty of airflow today.

    I've read posts from guys who talk about their MES breaking down or needing a 2nd or 3rd controller. I am NOT jinxing myself here, but mine has worked superbly from smoking day one. I recently read that I should be wiping down the door seals to keep them lasting longer so I started doing that after the last smoke. I'll say it again, I can't think of a better electric smoker for the price I paid for it. I purposely chose an electric smoker as opposed to a charcoal one. But if I want a charcoal smoker, I've always got my Weber kettle grill.
     
  10. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Hmmm, I wonder why?
     
  11. tjohnson

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

    So, do we have success?

    I'm patiently waiting.......

    TJ
     
  12. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Todd, you're in a boat fishing walleyes???????  I damn will disturb you when you're out on the lake. I'm here at home doing laundry, fella.

    Might be a silly question, but should the sand be sterile before pouring it into the water pan? I mean, should I get a bag of sand from Lowes or someplace? We have sandy soil on our property--couldn't I scoop some up to pour into the water pan?
     
  13. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Still waiting to get the internal brisket temp up to 190 BUT THE AMNPS IS STILL SMOKING, MY FRIEND!!!!!

    A question: how does turning the water pan into a heat sink help the smoker temp to increase more quickly? I'm not very versed in science but I thought the job of a heat sink was to absorb heat so that the ambient air around a device would be cooler and thus cool the device. If a sand-filled water pan absorbs heat, how would the internal temp of the smoker heat up more rapidly?

    Just saw that the smoke thru the vent has thinned out. Just checked the AMNPS and for the first time since I've been using it--it burned thru the all the pellets! My question now is: since the brisket is covered in foil I no longer have to worry about the AMNPS, right? The foil would keep the smoke away from the meat anyway. I've closed to the top vent to half open and increased the MES therm to 250* because the internal brisket temp has been stuck on 165-167* for about 15 minutes. I also shoved my therm probe a little further into the meat. She's a working!
     
    Last edited: Aug 18, 2013
  14. tjohnson

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

    Still crossing my fingers....
    Not gonna jinx your smoke

    Sand in the water pan acts as a heat sink.

    It does not speed warming up the smoker, but helps the smoker recover faster after you open the door.

    TJ
     
  15. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Thanks. 12-15 degrees away from brisket perfection. After I take it out of the smoker and it's done resting and I've taken it out of the foil I'll take a photo and post it along with the photo showing where I placed the brisket and the AMNPS.
     
  16. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Rick, If you're going to put sand in your water pan, make it sterile play sand.

    Bear
     
  17. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Thanks, Bear. My wife owns a home daycare business that she runs out of our house so she will have a source for the sand. We've already had to purchase pea gravel for the swing set area.
     
  18. I have a few suggestions since this works for me... I had the similar problem that you are encountering and I'm experiencing great results now..... I took a piece of ceramic tile and wrapped it in heavy duty tin foil. This gets the bottom off the floor even though it has a welded X at the bottom. I put it under the water pan in your last picture. I also REMOVED the water pan, it was a PITA and I have YET to have a piece of dry meat. I do not use water when I smoke meat. I also meaursed the distance of the chip loader cylindrical part to the right of your pick and pulled it out 2 inches and worked it back in until about 1 1/4 inches for the draft...... Get rid of the tin foil and buy a aluminum pan to catch your drippings that is wider and longer than your meat. You can get 2 for a $1 at the Dollar Tree/Dollar Store whatever.... Drippings were putting my AMNPS out on me. Lastly I noticed A LOT of the pellets in your picture are very long.... Break them in half making them smaller, put them in a bowl and nuke them EVERY single solitary time you are ready to do a smoke. Moisture gets in them and they won't burn if you do not. I also agree with someone elses post, they are not cherry red enough.... They need to look like you could melt steel. Please PM me if I can be of any other help.......
     
  19. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    The brisket smoking was a raging success, in my opinion. The AMNPS performed flawlessly using hickory and oak pellets I purchased from Todd.  When it comes to smoking know-how and help, Todd and Bear are the MAN, or MEN, as it were. Here's the link: Here's the link: http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/...et-ala-todd-johnson-and-bearcarver-with-qview
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2013
  20. daricksta

    daricksta Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    The brisket smoking was a raging success, in my opinion. The AMNPS performed flawlessly using hickory and oak pellets I purchased from Todd.  When it comes to smoking know-how and help, Todd and Bear are the MAN, or MEN, as it were. Here's the link: Here's the link:http://www.smokingmeatforums.com/t/...et-ala-todd-johnson-and-bearcarver-with-qview
     

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