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Spraying Chocolate: Equipment, Materials, and Techniques

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300 replies to this topic

#241 minas6907

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Posted 19 February 2013 - 12:10 AM

I dont have a solution for you, but are there anymore details you can provide?

#242 Mjx

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Posted 19 February 2013 - 12:29 AM

Airbrush.


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#243 keychris

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Posted 19 February 2013 - 01:35 AM

they have done it with regular spray guns (used for paint) on Masterchef. so long as you haven't used it for paint! and so long as your air supply is clean and dry.



#244 Kerry Beal

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Posted 19 February 2013 - 07:20 AM

How about a nice Kreb's Chocolate Sprayer.



#245 Gary Traffanstedt

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 05:14 PM

Somewhat related topic... I've just started playing with colored cocoa butter and of course want to get into airbrushing with my molds. Any suggestions for a good beginner airbrush setup? I need the gun, compressor, whole thing. I looked at one the other day that was a complete package that was around $1200. Was total overkill for my needs of course. Said the compressor could run two airbrushes at the same time continuously. I just need something simple, but also something that's easy to use for someone just getting into it.

 

And one related question, how are you guys melting the cocoa butter in the bottles? I scraped some out into a small glass dish and heated it in the microwave and then used a gloved finger to do some "painting" with it. Next time I'm going to paint the inside of some molds and do it that way. Unfortunately I already had chocolate in my molds when I got the colored cocoa butter but next time they'll look even better.



#246 Jenjcook

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 09:12 PM

I have a Badger 250. Very cheap, about $30-40 on amazon. You have to get one where the paint does not shoot directly through the air feed, or it will cool the cocoa butter and clog. The badger is set up so that the cocoa butter comes up one tube and then is blasted by air to the target so no clogs. It is very easy to use as well. The more expensive part comes if you want and air compressor. The badger comes with a can of air, which is kinda difficult to control, and gets pricey if your using it regularly. I just bought a compressor on amazon for $46. We'll see how it works. I think that's about as cheap a setup as you can get. Probably doesn't have the superfine mist or control of a $1200 one, but it does the job.

#247 minas6907

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Posted 14 October 2013 - 09:53 PM

On the topic of sprayers, does anyone know what a fixative syringe is? I really cant find out what these things look like. The only reference to them I've seen is from The Advanced Professional Pastry Chef by Bo Friberg. In the chapter on sugar work, theres a little box on page 607 for those who have it, and he mentions fixative syringes, which a google search didnt yield much that was related, since he says that its used to apply color to pieces of sugar work, it seems like a piece of equipment meant for pastry, not something he adapted to use in pastry work.

 

Part of the description reads "The liquid coloring is sprayed (blown) on the sugar by submerging the end of the thin tube in the color and placing the end of the other tube in your mouth. When you blow air into the syringe, the color is sprayed in a fine mist."

 

If anyone has an idea about what this is, I'd love to know. I've googled this many times with no results that even come close to matching this.



#248 Kerry Beal

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 03:55 AM

I wonder if it is the same as a 'mouth atomizer' that is used in pottery - here.  You put one end in the melted cocoa butter, bend it just right to that the venturi effect happens and sucks the cocoa butter up the tube and sprays when you blow on the other end.  I have a couple of them but prefer the stainless steel atomizers at the bottom of this page.

 

Here is a video of a fellow using one on pottery.  Note he's finding a way to use compressed air to blow for him.  You get a more even application that way.

 

I use one of the stainless atomizers when I want quick and dirty splatter - but it's still a pain if you want to do any volume.  You are much better off with the Badger 250 for that.

 

Lately though I've gotten attached to a couple of little Paasche brushes - two are external flow and one is internal.  Bought them used on ebay from a chocolate business that closed.  I'll have to see if I can see where I've posted about them before here to link to.



#249 minas6907

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Posted 15 October 2013 - 10:40 AM

Kerry, I believe it is a mouth atomizer, the item on amazon looks exactly like what Friberg describes, thanks! Looks quite inexpensive as well!

