How To Bypass Controller On Mes 30 Digital?

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by njfoses, Feb 10, 2013.

  1. njfoses

    njfoses Meat Mopper

    I recently purchased a pre-assembled pid from auber which i posted about here and why its not working (last post)   For this to work i need a way to bypass the digital controller on my mes 30.  This is the mes i have.      Basically i need the power cord to control the heating element only.  If the cord is plugged in the element is on automatically.  I will use the pid as the controller.  Can anybody help with this or have any ideas?  Thanks.
  2. geerock

    geerock Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    If you have a schematic for the mes auberin should be able to help. I was under the impression that if you set the temp on the mes to max that the pid would take care of things for you. You may have to get off the autotune mode and set the steps another way. I was sure that the folks at auberin had tested these things with the mes and they were compatible.
    Last edited: Feb 10, 2013
  3. njfoses

    njfoses Meat Mopper

    I have emailed auberbin and currently waiting for a reply.  I too thought i would be able to set the temp and time to max on the mes and the pid would control everything.  The problem is the pid turns off all power to the smoker not power to the element only.  The pid was probably tested with the older analog mes not the digital model's.  Thats why i am thinking i am going to have to bypass the mes controller completely in order to get the pid working.  Problem is that i dont know how to accomplish that.
  4. njfoses

    njfoses Meat Mopper

    Decided to tear the mes apart and figure it out.  Was easier than i expected.  Some pics below regarding the process.  Sorry for some of the pic qualities, not much light.  Thanks for looking!

    Drilled out the rivets with a 1/8" bit.  I believe this smoke/heat accumulation in the foam is due to the tile mod i use.  Going to continue to use it for now as it really does even out the temps.

    Another shot of the back.

    This is the controller box on the bottom of the smoker.  This required drilling out more rivets to remove the bottom panel.  To bypass the controller i disconnected the two black wires from the relay and connected them together.  The black wire on the left of the relay is from the element and the black wire on the right is from the ac cord.  I then disconnected the other black wire you see on the bottom left of the pic and the white wire and connected them together as well.  The black wire was from the other side of the element and the white wire is neutral from the ac cord.

    Close up of the element connection.  Not burnt up yet lol.

    Close up of the brown nasty foam.

    Another foam shot.

    Wires from ac cord disconnected.

    A couple connectors, heat shrink and electrical tape and i am in business!

    Used 1/2" pan head screws to re-attach the back and bottom.

    Pid is now running auto tune to get everything dialed in.

  5. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Mike, morning......  I have a dimmer on my element.... the PID should control the element the same....   at reduced wattage, and the element on continually, there is no hot spot....   I run my element about 300-600 watts, depending on the temp I'm looking for in the smoker......

    I would suggest, removing the tile before the foam insulation is compromised any more.... and check the smoker temps with the PID operating.....  

  6. njfoses

    njfoses Meat Mopper

    I finished auto tune last night and the pid would keep the temps + or - 3 deg of where i had it set after the tune was finished.  I dont believe the pid reduces wattage to the element but when close to set temp it will pulse the element on and off at times rapidly when needed to keep the set temp  Certainly much better than the + or - 20 deg swings i would get with the mes controller and having to guess where to set the mes controller to achieve my actual desired temp.  Im not sure the tile mod is causing the foam issue as i found another post here from somebody with the same foam issue and he was not using any tile mod.  Without the tile the right side is 20-30 deg hotter then the left and i really like the even temps the tile provides.
  7. tomolu5

    tomolu5 Meat Mopper

    Just a thought, I think if you tee your hot and neutral, and land the new "tees" where the factory cord wires plug in, you should still have he factory timer and temp readouts. Of course they would have no effect on the element, but I find them kind of handy, but I'm not familiar with the paid units either, maybe you get all that

    Sent from my XT907 using Tapatalk 2
  8. tomolu5

    tomolu5 Meat Mopper

    * pid, stupid auto correct
  9. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    After many mods to my MES, the exhaust tunnel mod seems to work very well.....   moving the exhaust stream toward the center of the smoker.... I think my tunnel is 7" long from the corner but longer would work also....   It is adjustable with a  pair of tin snips..... Adding a dimmer, in the circuit, would make the output of the element adjustable...

