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Popcorn machine recommendations - Page 12

post #331 of 451
Quote:
Originally Posted by rgswff3 View Post

Are people using soap and water to clean the kettle? I thought I read not to use any water on it, just wipe it clean with a damp cloth?

that's what ive been wondering too
post #332 of 451
Quote:
Originally Posted by rgswff3 View Post

Are people using soap and water to clean the kettle? I thought I read not to use any water on it, just wipe it clean with a damp cloth?

You're not supposed to immerse the kettle in water. But there's nothing wrong with carefully using soapy water on the INSIDE of the kettle. You just have to be sure you don't get any water past any side or edge seals. The kettle is actually two halves, an outer shell and an inner shell. The heating element sits in between the two halves. You don't want water getting into that lower half, around the heating element.

Mark
post #333 of 451
Stupid question, how do the popcorn machine and cart hook together? I've been looking at the popular Gold Medal Fun Pop 4oz and it has a dedicated cart. It looks like it just sits on the cart from the pictures. The machine itself is ~40 lbs and I find it hard to believe it's not attached somehow. I can just see my kids knocking it over and breaking the glass.
post #334 of 451
I have the paragon cineplex and the way it connects to the stand is that there are small feet on the popcorn machine and holes on top of the stand that the feet fit into to make a nice stable connection. I would assume it would be that way for the others but not sure.
post #335 of 451
For the cineplex the feet unscrew leaving screws protruding from the bottom of the popper. Those screws then pass thru the holes on the stand. Included wing nuts are then used to secure the two together. I think the holes on the stand may be large enough for the actual feet.
post #336 of 451
I have the Gold Medal Fun Pop & Cart. There are holes on the top of the cart that the machine feet fit into. I am pretty sure the also provided four squares of sticky material that helps hold it into place. I have a 2 year old grandson that has bumped it and the machine didn't budge. I don't think you have anything to worry about.
post #337 of 451
I took the plunge today. Of course no where near done with the theater build but I keep ordering stuff for it

I went with the Paragon 1911 8oz in black and chrome with the matching stand. I really wanted a 6 oz but they didn't make the black and chrome in 6 oz unless I went with the contempo. Unfortunately the contempo only comes with a cart and I didn't have room for a cart but I think I prefer the style and stand of the 1911 better.

I'm so excited!
PopcornMachine_zps10fbec5b.jpg
post #338 of 451
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry M View Post

I took the plunge today. Of course no where near done with the theater build but I keep ordering stuff for it

I went with the Paragon 1911 8oz in black and chrome with the matching stand. I really wanted a 6 oz but they didn't make the black and chrome in 6 oz unless I went with the contempo. Unfortunately the contempo only comes with a cart and I didn't have room for a cart but I think I prefer the style and stand of the 1911 better.

I'm so excited!
PopcornMachine_zps10fbec5b.jpg

Very attractive machine! And one I considered before ultimately concluding that I needed, at least, a 12 oz machine. I do three or four 12-oz batches at each of our Booth Bijou Garage Theater movie nights.

But, boy, is that a pretty machine! smile.gif

Mark
post #339 of 451
Has anyone bought a Cretor's machine. I have had this for going on a year. 6 oz kettle. It was my best Craigslist find. We are a family of 5 and 1 batch is enough for us usually...we use white cheddar primarily, but I keep a good stock of sour cream and onion, nacho, parmesan and garlic...From what I can tell, the Cretor's machines are bulletproof. The machine is fairly heavy and sits on the cart inside the ~1 inch lip. It is not attached and has never been close to tipping with 3 kids and an 80# dog. Very happy with it. The theater IS a theater with the smell of popcorn. I use prepackaged corn/oil/salt/butter flavor packets from Valley Popcorn in Oshkosh, WI. I don't know if they ship products and dont know if I am allowed to put up a link. Google it!!! They use coconut oil in the packets and in my experience, you can't beat this, even at theaters!

