I've had this machine for about a month now and made a variety of recipes from luxury ice cream & frozen yoghurts to low fat ice milk. All recipes have been a great success with some tweeking to accommodate the machine. Read on for easy solutions to your every irritation.
Some folk have had problems with paddle jams, lid jams, runny mixtures, ices that are rock solid from the freezer - I've overcome all of these problems and there are easy solutions which I'll include.
This machine is small, not for a large family who wants ice cream fresh every night. The exact capacity is 1 litre (yes, I measured it!) but that doesn't mean you get to add that amount of raw ingredients, or that this is the final amount of ice cream you are going to get. Your mixture will increase in size as it freezes. The thicker the mixture you start with eg/greek yoghurt, heavy cream, the more the mixture will swell. In my use of this machine I would advise not making or adding more than around 500ml of mixture into the machine at a time. The paddle will indeed jam, and the mixture will rise well up the sides and cling to the lid. You'll then have some struggle to get the lid off. For thinner mixtures you can get away with the amounts in the included recipe for Low Fat Ice Cream (a nice one but this should be eaten on the day as it doesn't keep well). I have successfully put a large mixture through the machine in 2 batches and the 2nd batch still freezes well.
Additional utensils in my arsenal are a good ice cream recipe book, a firm plastic jar scraper to get the last of the ice cream off the machine without scratching it, and a set of freezable jelly tubs with lids (these make attractively shaped individual servings and can be stored throughout the freezer taking up less space).
Now for the problems:
Jamming paddles and lids are likely due to overfilling your machine. The motor isn't made for shifting bricks, so be fair to it. Unfortunately most recipe books are designed for large capacity machines so divide the recipes to suit or make 2 batches. If you listen to the motor you'll begin to hear it labour slightly as your ice cream nears completion. Turn it off at this point or wait until it stops and reverses, that's it saying "stop!"
If your ice is too hard after freezing, add around 1/4 - 1/2 tsp of glycerin to your mixture for both a smooth texture and to prevent extreme hardness. Another trick is to add a couple of tsp of alcohol. Some recipes call for a splash of a complimentary booze, but if you want to prevent hardness without the taste, add a tsp or 2 of vodka. Or just pig out and eat the lot in one go so it doesn't need to go in the freezer at all.
For runny mixtures I might suggest that you could be overfilling your machine and it's not getting enough contact with the bucket to freeze. It could be that your recipe needs adjusting, or your equipment/mixture isn't cold enough to start off. Everything should be cold, cold, cold. If you have a family and the bucket is being exposed to continual open/close freezer door syndrome, it's going to take longer for it to achieve a really cold temp. Think through all the possibilities and persevere.
For those who are moaning about having to freeze the bucket for hours, or having to stand around watching the machine (really not necessary for the first 20 minutes, you do need to watch it near the end to achieve a perfect result), save your pennies for a complete machine that will take up all your kitchen counter space (of course you'll just be shifting the moan to another problem) instead of the small space in your freezer required for this one. I find this little machine takes up a minimum of space which is great for storage. We can't have everything. If you have a stroke because you have to open the freezer door or push an "on" button, then really you'd be better to capitulate and buy Ben & Jerry out of the supermarket. We aren't quite at the Star Trek generation when we can just shout "ice cream, vanilla, cold" from the sitting room and expect it to pop out of the freezer by itself. So yes, in the same way you wouldn't turn on your blender and take the dog for a walk, you actually have to pay some attention to what you are doing with an ice cream maker.
I am a weekend ice cream maker for a small family, and in that equation this machine is perfectly adequate. There are bigger machines for bigger families, some have timers, some will be an expensive trade off with your holiday in the Maldives this year, it all depends on what you want. Just remember that it's only a little ice cream maker for a snip and it's not able to run itself, sort out the right recipes/amounts, freeze itself without taking up some space where the ready meals live, or respond to shouts. Taking all that into consideration you should have a good deal of fun and increase your waistline in no time with the aid of this ice cream maker. Enjoy!