    And the fastening system to hold it in place....   enlarge the photo above to see the rebar wire "in and out" through 2 holes.....

    slightly inboard toward the center of the smoker to "pull" the tunnel toward the corner for a "tight" fit....  

    Works for me.....    No patents pending or anything like that....  Go for it......    Dave
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2013
  10. njfoses

    njfoses Meat Mopper

    I have no use for the timer or temp readout on the mes controller as the pid and my mav 732 now handle all i need.
  11. njfoses

    njfoses Meat Mopper

    I tried this mod originally and it only had a slight effect on balancing out the temp.  It seemed the heat would still come up the right side before reaching the tunnel.  The tile so far has worked better for me.  Im using 4 qty 5x5 unglazed quarry tiles wrapped a few times in heavy duty aluminum foil to form a 10x10 square.  6x6 Was the largest unglazed tile i could find locally and i had them cut to 5x5, for my mes 30 i felt 10x10 was a better fit than the 12x12 often mentioned here.
  12. geerock

    geerock Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Thanks for the info and the pics. Same to you Dave. Been trying to get controller from mb for 2 months with no end in site on a brand new unit. Ordered a pid today. Their customer service basically told me to do the same thing you did but you made it look easy so thanks again.
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2013
  13. njfoses

    njfoses Meat Mopper

    I didn't have much time to play with the pid last night as it was getting late once i finished everything up but i can say you will absolutely love the accurate control it provides vs the stock controller.  Which model pid did you order?
  14. geerock

    geerock Master of the Pit SMF Premier Member

    Ordered from an electronic supply shop here in town who has a business right next to my storage facility.  Guys there are going to build one with their own components after I showed them what I wanted in the Auberin catalog they had laying around.  I want the meat probe also so they said they would build a programmable unit with smoker temp control and and dual meat probes good for 1800 watts.  These electronics geeks make it sound like no problem.  It will be ready by the weekend.
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2013
  15. njfoses

    njfoses Meat Mopper

    I thought about the dual probe model from Auberin but i really like the wireless monitoring the mav 732 provides me so i decided i will still use the mav probes for meat and to check temp in additional areas of the smoker beyod the pid probe.
  16. jresurv

    jresurv Newbie

    I just got the 1800 watt dual probe from auberin. I have the 40" window MES. Since it has the access door on the back( and I didn't really feel like pulling off the back) ,I just opened the access door and clipped the 2 wires to the element and put wire nuts on them. Then just attached a heavy duty 6' power cord from home depot right to the element. The access door is pliable enough to be able to bend it around a little so it doesn't pinch the cord and still get the 6 screws in. Put some high temp sealant around the plate to finish.  It does have 2 cords now, which i guess isn't ideal, but I can plug the existing cord in if I want the timer or meat probe info(both still work).

    The reason I went with the Auberi
    n was I convinced the wife we could try it as a sous vide controller, they sell an immersible thermometer for about 20 bucks. Even though I told her that just so I could get it for the smokers(they also have a blower) we cooked a couple of steaks in a 130 degree water bath for an hour the other night, then seared them for about a minute, and they were incredible.
    fixer likes this.
  17. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Excellent mod.....  I love the "outside the box" thinking members come up with...     [​IMG]  ....  Dave
  18. uisge beatha

    uisge beatha Newbie

    Okay...I really apologize for the resurrection of an old thread but have a question that is relevant to this thread and never know if it's more appropriate to start a new one because the information gets lost when people (like me) are searching for info.  I bought an Auber PID for my MES 30 and have bypassed my board as illustrated in this thread.  As I'm not a "sparky" (electrician) would it still be prudent to run a relay, or something, in line?  Is there any reason for concern running those wires directly in line?

    Thanks in advance...again sorry for the resurrection.
  19. bham smoke

    bham smoke Newbie

    Maybe the thread should read how to get MES to build a controller that works

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