No smoke in MES-40

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by kcredzone, Jun 24, 2013.

  1. I've had the unit for about 8 months, and followed Delta Dude's instructions for pre-heat, and getting chips started.  The unit has always performed.

    So, recently I moved, and the movers took care of all the heavy stuff...

    When I went to use the MES for the first time since the move, I did my normal pre-heat to 270 for 30 minutes, vent open 100%. Unit came up to tempature in the normal amount of time.

    Brought temp down to 220.

    Add a couple of pecan chips, (I normally get smoke within a couple of minutes), and nothing....  So, I opened up the door, and pulled out the entire chip box.  There was some ash in their from previous smokes, so emptied the whole chip box out, and started over.  10 minutes later still nothing.

    Opened the door again, and pulled the chip box out, to insure the heating element had not shifted during the move somehow. Looks fine to me... the chips were warm, some had turned dark, but none had ignited. Strange...

    I messed with it a few more times, and never got chips to ignite. (It's always been add chips, smoke a couple minutes later)..

    If the unit is good, the only other variables involved are the chips and oxygen.

    I don't soak chips, just straight from the bag. And these chips are from a bag I've used in many previous smokes.

    Oxygen. Before my unit was out in open air (backside about 4 feet from a hot tub)..  Now the unit is on a balcony turned with back side about 2 feet from a solid wall

    The only saving grace through this ordeal, I was smoking brats and beans..  So, we weren't too put off by the lack of smoky goodness.

  2. I would say that your chips were moist. Might try microwaving them for a min.

    I have a mes 40 I use a AMNPS for smoke.That is the only way to go.

    Happy smoken.

  3. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Check the clearance between the chip pan and the element....   On my MES 30, the gap is about 1/32".... If something shifted during the move, that relationship between the chip pan and the burner may be what happened.....    Dave
  4. The MES-40 is set up differently than the MES-30 then. From the attached photo, you can see the heating element, and then the lip(s) that the chip tray slides over when inserted. The vertical height of the lip(s), make's for about 1/2" or so from heating element to chips. Note: I've never had any issue before with chips not igniting.  I've used the smoker approx 30-40 sessions.

    @TheMule: I suppose the chips could have saturated some moisture, though they have been stored inside the entire time. I'll try microwaving, and doing a test run later today..

    I'm still wondering if there is an oxygen deficiency from the way I have the MES 40 positioned, with the back towards a solid wall on my balcony...
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 24, 2013
  5. daveomak

    daveomak Smoking Guru OTBS Member SMF Premier Member

    Is it possible to slide the chip tray under the lip(s) to get it closer to the element. ???    In the original MES 30's, that heat shield, between the chip tray and element, has been removed to get better smoke from the chips....  
  6. I don't think the problem is the air flow based on where you have it sitting. Mine is in an enclosed cabinet and I have no problems getting smoke. Sounds like either the chips are a bit damp or the element isn't heating hot enough to get them going. When you pre heated it, was your chamber temp good?

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