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Discussion Starter #1
well, iv'e had to modify my 4oz machine once again..this time not as dramatic.most here know i was using a hot air popper to supply hot air into my custom(i modified it) 4 oz machine..it's a paragon,and of course you know it doesn't come with a heated tray..just a SUPER small heat lamp..if you can even call it that..


all this time my hot air dryer has been working fairly decent..until a couple of days ago, when it decided to stop working..instead of getting a replacement i decided to experiment with another source of heat..hence here comes the heat element..the hardest part was finding a 120volt element..believe me, that's all you need..anyhow i ended up finding a cheap 120 volt single element hot plate at WALMART!!!yes once again walmart has come thru..it's essentially a "hot plate" like what you might find in a college dorm or something..there's a pic...


it didn't take that much to get it in the bottom of my machine since i had a 6" hole cut already for the air dryer..i just had to enlarge it a small bit,to get the hot plate to fit..all i can say is i am very pleased!!!it is completely adjustable,and has proven to be very effective on my test batch of popcorn..i really don't see why paragon doesn't include a heated element of some type in there machine..


the brand of hot plate is DURABLAND.it was over by the toasters,george foremans,etc..model # is WS100. sku is 681131692366..


brickie
 

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Discussion Starter #2
here is another pic..i don't know if theres a complete pic on the walmart website,but the only thing i used is the element and the drip tray.."the housing" wasn't used..you'll understand when you see burner in store.


brickie
 

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brickster,

I assume that you forgot to mention that probably a removable floor for the popper goes over the burner, right? And the heating coil heats up the metal floor that the corn lays on, right?

Perhaps a pic of that would be helpful to those new at this.
 

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Brickie,

All this talk about alternate uses for air-pop popcorn poppers reminded me of when I first started at a new job and my office-mate and I were in an office with no heat. We were freezing and there were no space heaters and we didn't want to spend our own money on a space heater.


We found an air popper in the lounge, so we used to turn it on a few times an hour for a couple of minutes to fill the room with warm air for a little bit.

Desperate times called for desperate measures. Funny, huh?


Sounds like something Scrooge would make his employees do.
 

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Very cool Brickie! As we had talked in the past, that's all that's in my 6oz machine...a single heating element under the tray. I venture to say your design is better


1) It's in the center (as opposed to the right side like mine) which should result in even heating


2) It's adjustable...you could set it on turbo for quick dryout, or on low to maintain an already dry batch.


Very ingenious...you are indeed the popcorn king!
 

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brickie,


Very, very ingenious! You are amazing!!


htomei
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Quote:
Originally posted by rodon
You have the only popcorn machine that doubles as a one burner stove.


Are you worried about a fire at all?
DAMN, that's funny...LOL..i guess i did forget to mention the "metal floor" is over the burner.well here is a pic..


brickie
 

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Discussion Starter #9
here's another few pics while we're at it..


brickie
 

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Discussion Starter #10
okay here is the last pic..just of a metal sign i attached to my cart..thought it was cool when i saw it,and was cheap ($8).


a few more specs...the burner is about a 1" below the metal tray that the popcorn sits on..and it is quite nice that it is adjustable..from warm to ,yes blazing..being in the middle does give a nice even heat as well..


when i first decided that my machine needed a proper way to dry the corn, my first thought was this..at the time i couldn't find a 120 volt element though..everywhere i went carried 240..when i saw this,especially after my hot air went "kaput",then i knew this is what i wanted to try..those that have been here for awhile probably remember us talkign about using the "reptile stick on heaters" from pet sotres...problem was not enough heat output to be effective.and along came this..


as usual i wouldn't recommend this to everyone since it would be a major mod..but just know you have options to get rid of dry corn..i love my paragon machine but makes you wonder why they couldn't throw a $9 heating element in the bottom of this machine..


brickie
 

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Hey brickie, why the name "brickie"?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
i'm a union bricklayer here in chicago.


brickie
 

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Discussion Starter #14
PCDOCTOR, you are absolutely correct!!!!!!when you look at some of the bigger machines they use either a electric coil,or o hot blower...personally i prefer the coil design i did..it looks very professional,and i have a TON of room on the other side of my cart now!!


brickie


p.s. i actually own ALL the small helman appliances...we love them,and will have them out for superbowl for sure!!
 

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So Brickie...


Which is better popcorn? Snappy or MegaPop? I see you have switched to MegaPop but do they make a 4oz mix?
 

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Discussion Starter #16
i would have to give the edge POSSIBLY,and i mean a SMALL POSSIBLY to snappy...as far as which will i buy,megapop alll the way...just seems to be a better product,and drys extremely fast...unlike snappy..i'm experimenting to get the right amount of "added" flavacol to the prepak,and then i think it will be the out right winner..so much depends on individual tastes. the theater we frequent tastes just like snappy...but they all use cocnut oil,and flavacol so i'm sure it's just a measurement thing...


sorry for rambling...they don't make a 4oz pre-pak,but the 6oz paks work just fine.


brickie
 

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Brickie,


You've done it again. I envy your machine.


Two more questions (sorry):


1) Was it difficult to cut the center hole out. You use a machine press or something?


2) How is the burner wired? Does it have a switch along with adjustment settings?


I'm going to try and find one out here in LA.


Thanks again for sharing your creative work.


Best,


Soundboy
 

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Discussion Starter #18
the $8 burner from walmart comes with a switch..very good that it's not just on or off.it is completely adjustable for temp.all i did was remove burner along with drip pan from housing..temp control will come out as well,since it's part of it..


i could have wired it to the outside somewhere but i opted not to..i just reach under and trun it on..actually once set you can leave it alone permanently..i MAY wire a small led so i can see when i have it going by just looking at cart. if you leave underneath just tape up the electrical connections so as not to get a shock reaching for knob..


as far as cutting the hole, it is a pain!!!!!!i used a special "cutting bit" attached to my drill...it was custom made at machine shop where my father in law works just for this...home depot has a metal hole saw bit that would be ALOT easier..you need around a 6 1/4 " rould hole..their bit is 6" i believe..you could just use a dremel on the last 1/4"..keep me posted.and if you need to know anything else,i'm here..


brickie
 

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Discussion Starter #19
just read first question again..if you trun switch all the way to left, that's off.when you start to trun to right burner starts to heat up..it doesn't take alot...it can get VERY hot , if you turn all the way too high..that you don't want...like i said COMPLETELY adjustable..


brickie
 

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Brickie I have a Gold Medal 6oz popper and it has a similar design with a heated coil from the factory. Two differences you might want to consider is the coil is covered and the bottom tray has some holes drilled in it. The allows the heat to rise in the tray and also allows air to circulate to help with the drying.
 
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