HomeRoast Digest


Topic: First Roast! (38 msgs / 1499 lines)
1) From: Bob
 
Got the gear, set up record keeping in Word, and did my first roast in the 
HIP. I used 85 grams of Amistad and tried to follow Tom's directions in the 
cupping review. 1st crack at 3:40, ended at 5:00 and I let it go to 5:45 
before starting the cooling cycle. They turned out a medium brown with no 
oily sheen. I suspect I under roasted, but not knowing where 2nd crack 
would have begun, I won't be able to tell for a day or two when I brew a 
pot. I should probably go to the beginning of the 2nd crack, just to get a 
feel for the timing and the change in aroma, even though it will probably 
trash that batch. They lost 18% of their weight in the roast. Gee, this is 
turning out to be fun! Thanks to all for the great information you've provided.
Bob Bowen
"I'm not from Texas,
But I got here as fast as I could"
homeroast mailing listhttp://lists.sweetmarias.com/mailman/listinfo/homeroast

2) From: Steve
Bob,
I had a tough time in the beginning trying to find 'the end' until I finally
hit second crack. Now it's music to my ears! I no longer use time. When I
hear second crack, which is a chorus of pops/crackling like the height of
popping popcorn, I watch the beans and turn to cool down when they are the
color and sheen that I prefer. I like dark coffee. My favorite beans (so
far) are Yemen, Sulawesi, Sumatra. When I don't reach second crack, the
coffee tastes like straw to me, kinda sour. My favorite thing of all this is
the smell: smoke from roasting, opening the jar after a day or two, after a
grind, and during brewing!
steve
if it's not second crack, it's tea

3) From: Jeffrey Seabrook
UPS delivered my Precision Roaster today and I have been busy!  Roasted up six batches of beans with no problems.  Can't wait to grind them for a pot in the morning.  Is it Okay to roast less than 3 oz. of green beans?  I am a real novice and am looking forward to blends.  Thanks to Sweet Maria's for fully shipping my order.  The Solis Grinder is also a wonderful machine!
Jeffrey Seabrook

4) From: Eric Fesler
<!DOCTYPE HTML PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD HTML 4.0 Transitional//EN">
You should probably stick with 3oz.  The roast time 
varies substantially with the bean quantity and this makes repeatabillity 
difficult.  Poor repeatabillity and you will feel like a beginner no matter 
how much you roast.  Also I would strongly recommend getting a french 
press.  They are super cheap easy to use and a good way of cupping a 
single bean.  I use it to try a bean before making a full pot in hopes 
of being able to tell if it needs to rest longer. (or be tossed in the 
trash)
 
I actually made a french pressed cup of Tanzanian flatbean 
(1:20 past 1cr) this morning which was simply 
amazing.  It was quite strong with a bit of acidity but also with a 
sweetness I have never experienced before in a cup of coffee.  I can see 
how an espresso with this character would be something to look forward 
too.
 

5) From: cthomas
Jeffrey Seabrook  wrote:
<Snip>
Jeffrey;
I have a Fresh Roast and  I think it prefers 2 - 2.5 oz roasting charge. 
That's about the level of the band they recommend you stay below and the
mark on the  measuring spoon they supply.  I typically roast about 30 grams
for the amount I use per pot.  This makes about 4 standard measures when
ground.  I've done 30, 40, and 50 gram lots and the roast temperature
definitely goes up with quantity, I think because the flow rate through the
beans goes down and more heat is extracted by the beans.  This is based on
the decrease in time to 1st crack for the same bean type.  While this does
not seem to be exceedingly accurate for most beans, there is a noticable
trend.  Whatever weight you end up using, I suggest you stick with it,
because as Eric said, repeatability is a desirable goal and you won't get
it if your roast weight varies too widely.  I haven't yet determined what
the sensitivity actually is for the Fresh Roast and I assume it will vary
with roaster brand, at least for the fluid bed types.
Happy roasting,
Carl T.
homeroast mailing listhttp://lists.sweetmarias.com/mailman/listinfo/homeroast

6) From: Steve
Carl,
I have a Fresh Roast and lately I have noticed after several roasts it seems
like a thermostat kicks in and shuts the heat off for a bit which results in
not getting to 2nd crack. I was using 2 oz by weight but now have switched
back to the measuring cup that came with is usually about 1 1/2 oz.
I haven't called them yet but I was wondering if you have ever had problems
with your Fresh Roast?
steve
homeroast mailing listhttp://lists.sweetmarias.com/mailman/listinfo/homeroast

