The Chocolate Life

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Greetings all...So we have a 240 hilliards temperer...

2 weeks ago it started not being melted in the bottom of the bowl in the mornings when I would go in. (I leave it set around 110 degrees over night) So then...it took about 4 days and one day I walked in and it was all solid, in the front of the bowl, in the back of the bowl it was barely warm. It was set at 110/115 and registering around 85 in the back bowl)

So we have changed the thermal cut out twice, we changed the temperature probe, we changed the board. We in turn changed the relay 2 times with that...today I got yet another thermal cutout. Put it in and nothing...I set it at 110 and it cannot get itself over the high 80's...BUT....if I take the two wires off the thermal cut out and connect them...I can get the heater to kick on and work.

However today... I had for me what is a small amount in the front of the bowl, it was below the heater block. The room temp was about 68 and when I got it down to 83 and back up to 87 it looked horrible, it was way too thick. I tested it on a spoon and all I had to do was cap molds so I used it but I don't think it would have passed for molding.

So I have stumped the folks at Hilliards and tomorrow I am going to clean the blower that forces the heater air thru the cabinet to see if that is the issue...they are sending us new wires for the thermal cut out as well...

Does anyone have any thoughts on this....tomorrow when I pick up the can of air I am also picking up and air horn to sound it when I get this thing fixed... keep an ear out...

Tags: 240, equipment, hilliards, lb, not, temperer, working

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Emily:

I've been on the tech-help side of these things after you've tried ninety-eleven ways to try to fix things and nothing seems to work.

Although not relevant to your problem, I got some panicky emails the week before Valentine's Day from someone who'd purchased a specialty chocolate holding cabinet through me. They pressed a button on the front during cleaning and changed the temperature and it would no longer reach and hold the correct temperature - too warm! ... and it had work flawlessly for three years. They tore it apart, cleaned the insides, had tech help from the company on the phone for hours and in the end, the solution was exactly what my initial thought was: in the three years they had never checked the refrigerant level. The refrigeration repair tech who came in diagnosed the problem in about 2 minutes and within another 15 minutes the cabinet was back up and working. The moral of the story there is that the pre-season checkup now includes not only a cleaning but also recharging the system.

I imagine that it will be something that either has never happened before in the history of this machine (I've run into that scenario) OR it will be something so obvious in hindsight (like the above) that everyone will be slapping their foreheads.

Please let us know how things turn out!

****UPDATE*****

news flash...what ever you want to call it...

It was working after I cleaned the fan that goes to the heater. I kept heat all night last night and it was all melted this morning. To a lovely 112 degrees. (dial is set at 115) So I load several lbs of chocolate in and run it, turn it down, turn it back up...and the chocolate looks hideous. I got it to temper enough chocolate for me to line 4 molds and cap two of them and then it was not staying melted on the baffle, and it was creeping up the corner like no tomorrow...WT#....So I put it on the corner with a free sign attached to it.

The heater block wasn't hot. (the block on the baffle, yes the bowl was moving.) So while stressing over this and dealing with a PITA salesman about packaging I turned it off and set it to 115 again. It sat like that for a good hour. Chocolate in front bowl turned to a thick sludge. The heater was working because the back of the machine was hot as usual. I am thinking it's the blower on the heater....but that doesn't explain the block not working, and I know the block wasn't working by sight and by the fact it was cold, the chocolate all over the baffle was setting.

So, yeah, I mopped the floor and filled the case, and I am home now eating a steak dinner. I don't know what else to do...

I suppose get a fan from Hilliards. I am unsure of why the block was cold. All connections inside have been double checked for tightness and such. I suppose several hundred dollars in parts is better than several thousand in a new machine but this is getting old fast and the bunnies cannot make themselves....

Any thoughts on todays debacle-ness...

( mine are get a good bottle of wine )

Another update from Saturday....

So my husband goes in to work and it has melted the chocolate fine. It's nice and warm and the whole bowl is melted. 

So from when I used it friday and turned it off because it was tempering horrible and then turning into sludge in the bowl, it melts over night to it's right set temperature.

Any thoughts on that? Why it can't cycle and temper but can seem to keep the heat? Could the heater fan be working intermittently? Or maybe the combination of the fan not working and the block not keeping heat...

Today we have a friend who is a mechanical engineer coming to look at it, because maybe someone else's eyes can see what we can't...

I might try to make it come to temper if I have time...or I might put it back on the sidewalk again with the free sign.

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