The perfect scale
- Dylan Jun 20, 2006 02:43 AM
I'm frustrated with my digital scale. First, it's only ounces while many european recipes are grams (and sometimes I just want to measure a few grams - yes for food purposes!!). Second, it sometimes doesn't stay on for long enough - it will zero itself if you don't touch it for too long! Third, it doesn't have a terribly large capacity - maybe five pounds. That's usually ok, but what if you start with a heavier bowl?
One nice feature: it does go "negative." That is, put a bowl on, zero it, take the bowl off, it lists " negative" weight so that if you put the bowl back on, it goes back to zero. I've seen some that produce an error message with this combination of steps!
Does anyone have what they consider "the perfect scale"? Perhaps there are other things I'm not thinking of as well!
There have been alot of discussions about this, so maybe do a search.
I have a Salter and it's the most amazing scale I've ever used.
Huge capacity (like 11 lbs.)
Doesn't go negative, but returns to the number when bowl is replaced
Measures, grams, ounces, fluid oz. and millileters with easy push buttons to switch between the two
Big base, so large bowls and containers don't fall off
I could go on and wax poetic...I just love this scale.
I think I have the same Salter you do and it's good for the reasons you describe. But the huge negative is that it turns itself off after a short time, which, if you've got a bowl full of batter and are in the midst of adding more ingredients, can just kill the whole process. If there were a decent scale out there that didn't turn itself off, I'd buy it.
I actualy have 2 scales, one digital that goes up to about five pounds (2.5 kilos) includes the tare function (zero with bowl on scale) and does both imperial and metric. The larger spring scale goes to 18 lbs (8 kilos), the scale rotates to allow the bowl weight to zero out. Both are useful for different things, the large one is not accurate at the sub 1/2 lb measurements, the small one is hard to balance a bag of potatoes on.
Both are considerably improved by having a box of deli paper near by (think a kleenex box full of wax paper). I lay one on the scale and scoop ingredients directly on, stack them up according to the recipe and pour them easily as needed.
Do you think that an accuracy of 1.0g versus 2.0g will make a lot of difference in choosing a scale? I'm debating over 2 scales, each with different capacities, accuracies, price, etc..
The scale will be used primarily for weighing baking ingredients. Will I go crazy without the 1.0g accuracy?
You may, baking is a pretty exacting endeavor, and a difference of a gram will affect a recipe if you're only supposed to use 10 grams of something.
Plus, if you've never owned a nice digital scale, you will soon find yourself using it for lots of things which may benefit from the added accuracy. I use mine to measure out 6 oz. wine pours, measure coffee beans for grinding each morning (45 grams), adding precise amounts of cheese to beaten eggs...
I've had this Salter:
IT was a POS. Salter claimed it was only acurate to .5 oz
The first one was DOA and the 2nd after 2 months, when I set a pot on it it would down tick the weight every few seconds. Finally it just wouldn't turn on. At least BB&B took it back no questions asked.
I'lll get another scale when I have the time to look but certainly not another Salter!
For anyone who's still on the search for a good kitchen scale, the one that Louisa Chu actually recommends in her Gear column is one of the few I'd narrowed down my choices to: The Tanita KD-400 has a large (5kg/ 11lbs) max. capacity but weighs accurately in 1g increments. It has a 6 1/4 in. stainless steel weighing plate and large display. The scale also stores upright, taking up minimal space on ones countertop. And for those concerned with too-quick auto shut offs, this scale has a 10-minute window, and MyWeight make scales with an option to disable the auto-off completely.
For Louisa's review and links to purchasing the Tanita: http://www.chow.com/stories/10409