Like many others, I read the reviews on this product and decided to get it despite some bad reviews. This thing is pretty awesome! I've tried many types of candy in this, some work, others don't. The one's that work very well are really sugary hard candies. Lifesavers work great! Old fashioned rootbeer & apple drops work great too. Jolly ranchers work as well, but they have a scratchy looking texture. Rock candy & dum dums do NOT work. Feel free to experiment.. afterall, its just sugar... if it doesn't spin the candy, then just wash it out and try again later. I do have a few things to say about this item, it's great for a once in awhile use, however, using it ALOT causes candy to burn on the metal plate, this is pretty hard to get off. I soaked mine in oven cleaner and it came right off [however, I did have to soak it for a day or so to make sure the oven cleaner was off it]. Next thing on the list is that I found that the candy didn't spin on the sides for me, but rather a web over the top.. so.. instead of going around the barrel to collect, I just hold my stick ABOVE the metal plate and twist with my wrist. Perfect candy! I also used this for my work, you can make additional cones out of paper or cardstock [both work, but if you're going to use paper, you might need to make the cone a little tighter. My machine only takes 3-4 minutes to heat up, its pretty quiet, although, sometimes if the lid is slightly off centered it rattles. I've had a great time with this machine and I'm very glad I bought it. Oh, one last thing. For those folks having trouble getting candy to spin, here are some tips. CRUSH candies work best, spaced evenly on the heated plate. If you don't want to crush them, you can place two candies opposite of each other. Basically, if the dish isn't balanced when its spinning, you won't get much of a result. Lastly, when you pickup your machine, I would suggest you get one of those big bags of lifesavers with the 24 flavors [or however many they have]. Mix and match flavors! My favorite cotton candy is lifesavers banana! YUM!
Overall, this is a great machine. I feel that many of the bad reviews are from folks who may have only tried 1 type of candy that wasn't sugary, or.. perhaps it was user error [like offsetting the balance of the plate]. I am very happy with my purchase.
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