#250 Gary Traffanstedt

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Posted 16 October 2013 - 04:30 AM

I have a Badger 250. Very cheap, about $30-40 on amazon. You have to get one where the paint does not shoot directly through the air feed, or it will cool the cocoa butter and clog. The badger is set up so that the cocoa butter comes up one tube and then is blasted by air to the target so no clogs. It is very easy to use as well. The more expensive part comes if you want and air compressor. The badger comes with a can of air, which is kinda difficult to control, and gets pricey if your using it regularly. I just bought a compressor on amazon for $46. We'll see how it works. I think that's about as cheap a setup as you can get. Probably doesn't have the superfine mist or control of a $1200 one, but it does the job.


I looked on Amazon and there are a few versions of the Badger 250. For example one is the 250-MT. Does it matter which version I get? And how is the compressor working for you? There's a Harbor Freight Tools here and I was going to see what they have for little air compressors. Something pretty quiet would be nice.

#251 Kerry Beal

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Posted 16 October 2013 - 05:50 PM

Looks like the MT has the bigger nozzle for more viscous materials - would be a good choice I'd say. 



#252 Gary Traffanstedt

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Posted 16 October 2013 - 07:18 PM

Kerry, I know you prefer your Fuji over the Badger. Do you think the Badger is ok for starting out? I'm assuming a Fuji would cost quite a bit more? And any recommendation for an air compressor? Thank you!

#253 Kerry Beal

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Posted 16 October 2013 - 07:34 PM

Actually right now I prefer my Paasches to my Fuji - Fuji makes a hell of a racket and my chocolate room is under the rug rat's bedroom.  

 

The Badger is however perfect for starting out.  I've taken a little heating tray and added an Ikea dimmer switch so it isn't quite as hot and I keep my air brush on it between times - check out post 123 here - http://forums.egulle...room/?p=1918116

 

I have an Iwata Smart Jet compressor that I picked up inexpensively from Kijiji.  



#254 Victor Antonio Padilla

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Posted 13 November 2013 - 11:12 AM

Hello,

Today I found here the Wagner W550, I looked for the ones mentiones in this thread (120 and w180p) witj no luck.
W550 is still in my bucket but would like to know if you can give me an opinion about it, I am currently spraying colored cocoa butter in a lot of molds. Maybe later I'll start spraying chocolate too for other kind of confections.

Any help would be really appreciated.

#255 Jim D.

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 03:43 PM

I too am finally taking the airbrush plunge and plan to start out with the Badger 250.  I'm finding confusing information on what comes with it.  So a few questions:

 

Do I need to purchase an adapter for use with a compressor?  Is there a standard adapter I should look for?  One place said the Badger came with an adapter, but it seemed to be referring to canned air.

 

The jars with the basic model hold 3/4 oz., whereas the 250-4 jars hold 4 oz.  I would be using one color to paint a couple of molds at a time.  In practical terms, how far does 3/4 oz. of cocoa butter go?  I'm assuming I should buy extra jars for the sake of convenience.

 

As for a compressor, some posters have recommended the Badger 180-10 with a regulator, but that model has been replaced by the 180-15, and I can't find whether the psi can be regulated or not.  I am also looking at the Iwata compressors; their "Studio Series" models say they come with all adapters, hoses, etc.  It's all very confusing.  Any recommendations?  I won't be using the compressor all that often, but I don't want some noisy machine that will die on me after a short while.  I notice that compressors have somewhat ominous ratings for use in their descriptions (such as "for occasional use" or "for use several times a month").  Doesn't inspire a lot of confidence.  And someday I might want to upgrade the airbrush, so I wouldn't want a piece of junk for a compressor.

 

And finally, a very practical, mundane question:  As long as I am buying a compressor, I may as well get something that also inflates auto tires.  Should I assume these machine will do that?  Another adapter needed, I suppose.

 

Any guidance in this process would be most appreciated.



