It is finally that time - we have found a 300sqm site for our new factory/offices/cafe/showroom.
Next step - buy tempering machines. And getting them to New Zealand (for those geographically challenged, that's next to Australia. If you don't know where Australia is, you are probably a little too geographically challenged ;)
I am so torn about what to buy. I want to have two machines, so I do not need to change out to mix between milk & dark. And to keep production in the event one needs servicing. But by buying 2, I will not be able to afford a Selmi.
I have considered 2 x Moldart machines as these are fairly reasonable in price.
I have heard a lot of people talk about Prefect machines, but haven't priced/examined in detail, but this could be an option.
Essentially, I don't want to spend more than $15,000 US - what would you do with that budget? I am looking for either continuous automatic tempering or a semi-automatic wheel machine. Must have vibrating table. Size - 25kg capacity would be the ideal size.
Lastly, anyone used Desserthouse? They are offering 40% off but I have never heard of them.
What kind of hourly/daily production are you looking at?
Also - be aware of the difference between automatic tempering machines (i.e., continuous tempering machines, e.g., Selmi), semi-automatic machines (i.e., batch/wheel, e.g., Perfect, JVK), and melters (i.e., manual tempering).
Automatic is most expensive, and because of the electronics, most likely to break. These also offer the highest production capacity and throughput with enrobing, mold filling, and depositing options. Usually have buit-in vibrating tables.
Semi-automatic is middling expensive and are much more rugged. Second-highest capacity and throughput with enrobing options.
Manual are least expensive (though not cheap) and least likely to give problems. However, the require the highest degree of skill to use and need to be tweaked during the day. No options, everything is done by hand. Can be high throughput for skilled workers.
Which way to go depends on your confidence and your skill level as well as the mix of products you're making and how much chocolate you go through every day. If you can answer these last three questions, we can make better recommendations,
Good point, have edited my post above to include the relevant information, which is:
Continuous Automatic (would be nice!) or semi-automatic wheel machine (most likely what I can afford). I do not want a manual melter.
Size - 25kg capacity is about right for us.
Sorry, throughput, not capacity: 25 kg/hr or 25 kg/day?
A machine has a work bowl capacity and an average hourly throughput capacity. A batch melter might have a high bowl capacity (e.g., 25kg, but if it take 1 hour to melt and temper 25kg, then its throughput is limited to the number of cycles in a day.
The small Selmi's have work bowl capacities that are small, but have throughput capacities that are multiples higher. If you only needed 25kg day of chocolate, you could get by with a machine with a 4kg work bowl capacity with an hourly throughput of 10kg.
Hourly throughput in the range of 50 - 90kg
At that kind of throughput, a couple of options suggest themselves to me.
The first is a continuous machine like a Selmi Color EX. It's about 10,000 Euros ex-works Italy. It's sweet spot for production is right in the range you are talking about. As you mention it's not a great option as you can only afford one and if anything goes wrong ... The EX model has the removable augur making changeover faster.
Another continuous tempering option is the FBM Prima. This has a 7kg tank and an hourly capacity in the 35kg range, but the price is 6,000 Euros ex-works Italy, before a ChocolateLife member discount. You can run milk in one, dark in another, or the same chocolate in both to reach ~70kg/hr throughput. And you have a backup machine in case one goes down.
Another option is what are called "over/under" tempering tanks. These are basically two melting tanks, one positioned over the other. The top tank holds melted chocolate that is dripped into the bottom tank, The bottom tank is tempered using the seed method (there is an agitator), and chocolate is removed via a valve at the bottom of the lower tank. There are many operations that use this approach for very high volume production. The cost depends on the sizes of the tanks and whether or not there is a pump involved - but you should be able to buy two sets for the budget you're talking about. The vibrating table is not included, but you can get one that holds three full-size molds from Chocovision for about US$800.
where about in New Zealand are you starting your business?
Thanks and a happy new year!