The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

Fomag IM-10 Mixer

Ricko's picture
Ricko

Fomag IM-10 Mixer

Greetings to all,

Like everyone else it seems, I too have had my KA give up the ghost recently, and now I find myself in the market for a new home use mixer. After many years of a love hate relationship with my KA I find that there is a overwhelming plethora of choices from which to pick from when considering a new mixer! My needs are for a twice a week bread bake of 4 loaves or so. Mainly sourdough, white, wild rice and onion, and a rye bread now and then.  I do pass loaves onto family and friends. I’m trying to research the pros and cons of the planetary and spiral styles, but haven't come to a final conclusion.  One mixer that I find appealing and haven’t  found too much in the way of like or dislike comments on is the Famag IM-10 Spiral Dough Mixer sold through Pleasant Hill Grain here in the U.S.  https://pleasanthillgrain.com/famag-im-10-spiral-dough-mixer  There are some YouTube videos of this mixer in action which look good.

Since I’m strictly a bread baker, I don’t see the need for the versatility of the planetary mixer with the paddle and whisk etc. for cakes, cookies and the like.

At this time I’d like to ask some of you die hard bread makers to look over the site and specs of the mixer above and tell me if there is anything that you see or don’t see with this mixer that causes you concern with this mixer fitting in with my weekly schedule. Or perhaps you own this particular mixer and could offer some first hand knowledge of its use! I might mention also that at 66 years young, I want this to be the last mixer I’ll ever have to purchase. The KA served me well for many years, but I’m sure there are mixers out there that I’d be much happier with, and could satisfy the addiction of my bread making hobby. Perhaps even something that might allow me to double my weekly amounts or multiple varieties if I so desired. Something that also wouldn’t require the starting and stopping for cool down like the KA needed from time to time. Many thanks for your help and happy baking!

wheatbeat's picture
wheatbeat

If you primarily bake bread then the best choice by far is a spiral mixer. The Famag is excellent. I hear great things about the SunMix too. I may have an opportunity to test one out soon and I will review it when I do, but for now I can offer you this:

https://wheatbeat.com/equipment-review-famage-spiral-mixer/

and

https://wheatbeat.com/famag-spiral-mixer-update/

Let me know if you have question.

Ricko's picture
Ricko

 wheatbeat, thank you for your reply and the two reviews which I found indispensable in my decision for which mixer to purchase. Even though these Famag issues may seem small to some, I really find it disheartening to have to start off cobbling a new mixer in order to get it to perform properly. I have done extensive searches on the Sunmix, the SUN10 in particular, and pretty much came up empty handed. Especially on any YouTube videos of said mixer in action. I guess one thing that gives cause for suspicion is that any time I did find something on the Sunmix mixer, it was always in relation to mixing pizza dough, never anything to do with bread dough mixing. Now I am not familiar with pizza dough at all and perhaps it is that pizza dough is more easy on a mixer than bread dough, thus making any video appear as though such dough is child's play for a Sunmix mixer. I don't know. You mentioned that you may have an opportunity to test out a Sunmix soon leading to a review. That would be fantastic and worth holding off on a purchase. I'd like to ask how soon your testing might be? In my original post I mentioned that my KA gave up the ghost recently. The reason for this was that I was trying to incorporate some additional flour into a cold lump of dough which was retarded in the fridge for 12 hours. It was the King Arthur recipe for their Tangy Sourdough Bread. The KA had a hard time with the cold lump of dough and ended up striping the internal gears. On conferring with King Arthur about what happened there was no suggestion to let the cold retarded dough warm-up, or to add ALL the flour to the mix before retarding. This recipe is one that I don't want to let get away from me as it does have a very strong tang to it. Thus I'm hoping that my next mixer can handle a lump of retarded dough without the same trouble my old KA had. Again wheatbeat, thank you for your insight and hopefully a nice Sunmix review in the near future! Just maybe in the meantime someone who does use the Sunmix for bread mixing can chime in with some reassurance as to its capabilities with bread dough mixing. In closing after reading your reviews, I do have to say that I am leaning heavily on a Sunmix purchase. But I can wait to see what else might come to light. Again, thank you!

