The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Need spiral mixer advice/opinions

  • Pin It
SadieBear's picture
SadieBear

Need spiral mixer advice/opinions

Hey lovely people,

So about a year ago I started producing bagels as a Cottage Food Operation. We grew very quickly and eventually moved into a communal kitchen space where I was using Hobart 20qt stand-mixer. It was kind of a pain having to do multiple batches. Now we are lucky enough to be moving into our very own kitchen space, and due to volume we are looking to purchase a spiral mixer (looking at 180lb capacity versus 220lb). I've worked in restaurants before but had no high volume baking experience prior to this.  FYI, the dough is very stiff at 51% hydration.

Fresh Loafers, what should I look for when buying a spiral mixer?  Do you have any brands you suggest?

Lox of love!

gerhard's picture
gerhard

Most spiral mixers require 3 phase electricity so make sure your space has a 3 phase service before you order the machine.  Installing a 3 phase service may well cost more than the mixer.

Gerhard

Bob S.'s picture
Bob S.

If three phase power is not available, the mixer could be wired to a relatively inexpensive (depending on horsepower) phase converter. A variable frequency drive might also be employed.

ananda's picture
ananda

Hi SadieBear,

For the size of mixer you discuss, you need 3-phase.   I'm not sure a converter will allow you to run your mixer at full power - I am a baker, not an electrician.   If you want to mix large quantities of dough at this hydration, your mixer needs to run on full power, especially with the high gluten flour used in bagel production.

Best features in a spiral mixer:   look for bowl rotation, and twin speed.   Ideally, you should have a two speed mixer with bowl rotation [ie you can run machine with the bowl moving either clockwise, or, anti-clockwise] available for both speeds.   Timers on both speeds are common; modern mixers have a programmable feature.

Detachable bowl may be useful for ease of operation, but not common here in the UK.

Best wishes

Andy

Bob S.'s picture
Bob S.

I am an amateur baker, but I am also a retired electrical engineer. I can assure you that a properly sized phase converter will operate a motor at full load, even if the starting torque is high. Rotary phase converters in sizes from 3 HP to 75 HP are available in the USA. Check out the following link:

http://www.americanrotary.com/products/phase-converters/rotary-phase-converters

SadieBear's picture
SadieBear

Thank you all so much this has been incredibly helpful!