I have not had any experience in using these machines and wondered if someone could explain how the chocolate is changed over. For example, I use two different kinds of dark, and milk. How do they all stay melted? Is it a lot of work to clean up and make the change over?
Also, I have been look at a Perfect air 2 / enrober 2 machine as a possibility as it would fit my budget and has gotten reasonable reviews. Does anyone have any experience with this particular make?
I sent a friend request to you to find out more about your machines.
Richard, I'm also interested in your wheel machine. If you could tell me a little more about the brand, size and how much you're asking. Thank you. firstname.lastname@example.org
I have the Perfect Compact Coater. It's the smallest enrober the company offers and probably the least expensive enrober on the market. It is even more rudamentary than the Prefamac that Jeff Stern speaks of. I find that it is an excellent starter machine. It is a giant step up from hand dipping without spending $30-40k on an automatic machine. As my business grows, I will certainly look into getting a higher end machine such as a Selmi or LCM (my favorite!). With the lack of financing available for small business these days the Perfect enrober is an excellent compromise.
It is a rather simple machine that includes a blower, a detailer, and a polycarbonate shield (at least mine does). Just like Jeff Stern says, it is the talent of the operator that really influences the results. I am able to keep the temper going for 12-15 hours. Keep your heat gun handy, but so long as you keep the room around 70 degrees you should only need to use it maybe once an hour for about a minute or two. Learning the mechanics of how the belt, the blower, and the detailer work will give you the best results. The Perfect Enrober is a simple machine and you will definitely see all the mechanics in action which is actually kind of cool. Tempering in the machine is easy with the seeding method. Also, cleanup is very easy and you can easily enrobe in dark one day, clean the pan, and enrobe in milk chocolate the next day.
Using a wheel based enrobing machine can actually make you a better chocolatier. You learn to keep an eye on things and have an understanding of what is going on all the time.
So the bottom line is if you feel you need an enrober, but cannot yet afford a Selmi, Savy, or LCM (Lexus, Mercedes, BMW) definitely get a wheel based machine such as Perfect (Honda Civic). It will get you where you want to go.
Excellent review Daniel. Can you tell me what the max. and min. amounts the Perfect compact wheel machine holds? Thanks!
I think my machine holds around 20kg maximum. You need a tank that is at least half or 2/3rds full to have a good enrobing session. If the chocolate gets too low, the wheel does not pick up the chocolate very well and this will affect your chocolate curtain.
The Perfect company now has a new owner and they have made slight improvements to their machines. The bottom line is if you don't have the money for an excellent selmi or other automatic machine, get started with a wheel machine. It's a major step up from hand dipping.
Thanks Daniel that's helpful. Where did you hear that the Perfect Co. has a new owner? I checked out the website and it's still listed at the same address... I wonder if the Dad sold to the son? I popped in a few years ago when I was in Montreal visiting. Their factory is behind their house - a nice family business - and really nice people!
I bought my Perfect last August just before the sell. I was dealing with the son, but he sold to someone else.
There are a few articles about the sale to the new owner in French on the Perfect Equipment website. I had to order a part this past week and they were quite responsive. Good luck with everything.
I have a wheel based temperer, a forty-four pounder. When you change over, if you can store the pan in a warming cabinet; then tempering doesn't take forever. Then we usually wash up the wheel and the little spout/waterfall, whatever it is called. It's not too bad. Of late we have a bit of a problem with the chocolate over-tempering during the enrobing run. Parts of the enrober itself are a bitch to clean. I dream about the Selmi.