7) From: cthomas
Steve wrote:
<Snip>
seems
like a thermostat kicks in and shuts the heat off for a bit which results
in
not getting to 2nd crack. I was using 2 oz by weight but now have switched
back to the measuring cup that came with is usually about 1 1/2 oz.
I haven't called them yet but I was wondering if you have ever had problems
with your Fresh Roast? <<
Can't say that I've noticed this particular problem.  I've had quite a few
varieties of beans that I expected to get to 2nd crack after a 4 - 4 1/2
minute roast, but didn't.  I never thought to check where in the sequence
they were.  I've never roasted more than 6 30-35 gram batches, but I
haven't enough experience to know which beans will or will not go to 2nd
crack in that time in a Fresh Roast.
There are some beans, I recall, that reliably and noticably go to second
crack when I roast them long enough.  What I can do is try a couple of long
roasts with them late in a six batch set and see what happens.  Guatemalan
Flores Oriente and Hawaiian Kona Extra Fancy go to second crack in 3 1/2
minutes.  Since these are two of my favs, the experiment will be fun as
well.
BTW - have you made any temperature measurements?  Did you notice any
different behavior after you reduced the weight of the charge?  If there is
a cupout due to overheating, a reduced charge would be expected to change
the behavior.  Also, I can see the heating elements in mine, so I would
guess you could too.  If you know about when the cutout occurs, you might
watch the elements during that time.  Also, my unit is only a few months
and maybe a hundred roasts old, so it may be a problem that shows up in
older units if you've had yours a while and used it a lot.
Later,
Carl T.
homeroast mailing listhttp://lists.sweetmarias.com/mailman/listinfo/homeroast

8) From: cthomas
Steve,
Ran the experiment I promised.  Had no problems getting the Guatemalan
Flores Oriente to and through
second crack in the 5th (4 minutes) and 6th (4 1/2 minutes) roasts in the
set.  The earlier roasts were other beans at 3 1/2 minutes each so no
second crack expected.  In addition, I could see the hot elements in the
later stages of both roasts, although with the beans obscuring visibility
most of the time, that's not saying much.  There was no obvious change in
blower motor pitch as there is when the elements switch off going into the
cooling part of the cycle.
Sorry to say, it must be your unit.
Good luck.
Carl T.
homeroast mailing listhttp://lists.sweetmarias.com/mailman/listinfo/homeroast

9) From: Justin Marquez
I couldn't stand it any longer.  The green beans have been here since last 
week and the popper won't be in for probably another week.  I went to the 
local hardware store and bought a Wagner HT1000 heat gun, went to Wally 
World and bought a screen-type strainer and a new 3-qt SS bowl. Just $39.15 
later I had a functional heat gun/dogbowl setup.
I put 3/4 cup of Columbian Narino del Abuelo beans in the strainer, put the 
strainer down in the bowl and fired off the heat gun.  I held it down about 
1-2 inches above the beans and waved it around on the lower heat setting for 
about 2 minutes, kicked up to the high heat. The chaff started blowing out 
soon and the popping started at about 5 minutes. (I was startled by the 
loudness of the cracking! I expected sublety - ha!) It kept popping until 
about 7-8 minutes. I kept the heat gun on high for another 1-2 minutes. Then 
I chickened out and cut it back to low heat for another minute (to sorta 
help cool the element). Never got to the second cracks, but the beans sure 
looked and smelled good.  I shut down the heat gun, and tossed the beans for 
a couple of minutes in the mesh strainer, took them inside and started 
cooling them in a loaf style pan, pouring them between the mesh strainer and 
the loaf oan. After about 2-3 minutes of that I poked them in the freezer 
for 2 or 3 more minutes. Now they were at a little warmer than room temp but 
not uncomfortable to the touch.
I made a small grind and brewed my first home roasted batch.  It was very 
smooth and better than most of what you can buy in the store.  Needs to 
roast more.  I won't chicken out next time before the second crack.
Thanks to all for your help and comments. It was all very helpful.
Safe Journeys and Sweet Music,
Justin Marquez
(Snyder, TX)

10) From: Les
Good Job Justin!
Roasting isn't really that hard!  What is hard is repeating the same
roast.  The most challenging roast is a cinnamon roast!  Getting
through 1st crack and carrying it to second crack is scary at first. 
One thing a newbie should do is just roast!  Burn a batch!  Watch
listen and learn!  If you do it once, you will learn a lot, and won't
worry or wonder where you are.  DB roasting is an excellent way to
learn.
Les
On Thu, 30 Sep 2004 22:21:26 -0500, Justin Marquez
 wrote:
<Snip>

11) From: Dennis Parham
JUSTIN!   Fun hu?? hehe  did you rest your beans a few days in a
sealed container ( venting from time to time?  they only get better!!
well..lol until they take on too much O2 ... I drink everything
withing 1-2 weeks... more like 1...
its more detailed( or can be) but for FABULOUS coffee to enjoy it is
not necessary to have a SUPER NICE CUP! but not necessary...lol
Dennis
On Thu, 30 Sep 2004 20:35:39 -0700, Les  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Dennis Parham

12) From: Jared Andersson
Congratulations on your roast Justin.  For cooling your beans quickly
I really like this Honeywell fan   http://tinyurl.com/4eqzu  
pointed straight up with my mesh strainer on top of it.  This fan is
very powerful even though it is both little and quiet.  I have never
actually timed it but I bet the beans are very near room temp within
30 seconds.  The mesh strainers sit nice and safely on top of it also.
 I got mine at Target some months ago but this link is to Homedepot. 
I think the Target one was cheaper.  I feel silly getting so excited
about a dumb fan but it one of my favorite roasting tools.  Jared
On Thu, 30 Sep 2004 20:35:39 -0700, Les  wrote:
<Snip>