#256 Alleguede

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 06:50 PM

Jim D: You won't be able to inflate your tires with the Iwata smart jet series. The advantage of this compressor is the silence it gives. If you want and plan to use your air compressor for a little handy work, maybe you should look for a 3 gallon oil-free compressor. I recommend you add a waer and particul filter as well as a regulator. This will allow you to have a decent but more noisy beast.

 

A 3/4 oz jar should take you throught about 5 to 10 molds depending on how much you spray each mold. The 4 oz molds will last a while. The thing is also that if you keep your cacao butter in the jar you will have to melt and temper in that jar (no fear its not a problem in itself). For the spraying, you need the size of the nozzle (needle to be the most open possible) If I recall 1.0 or 1.2 is a good number, Kerry can confirm. In my defense, I am more for the gravity feed then the bottle, but that is my choice.

 

Victor, what do you mean by spraying chocolate too? velvet mix or pure chocolate? If you spray a lot of molds, are you searching for detail or mass one color spray. When I'm in a good mood and want something different I will use my Iwata HP HC (i think it is) when I want to produce a lot, I use an air brush gun such as http://www.tcpglobal.../promokits.aspx which puts out much more and faster. To use this thought you need the matching power compressor.

 

hoping this helps. I will let Kerry finish this analysis... :)



#257 Kerry Beal

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Posted 17 November 2013 - 07:56 PM

Don't know what I have to add - I started with the Fuji which is a pressurized gravity feed HVLP turbine.  Lovely unit - but noisy so doesn't get much use these days.

 

I find the Badger a bit frustrating at times - it seems to block up more than others.  I do have a larger needle for it - but haven't gotten around to installing it yet.

 

I'd say I'm happiest with the little collection of external mix Paasche brushes that I have.   They have the largest needle on them (0.5mm) - suited for heavy materials.  I have an Iwata Smart Jet compressor - delightfully quiet, turns itself on and off as needed.  The fan for my air extraction is a lot more noisy.  



#258 chocochoco

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 07:37 AM

Hi Kerry, have you tried the Krebs LM25 or LM45 food sprayer?

http://www.krebsswit...krebs-lm45.html

 

Or if anybody has tried them, how did you like them?

 

Thanks,

Omar



#259 Kerry Beal

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Posted 18 November 2013 - 01:46 PM

Nope - wanted to but never got my hands on one.



#260 Jim D.

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 03:20 PM

I have just taken the leap into airbrushing, and I must say, it was not a smashing success.  Yes, I got color to come out and land in the molds, but there are issues.  I decided to start simple and got the Badger 250, which many people (including Norman Love, I have read) use.  I got an Iwata compressor.  I bought the "Molding Techniques" DVD by Bill Fredericks.  What happened is what Kerry Beal described some time ago:  There was a huge cloud of cocoa butter that, in spite of the mask I had bought--as Kerry recommended--was unpleasant and gave me the distinct impression that something was wrong.  I can't believe that chocolatiers endanger their health regularly.  There must be something I am doing wrong since in the DVD there is no cloud--and no coughing fits.

 

As for the result, the coverage seems quite light, even after repeated passes over the mold.  The coverage seems light, that is, until I go to scrape the extra that lands around the cavities.

 

I am ready to give up and go back to painting cavities with a finger or with a brush.  If it weren't for the expense of the compressor, I probably would.  Does anyone who uses the Badger 250 have any suggestions as to what I could do to solve the problem?  I should add that I am working inside a very large box, but that does not stop the cocoa butter cloud.  There is only so far one can stand away from the procedure and still be able to work.  And I have adjusted the nozzle up and down.  If I lower it (less paint coming out and less cocoa butter cloud), there is barely any color at all deposited in the mold..



#261 Chocolot

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 05:42 PM

I feel your pain:) We have all gone through the learning curve. You might check the pressure coming out of the compressor. if it is too high, the butter atomizes more. I find that some colors are worse than others. There are some days that I am ready to give the set up away, and then other days that it works great. Don't give up, it just takes a long time to get consistent results.


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#262 Jim D.