I love when the kids go to a movie and say that they did not get popcorn because it is never as good as home smile.gif

I clean it with a food-safe product that I get from Valley Popcorn in Oshkosh, WI. I will post the product info later. I wipe the kettle clean after each use with a paper towel and it is pretty clean. I also have a product to deep clean the kettle when it is time. I used this to clean it the first time when I brought it home and it got it absolutely spotless. It is a powder that you mix with water and run the kettle for 10-15 minutes I cant remember. Worked great though.

accessories.jpg 1664k .jpg file
post #340 of 451
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Booth View Post

Very attractive machine! And one I considered before ultimately concluding that I needed, at least, a 12 oz machine. I do three or four 12-oz batches at each of our Booth Bijou Garage Theater movie nights.

But, boy, is that a pretty machine! smile.gif

Mark

That is A LOT of corn!!!

So I'm now searching for supplies: what is everyone's thoughts on portion packs? Seems a bit expensive at what I believe is the equivalent of $0.75 for a 4oz serving

My wife loved Mega Pop when we tried it. It looks like coconut oil, flavacol, and kernels neatly packaged. Bulk coconut oil and 10 year supply of flavacol is pretty inexpensive. I just can't find Gold Medal kernels. I found Paragon kernels at about $2 a pound shipped for a 12.5lbs bag. Amazon also has a 50lbs bag for about a $1 which is just insane...don't know what to do
post #341 of 451
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry M View Post

That is A LOT of corn!!!

So I'm now searching for supplies: what is everyone's thoughts on portion packs? Seems a bit expensive at what I believe is the equivalent of $0.75 for a 4oz serving

My wife loved Mega Pop when we tried it. It looks like coconut oil, flavacol, and kernels neatly packaged. Bulk coconut oil and 10 year supply of flavacol is pretty inexpensive. I just can't find Gold Medal kernels. I found Paragon kernels at about $2 a pound shipped for a 12.5lbs bag. Amazon also has a 50lbs bag for about a $1 which is just insane...don't know what to do

My favorite portion packs are the Great Northern brand. I buy the 12-oz portion packs from Amazon for (current price) $36.15. That's 24 portion packs which works out to $1.51 per portion pack. So, about $0.50 for a 4-oz serving.

It's definitely cheaper to go the bulk route. But I'd worry about a large bag of corn going stale before I used it. The portion packs are sealed, which helps prevent the kernels from drying out.

Still, the portion packs aren't exactly "expensive" either. For $6 I can make enough popcorn to feet 20-22 people. A small bag (barely enough for one person) costs $6 at the theater!

Mark
post #342 of 451
I have yet to find a prepak that didn't make chewy popcorn. I finally have found that using bulk cocanut oil and popcorn I get very crisp popcorn. Do the Great Northern prepaks come out chewy?
post #343 of 451
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robert Clark View Post

I have yet to find a prepak that didn't make chewy popcorn. I finally have found that using bulk cocanut oil and popcorn I get very crisp popcorn. Do the Great Northern prepaks come out chewy?
Which kernels do you buy?
post #344 of 451
I get bulk popcorn from Snappy. They have it available in 4 lb canisters or 12.5 lb bags. I used to get 2 canisters but that cost more than 1 bag so I now I just order one 12.5 lb bag and pour it into a resealable plastic bucket. I have never had the corn go stale on me.

I used to get jugs of peanut popping oil from a buddy that worked at a cooking oil company. When he left I went with coconut oil and found it to be too much of a mess and tastes/texture was about the same so I am back using peanut popping oil.

Prepaks seem way too costly for me and I like to be able to control the amount of Flavocol, oil, etc.
post #345 of 451
Does anyone know what the portions are on the 8oz mega pop packets...obviously 8oz of kernels, but what about the rest?
post #346 of 451
Quote:
Which kernels do you buy?

I use either Jolly Time or Orville Redenbaker white popcorn locally. I find the yellow popcorn a little tough.
post #347 of 451
Valley Popcorn 5.5oz perfect packs. 1 pack is enough for me and 3 kids. around $1.20 a pack but Soooooooo good and simple.
http://www.valleypopcorn.com/Store.cfm?SubCatID=118
post #348 of 451
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry M View Post

Does anyone know what the portions are on the 8oz mega pop packets...obviously 8oz of kernels, but what about the rest?