13) From: Justin Marquez
I did what I expect every other first roaster does - brewed a pot as soon as 
the beans were cool enough to touch!  I roasted another batch today at lunch 
of different origin beans and carried it into 2nd crack.  Finally got some 
SMOKE off them ol' beans!  They made a good brew as well. I am going to run 
a pot tomorrow from batch 1, as it will have rested in the ol' mason jar for 
a day and a half by then.
Ordered different origin green beans again today! Yeah - this is fun!
Safe Journeys and Sweet Music,
Justin Marquez
(Snyder, TX)
From: Dennis Parham 
Reply-To: homeroast
To: homeroast
Subject: Re: +First Roast!
Date: Fri, 1 Oct 2004 11:02:02 -0500
JUSTIN!   Fun hu?? hehe  did you rest your beans a few days in a
sealed container ( venting from time to time?  they only get better!!
well..lol until they take on too much O2 ... I drink everything
withing 1-2 weeks... more like 1...
its more detailed( or can be) but for FABULOUS coffee to enjoy it is
not necessary to have a SUPER NICE CUP! but not necessary...lol
Dennis

14) From: Dennis Parham
yea... I have done that before but only with french press... hehehe  
not espresso tho! lol
Dennis Parham
On Oct 1, 2004, at 4:11 PM, Justin Marquez wrote:
<Snip>

15) From: Michael Schinasi
I just recently started roasting using a Salton popcorn popper.  I tried
using a cast iron pan on the stove but I found the roast too uneven and
went too fast.  Here are some of the other things I am having trouble
with.  My popcorn popper also seems to roast pretty quickly.  I am using
1/2 cup of beans at a time --1/3 doesn't get me to even a first crack;
you seem to just need more to get the stuff hot enough-- and if I go
about 7 minutes my beans are already far into the second crack,
blackened and beginning to seep oil.  But even if I let them go 6
minutes or 5 1/2 they are quite dark.  Pretty early in my roast the nice
cinamon color people talk about is already speckled with black and at
best I might get them the color of a very dark cordoban leather.  
I just did some Colombian decaf --is that a sin to purists?-- and
without coverinng the slits in my popocorn popper (usually I do this to
keep the chafe from blowing out, but with decaf it is not necessary) at
around 6 minutes I was just getting my first crack and they came out
light to dark cordoban leather speckled with choclate color and others
almost completely choclate color.  I haven't tried just a 4 or 3.5
minute roast; it seems very fast for roasting beans and I  am afraid the
results will be terrible.
For cooling, since I do a very small amount at a time, I immediately
pour the beans into a small dish and let it sit on top of my ice in my
freezer's ice maker.  There might be some condensation on some, but very
little.  It seems to be OK.
In the end the results have been quite good.  I just finished some
Ethiopean Yrgecheffe (the spelling always gets me!), and yesterday while
I wait for a new order of beans drank an organic Brazilian that my wife
bought at Sam's Club.  No comparison; this morning I decided to forego
the coffee until my shipment comes in and I had some pretty good white
tea.  In any cae, even if I am not that proficient at roasting I still
end up with a much better cup.  I started roasting the Ethiopean long
and ended up letting it go just into the second crack.  Tasted a little
like cherry or wine kind of in the background of the coffee.  No
bitterness (or maybe just a little depending on how I made the coffee).
Resting it at least over night seems to matter a lot.
By the way, let me make sure I understand first and second crack.  The
first crack is the first loud "pop" that you hear, preceded by a sound
comparable to a fire roaring witout the carack and followed by the saem
sound with the cracks.  Then, there is a very briefperiod when the sound
subsides, followed by another pop.  Right?
Ben
"If you live with a devil, you become a devil"
"Si te acuestas con perros te levantas con pulgas"

16) From: Justin Marquez
I am using the heat gun/dog bowl setup.  The heat gun is pretty quiet.  I 
hear at about 4-5 minutes a few loud cracks, followed by an increasing tempo 
of pops. That goes on about 2-3 minutes.  Then it's quiet again for a minute 
or two and then softer pops start to happen.  This time I get some smoke 
from the beans.
Safe Journeys and Sweet Music,
Justin Marquez
(Snyder, TX)
From: "Michael Schinasi" 
Reply-To: homeroast
To: 
Subject: RE: +First Roast!
Date: Fri, 1 Oct 2004 19:03:59 -0400
I just recently started roasting using a Salton popcorn popper.  I tried
using a cast iron pan on the stove but I found the roast too uneven and
went too fast.  Here are some of the other things I am having trouble
with.  My popcorn popper also seems to roast pretty quickly.  I am using
1/2 cup of beans at a time --1/3 doesn't get me to even a first crack;
you seem to just need more to get the stuff hot enough-- and if I go
about 7 minutes my beans are already far into the second crack,
blackened and beginning to seep oil.  But even if I let them go 6
minutes or 5 1/2 they are quite dark.  Pretty early in my roast the nice
cinamon color people talk about is already speckled with black and at
best I might get them the color of a very dark cordoban leather.
I just did some Colombian decaf --is that a sin to purists?-- and
without coverinng the slits in my popocorn popper (usually I do this to
keep the chafe from blowing out, but with decaf it is not necessary) at
around 6 minutes I was just getting my first crack and they came out
light to dark cordoban leather speckled with choclate color and others
almost completely choclate color.  I haven't tried just a 4 or 3.5
minute roast; it seems very fast for roasting beans and I  am afraid the
results will be terrible.
For cooling, since I do a very small amount at a time, I immediately
pour the beans into a small dish and let it sit on top of my ice in my
freezer's ice maker.  There might be some condensation on some, but very
little.  It seems to be OK.
In the end the results have been quite good.  I just finished some
Ethiopean Yrgecheffe (the spelling always gets me!), and yesterday while
I wait for a new order of beans drank an organic Brazilian that my wife
bought at Sam's Club.  No comparison; this morning I decided to forego
the coffee until my shipment comes in and I had some pretty good white
tea.  In any cae, even if I am not that proficient at roasting I still
end up with a much better cup.  I started roasting the Ethiopean long
and ended up letting it go just into the second crack.  Tasted a little
like cherry or wine kind of in the background of the coffee.  No
bitterness (or maybe just a little depending on how I made the coffee).
Resting it at least over night seems to matter a lot.
By the way, let me make sure I understand first and second crack.  The
first crack is the first loud "pop" that you hear, preceded by a sound
comparable to a fire roaring witout the carack and followed by the saem
sound with the cracks.  Then, there is a very briefperiod when the sound
subsides, followed by another pop.  Right?
Ben

