opinions anyone on new smoker

Discussion in 'Electric Smokers' started by nater, Oct 17, 2011.

  1. nater

    nater Newbie

    I'm new (hence the first post) but I've been trying to look around and learn as much as I can.  I think it'll all soak in once I actually get a smoker.  It started out that I wanted to get one to do venison jerky instead of the darned old dehydrator thats on its last leg.  I was looking for a gas smoker but have not switched gears and am going to get an electric as it seems like a better option for me (time and experience wise).  But.......now Im hung up on which one.  At first I was hoping to be on a budget of about $200 but Im wondering if I should just spring to go ahead and get a larger unit to start with that way if I really enjoy it, I can get into smoking all kinds of different meats.  Been looking hard at the Masterbuilts and Bradleys.  Any reason why you'd buy one over the other?  Im really leaning toward a Masterbuilt 30 or 40 and eventually adding an AMNPS. 
  2. smokinal

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

    [​IMG]    Glad to have you with us!

    You will be very happy with a Masterbuilt. If you can swing it get the 40. 
  3. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Welcome Nater!!

    I definitely gotta agree with SmokinAl----MES 40 All The Way !

    You'll never be sorry!

  4. eman

    eman Smoking Guru Staff Member Moderator OTBS Member

    Howdy and welcome to SMF!

     I think you are making a good choice going electric for jerky. You may need to get a smoke generator (amns or tin can / soldering iron) To get enough smoke at low drying temps.

      the MES uses chips for smoke ,$2.79 a for a 180 ci bag here. i can do many smokes w/ a bag of chips. The bradley uses pucks. Not sure of the price but i'm sure they work out to be more than

    the cost of chips.

     I can use the same chips in the MES for hot smoking and in a tin can for cold smoking.

     don't know about using pucks in a tin can?

      right now Sams club has the 1200 watt MES 40" w/ remote  for $299. which is lower than what i paid for the 800 watt 40" over 2 years ago.

     I think that the 30" is going to cost almost the same somewhere else.
  5. I'm with Al and Bear. I have the MES 40. It is almost fail proof. And with the addition of the AMNPS or the tin can like eman says, it is perfect for all smokes.

    Happy Smokin'

  6. fpnmf

    fpnmf Smoking Guru OTBS Member

  7. [​IMG] Good Luck.
  8. nater

    nater Newbie

    Thinking about swinging by Sams this evening and picking up the MES 40.  Im assuming once the smoker is seasoned that the MES without AMNPS is still plenty capable, no? 

    Might try it without first and see how it goes.  What is the biggest advantage of the AMNPS?  Ease of acheiving a good smoke?  Or amount of smoke?
  9. I have an MES 40, and love it. Favorite recipe is for smoked salmon--can't seem to get enough!!  I find the smoke generation just fine, as long as you are over the 200 degree mark. Cold smoking is a challenge, so that's where a smoke generator would be a big help. I also find that on cooler days, the element comes on more often as the oven cools down--resulting in more smoke!!  Helped my brother-in-law set up his new MES 30 over Thanksgiving (Canadian was last weekend), and his has a larger chip tray over the element. My 40's is only about 1/2 the size. He will get awesome smoke, I'm thinkin'!!  Perhaps there has been a design improvement since mine was manufactured.  We get wicked winters up in North Central Saskatchewan, so my smoking days are numbered for this year. Will be dreaming all winter for the spring to hit.  P.S., I did a cold smoke on a 12lb turkey last weekend for 3 hours, then into the oven for three more.  Mmmmm, good!!  Enjoy your smoker!
  10. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Zippy & Nater,

    Some of the MES 30s and 40s were shipped out with chip burners that don't work worth a darn. We all convinced them of this fact almost 2 years ago.

    Since that, Masterbuilt came up with a replacement chip burner assembly. They ship them to MES owners FREE, so they can change it over with only a screwdriver, in no longer than 3 minutes. So:

    Zippy, if your chip burner is the half drawer, you probably have one of the faulty ones---Call them for your FREE retro kit.

    Nater: Don't let this keep you from getting an MES---It is easy to fix & FREE. You will still want to get an AMNPS, because even if your chip burner works Great, you'll still have to keep putting chips or chunks in every half hour to 45 minutes anyway.

    When you load an AMNPS up with pellets, and get it lit properly, it will give you nice steady perfect smoke for 9 to 12 hours, without touching it.

    Hope this helps,

  11. sound1

    sound1 Smoking Fanatic

    Go with Bear on this one, when you asked about the amount of smoke, more is not better in most cased.  Look around the forum about the magic of the thin blue smoke (TBS), the AMNPS just makes it easier to maintain the TBS for longer periods, but be forewarned,  not being required to babysit your smoker all day, any excuses that you may have had about that honey do list...history
  12. sqwib

    sqwib Smoking Guru OTBS Member

  13. Thanks Bear. The tip about the undersized chip burner assembly is awesome. I have contacted Masterbuilt in hopes of a positive response. Hopefully living in Canada will not present any problem here. I will keep you posted!!

    Graeme (Zippy) 
  14. moikel

    moikel Master of the Pit OTBS Member

    Masterbuilt over Bradley all day every day. Very happy with my MES not so happy with Australian pricing at the prices you guys can get by a 40.
  15. bearcarver

    bearcarver Smoking Guru OTBS Member

    Yeah, I'm not sure what happens with our neighbors to the far North.

    I'll keep my fingers crossed.

  16. Masterbuilt has told me they will send a replacement--but they are on backorder.  I seem to have read this is a problem for others waiting for things from them. In any case, customer service assures me that an assembly has been ordered for me and will be shipped in early November. I am greatful for the advice!!


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