Proper maintenance of a hydraulic power unit and lubrication of bowl-tilting components are critical for horizontal mixers. Source: Shaffer, a Bundy Baking Solution
Predicting potential problems
Requesting spare parts is getting easier. In some cases, it’s as simple as selecting the part on a 3-D model.

“You don’t even have to know the part’s number,” Mr. Warren said. “You just touch the part you want, and can request a quote for it. That’s a lot more reliable than having some person dig through a manual and find the right part. It’s just more intuitive to select the part at the machine.”

To ensure proper mixer operation and maintenance, data management programs such as AMFMethod and AMFConnect remind bakers that it’s time to grease or change a bearing.

“The fully automated systems keep all variables the same at any given time with pre-­programmed recipe-management settings,” said Mr. Martin, president and chief executive officer of Koenig Bakery Systems. “A gear wheel is sturdier and can withstand the need for higher power. If there is condensation on the outside of the mixing bowl due to the specific climate conditions such as high humidity and a cold bowl, the friction wheel might slide. To avoid this, gear wheels should be used.”

From a processing perspective, one helpful tip involves possibly extending the mix time by a minute or two to boost the batch size on existing mixers.

“If you’re mixing a 450-lb dough and peaking over the amp level, how do you get to 500-lb batches? Easy. Slow down,” Mr. Morabito advised. “You can then knock down your amp draw and mix out a larger dough without killing the mixer. The slower RPM, in most cases, also lends itself to proper mixing. And this speed reduction can easily be achieved by resetting the high-speed RPM on the VFD.”