Issues staying lit

Discussion in 'A-Maze-N Smokers' started by k5oneil1, Oct 15, 2015.

  1. k5oneil1

    k5oneil1 Newbie

    I have been having issues with keeping the pellets lit in my AMNPS. I've tried drying the pellets in the oven at 300 for a couple hours and microwaving. I've also done the mailbox mod on my MES 40 and I still cannot get the thing to stay lit. 

    Starting the pellets, I light it with a blow torch and get the embers white hot, for roughly 2-3" of the tray before putting it in the mailbox. 

    I assume that it is an airflow issue, Ive got probably 6-8 holes in the front of the mailbox for airflow and have the tube aluminum taped up, so id have thought it would've created a draft through the mailbox and out the smoker. That hasn't been the case though.

    Any thoughts/tips? Getting frustrating not being able to use the pellet smoker that is regarded by so many on this forum
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2015
  2. crankybuzzard

    crankybuzzard Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Hi there, hate to hear about the issues.  Love my A-Maze-N trays and tubes.

    Do you have pictures of your setup? Maybe we can see from there what the problem may be.

    Also, is the exhaust wide open on your MES?

    When you use the torch, do you allow the pellets to burn for 5-10 minutes BEFORE putting into the mailbox?  Just torching doesn't work for most, torch to start, let burn for several minutes, blow out the flame, and then put into the box.

    Also, where are you located?

    I'm sure others will chime in soon.
  3. k5oneil1

    k5oneil1 Newbie

    I will try to get pictures posted this evening, but I have it on a rack, so there should be ample airflow underneath the mailbox as well. I let the pellets burn for at least 15 minutes before putting them in, still to no avail. I live in SE Michigan, so would think humidity wouldnt be a huge issue
  4. Why 6-8 holes? I have three 1/2" holes in the door. I also mounted my mailbox to a board to block the factory holes in the bottom of the box.
  5. k5oneil1

    k5oneil1 Newbie

  6. driedstick

    driedstick Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Yep I just did the Mailbox Mod about two weeks ago and this last weekend I did salmon and I filled it up just to see how long it would go and got approx 9hrs out of it.

    You need to make sure you have a good "cherry" on the pellets before blowing out the flame, (appprox 10min) 

    Her a re a few pics of mine

    6 - 1/2" holes on front door,,, 

    I took the inside guts (pan) out of mine,,, I will need to do a little deflector thou later on. 

    Hope this helps 

    Good luck and let us know 

  7. tropics

    tropics Smoking Guru SMF Premier Member

    A chimney may help getting the draft to go up.


  8. k5oneil1

    k5oneil1 Newbie

    Thanks for the suggestions. I have been getting the cherry very hot before blowing it out. I have holes drilled in the side in addition to the front. I wonder if it is getting too much air and is not able to create the draft? I can always plug those up with aluminum tape and see how that works. Its either that or not having the flag up!!!
    chears500 likes this.

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