Top critical review
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Kitchen Necessity! .......Not Anymore - See Update.
on August 29, 2007
I grew up with one of the first KA mixers - my mom bought it at a fair over 35 years ago. With 5 kids in the house, it was used several times a week for years (cookies, cakes, desserts, bread, etc.). It finally started to give out last year (gear was slipping) so I bought her a new one. And I have 2 myself - one I got for a wedding present 18 years ago (it lives in my weekend house) & I just bought the red artisan for at home. I also have the meat grinder (as does my mom) & that is a handy device. Mom always used it to grind leftover turkey/beef roasts into the best sandwich spread. I can't say enough good about this mixer. I wouldn't bake half as much without it. It's powerful & dependable. I would give this mixer 10 stars if it was an option. You can't go wrong with this machine.
Update: 2/2/2010 I would now rate this 3 stars at most. I am shopping for a replacement to this mixer - ALREADY! And I don't think the replacement will be KA. My 20+ year-old KA is still going strong - this new Artisan has been a disappointment. Underpowered, cheap beaters (paint flakes off) & the head & the mixer itself jumps all over the place when mixing.
The wobbly head problem has become a common complaint with KA mixers. I found how to fix that at least temporarily 1. Unplug the mixer 2. Lock the head in place 3. Make sure the visible hinge pin that goes through body of the mixer is pushed all the way flush 4. Remove bowl & beaters 5. Turn the entire unit on its side 6.Look all the way down the shaft & you will see a screw. (My screw actually fell completely out & was thankfully on the counter, under the mixer!)6.Tighten that screw with a flat head screwdriver. This should fix the wobbly head problem. I was going through beaters - flaking paint issue(these new beaters are CHEAP junk) because the head was jumping all over & making the beater hit the bowl. I thought my beater to bowl clearance was wrong, but it was not. My old mixer never had this problem.
It hasn't died yet but I don't want to be without a mixer so I'm shopping for something better. KA has really slipped in quality. Jeez - I'd be willing to pay a bit more if I could count on KA holding up for more than a few years. They've been concentrating on pretty colors & not quality. The one year warranty should be a red flag!
By the way, the KA I bought my mom - DIED a year ago! What a disappointment. I have been a KA "cheerleader" for years, but no more. This is painful for me because I grew up using a KA stand mixer & have fond memories.