 

wheatbeat's picture
wheatbeat

The SunMix is an excellent choice but it is not a machine I have had a chance to use yet. Alberto DeCicco of forapizza.com might be able to loan me a Sun 6 for a bit so I can properly test and review it. I don't have a date yet, but am hoping it will be "soon". Until then, keep in mind that the SunMix does not have a removable bowl or a lifting mix head. These are features I personally find very useful. Both machines are entirely made in Italy including the motor.

Ricko's picture
Ricko

Yes, I do realize that the bowl is fixed and as for cleaning it requires a wet Scotch-Brite pad and some paper towel. That little effort sure beats having the bowl come loose from the mounting plate, having to make and install a special pin in order to keep the breaker bar centered, and the other minor problems one has to address before the mixer is good to go that you pointed out in your fine review. Yes, I hope the gentleman will loan you the use of a mixer soon!

wheatbeat's picture
wheatbeat

Yes, I hear you on the quirks of the machine. I will tell you that the loosening bowl latch problem has been solved and it is easy to do - very easy, actually. I will post on it shortly. The breaker bar tilting is also an annoyance, but I doubt it has any real-world implications. All in all, the machine is exceptionally good.

albacore's picture
albacore

Don't use a scotchbrite! It will abrade the surface of any stainless steel leaving fine scratches which will cause dough to stick even more.

For a fixed bowl, pour in a cup of two of boiling water direct from a kettle and immediately cover the bowl with a thin plastic carrier bag or similar. Leave it 5 minutes and clean the bowl with a cellulose sponge wipe.

Lance

GrainBrain's picture
GrainBrain

Greetings Ricko,

I own a FAMAG IM. 5S Grilletta, the smallest of the line. You can be sure that any model of FAMAG will last you the rest of your life, even if you were 20 years younger, it would probably still apply. They have the build quality of industrial rock crushers. The motor technology relies on speed control via variable voltage frequency, a technology used in industrial motors up to hundreds of horsepower. What this means for you is that at the very lowest speed setting of 0, the motor will deliver very high torque and will effortlessly mix dense, low hydration dough. The motor itself is nearly silent and barely gets warm.

My most helpful question is to ask why, if you have been happy with a KA, you need the Model 10? Granted there was a fire at the factory and some models and colors have a shipping delay at present. The Model 10 is currently out of stock as well. Do you plan to ever lift the IM 10 up to chest height? If it will be left in the same place forever on your counter, you are a fortunate man. If not, practice with 77 pounds of weight to determine if this is what you want to be doing 10 years from now? I can easily deadlift my bread-filled body weight, but 10 years from now it could be a workout. In short, give the models 5 and 8 a look see.

One other mixer to consider is the Danish built Varimixer Teddy, the smallest countertop model of a commercial line. Unlike FAMAG, the Teddy does not use a breaker bar, but is well worth a look for a countertop model.

Should you change your mind about more of a multi-purpose mixer, consider the Ankarsrum. It mixes effortlessly, but with a different action. Still, unless you are mixing extremely dense dough, it might be the last mixer you ever buy as well.

Good luck making your choice!

Ricko's picture
Ricko

albacore and GrainBrian, thank you for the tips. GrainBrian, I can assure you that I won't be lifting the mixer much. It will either be on a wheeled cart on on the corner of my large oak dinner table which seems like the logical place since I'm baking bread a couple times a week. As for the KA mixer, I believe it was a good entry level mixer and I had it for at least 15 years.....it was time to let it go and look for something else. 

Camarie's picture
Camarie

Those machines are so ridiculously expensive!!!! 

Ricko's picture
Ricko

Camarie, it's all relative.