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Good bread machine but watch for the pitfalls
on 18 November 2006
I would have given this breadmaker 4 or 4½ stars but for a couple of niggles.
This was our first breadmaker and we found it a joy to use. We would use it every day, and it baked what we thought was excellent bread, and dough for rolls or French sticks (or "baguettes", if you really must). We loved the fold-down paddle which ensures a smaller hole is left in the bottom of the loaf than sme other models.
After about a month, however, the machine stopped and smoke started to issue from the ventilation holes as it began to overheat. We returned the breadmaker for a refund and bought an identical one from Amazon. This worked fine for a while but after a few months, the paddle and spindle began to get stiff. About 11 months after we bought the machine, the spindle seized completely. Not even a pair of vise-grips would turn the damned thing. Luckily, we could remove the paddle itself.
I called Amazon and they said we had to return the whole machine at our own expense although I got them to agree to contribute an undefined part of the postage. Looking for a way to avoid shipping a heavy item, I rang the manufacturers (number in the manual) and they immediately dispatched a new baking pan completely free of charge.
Please, do buy this breadmaker but you MUST pay special attention to cleaning the paddle around the hinged joint, and the inside of the post. Every few sessions, pop the paddle into a cup of warm sunflower oil and let it sit there to keep the joint nice and free. You can use the oil in your next loaf.