17) From: Edward Spiegel
At 7:03 PM -0400 10/01/04, Michael Schinasi wrote:
<Snip>
Hi Michael,
Welcome to the list. First crack and second crack describe periods that occur during the roast. The first crack period has sounds that sound something like popcorn popping (it will last anywhere from 15 seconds to a couple of minutes depending on the roasting conditions). The second crack period has sounds that sound something like the snapping of rice krispies. Each period has some outliers that precede and follow the period. My understanding is that most (but not all) people consider first crack to have begun once there are less than a few second between the cracks/pops.
Generally, one wants a pause between the first crack period and second crack period. Some poppers go so fast that first crack rolls into second crack.
You might find my popper tips page helpful. It describes some techniques to help slow down roasts and a procedure to get calibrated with your popper and it also talks about first and second crack and identifying them since all of us find the whole thing confusing when we get started.
It was written to both help others over the initial learning curve that I (and most new poppers) went through and to share some great tips that I received from list members.
The page is found at:http://www.edwardspiegel.org/coffee/poppertips.phpBest,
Edward

18) From: Michael Schinasi
Thanks Edward; very useful... you covered lots of stuff I wanted to
know.  Great page!
"If you live with a devil, you become a devil"
"Si te acuestas con perros te levantas con pulgas"

19) From: Edward Spiegel
At 11:23 PM -0400 10/01/04, Michael Schinasi wrote:
<Snip>
Thanks. Glad to know you found it helpful. If you make some discoveries or have any refinements that you think would be helpful, please leave a comment on the page. I will eventually incorporate the great feedback people have given me into the main page (I'll also add some pictures).
--E

20) From: Pecan Jim Gundlach
Michael,
I always had difficulty getting an even roast with a standard pan, 
stirring simply did not move the beans well enough.  I have much better 
luck with a round bottom wok.  I also find that trying to roast less 
than half a pound at a time is difficult to control.  My work roasts go 
best when I roast a pound to pound and a half at a time.   Can't help 
on the hot air poppers, I gave up on them years ago.
       Jim Gundlach
On Oct 1, 2004, at 6:03 PM, Michael Schinasi wrote:
<Snip>

21) From: Steve Hay
All,
I roasted my first batch with an iRoast2 using default profile 2.  It
came out qiute dark and the beans looked like they kind of exploded. 
There was no oil on the surface but the beans were very dark.  Using
the pictoral, I would guess its about a vienna roast.  I was using the
Ugh! Vietnamese Robusta on Tom's site.  I didn't hear any cracks but
just more of a soft popping that continued until the roast was over. 
The coffee was actually quite different from anything I've ever had. 
At the same time, the flavors that came out weren't terribly great. 
Still, I can tell that freshness makes a HUGE difference.  Even this
UGH coffee was extremely flavorful, and if I hadn't acquired a taste
for stale coffee, I'd probably have thought it was better.
Does anyone else notice that they single-bean and multi-bean pictures
on Tom's site appear to be different colors?  Especially up towards
French Roast...
This morning I roasted two batches (9oz) of some coffee from East
Timor.  The smell is stronger immediately after the roast completed,
and I used default profile #1 this time and cut it off 2 minutes
early.  I heard what I believe to be first crack.  It sounded like
popcorn.  I stopped it probably 30 seconds after first crack was over,
which was probably 2 minutes after it begun.  I think I hit a City+
roast, but I don't have much experience judging roast level.  It is a
deep, milk chocolate brown.  It was just starting to get kinda smoky,
but only just a bit.  I can't wait to taste it Monday.
On an aside, I went to a place here in the DC area called "Misha's"
which is considered to be the best local coffee place around.  They
roast their own.  They about 15 2 gallon jugs of roasted coffee
sitting out, most of them full, and 4 blends.  I asked what their
freshest coffee was and they told me the blends.  When inquiring about
the single-origin coffees, they claimed not to know.  I suspect they
are pretty old.  However, I decided to get some Java at a FC roast
level (although it looked more like City roast to me..  It was the
same milk chocolate brown color as my East Timor).   The coffee was
OK, but lacked the fresh flavor of the Vietnamese Robusta.  It is sad
I may be ruined for life even shopping at a coffee place that is known
for quality.
They also told me that coffee was best drunk 3 days after roasting. 
However, I thought cupping was supposed to happen 1 day after
roasting.  I've heard some people on alt.coffee way 2 days.  Now, I
have no doubt that 3 day old coffee is probably fine, but is it true
its the peak flavor?
It also contradicts their earlier statement that their blends were
roasted the day before.  Why wouldn't the (more popular) blends be
served at their "perfect" age?
Regards,
Steve
--
Steven Hay
hay.steve -AT- gmail.com

