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SEEKING RECOMMENDATIONS for chocolate melters or tempering machines and vibrating tables


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Hello all! Longtime creeper, first time poster. I have been running my little chocolate company by hand in south Louisiana for the past 6 years now. Quarantine has become somewhat of a boom for our bon bons and business is up 300%. This Thursday I will be taking a second look at a commercial property and should be making an offer if all goes well. I personally come from dirt and the most expensive thing I've ever purchased is a motorcycle so I never thought I would be staring at chocolate tempering machine with heated vibrating tables that are 12,000 bucks! I have contacted a few different retailers and received quotes but I am blindly doing so. The machines I worked with at a local retailer were from the 70's. Because of my humble upbringings these numbers kinda freak me out. Please help!

 

  I need recommendations for two melters or tempering machines that can handle about 25-50lbs of COVETURE chocolate each in order to turn out my shells. Also I need a vibrating table. The dream of course would also be to have the machine that washes and polishes shells but that may have to wait. I need to send specs to one of my investors as he has may have some big machinery hookups. But I am unsure as to which is best. I know a water jacketed machine has worked quite well for me in the past but, beyond that? I know not. Thanks

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Welcome @LOUROUX

 

The gold standard for tempering machines with vibrating tables (not sure they are heated) seems to be Selmi. You want to talk to Brian at Tomric Systems for those. Don't know what you'd get for $12,000 though. There are generally some used units on the market. 

 

Perhaps if you post here what machines you've been looking at you can get the groups input on each machine. 

 

Is there a machine that washes and polishes molds? Thought that was what they call a high school student!

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As of today, September 27th I have had replies from two companies.

 

The pro BAKE diva 12 is the melter with the heated vibrating table & the R400 of the same line, enrobes as well. The diva 12 was the 12,000 quote...

 

I have had replies from WOHL for a water jacketed machine but no specs or numbers yet after several back and forths

 

and that's it! Not a lot of folks have replied, surprisingly. I am used to working with water jacketed savage kettles from the 70's, hep me

 

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You can get a non-automated tempering  wheel melter for $4200, and a vibrating table for about $950. With two wheel melters you can work dark and milk, capacity is about 25 pounds each. This is enough to work all day and you can add chocolate if needed. Way easier than Mol’d’art melters because you have the wheel and spout-constantly stirs for you and filling molds is much easier than ladling.  Contact BAKON USA in Torrance, Ca. These are a great starting point without too high of an investment, and a good company too. I have been doing business with them for years.

Edited by Marmalade (log)
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Jeffrey Stern

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35 minutes ago, LOUROUX said:

As of today, September 27th I have had replies from two companies.

 

The pro BAKE diva 12 is the melter with the heated vibrating table & the R400 of the same line, enrobes as well. The diva 12 was the 12,000 quote...

 

I have had replies from WOHL for a water jacketed machine but no specs or numbers yet after several back and forths

 

and that's it! Not a lot of folks have replied, surprisingly. I am used to working with water jacketed savage kettles from the 70's, hep me

 

One of our members makes very good use of Savage kettles in addition to some other pieces. I'll ask her to weigh in.

 

 

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The downside of the wheel is the constant agitation can lead to faster over-crystallization.  I worked with one briefly at a side job and found it awkward to maneuver molds under the spout to fill them.  Also found the spinning distracting, but that's just me.  If you do go for the wheel temperers you can get just a regular food warmer instead of the more expensive melter to keep a back-up supply of melted chocolate.

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FIRST OFF, thank you so much to everyone who replied! I am self taught, so advice and knowledge is gracefully received. I plan to be on this site more as I have recently acquired a laptop, hooray 🙂

 

 Has anybody used the Diva machines? I wish I could attach a video the rep sent to me in drop box, it's pretty seductive. foot pedal and a heated vibrating table.

 

  Of course my first inclination was to find a few savage kettles but I haven't had much luck yet. Does anyone have model numbers for 25lb and/or 50lb savage kettles that I should be on the lookout for?

 

Mol d'art melter enthusiasts:

   Doesn't ladeling into chocolate moulds get cumbersome and messy? I have faith that it keeps true temperature, as it was designed                     by Wybauw but is that assumption naïve? There's no auger! It reminds me so much of those cheapy food warmers, I wonder how the                   heating is properly dispersed and the temperature is secure. Does it have a spout/skimmer attachment similar to the one for                                 Chocovision and delta machines? The kitchen will have two glass doors so a little flair would be nice.

 

EZ temper:

  I will be more interested in this apparatus after I move into my commercial space. I will have room to build a box for cocoa butter spray and learn how to spray moulds. Up until now I have decorated with powdered food coloring. I think my past history of pinstriping cars and motorcycles will help me with the gun but y'all can be sure I will be coming here for advice on that.

 

*Also any and all advice on dry cases is greatly appreciated 💋 thanks again!