Quoting myself here

8oz. of kernals
2oz. of oil
1oz. of flavacol salt

Interesting enough, I priced the individual components and came up with the following:

From Gold Medal site before shipping (shipping is a killer)
Individual Components
8 Oz. Naks Pak (2837) (48 servings) $49.25
Carton Of Only Flavacol Salt (2045CT) (35 servings) $2.50
Naks Pop #2 Oil 2 Oz (2638) (96 servings) $48.45
Total cost per 8oz. serving $1.60
Shipping adds $0.87 per serving for me

All in One Kit
8 Oz. All In One Kit (2838) (24 servings) $23.25
Total cost per 8oz. serving $1.00
Shipping adds $0.62 per serving for me

I really wanted to get individual components so I can adjust quantities or flavacol flavors
post #349 of 451
That is interesting and really surprising. However if you really want to control your portions then go with bulk popcorn and coconut oil. This is a quote from Snappy Popcorn:

(2) 12.5 lb Bag Yellow Popcorn (60 8oz servings) $18.00 (each bag is $9.00)
1 carton of Flavacol $3.00
1 gallon coconut oil (64 servings) $43.00

$1.07 per 8 oz. serving

Shipping to my state (PA): $40.58 so adds $0.67

So pretty close to the All in One Kits. By the way I only factored one quart of Flavacol because 35 servings is waayyyy to low. One Flavocol container lasts for at least two 12.5 bags of corn for me (probably more) and I love salt!
post #350 of 451
Quote:
Originally Posted by godsbrother View Post

That is interesting and really surprising. However if you really want to control your portions then go with bulk popcorn and coconut oil. This is a quote from Snappy Popcorn:

(2) 12.5 lb Bag Yellow Popcorn (60 8oz servings) $18.00 (each bag is $9.00)
1 carton of Flavacol $3.00
1 gallon coconut oil (64 servings) $43.00

$1.07 per 8 oz. serving

Shipping to my state (PA): $40.58 so adds $0.67

So pretty close to the All in One Kits. By the way I only factored one quart of Flavacol because 35 servings is waayyyy to low. One Flavocol container lasts for at least two 12.5 bags of corn for me (probably more) and I love salt!
I believe Mega Pop is 1oz of Flavacol per 8oz serving. That is why I put it at 35 servings
post #351 of 451
Yep I understand. It is just from my experience one of those Flavacol containers lasts a long time.
post #352 of 451
So I ordered my popcorn.

In all the excitement, I failed to realize I ordered 48lbs of popcorn.....oh boy
I decided to go with
48 packs of Mega Pop 8oz kits
48 packs of Mega Pop 8oz kernel packs

Hopefully it has a long shelf life
post #353 of 451
Quote:
Originally Posted by godsbrother View Post

That is interesting and really surprising. However if you really want to control your portions then go with bulk popcorn and coconut oil. This is a quote from Snappy Popcorn:

(2) 12.5 lb Bag Yellow Popcorn (60 8oz servings) $18.00 (each bag is $9.00)
1 carton of Flavacol $3.00
1 gallon coconut oil (64 servings) $43.00

$1.07 per 8 oz. serving

Shipping to my state (PA): $40.58 so adds $0.67

So pretty close to the All in One Kits. By the way I only factored one quart of Flavacol because 35 servings is waayyyy to low. One Flavocol container lasts for at least two 12.5 bags of corn for me (probably more) and I love salt!

Math is off here.

Your pricing for coconut oil is for 4 gallons. Which is too much for my area cineplex. And also a reason why your shipping is so high: thats >30lb of coconut oil. And while there is some discussion whether its good or bad for you, at 32 pounds its not an argument anymore. Your loved ones would just need to get two extra pallbearers.

Take that down to $16 and drop the shipping in less than half and you can see ifs far cheaper to go that route.
post #354 of 451
Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry M View Post

I believe Mega Pop is 1oz of Flavacol per 8oz serving. That is why I put it at 35 servings

Flavacol is heavily flavored salt. If you actually put 1oz in... Well you can't. Its likely closer to .1 oz.
post #355 of 451
has anyone tried using a Mr.coffee warmer plate to heat up butter topping in a plastic chief bottle? will it melt the bottle?
post #356 of 451
I just purchased a paragon machine, do you guys prefer popcorn bags, boxes or tubs
for home use??
post #357 of 451
Quote:
Originally Posted by dtprkr View Post

I just purchased a paragon machine, do you guys prefer popcorn bags, boxes or tubs
for home use??
it depends on how much popcorn you will eat, boxes are great for portion control, but if your watching a 2.5-3 hour movie you may want a tub. its all personal preference
post #358 of 451
I just bought these at bed bath beyond. They are made by Solo and are plastic. They are inexpensive and work well. Plus with bed bath coupons it makes it cheap.

http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/store/product/cinema-style-popcorn-tub/128297?Keyword=Popcorn
post #359 of 451
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mark Booth View Post

Just checking in with an update on the 12 oz. Great Northern Popstar machine we purchased for the Booth Bijou Garage Theater back in December.