22) From: Aaron
welcome to the roasters club.
on the cracks.
yes first crack will sound kind of like popcorn.or fresh wood snapping 
on a campfire  contrary to the word 'crack'  there is no sharp snap or 
crack sound, it's more like popcorn popping.   You will find though that 
some beans crack a bit louder than others, and the amount of cracking 
changes too.  some all go pretty fast, others drag out a bit.
second crack is more of a softer snap,  To use the campfire analogy 
again, it's kind of like a campfire when the coals are dying down and 
you hear a slight snap or muffled crackle coming from them.  sometimes 
you have to listen very closely to hear it, and with the noise the i 
roast makes to begin with, yes, it can be missed.
this is why you need to watch the color of the beans too and don't rely 
solely on time and noises, but stop the roast when it 'looks' done to 
your liking.
I can't tell you which time that is to get to 1st crack, second etc. 
because as has been mentioned in previous posts, each I roast has a 
personality of it's own. 
Using the ugh is a good thing.. it lets you play around and see how the 
roaster behaves without killing a good coffee.. let alone an expensive one.
I would suggest that you do a roast using a moderate profile but letting 
it run the entire 15 minutes in the i roast using the ugh.   This way 
you can see, smell and hopefully hear first, second, and see how the 
colors change, the oils etc etc.. all the way to the point where you 
burned the hell out of it, then you can sell it to starbucks.  It gives 
you an idea approximately how fast these stages happen, or ... how far 
you can push a roast at a certain level before you really mess it up.  
Note:  if you start getting a LOT of smoke before your 15 is up, stop 
the process so you dont start a fire :O
Aaron

23) From: National Prison Consultants
Steve:  I use the I Roast as well and can say that the preset 2 usually
roasts too dark unless you are looking for a Vienna/espresso/French roast.
I usually use its profile then watch the coffee in the 3rd stage and hit the
cool down button when it gets to where I want it. Remember the amount and
type of beans you use also affects how quickly they darken.  As well, the
beans will get a shade or two darker during the cool period as well. As to
Tom's pictures, the different shades will all depend on the graphics card
and the quality of our screens---so I think it may be hard to match them
exactly.  I have accessed his pictures on several different computers and
they look different on each.  Experiment to taste is the best suggestion I
have.
John B. Webster
Managing Director
National Prison & Sentencing Consultants, Inc.
310 Bourne Avenue
East Providence, RI 02916
401-694-1294
Los Angeles  323-924-5154
www.nationalprisonconsultants.com
info

24) From: Steve Hay
On 2/4/06, Aaron  wrote:
<Snip>
I tried this with some UGH.  I let it go until I could smell a strong
burnt-coffee smell in the house.  I also noticed some oil on the beans
inside the roast chamber.  The beans are very dark..  I think it was a
bit darker than my previous UGH! roast.  I need to get a dryer hose so
I feel a bit more adventurous about the smoke and darker roasts. 
However, since I don't really do espresso much and don't like the
french roasts I've had, I'll probably mostly stick to FC+ and less
with an occasional adventure into Vienna.
--
Steven Hay
hay.steve -AT- gmail.com

25) From: Sandy Andina
Just got home from Wisconsin and had to roast (hey, I'm a coffee  
geek, remember?).  My current espresso is six days old and I am  
nearly out of decaf for drip/press (about a small press pot each of  
Sidamo and Sulawesi left). So I loaded up the i-2 with two scoops of  
Costa Rica SHB decaf and hit preset 1.  I had forgotten what "SHB"  
meant--it went through the entire 10 minute cycle just barely hitting  
the verge of second crack (and no oil before the cool cycle began).  
But no harm, no foul: Tom recommends City to FC+ for this, and it  
ended up City+ to FC. Tasted a bean. Yum. Too bad I can't drink it  
right now. (Yeah, I KNOW how late it is--but I didn't leave Milwaukee  
till 1 am and slept in this morning).  So as the i-2 cooled, I loaded  
up the original i-Roast with 2 scoops of Metropolis GreenLine (the  
green version of Red Line for home roasters).  Hit preset 1, reached  
first crack at 4 minutes in with loads of chaff flying around the  
inside of the pot, and began getting oil and smoke less than 6  
minutes in (with a few cinnamon stragglers). Hit the cool button and  
noticed the pot seemed sort of canted. To my horror, I discovered  
that the weld of one of the metal struts to the collar around the top  
of the pot had failed, and the pot was indeed rising up on one side.  
So for the remainder of the cool cycle I held the pot down with a  
potholder. Lots of chaff, FC+ roast.  By then, the i-2 had cooled, so  
I loaded it with 2 more scoops of Green Line and hit preset 1. This  
time, reached second crack at about 7 minutes in and saw oil at a  
little past 8.  Must be a blend of much softer beans.  So for the  
SHB's I will use preset 2 next time, and keep using 1 for espresso.   
But a complication--the chaff collector lid worked loose, spewing hot  
chaff all over the counter---and melting the bristles on my bar  
broom!  Had to use several dishtowels to lock the lid in place. Also,  
I notice the pot is very hard to remove and click back on to the  
i-2's base.
Will have to order a replacement pot for the original i-Roast.
On Feb 4, 2006, at 11:29 AM, Steve Hay wrote:
<Snip>
Sandy
www.sandyandina.com