 

 

Edited by LOUROUX
it looked messy af, had to clean up the sentence spacing (log)
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1 hour ago, LOUROUX said:

FIRST OFF, thank you so much to everyone who replied! I am self taught, so advice and knowledge is gracefully received. I plan to be on this site more as I have recently acquired a laptop, hooray 🙂

 

Welcome to the forum, it's nice to see a good amount of chocolatiers surfacing from the lurking zone. I hope you and the others will continue posting, some new blood is always good.

 

 

 

1 hour ago, LOUROUX said:

 Has anybody used the Diva machines? I wish I could attach a video the rep sent to me in drop box, it's pretty seductive. foot pedal and a heated vibrating table.

 

I don't see the need for a heated vibrating table. The need for a vibrating table, yes. For a heated one, no: you vibrate molds for few seconds, if the table is heated or not it won't make any difference. The only difference is that the drippings will harden on a non heated one, while they will flow back in the tank is it's a heated one, the last of your problems.

 

 

 

1 hour ago, LOUROUX said:

Mol d'art melter enthusiasts:

 

1 hour ago, LOUROUX said:

EZ temper:

 

If you do only molded stuff (meaning you don't need an enrober) and you are money scared, then the solution prospected by @pastrygirl could be your optimal. You need the EZtemper to temper the chocolate in the melter quickly and without troubles. That's something you do at least 1 time every day. Plus it helps a lot for ganaches. Ladling is boring, yes, as is filling dozens of molds. Ladling has the advantage that when you find the ladle with the proper dimension then you work quicker and cleaner.

With tempering machines you need at least 2. If you are making stuff for vegans or people with health troubles, then 2 is not enough because you can't use one for both dark and milk, and you will always need one for white. The real advantage of tempering machines is that you can use the enrober, that makes a HUGE difference if you need to enrobe something.

 

 

 

Teo

 

Teo

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3 hours ago, LOUROUX said:

 

Mol d'art melter enthusiasts:

   Doesn't ladeling into chocolate moulds get cumbersome and messy? I have faith that it keeps true temperature, as it was designed                     by Wybauw but is that assumption naïve? There's no auger! It reminds me so much of those cheapy food warmers, I wonder how the                   heating is properly dispersed and the temperature is secure. Does it have a spout/skimmer attachment similar to the one for                                 Chocovision and delta machines? 


Yes a ladle can be a bit messy. I’ve seen a pump I think at Design & Realisation but don’t have one. 
 

I get the attraction of all the expensive toys, I’ve been lusting after a Selmi for years. But for me, and especially now, not being in debt is priceless.  If you have other people’s money to spend that could change things. :) 

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8 minutes ago, pastrygirl said:


Yes a ladle can be a bit messy. I’ve seen a pump I think at Design & Realisation but don’t have one. 
 

I get the attraction of all the expensive toys, I’ve been lusting after a Selmi for years. But for me, and especially now, not being in debt is priceless.  If you have other people’s money to spend that could change things. :) 

The pump is available through TCF sales - it suffers from the same problem that wheel machines though - all that agitation causes significant thickening. 

 

I find that using a Mold'art with an EZtemper - it works best if you keep the untempered chocolate in the meter at about 34º C - take out as much into a bowl as you need - temper with EZtemper and work out of the bowl.  Add more chocolate to the bowl as needed and temper. Avoids the inevitable thickening over time. 

 

I do occasionally see the small Savage melters around. 

 

Gami makes decent machines - but you need to think about potential repairs when you get one of these European machines. 

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9 minutes ago, Kerry Beal said:

The pump is available through TCF sales - it suffers from the same problem that wheel machines though - all that agitation causes significant thickening. 

 

I find that using a Mold'art with an EZtemper - it works best if you keep the untempered chocolate in the meter at about 34º C - take out as much into a bowl as you need - temper with EZtemper and work out of the bowl.  Add more chocolate to the bowl as needed and temper. Avoids the inevitable thickening over time. 

 

I do occasionally see the small Savage melters around. 

 

Gami makes decent machines - but you need to think about potential repairs when you get one of these European machines. 

I understand the thickening problem with the wheel machine, especially if you walk away from the machine for too long. But like most machines, regardless of how automated, you do have to babysit it. Whenever I run into thickening, I just bump up my temperature a few tenths of a degree to break some crystal down for a while then bring it back down once my chocolate has thinned down as needed, and continue the day on.

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Jeffrey Stern

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http://destination-ecuador.net

cocoapodman at gmail dot com

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Looking at the Selmi side by side with the Diva makes the Diva look like the low rent version, ha! But they are pretty similar.

 

Right now two of the Mold'art machines is looking like a pretty nice option to start with. Now, remember y'all, I will be putting confectionary coating in these! Will I still have thickening problems if I also have the pump? And will I still need an EZtemper as I am not tempering chocolate? I am a bit confused as to the advantages of using it for ganache as well, can anyone elaborate?

