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Topic: New roaster, first roast results (4 msgs / 181 lines)
1) From: Derek Bradford
Hi All,
Mechanically, the roaster worked like a charm.  It ran the entire time
without a glitch, and the unhooking/tipping time was pretty quick. 
Dumping into the running fan halted the roast almost immediately, I
believe.
However, it took a long time to roast.  It took a good 10 minutes for
the roaster to heat up.  I hadn't anticipated the longer heatup time,
and the beans were inside for the whole time.  It took a long time for
first crack to happen after that; perhaps 15 minutes.  After that, it
was a long time until second crack, which happened 9 minutes after
that.  All said, it was a 34 minute roast, but 23-24 once the
preheating is accounted for.  Still, that's too long.
To fix this, I'm going to try a couple things.  First, preheating the
roaster.  That should help.  Second, I'm going to set up some metal
sheeting around the base of the roaster, where the flame is exposed
all around the roaster.  I think I lost a great deal of heat there. 
I'll make them adjustable for air flow.
Some notes...The drum rotates faster than the old one did, which may
have led to the longer roast time.  Also, it was very difficult to
detect first crack, and I'm not sure I heard it at all.  I won't know
that until I taste the beans.  One interesting effect of the long
journey into second crack was that there is no chipping.  When I went
to second crack with my old roaster, I got chipping every time.  Not
here.
All in all, I'm satisfied with it.  I'll try the coffee tonight and
see if it was roasted too long or not.  I've heard of lots of people
having 23 or so minute roast times, so as long as they aren't baked it
should be ok.
--http://uglyroaster.blogspot.com

2) From: Alchemist John
 From my own drum roaster http://www.chocolatealchemy.com/zenii.php)
you will notice two things.  I also use wire to support one end of 
the drum.  I really like this - simple and quiet.  The other end of 
is where the shaft of the drum connects to the motor.  I ended up 
with a small piece of square hollow stock that the roaster shaft 
slips in and out of. I have a feeling you may need to come up with 
something a little  - I loathe to use the words neater or better - 
more durable maybe.  I have a feeling your two rounds are going to 
weaken and shear over time.  But time will tell.
And you have already come up with the other things that will help 
immensely - preheating and insulating.  I don't know of any drum 
roasters that don't preheat - there is just too much mass there not 
to pre-heat and have a short enough run.  The picture of mine shows 
no insulation at all.  There are now three sides insulated with just 
sheet metal and each time I added a side, I took over a minute off 
the run time.
Finally, give thought to some tests without any heat diffuser at 
all.  Do don't use one, but am running off electric not gas.  Even 
so, your drum's holes are rather small and you have a good 
rotation.  I am willing to bet you don't need the diffuser.
Why was 1st crack hard to here?  Is the whole thing noisy?  Does not 
look like it should be.
And least I forget to say it - Good job!
At 22:17 8/28/2005, you wrote:
<Snip>
John Nanci
AlChemist at large
Zen Roasting , Blending & Espresso pulling by Gestalthttp://www.chocolatealchemy.com/

3) From: Derek Bradford
Nice roaster, John.  I wish I could build something so permanent... 
Mine's a temporary(ish) roaster, in that I'll have to leave it behind
when I head back to Canada in two years.  That's ok though, cause then
I'll get to build a new one.
No offense taken on the shaft comment.  It's clearly temporary.  I've
found some promising places nearby that I think can help me.  There
are some sheet metal supply shops, and welders in the same
neighbourhood.  I think I'll get some nice modifications done very
soon.
As to heat, I had also planned to try a roast sans diffuser.  Since my
drum is so far from the flame, I'm not sure the diffuser is doing a
whole lot.  However, I do think it's helping to provide more stable
radiant heat, once everything's up to temperature.  Oh, the testing.
Speaking of which, I just had my first macchiatto from today's roast,
and it was quite good.  Straight Brazil Bourbon, so a little
flat/boring overall, but it had great balance.  If this was a "bad"
roast, then I can wait to do more testing.
As for noise, the roaster is really quiet, but the beans are noisy. 
The whoosh-clunking of the beans is noisy enough, though, and may have
masked the crack.  I'll just have to listen more closely next time.  I
did a small batch, only 150 grams, so there wasn't a lot of cracking
to be heard.  It was much more pronounced in the old roaster, but it
turned much slower with only 2 vanes.
On 8/29/05, Alchemist John  wrote:
<Snip>
tings
<Snip>
ribes) go tohttp://sweetmarias.com/maillistinfo.html#personalsettings<Snip>
-- 
Check out my roaster blog:http://uglyroaster.blogspot.com

4) From: DJ Garcia
Derek, 15 minutes to first crack is not all that long. I often get that
in my HotTop. The 9 minutes to second crack, on the other hand, seems
definitely overly long. But it sounds like you have the makings of an
excellent roaster!
DJ


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