The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

My scale is a peice of *@#%@.

will slick's picture
will slick

My scale is a peice of *@#%@.

Hello, friends.

 With the holidays around the corner, I am brushing up on my baking. Today, I embarked on a Cooking with Julia, Cranberry, raisin, pumpkin, brioche bread.  After a painstaking, effort converting my volume measure recipe, to a weight based formula, I realized my scale was not registering up to 10 grams! Ouch! I need a reasonably priced scale, accurate to 1 gram. Thanks for any help. By the way I was forced to resort to cups and spoons! 

WatertownNewbie's picture
WatertownNewbie

Keep in mind that you often get what you pay for.  I really like my OXO digital scale, which measures in ounces (to the quarter of an ounce) and grams (to the whole gram).  If you want portions smaller than that, you can find scales that will do so, but you will pay for that degree of granularity too.  On the other hand, I would be wary of a scale that was cheap and claimed to measure in small increments.

A friend once asked me what the most essential baking tool was in my collection, and I immediately answered that it was my digital scale.  It is used every single time that I prepare something.  Pay a little extra, and you will more than recover the cost from frequent use and reliable results.

 

will slick's picture
will slick

Reasonable to me means the best scale for the money. I do not need factions of a gram. I don't mind spending a little more for a quality scale. However I don't have unlimited funds for this purchase.

 

WatertownNewbie's picture
WatertownNewbie

Here is the OXO web page for the product, which you can find at your favorite kitchen store or online store:

https://www.oxo.com/products/preparing/measuring/11lb-food-scale-w-pull-out-display

HansB's picture
HansB

Is perfect. Pull out display is handy and the top comes off for easy cleaning too.

greyoldchief's picture
greyoldchief

I get my scales at 

www.oldwillknottscales.com

They are reasonable and have a large variety of scales in all price ranges.

MonkeyDaddy's picture
MonkeyDaddy

I first found about it at Old Will Knott, but purchased it from Amazon - it was cheaper there.  Weighs by the gram, holds up to 8 kg, has multiple display settings, and even offers a "baker's math" feature where you lock in the weight of your flour, and it will do the percentages for your other ingredients (I haven't used this feature, yet).  The weighing pan is stainless steel and removes for cleaning, and there is a removable gunk shield that covers the controls.

$35.00 here on Amazon, but be careful.  They also list the same scale with an AC adapter and charge $49.00 for it.  I don't think the adapter is worth the extra money - I'm still working on my first set of batteries after over a year, and I keep the back light on all the time.

     --Mike

will slick's picture
will slick

So, while I was searching for the recommendations, I came across an article for testing your scale, using coins. U.S.A. penny = 2.5 grams, USA nickel = 5 grams. My scale is rated for 1 Gram increments, so 1 penny registered either 2 or three grams. Adding a second penny brought the reading to 5 grams every time. I think my issue is when, I have a heavy bowl on the scale, flour in the bowl, then I try and add 6 grams of salt. I think I will weigh out the small quantities in a pudding cup, then add to the big bowl. I even tried putting my empty mixing bowl on the scale and adding the coins, it still worked, curious to be sure. However, I think my solution will work fine. How do you fine bakers add your small quantities? Tared, right into the main mixing bowl or separately?  Thanks, for your help. 

 

will slick's picture
will slick

My cooking with Julia, Pumpkin, brioche bread is looking nice. The dough rose quite a bit overnight in the fridge. Few more hours, it should be up to temp. and ready to shape. 

pmccool's picture
pmccool

and it was accurate but small enough that larger bowls made it difficult to read the display.  When it eventually gave up the ghost, it was replaced with a MyWeigh KD7000.  It is much more suited to my use with its higher capacity and big display.  

My normal practice is to measure everything into the bowl and that includes the one-gram items.  It's possible that those small quantities are off by half a gram or so but it hasn't caused any problems in my breads.  What I do notice when measuring small amounts of very lightweight materials (and this seems true for most digital scales) is that a slow addition sometimes doesn't register.  If the scale says zero and my eyeballs say that it looks like plenty, a gentle tap on the bowl will often cause the scale to display the weight.  

Paul

will slick's picture
will slick

I think you hit the nail on the head. I was trying to sprinkle the materials in. I may try using a teaspoon. I did notice the tapping worked when I added the coins to the empty mixing bowl. Great observations! I guess my problem is not unique.

 

Lazy Loafer's picture
Lazy Loafer

I usually bake in batches of four or more (up to 12) loaves, so add more of the 'small' things anyway. However, I often will weigh the salt into a small bowl rather than the big bowl of dry ingredients, and sometimes will measure the yeast by volume instead of weight if it's a tiny amount (e.g. one of my poolish breads uses 1/8th tsp per loaf in both the poolish and the finished dough; hard to weigh).

My scale is a Taylor 3830-48, and weighs to .5 gram. It's fairly accurate but there is a lag, so it's a bit of an art when to stop adding ingredients and wait for the scale to catch up.

will slick's picture
will slick

Thanks, after I did the coin test, I was pretty sure another scale was not going to solve my problem. Now that I know the issue I can work within the frame work. I don't remember my original inexpensive scale, lagging as much. Anyway, spoons and cups not withstanding, I think my pumpkin cranberry bread came out pretty good!

albacore's picture
albacore

Well, for anyone else looking for a scale recommendation I would add my vote for the MyWeigh KD8000. 8kg max in 1g increments and accurate too.

To do the job properly you also need a small scale that will weigh in 0.1g increments up to say 150g for small quantities of IDY, salt, etc.

Lance

will slick's picture
will slick

Thanks for the reply Lance. That makes a lot of sense. Some might say it is over kill, however I am big on having the right tool for the job.