26) From: Steve Hay
On 2/4/06, Steve Hay  wrote:
<Snip>
I did two batches of these and I brought them into work to drink, and
they were fabulous.  The taste changed from the second to the third
day.  The second day, there was an incredibly delicate sweet peppery
flavor.  Its a flavor that I also find (rarely) in wines.  The last
time I found it was in an $80 bottle of Paulliac.  On the third day,
this flavor had mostly subsided to reveal a more earthy, forest
flavor.  I think this is what Tom described in his review.  Still very
very good, and better than any coffee I'd had previously.  Some others
also thought it was pretty good.
As for the Ugh!, I think I hit Vienna/French levels with it and bagged
it up too.  We started hitting in later in the week (day 4-5) and the
flavor was noticably not as good.  The roast characteristic was fine,
and actually the coffee was very drinkable, but it had this horrendous
aftertaste of dirty floor.  Bleh.  I know Tom says this is what
"gourmet" coffee is made of, I think they would be able to filter this
one out.  It did remind me of a "gourmet" coffee I picked up in Ross
off of the discount rack though.  That was had a very pungent odor in
the bag and tasted the same.
Today, I am roasting up some Columbian Cauca FNC Excelsio.  I hit it a
little harder than the Timor, using my default iRoast2 profile #1 and
stopping at 1:15.  No appreciable smoke but definately past 1st crack
(which was loud).  I stopped about 30 seconds after the exhaust
started to smell just a bit of that pungent coffee burning flavor.  I
think I hit FC on this one...  However, I didn't hear any second
crack.  The beans have a bit of a sheen, but not glossiness like some
dark roasts.
There have been discussions of smell in these forums..  The smell does
seem to change a bit as the roast progresses in my iRoast2.  First,
there is what I believe people call a "grassy" smell from the beans.
After that, the grassy smell gets more and more "toasty"...  Then, a
little bit before first crack (with the Columbian) I start to smell a
more burnt popcorn smell.  I think this may be the "sweet smell"
people refer to.  I think this is the beginning of A Light City roast.
 The smell then starts to get more pungent and have that familiar
coffee smell.  Not really the one of beans in the bag, but more
characteristic of that kind of bitter, burnt, roasted kind of smell
that I think Vienna/French roasts have.  I think hitting this is Full
City range..  Then there is a point at which the coffee starts to
smoke appreciably.  I'm going to call that Vienna, and if you let it
sit there a bit, I'm guessing that's French.
Anyways, the above are just some of my observations and I'd be curious
to see what more experienced roasters think about them so that I can
learn more about the process...  If I'm even close in describing the
smells vs. roast levels above, it seems like it is an excellent way to
gague where you are in the roasting process.
Regards,
Steve
--
Steven Hay
hay.steve -AT- gmail.com

27) From: james McDougal
I just completed my first roast ever, this weekend!
The stainless steel popper with an 8 pack sampler came nearly a month ago.
Didn't have a chance to try it before going off on vacation for 2 weeks.
When I got back I first tried to use my digital Taylor stainless steel
thermometer (has a 90 degree bend) that fit nicely in the enlarged (by me
and a screw driver) hinge hole.  It looked like it was the perfect length
and would drag in the beans.  In an attempt to heat the popper to 400 deg, I
discovered that the reading of the thermometer went out of range before I
could get to 400. Aborted the attempt and ordered the digital thermometer
with the flexible probe from SM.
Saturday, (after the digital thermometer arrived) was my first chance to
take the roaster on a "maiden voyage".  I placed the flexible K-type probe
through the hinge hole and used duct tape to tape it to the lid.  With the
spouse as a lab assistant to write down temperatures every minute, we
started using a gas range, and a nearly commercial quality free standing
hood.
When the temperature was 400, I put in 1/2 lb Costa Rica Asoproaaa coop
Tarrazu, started cranking and started toward what I hoped was a full city+
roast (intending to stop at 454 deg).  With the beans in the temperature
dropped to 225 and was back up to 309 at 5 minutes (with just a little smoke
– turned the fan to high).
At 6 minutes (326 deg) I heard a few pops and turned the heat down just a
little (1/2 mark).  Temp at 7 minutes was 359.  About this time the duct
tape holding the flexible probe at the right distance from the bottom of the
pan let loose.  I could see the probe back out of the hinge hole when I
backed up the crank and go back down when I continued cranking.
<Snip>
the flexible probe, but I couldn't tell if it was on the side of the pot, in
the air or in the beans.
8 min  - 312 deg
9 min  - 318 deg (hearing some pops)
10 min – 228 deg (at which time I turned the gas back up 1/2 mark)
11 min – 339 deg
12 min – 369 deg (some pops)
13 min – 410 deg
14 min – 395 deg
15 min – 420 deg (lots of smoke)
16 min – 432 deg –
shortly thereafter the thermometer jumped to 466 deg and I took the beans
outside to pour between 2 colanders.  I was surprised that there wasn't more
chaff.  The color looks a little darker than FC+ roast, but I was comparing
it with the SM color guide from a color printer that might not be true
colors. When cooled, I put the beans in the coffee tin with the de-gas valve
overnight.
Sunday, I measured out beans and water (1.45 grams per ounce) and made drip
coffee.  It smelled and tasted very good to me.  I like dark roast coffees,
so this was OK – much better than anything I ever had from Starbucks.
Evidently, I was very lucky in the first roast!
I'd appreciate comments from those of you with some experience.  I thought
the 2nd crack should have been underway, but the later "pops" didn't seem
distinctly different than the first ones I heard.
I would especially appreciate help finding an appropriate K-type probe.  The
plastic end near the sensor melted on this one and the flexibility was a
real problem. It sometimes would get caught in the paddle as I cranked and I
never new if it were in the air or the beans.  A stainless steel probe of
the correct length that fits through the (expanded) hinge hole of the top
would seem to be ideal.  I've seen the directions for drilling a hole and
attaching the rigid Taylor probes through the top, but I fail to see how
those can reach down into the beans with the paddle turning.  There appears
to be enough clearance between the side of the stirring paddle and the pot
for a rigid probe if I could find the right one.
Has anyone solved this problem? I've looked in the internet, but it would be
much better to use a solution that someone else has found.
Thanks, Jim
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28) From: Martin Dobbins
Jim,
 
