Kathleen: I agree with Perter, yeah strange I know, but check your breaker. Otherwise we all use any excuse to buy up!
I have a sinking feeling about this, but thought I'd ask the experts here if there is any hope (and I will call the company in the morning). Tonight my Alp lost power at some point while roasting (perhaps at 17 or 18 minutes, about when it would have finished -- I was able to salvage the coffee, I think). Instead of going to cool, the light went out and the machine simply died. No warning, nary a hint. Is this likely to be something electrical that could be repaired? Or should I just give up and buy a new roaster? Any advice gratefully received. Kathleen
Hi, I almost hate to mention this, but the first thing I thought of was that it tripped a circuit breaker. Does the outlet work with something else? PeterZ Kathleen Tinkel wrote: <Snip>
Thanks. And that's all right -- it was one of my first thoughts as well. But the outlet works with coffee grinder, coffee maker, etc. Just not with the roaster. I hope to talk to Swissmar next week. Perhaps it's fixable. In the meantime, guess I'll start looking into roasters again. I know there have been quite a few new ones since I bought the Alp. Kathleen <Snip>
Advice - Chuck it and buy a Stir Crazy and Sunpentown Convection Oven. The exact same thing happened to me with Alp. Only with me the fan died, I didn't know it and ended up melting various plastic parts. The SC/ST mentioned above can be had for around 80 to 85.00. A steal. And it can roast up to a pound at a time. It's the BEST set up I've seen short of the Hot Top or RK Drum. Michael A. Roaster of Vienna, Va.
--Apple-Mail-7-827405535 Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable Content-Type: text/plain; charset O-8859-1; format=flowed hehe I agree!! Dennis Parham On Jan 15, 2005, at 5:54 PM, MMore wrote: <Snip> the <Snip> 85.00. <Snip> set <Snip> --Apple-Mail-7-827405535 Content-Transfer-Encoding: quoted-printable Content-Type: text/enriched; charset O-8859-1 hehe I agree!! Dennis Parham On Jan 15, 2005, at 5:54 PM, MMore wrote: Century = Schoolbook0000,8080,0000Advice - Chuck it and buy a Stir Crazy and Sunpentown Convection Oven. The exact same thing happened to me with Alp. Only with me the fan died, I didn't know it and ended up melting various plastic parts. The SC/ST mentioned above can be had for around 80 to 85.00. A steal. And it can roast up to a pound at a time. It's the BEST set up I've seen short of the Hot Top or RK Drum. Century = Schoolbook0000,8080,0000 Century = Schoolbook0000,8080,0000 Century = Schoolbook0000,8080,0000 Century = Schoolbook0000,8080,0000 Century = Schoolbook0000,8080,0000Michael A. Roaster of Vienna, Va. = --Apple-Mail-7-827405535--
Well, at least it waited until it had done its roasting before it quit. Quite decent of it I would say. So now you have a great excuse to get a better one. There must be one or two out there that you always wished you had O:-) I know nothing about the Alp, except that I decided not to buy one. Almost did once on ebay, but the gods were not with me. Then I got more involved with this list, and reading everything on the SM sight. Had my heart set on a greatly improved product that Tom sells. If the I Roast had come out sooner I probably would have one of those, but I had to do something while I waited. (hot air popper) Would you believe that my first thought about this was that I would NEVER waste my time tinkering with some half way device, or spend a lot of time roasting and blending coffee........ Good luck :-) PeterZ Happily roasting with home built roasters, here in LHC. Kathleen Tinkel wrote: <Snip>
Thanks, Peter -- very much. I have been roasting coffee since the 1970s, and have used many, many different devices. Before the Alp, I used a FreshRoast; before that, a Melitta thingie; before that, a copper ball on top of a gas stove; before that, a perforated sort of pizza pan thingie in the oven. I have also roasted coffee in a wok. The Alp was a great relief that lasted for three or four years. It wasn't perfect, but it was satisfactory and fairly easy. My objective is to have decently roasted fresh coffee for drip -- nothing exotic! If the Alp cannot be easily resuscitated, I guess I need to move on to the next thing. But being fundamentally lazy, I really don't want anything seriously fussy. Guess from your comment that I should look into the iRoast? Okay -- ready to research. Just in case the Alp cannot be restored, Thanks. -- Kathleen <Snip>
