My popping plate is not getting hot. The stirring rod is rotating so I assume the plate is locked in properly, however after several minutes (10 +) of stirring, the plate is still cold. Could there be something wrong with the unit? It worked the first few times I used it.
Remember the strirring rod connects to the motor, but the heating element connects via the two prongs in the rear, so the motor can run without the heating element turned on (turn on the base without the plate on...the motor runs fine). Try reattaching the plate...it needs a good connection to the connectors in the back. It should heat up pretty quickly. Also, if you put the heating pad in the dishwasher, make sure it is dry and that the contacts aren't tarnished.
I'm certain over time the contacts will get loose and the popper will stop working, but our is going fine after a year.
Also, be careful not to drop the base...lots of cheap, hard plastic that will break and rattle around.
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Re: popping plate not heating up
Place an enamel-coated cast iron Dutch oven (such as one from Le Creuset) on medium-high heat. Add 1 teaspoon vegetable oil and 3 popcorn kernels. Cover it and let it heat up. Don’t shake it or anything. Wait until the three kernels pop, then pour in 1/2 cup popcorn. Stir to coat kernels in oil, then cover and leave the whole thing alone. When popping slows down to one pop every few seconds, remove from heat, uncover and pour into serving bowl. Cue melted butter and salt. Eat.
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If it heats up, your popcorn may be old and dried out. If it doesn't heat up and the stirring rod does not turn, check your power cord for defects. Procedure: plug in the popper (check both ends of the cord!), turn it on, and gently wiggle the cord right at the plug or where it goes into the popper, and watch the stirring rod to see if it moves. If it starts and stops as you wiggle the cord, you've found the break in the cord. Repair it or replace it (West Bend lists it online for $5) and be more careful with the cord in the future (never unplug by yanking on the wire, always pull on the plug itself).
If the stirring rod turns and there is no heat, the thermostat or thermal fuse is probably open. This can happen in some poppers if the air vents are blocked on the bottom. Remove the obstruction from the vents, let everything cool off, and try again. If it does not heat up from a cold start, there may be a blown thermal fuse inside. If you decide to replace the thermal fuse or thermostat, it MUST have the same temperature and current rating as the original.
Take the kettle crossbar assy off the kettle and look and see if there is a set collar above the shaft weight. If so loosen it so you can slide the weight up...enough to get the old one out and the new one in.
The symptoms of only pops half the popcorn is a hard one to trouble shoot. 1.Check your popcorn, old popcorn dries out. As it loses moisture its ability to pop is reduced. Popcorn only lasts about 90 days after opening the air tight packaging. 2. If it is a oil popper, make sure the stirring rod is turning during the popping cycle. They sometimes can stir, but once the popping starts the pressure of the corn can stall a motor. This results in the first half popping, and the second half burning on the bottom. 3. Popper is too cold. This has symptoms of a long, long popping cycle, and half the corn popping the other half just turning brown. Some machines had adjustable thermostats inclosed, most home units do not. Letting it pre-heat longer does not help, the temperature is controlled by a thermo-stat.
Your question has more questions than answers. You choose a Gold Medal 2408 Popcorn popper as your model, but it does not have a 60ktyz motor, the stir rod and shaft are separate from the motor, and you can't get parts for it on ebay.
The stirring rod is operated by a motor on the bottom of the popcorn maker, if the rod is not moving, it means the motor is not moviing either. Most likely faulty motor, and it should be replaceable by opening the bottom of the maker. If the motor rotates but the rod doesn't move, something is cut in between the motor and the rod.