Congratulations on your first roast, at least it turned out drinkable.  M=
ine, along with many others, I'm sure, didn't.
 
You've found the problem with most digital thermometers, they go out of ran=
ge just around 400F.  Here is one that doesn't:
 http://www.indoorhealthproducts.com/912.htm 
I have no connection to the company other than as a satisfied customer.  =
They often ship for free by USPS and handle orders very quickly.  I have =
not tested the product to its rated 572F maximum but I can vouch for the fa=
ct that it reaches 475F with no problem.
 
If you want to stick with your thermocouple you will find the bead type pro=
be that ships with the instrument will fail very quickly in amongst hot w=
hirling coffee beans (voice of experience here).  A thermocouple will r=
eact to temperature changes far more quickly than a thermometer, so dependi=
ng on how "exact" you want your temperature measurements to be you can modi=
fy your existing probe to make it more hardwearing or buy another one with =
a probe that is more like the probe on your Taylor thermometer.  There ar=
e many places to buy replacement thermocouple probes, this is one of them:
 http://www.omega.com/ 
If you would like instructions to modify your existing probe write again an=
d I'll try and find a link to a "how to" for you.
 
Regards,
 
Martin  
--- On Mon, 8/18/08, james McDougal wrote:
I just completed my first roast ever, this weekend!
When I got back I first tried to use my digital Taylor stainless steel
thermometer (has a 90 degree bend) that fit nicely in the enlarged (by me
and a screw driver) hinge hole........In an attempt to heat the popper to 4=
00 deg, I
discovered that the reading of the thermometer went out of range before I
could get to 400........
.....I'd appreciate comments from those of you with some experience.  I tho=
ught
the 2nd crack should have been underway, but the later "pops"
didn't seem
distinctly different than the first ones I heard.
I would especially appreciate help finding an appropriate K-type probe.  The
plastic end near the sensor melted on this one and the flexibility was a
real problem. =
Has anyone solved this problem? I've looked in the internet, but it would
be
much better to use a solution that someone else has found.
Thanks, Jim
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Homeroast community pictures -upload yours!) :http://www.sweetmariascoffee.com/gallery/main.php?g2_itemId=7820      =
Homeroast mailing list
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29) From: miKe mcKoffee
Congrats on your first roast Jim, enjoy the Journey!
No help on a decent stiff K type probe but IMO a decent bimetal thermometer
works just fine. Used one with my Rosto for years with very repeatable
results. 
Kona Konnaisseur miKe mcKoffeehttp://www.mckoffee.com/Ultimately the quest for Koffee Nirvana is a solitary path. To know I must">http://www.mcKonaKoffee.comURL to Rosto mods, FrankenFormer, some recipes etc:http://www.mckoffee.com/Ultimately the quest for Koffee Nirvana is a solitary path. To know I must
first not know. And in knowing know I know not. Each Personal enlightenment
found exploring the many divergent foot steps of Those who have gone before.
Pacific Northwest Gathering VIIhttp://themeyers.org/HomeRoast/Homeroast mailing list">http://home.comcast.net/~mckona/PNWGVII.htmSweet Maria's List - Searchable Archiveshttp://themeyers.org/HomeRoast/Homeroast mailing list
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30) From: golfermd01
Congratulation, Jim. Welcome to coffee nirvana. Of course, you realize that you cna never go back!
Dan
---------