You guys have me lost: What is the "Stir Crazy and Sunpentown Convection Oven" -- I feel seriously out of the loop! Thanks. Kathleen <Snip>
Hi Kathleen, Check & replace the thermal fuse. Please read this link http://www.coffeegeek.com/forums/coffee/homeroast/63491#63491& the others there on my post. I've posted lots of info for repairing & adjusting a too cool Alp, etc. Cheers! Regards, Craig. -- No virus found in this outgoing message. Checked by AVG Anti-Virus. Version: 7.0.300 / Virus Database: 265.6.12 - Release Date: 1/14/2005
Kathleen, here is my setup ... it is a 6qt. Stir Crazy popper, mated to a Sunpentown convection oven... roasts very nice! brand new... 85 bucks for everything! give some shipping costs...http://homepage.mac.com/dparham_is/PhotoAlbum20.htmlDennis Parham On Jan 15, 2005, at 7:21 PM, Kathleen Tinkel wrote: <Snip>
Kathleen Tinkel wrote: <Snip> Here are some links:http://www.bish.ws/coffee/TurboCrazy.htmlhttp://home.earthlink.net/~ddesmarais/Turbo%20Crazy/turbocrazy.htm Also search on Coffee Geek for SC/TO, SC/GG and Stir Crazy in the Home Roasters section and you'll find a lot.http://www.coffeegeek.com/forums/search?RET=%2FforumsJeffO
Kathleen, Sorry this may be a bit late, but I was out of town. This sounds like you tripped the thermal fuse in the unit. Basically, there's a device in the power loop of the roaster that 'blows' if it reaches a certain temperature. This puts an 'open' in the power path and shuts off the roaster. This is generally done to meet UL listing or CE mark requirements (so the roaster won't burn down your house). My alp blew the first one and I replaced it. It requires taking the alp mostly apart, finding it, cutting out the blown fuse, and soldering in a new one. This worked for maybe 20-30 more roasts. Then it blew again. I replaced it again, and it worked again for 10-15 roasts. The third time I replaced it, it only worked for maybe 5 roasts. I believe the unit was experiencing another failure, and the thermal fuse was just a symptom. I don't think it was too dirty, as I had plenty of opportunity to clean it while taking it apart over and over. I think it may be that the fan is failing. It looks like a standard computer fan, and I can imagine that it's probably not happy with coffee oils all over it. The last death it died was right around the time the iRoast came out, so I've not bothered to troubleshoot any more. I did roast several hundred roasts with the Alp,so I figured it might be time to let it rest. If you're interested in further discussion, email me off list and I can walk you through fixing it. You can get a thermal fuse at radio shack for a buck or two. Hope this helps! -Garrik On Thu, 13 Jan 2005 21:57:50 -0500, Kathleen Tinkel wrote: <Snip>
Thank you! Fascinating, and I would love being able to roast a pound at a time. But I think I need an appliance, and something that collects most of the chaff, as it is too cold here in Connecticut to roast outdoors for much of the year, and I don't think my husband would like me sullying his garage workspace! Still, it is pretty amazing, and I have printed out the instructions from those sites. Maybe I'll get the components and try it, in the pursuit of knowledge. Thanks very much for the links. Kathleen <Snip>
Garrik: Thanks. It seemed very much like a thermostat or control failure, so your advice is appreciated. My husband is downstairs now disassembling the Alp, trying to figure out what's where in it, and checking whatever is visible or can be measured by his various meters. Did you try replacing the fan? I realize it is but one of the components that could fail, but it appears to be fairly accessible. Thanks for the offer of further help; if we need to, I'll write off list. Kathleen <Snip>
buy a stainless or galvanized steel bucket... the chaff just falls out the side... "into the bucket" hehe also..if you run a few minutes before, it will warm up the immediate area some... just an idea ;) Dennis On Jan 16, 2005, at 2:34 PM, Kathleen Tinkel wrote: <Snip>
The chaff just falls out the side, huh? Interesting notion. I was wondering about an enclosure of some sort, maybe with a vent fan in it. But it all sounds like a lot of work. Fun for a techie, maybe not so much for me. Thanks. Warm sounds good, right around now. . . Kathleen <Snip>
... Serve him Folgers for a week, and you'll get everything you ask for! On Sun, 16 Jan 2005 15:34:40 -0500, Kathleen Tinkel wrote: <Snip> -- Regards, Brett Mason HomeRoast __]_ _(( )_ Please don't spill the coffee!