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Posted 01 December 2013 - 06:29 PM

Thanks for that tip about the compressor's pressure.  That had passed through my mind as I was washing up all the mess I had created.  I'll check tomorrow (after a drink and dinner, I have decided not to give up).  I do hope all the eGulleters will come visit me when I am in respiratory care with "cocoa lung" disease.



#263 Jim D.

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Posted 02 December 2013 - 06:42 PM

Just wanted to add that, after calming down a bit from yesterday's less than successful attempt at spraying, I have taken some steps.  With Kerry Beal's advice, I have ordered a Paasche external-mix airbrush.  Meanwhile I experimented with the Badger 250 I already have, using water instead of cocoa butter, and found a spray setting that produces a smaller mist, but it still looks like too much.  I am mystified since in the Bill Fredericks DVD, there is no visible cloud of droplets whatever, and he is using the Badger 250.

 

I checked the compressor pressure, and it reads close to the number Badger suggests.  And finally, to protect my fairly new kitchen from colored cocoa butter droplets, I found a nice place in the basement where I can spray to my heart's content without worry--except, of course, for my lungs.  A really nice finished product may just make the physical perils worth it.



#264 Jim D.

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Posted 07 December 2013 - 02:00 PM

With the advice of Kerry Beal, I moved to a Paasche external-mix airbrush and have had more success with it than I did with the Badger 250.  They have in common, it would appear, a rather wide spray area, but I guess that is the nature of external-mix brushes.  I do have a few questions from my experience so far and would be grateful if those more experienced could help:

 

1. My impression is that covering a mold with colored cocoa butter takes a lot more time than painting it with a brush or finger.  To get a complete covering, I had to make as many as four passes over the mold with the airbrush, and still it did not look as opaque as it would if I had used a paint brush.  I think I had the paint level as high as I could get it.  Is this normal?  I recall a photo from Chocolot showing some molds sprayed with her Fuji, and they look much more thoroughly covered than I have managed.

 

2. After about two passes over a mold, I had to stop and hit the airbrush with a heat gun, then the color would start flowing again with more fluidity.  Is this normal?

 

Thanks in advance for any advice.



#265 Kerry Beal

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Posted 07 December 2013 - 05:51 PM

Yup - to get a thick layer of colour does take a fair bit of work with an airbrush.  Warming up the airbrush is usually necessary a few times in the process to keep colour flowing.  I have two airbrushes going - one warming on the warmer - the other spraying.

 

The Fuji is a whole different level of spraying - it's a pressurized gravity feed - so puts out a whole lot of colour with minimal overspray when it's adjusted correctly.  



#266 Jim D.

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Posted 07 December 2013 - 07:12 PM

Thanks, Kerry, that is exactly what I needed to know.  And I am grateful (as always) for all your help.



#267 stevem13

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Posted 20 December 2013 - 03:50 AM

Hii,

 

At work we spray chocolate and candies frequently and for the spray we melt equal amount of chocolate and coca butter over double boiler. Strain through chinois into the paint receptacle,screw all on the spray. During cleaning,I suggest you get a slick surface that is not all dramatic.

 

Use Wagner sprayer when I use one at work to spray chocolate on desserts or candies,Pastries. It works just good you have to use lube on the piston before you use it and use a cleaner lube on it after.

 



#268 Darcy

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Posted 26 January 2014 - 03:40 PM

 I wondered does anyone know which heart mold Norman Love uses? I like the shape and also the domes? I would like to buy molds the same shape but sizes can vary? I've seen some 15g ones but that seems a bit too large? Also, I have been looking at badger airbrushes, with a view to buy. But have noticed on the packaging it says the airbrush contains material known to cause cancer? What are your views on this and is their a safer alternative? I would much appreciate every one's advice



#269 Kerry Beal

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Posted 26 January 2014 - 04:19 PM

Maybe CW1417 - 11 grams

 

Here



#270 Darcy

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Posted 26 January 2014 - 04:35 PM

Thanks Kerry! appreciate your help







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