MES 30 Electrical Modification help

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by daveomak, Mar 29, 2011.

  1. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I am thinking about installing a  rheostat on the heating element. The element is an 800 watt.

    I am trying to "slow down" the heating cycle at low temps to reduce over shooting the set temp.

    Will a rheostat work? What would be the drawbacks?

    This is one unit, not necessarily the one I would purchase, but would it work?


    If my thinking is flawed, what direction do I need to go?

    Last edited: Mar 29, 2011
  2. smokinal

    smokinal Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member ★ Lifetime Premier ★

    Someone smarter than me is going to have to answer your question.
  3. bamafan

    bamafan Smoking Fanatic OTBS Member

     I would be very careful how you mount it. Were you going to put it inline in like a 4x4 metal box, or mount it on the unit? That dimmer should handle it but if it is the one I'm thinking of there is also a heat sink that comes with it that you will need to install. Your heating element at max should only draw 6.66 amps of current if my math is right. If you hook it stright inline with the power cord not sure what you are going to do to the electronics on the unit with the voltage drop.
  4. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    I am thinking of putting the rheostat in an exterior type box on the outside of the smoker.

    I would break the wires at the heating element.

    I am not sure of the name of the switch but I think it is a double pole/double throw.

    The power from the controller would go to the switch and I could switch between the factory element or run the power thru the rheostat.

    With that configuration, low temps could be on the rheostat and high temps would be factory configuration.

    High temp wire and connectors would be used.

    I have not pulled the cover on the wiring yet. Still thinking. I probably would run flex from the cover to the top of the smoker where the new box

    and rheostat would be installed.

    Does this make GOOD sense? I know enough about electricity to be dangerous.
  5. fpnmf

    fpnmf Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Ummmm Dave....

    Is your hobby smoking meats and making sausage or fiddling with yer smoking equipment??

    Hehehehehe...Hope you are having fun!!

  6. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

    Why not just wire in a oven controll and tstat?
  7. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Craig, Morning. I fool with everything. I like to see how stuff is made, designed, how it was intended to work and how it can be improved.

    Everything can be improved. I may not be able to improve it but someone can.

    Keeps me busy and drives the wife nuts.[​IMG]
  8. fpnmf

    fpnmf Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Believe me..I know the drill.

    As a lifelong mechanic (20+ years as an HD dealer wrench) I suffered from the same addiction...

    Pretty much got over last year after the wreck.

    Now just enjoying being alive!!

     Have a great day bud!!

  9. saugeyejoe

    saugeyejoe Fire Starter

    Sounds like it should work.   You may have problems with the controller if you reduce the current flow to the heater by reducing the voltage with the power stat.  The controller on your MES is time proportioned and “tuned” to run with the heater provided, if you change the wattage by using the power stat it may overshoot or undershot the temp setpoint.  But what the heck, give it a try.   After all the heater will get tired over years of service and lose some of its output wattage naturally over time.
  10. tjohnson

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

    Tried that and did not work.  Oven control is for 220v not 110v.

    I also tried a dimmer, but the controls did not work when I turned down the power.

    I DID NOT try to split the wires at the element.  This should be an easy thing to do!

    Last edited: Mar 29, 2011

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