Thanks, Craig. My husband is doing an exploratory operation on my Alp right now. Thanks for all the great information. Kathleen <Snip>
Thanks, Brett. And oh, I wish it were that easy -- but he doesn't drink coffee! It's all for me. Kathleen <Snip>
Kathleen...... The three mods I've done to my Stir Crazy are 1) a new stirring arm 2) a copper pipe cap - 2" dia. 3) disconnect the heating element. If you choose to try this wonderful set-up, I will send you a custom bent arm (good for 100g roasts up to 400g) and a pipe cap. Since your husband is able to check out you Alp, he would certainly be able to find the wire to the SC element and either cut it, or install a switch. Free stirring arm, and a pipe cap...... Just a little incentive to try this roaster. You'll be thanking us for recommending it. :-) Roasting in the shade, in M'waukee peter schmidt
Well, I thought you (and others here) might be interested in seeing what caused my problem (and I do believe it is a failed thermal fuse). Take a look at these two snapshots of what we found inside once we opened up the Alp:http://www.broadlyspeaking.com/alp_fan_top.jpgThe amount of chaff and chaff dust around the electronic components ">http://www.broadlyspeaking.com/alp_overview.jpgandhttp://www.broadlyspeaking.com/alp_fan_top.jpgThe amount of chaff and chaff dust around the electronic components (and elsewhere) within the Alp was astounding. Of course it would kill a thermal fuse! I guess my question for the assembled multitudes is: Is that a normal state for four-year-old Alpenrost? I cannot imagine that I am at fault -- I brush out all the accessible places (all around the coils; the chaff tray and beneath it; within the gates leading out to the fan doohickey; and the fan thing itself -- everywhere that can be reached, in other words, without disassembling the Alp). It seems to me that this is a grievous design flaw, yet no one has mentioned it. So perhaps it is a problem just with my unit? In any event, it appears that the fuse has been fried, and we shall go get a replacement at Radio Shack, solder it in, and see if the machine can work again. Thanks for all the great advice! By the way: two of the screws that allow the machine to come apart are hidden within the rubber feet. Just in case anyone else has as much trouble as we did in figuring out how to take the Alp apart. Kathleen <Snip>
Kathleen, The Stir Crazy / Turb Oven combo is only a *little* messy - if you set it in a shallow box / pan (like the recently suggested kitty litter box) then there's virtually no mess at all. Add in a bucket / colander / shop vac bean cooler and you're all set. I keep all of these as one of my backup systems, largely because I don't have room in our small house to leave them set up. My Cafe Rosto works well and fits in minimal space. Plus, I only need about three 125-gram batches a week which would be only one batch in the SC/TO setup so I get more variety this way. The bucket / colander / shop vac cooler is something I learned about from the list. For those who haven't yet heard about it, get a thin steel colander (big mesh strainer might work). Cut a hole in the lid of a bucket so the colander just sits down into it - remember to *NOT* make the hole the size of the colander's rim - you don't want it to fall in! Cut a hole about 1/3 up from the bottom of the side of the bucket to stick in the hose of your shop vac. I use a hose from a Dirt Devil handheld myself. To cool your beans, turn on the vacuum cleaner and dump the beans in the colander. You'll need a spoon or something to stir them with for the first minute or so, then they'll be cool enough to stir by hand. The vacuum sucks up almost all of the chaff - note that for larger drum roasts this can be a slight fire-hazard. The key is to make sure you don't have so much surface area open above the beans that all the air you pull in goes around them. That's why a colander, with its limited number of holes, is probably best. Enjoy! Steve :->
Very nice pics! On Fri, 16 Sep 2005 19:54:23 -0700, Deward Hastings wrote: <Snip>
<Snip> Not mine, understand . . . credit them to Kathleen , , , Deward
Kathy said "I guess my question for the assembled multitudes is: Is that a normal state for four-year-old Alpenrost? I cannot imagine that I am at fault -- I brush out all the accessible places (all around the coils; the chaff tray and beneath it; within the gates leading out to the fan doohickey; and the fan thing itself -- everywhere that can be reached, in other words, without disassembling the Alp). It seems to me that this is a grievous design flaw, yet no one has mentioned it. So perhaps it is a problem just with my unit?" Not just your unit. The insides of my two Cafe Rostos were similarly coated w/ chaff dust when I opened them up. There was less of it but they weren't as old as your Alp. The fans suck the dust in along with the air they use to agitate or cool the beans. Holly