31) From: Stephen Carey
Jim,
Congratulations on your first roast.  It sounds =
like you worked hard (with spouse!) to get it =
done.  I didn't start with what you are so I =
can't really help you, but I can thank you for =
sharing how the roast went the details.  And, =
welcome to the group.  Keep in touch and you =
should get your questions answered.  I know I did.
If you don't hear anything, you might want to =
post another email, but narrow down the question =
and make the subject very direct.  That will =
catch the eye of the expert roasters in this =
community.  This group has helped me along every =
step of the way.  I have been roasting for 13 =
months and it has been a true blast.  Couldn't =
have done it with out everyone's help.
Again, congratulations.  Keep moving forward.
Stephen
At 01:30 PM 8/18/2008, you wrote:
<Snip>
 I
<Snip>
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<Snip>
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32) From: Bonnie Polkinghorn
Hello Jim,
I roasted for a long time with the popcorn popper, like you.
I used the thermometer as a relative reading, not an attempt to read the
temp of the beans.  Kind of like putting the oven thermometer in the center
of the oven.  I used an analog instant read thermometer that was rated over
550 degrees.
As I roasted, I got the chamber temp, and I would write down the time and
the temp of first crack starting/ending.
That way, I got a feel for the temps just before 1c, at 1c, when 1c was
over.
The temps were very consistent.  The actual temp. didn't really matter.  On
my thermometer, 1c was always at 380.  I would heat the popper up until the
temp was 380, then put my beans in, crank away, watch the temp drop and then
rise up, and 1c was always at 380.
I popped a small hole in the lid and dangled the thermometer in the hole, it
never fell out, even when I dumped the beans.
I don't have my notes with me, but I recall roasting about 12 oz of beans,
and getting to 1c in 8 minutes.  It took me 20 minutes from the start of one
roast to the start of the next, I could do 3 roasts in an hour.  Those were
the days.
Don't forget, when your popper is new, for the first few roasts, your temp
readings will be much higher because the insides aren't coated in "soot",
yet.
Have fun roasting!
I did about 7 months of roasting in the popper until Christmas arrived and
Santa brought me my Behmor.
-Bonnie P.
On Mon, Aug 18, 2008 at 10:30 AM, james McDougal wr=
ote:
<Snip>
on
<Snip>
ng
<Snip>
ip
<Snip>
s,
<Snip>
rs
<Snip>
ee.com
<Snip>
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33) From: peterz
Hey Martin,
Great find!!
I just ordered, and they look great!
Especially like that they have so many functions combined, and that the 
probe is covered with SS.
The + - 8 degree accuracy does not matter with coffee roasting I think.
What matters mostly is keeping the temperature rising slowly, and 
knowing about what the temperature is.
The probe will read different temperatures at different places in the 
roaster. One second update time is fine for this.
Also I like that it only takes an AAA battery! Sure beats replacing a 9 
Volt like in the Digital TC I am using now. :)
Can you tell me if the probe comes with a clip to help it attach to the 
side of a pan or something? It looks like it does not have one, in the 
picture.
Thanks again,
PeterZ
Martin Dobbins wrote:
<Snip>
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34) From: james McDougal
Martin, thanks. I ordered the digital thermometer - good price and free
shipping.
Thanks, I'll post again when I try it.
Jim
On Mon, Aug 18, 2008 at 7:14 PM, Martin Dobbins  wrote:
<Snip>
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35) From: Frank Awbrey
Peter, I've had that thermometer for several months now. I don't recall a
clip coming with it. The probe is 6 or 7 inches long. I use a hot air popper
and drilled a hole downwards thru the top plastic part, then push the probe
down thru it to where the tip stops right in the area of the air vents.
Works great this way.
What I don't like about it is just a couple of minor things.  The long
(about 2 ft or so, maybe 18 inches) wire line likes to curl (or loop) which
is really no problem, just bothers me. A couple of other things is sometimes
the readout jumps from degrees fahrenheit to celsius (this only occurs if I
am moving the probe), again, it is only a distraction, no biggie. It also
has a clock, which I ignore. I only use the heat reading on this device.
These are just minor inconveniences (if you want to call them that) and in
no way affects the actual temperature readings (that I know of).
For the money, it can't be beat (I don't think). I have no problems (that I
know of) with the temperature readings. I think that it gives pretty
accurate readings. I wished that I had ordered two instead of one.
On 8/19/08, james McDougal  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Frank
"Still the one"
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36) From: David Morrow
Mine did not come with a clip, but Tom has a page showing how to make one.
I sometimes use the count down timer, but I would prefer to use the count up
timer.  The problem is that the only way it will count up is after it counts
down to zero and the alarm sounds, and then stopping the alarm stops the
timer.
Still a great value.
Dave Morrow

37) From: Frank Awbrey
David, about a year ago, I bought a digital timer at Wal Mart for about
$5.00. It has nice big numbers. I like it because it does count up, from
zero to twenty minutes, I think. I use it to time my roasts. So, I actually
use two readouts, one is the temp probe and the other is the timer.
On 8/20/08, David Morrow  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Frank
"Still the one"
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38) From: james McDougal
Thanks to everyone who provided insight and welcomed a newbie to the list!
I'm looking forward to learning from you all!
Cheers! Jim
On Mon, Aug 18, 2008 at 1:30 PM, james McDougal wro=
te:
<Snip>
 I
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oke
<Snip>
the
<Snip>
 in
<Snip>
be
<Snip>
as
<Snip>
ip
<Snip>
The
<Snip>
d I
<Snip>
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