 

Thanks, Lou

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If you use it to temper your ganaches you can cut them faster, back them off more quickly. I'll try to find the article by Greweling on tempering ganaches.

 

 

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51 minutes ago, LOUROUX said:

Now, remember y'all, I will be putting confectionary coating in these! Will I still have thickening problems if I also have the pump? And will I still need an EZtemper as I am not tempering chocolate? I am a bit confused as to the advantages of using it for ganache as well, can anyone elaborate?

 

 I am confused. Earlier you wrote:  

 

Quote

 I need recommendations for two melters or tempering machines that can handle about 25-50lbs of COVETURE chocolate each in order to turn out my shells.

 

Couverture is not the same as confectionary coating (a snob might say it is the opposite, but of course we don't have those types on eG).  If I may dare to give advice to someone much farther along in the business than I am, if you use the real thing, you can charge more and have claim to the quality of your chocolate.

Edited by Jim D. (log)
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I see, I'm just throwing words out willie nillie. 😄 Sorry about the confusion, I use the Ghirardelli 25lb box of wafers, Confectionary coating I believe.

 

These last 6 years I have been making chocolate by hand in a 100 year old house that only has window units and not one in the kitchen. The humidity in New Orleans is frightening for chocolate, to say the least, much less without central air. I adapted to the tools I had and now I am worried to change the flavor up on my customers. I use locally made chocolate for the ganaches but the shells? eh. I feel like people are kinda rubes about that, even in a culinary heaven like New Orleans. Also, my chocolates are quite...special...so there's a separate focus going on as well ya dig. 

 

I will be moving into a new building with central air (hallelujah) and perhaps when I'm there I will pester you nice folks for more information on dat

 

 

out here, Lou

 

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Hilliard makes a lot of equipment that deals with confectionary coating - lots of used equipment available as people move over to ‘real’ chocolate. Tempering not required - just heating and warmer than couverature.

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Thank y'all for bearing with me! As I have said, I am self taught so I may use the incorrect terminology sometimes. 

 

As for the Hilliard's, I've heard far too many temperature fluctuations can occur and in general, that's its not great equipment. Am I wrong?

 

Now that it's clear that I need a few machines for confectionary coating, besides the Mold'art- what are some 25-80lb machines, with a spout or wheel do yall recommend? I prefer a free standing one but I can also deal with sharing precious counter space with a table top machine.

 

NOTE: I will be using someone else's money to buy these but I'd say my budget for two melters is 6-8 grand but would be fantastic if I could spend less

 

😊

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Since you just need melting - I was going to suggest the Keychoc. But I think it's out of your budget. 

 

Hilliards are not sexy machines but they are workhorses. I don't know how much you need to worry about temperature fluctuations if you are using compound coating. 

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  • 4 months later...
On 9/27/2020 at 2:56 PM, pastrygirl said:

I got a quote on a Selmi last year that was around $16k. 

 

You really can do a lot with a couple of 24 kg mol d' art melters for a small fraction of that.

 

On 9/28/2020 at 2:38 PM, pastrygirl said:


Yes a ladle can be a bit messy. I’ve seen a pump I think at Design & Realisation but don’t have one. 
 

I get the attraction of all the expensive toys, I’ve been lusting after a Selmi for years. But for me, and especially now, not being in debt is priceless.  If you have other people’s money to spend that could change things. :) 

 

Sooo, less than 6 months later and I'm here to eat my words 🤣

 

I'm back on the Selmi lust ... yes, I can do a lot by hand and the EZ temper helps but lately I've been making a ton of bonbons and thinking about how much time I spend maintaining the temper in the melter.  Fill 4 or 5 molds, dump them back in, re-heat the chocolate from 88 to 90, repeat ... my production days could be so much more efficient. 

 

Are they really as fast as they say they are?  The Selmi Color EX claims to temper 12 kg in 7 minutes, seems like decent capacity and better on the budget but I'm wondering if in a few years I'll wish I'd gotten the 24 kg Plus EX. 

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@pastrygirl I’d check and see if you can add the same variety of attachments to the Color EX as the Plus EX. That might be a helpful deciding factor. Also, it may be helpful to talk to Brian at Tomric and discuss your options with him. It would be awesome to have a Selmi!

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34 minutes ago, curls said:

@pastrygirl I’d check and see if you can add the same variety of attachments to the Color EX as the Plus EX. That might be a helpful deciding factor. Also, it may be helpful to talk to Brian at Tomric and discuss your options with him. It would be awesome to have a Selmi!

Second that - give Brian a call. You likely want one you can put an enrober on in the future. 

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@pastrygirl any reason(s) why you're looking at the EX models, instead of One/Legend? Unless you have a kitchen where you can do the water cleaning of the machine (i.e. a floor drain) or see big benefits from being able to add inclusions (nuts, nibs etc) to the machine itself, I haven't been able to figure out the other real benefits? Curious to hear if there are other points. 

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