Hmmm. If/when we get it working again, I'll try that. Wonder, though, whether the chaff will exit as readily as it entered. Certainly would make sense to open it up and clean it a couple of times a year, though. Now, of course, we are concerned about which components besides the thermal fuse may have suffered from the buildup of heat. Guess we'll find out. Thanks for the good idea. Kathleen <Snip>
Thanks, Holly. It makes sense that chaff would be inclined to be sucked in, but it doesn't make good sense not to design something to prevent it from happening. But perhaps the thing was never expected to have a four-year lifetime? [shrug] Kathleen <Snip>
Thanks, Steve. I tried the colander/vac bean-cooling method a few years ago, when I was mostly using the FreshRoast. Too much fuss, too much equipment. I think I must be a really lazy wench! But the kitty litter tray sounds like a good idea if I decide to play around with the StirCrazy/Turbo oven combination. As you point out, it would be a reasonable backup, and I can seen its use for roasting lots of coffee for parties or gifts. Now, though, it's fix the Alp or replace it with something, and I must say the HotTop has really got my attention. Expensive, but the notion of really good flavor -- as is noted in all the reviews -- sounds wonderful. Kathleen <Snip>
Hi Kathleen, At 4 years of age it's a wonder you didn't have problems sooner! Some of the chaff gets blown through the slits in the fan shroud during every roast & will circulate through the Alp, & ESPECIALLY the printed circuit board also., clean that out too! Please read my post here: http://www.coffeegeek.com/forums/coffee/homeroast/6348#6348. If you ">http://www.coffeegeek.com/forums/espresso/questions/95951#95951& here: http://www.coffeegeek.com/forums/coffee/homeroast/6348#6348. If you care to search on my handle CraigA, I think I have all your questions answered, as I've posted extensively on the Alpenrost. I used to do some repair & service refurbishing work on the Alp as an interm off premises sub-contractor for (Canada) Swissmar (Swissmar Imports Ltd) 35 East Beaver Creek Rd., Unit 6 Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada L4B 1B3 1-(905)-764-1121 for a short period. Regards, Craig Andrews. <Snip> <Snip> <Snip> <Snip> <Snip> <Snip> <Snip> <Snip> <Snip> <Snip> <Snip> -- No virus found in this outgoing message. Checked by AVG Anti-Virus. Version: 7.0.300 / Virus Database: 265.6.12 - Release Date: 1/14/2005
Kathleen, I love my Hottop, and it is totally non fussy. Michael Kathleen Tinkel wrote: <Snip>
Who the hell are you ?! Why are you writing to me ???? Deward Hastings wrote:> Take a look at these two snapshots of what we found inside once we opened up the Alp:http://www.broadlyspeaking.com/alp_fan_top.jpgUgly. This might be one of those cases where blowing it out with compressed">http://www.broadlyspeaking.com/alp_overview.jpgandhttp://www.broadlyspeaking.com/alp_fan_top.jpgUgly. This might be one of those cases where blowing it out with compressed air (even just the blower side from the shop vac) every now and then might not be such a bad idea. Can't be any worse than what you got . . . Deward--------------------------------- Do you Yahoo!? Yahoo! Mail - now with 250MB free storage. Learn more.
Perhaps because you or someone on your computer subscribed to the list. If you want off, just look at the bottom of the message and follow the instructions. Cheers, Mike --http://www.mjv.com/Tanya sunshine wrote: <Snip>
Thank You T.Sunshine... Sunny Disposition Shining The Light... Read the bottom of these and unsubscribe. Otherwise you'll get a whole lot of mail! On Sat, 19 Feb 2005 09:48:23 -0800 (PST), Tanya sunshine wrote: <Snip> -- Regards, Brett Mason HomeRoast __]_ _(( )_ Please don't spill the coffee!
Brett (and everyone): I thought we'd passed through a time warp, or that the coffee was = *really special* this morning, or something . . . . . . That sly allusion to the "safe to clean with compressed air?" = conversation was posted here over a month ago . . . (and no, I don't know T.Sunshine, either . . . ) . . . but there's got to be a *lot* of homeroast mail = in the poor thing's in box . . . Deward
<Snip> once we opened up the Alp:http://www.broadlyspeaking.com/alp_fan_top.jpgUgly. This might be one of those cases where blowing it out with =">http://www.broadlyspeaking.com/alp_overview.jpgandhttp://www.broadlyspeaking.com/alp_fan_top.jpgUgly. This might be one of those cases where blowing it out with = compressed air (even just the blower side from the shop vac) every now and then = might not be such a bad idea. Can't be any worse than what you got . . . Deward