4bea555d_i-WQShN3L-X2.jpeg


We've used the machine twice a month for the last 6 months and it's performed flawlessly. It has proven MUCH easier to clean than I expected. Once I pull the kettle into the kitchen to wash it next to the sink, it's a simple matter to use a big bowl of sudsy hot water and a sponge to wipe down the interior of the machine. (I use my shop vac to suck up leftover kernels or popcorn hulls first!) Seriously, it takes less than 10 minutes to clean the whole thing!

I'm VERY pleased with this addition to the Booth Bijou Garage Theater!

Mark

Update on our 12 oz. Great Northern machine….

Last weekend, after making two 12 oz. batches of popcorn before the 1st movie, I went to make a third (and forth) batch for second feature. The kettle in our machine heated the coconut oil but then lost all heat and wouldn't pop the corn! DAMN!!

There were a few reports of this problem (Amazon reviews) when I purchased the machine, but I was willing to take the risk because I really needed a machine with a large bin capacity.

I contacted Great Northern and they have a repair program. The kettle is only warrantied for 30 days! (I knew that going in.) For $24.95 prepaid (plus one-way shipping), they'll repair the kettle (regardless of problem). I got an RMA number but I am concerned about turnaround time. I need the machine every two weeks for the next several months. So, being pretty competent with things electrical, I decided to disassemble the kettle to see if I could figure out the problem.

Turns out there is a thermal fuse built into the circuit inside the two halves of the kettle. It's not much bigger than a 1/2-watt resistor and is connected to the wiring via crimp connectors. I isolated the fuse from the rest of the circuit and used my trusty ohm meter to test it. Yep… open circuit. The fuse had blown. Thankfully, the brand and model number were clearly visible on the thermal fuse. It's an SEFUSE brand, 10 amp, designed to blow at 240º C (464º F).

In addition to the fuse, there's a circuit breaker arrangement mounted to the bottom of the upper half of the kettle. There's a bit of spring metal that, when heated to a certain temperature, changes position and opens the circuit (allowing the kettle to cool). The mounting nut holding this circuit breaker to the bottom of the kettle was somewhat loose. The way it mounts, I suspect that it being loose could affect how well the spring metal reacts to heat.

I tightened the nut on the circuit breaker and replaced the SEFUSE with the exact same brand/model (easily sourced on the web). I reassembled the kettle, plugged it in, and sure enough it's heating again!!

I didn't pop any batches of corn so, at this point, I do not know if my fix is going to last. The problem MAY lie with the spring metal in the circuit breaker not working correctly. If it doesn't respond at the right time, the kettle could become too hot and, pop, there goes the thermal fuse again.

I will add this…. When I went to make that third batch of popcorn right before I figured out the kettle wasn't getting hot anymore, I put in the coconut oil first to let it heat for a bit. Then I FORGOT to add the popcorn within a few minutes. I got distracted by one of our guests and got involved in a conversation. It was about 10 minutes before I realized the popcorn wasn't popping. Oops… I never poured the corn into the kettle! So, the kettle sat there heating (stirring rod NOT turning) with oil in it for about 10 minutes. If the little circuit breaker is designed to open the contacts before 464º F, then the fuse should not have blown. But I'm reasonably convinced that, had I added the corn in a timely fashion and turned on the stirring rod, I wouldn't have needed to replace that fuse. The corn would have absorbed some of the heat and helped keep the temp below 464º F.

I'll be more careful going forward. The machine will get used again this next weekend. We'll see how it goes.

Mark
post #360 of 451
We have had our Great Northern 8oz popper and cart for now 2 months. We love it so much and have tried the Great Northern 8oz and Mega Pop 8oz portion packs. Both are great tasting so far. The machine was bought through Costco online for a great price. Plus with Costco's return policy it's like having a lifetime warranty, win win. smile.gif
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