HomeRoast Digest


Topic: Gene Cafe (62 msgs / 1702 lines)
1) From: Tom & Maria - Sweet Maria's Coffee
I tested prototypes for them a while back but can't really go into it 
much. It had issues but I am not sure if they are resolved in the 
final production version. It's going to be offered in Korea first, I 
believe, and maybe that will work out any bugs with the machine. 
(It's a LOT better to buy the 1000th than the 1st or the 10th or the 
100th and I think this is especially true with home roasters). That 
said, it's a sounds design, and I liked it basically. In fact I still 
have 4 of them here at the shop. I preferred the analog model.
BTW: I am not sure why you thing this is related to Caffe Rosto ... 
this has anything to do with Imex or Caffe Rosto.
Tom
--
                   "Great coffee comes from tiny roasters"
            Sweet Maria's Home Coffee Roasting  -  Tom & Maria
                      http://www.sweetmarias.com                Thompson Owen george_at_sweetmarias.com
     Sweet Maria's Coffee - 1115 21st Street, Oakland, CA 94607 - USA
             phone/fax: 888 876 5917 - tom_at_sweetmarias.com

2) From: Peter Zulkowski
Nice movie, and I do like the roaster controls!
Does anyone know how I could duplicate the controls?
They seem simple enough so as to be off the shelf, well, some shelf anyway.
It does not matter to me if they have the on off built in, I just like 
the idea of dialing the time and temperature like they do.
Any help gratefully appreciated,
PeterZ
Who can't wait to see those controls on the new PGR, here in Lake Havasu 
City, AZ

3) From: Michael Dhabolt
Peter,
<Snip>
If you have any luck, let me know.
Mike (just plain)

4) From: raymanowen
Those are neat knobs, I admit.
One of them is the remote setpoint potentiometer for a temperature
controller with remote readout. All the "remotes" mean is that the devices
are not collocated in the controller proper. The pushbutton centers are
custom built- Optional at Extra Cost.
You could combine a PID controller, a countdown timer, and a blower motor
speed controller using a PLC controller. Manufacturers used to sell
potentiometers with concentric switches in the 50's and 60's.
The cheapest and most cosmetically pleasing way to duplicate the controls o=
n
a roaster is to drop for a Gene Cafe, or the parts you want. You could star=
t
out with a functioning roaster, only doing some mod to make the cool down
more rapid.
Did you note the screen mesh colander in the video? I have the same thing
set in the intake venturi of a furnace blower. 400g of smoking beans can be
stirred with the back of my hands in ten seconds.
If you want 5 snaps into second, you dump after #4 and Wham-o! They're
suddenly cold.
Cheers es 73 -RayO, aka Opa!
--
"When the theme hits the bass, I dance the Jig!" - -Virgil Fox at the Might=
y
Wichita WurliTzer

5) From: Peter Zulkowski
I have an old SCR that used to run an oven some time in the past, that 
does the temperature thing very well... even on 110V when it is supposed 
to run on 220V.
Perhaps I can use that, but, being a furnace control, it is quite a bit 
larger than the thing I am presently thinking of controlling, albeit, 
the whole thing is not all that portable anyway.
The other part would be the timer. I surely like that.
Also the dial a temp knob.
However, I am not about to buy a gene cafe thingie just to get the 
controls from it.
Zounds batman.. seems like I may have to start thinking electronicly again!!
It was so nice to be retired for a while. here in LHC.
PeterZ
CA was greyed out for a bit, but now it is back... dust storms, here in LHC.
raymanowen wrote:
<Snip>

6) From: Tom & Maria - Sweet Maria's Coffee
Yeah - me too! I just feel that someone (well, someone besides us on 
the list) realised that we want to interact with the roast in 
progress, and make determinations on the fly. This is the next best 
thing in controls to being able to pull a sample from the drum and 
hold it up to your nose ... I mean, your visual access to the coffee, 
and your ability to adjust with these simple controls was a really 
smart pairing of features. As you see in my review on the web page, I 
consider cooling to be the weak point on this machine.
Tom
<Snip>
--
                   "Great coffee comes from tiny roasters"
            Sweet Maria's Home Coffee Roasting  -  Tom & Maria
                      http://www.sweetmarias.com                Thompson Owen george_at_sweetmarias.com
     Sweet Maria's Coffee - 1115 21st Street, Oakland, CA 94607 - USA
             phone/fax: 888 876 5917 - tom_at_sweetmarias.com

7) From:
<Snip>
(SNIP)
<Snip>
Iím perdy much a newbe in the art of roasting. 
 Iíve been watching yalls posts for, what, a month now.  
I donít know Tom nor Maria personally, thought I do have a deep appreciation for their mindset as itís projected.  
<Snip>
Iíve dabbled in beer, wine making, but wify couldnít stand the stench.  The coffee bean roasting has her approval :-).
Iíve always liked Columbian coffees.  Bought a whirly-gig grinder (before  the foodtv guy Mario Brown, or whatever, said I should), and started purchasing Columbian roasted coffee beans.
In my Black & Decker, under counter coffee drip machine, the taste was so much better than the commercial coffees I was in hooked!  
Then, I got smarter.  Alas.
I found Tom and Mariaís web site one night after brewing ( and consuming most of) the best lager ever tasted.  Mine.  
Iíve since made a coffee grinder patterned from some of the fine pictures Iíve seen on their ( Tom and Mariaís) web site.  (One day I hope to house it in a nice wooden box to conceal the inner workings of the 2 inch pipe union I constructed from.  (laffs
Oh, and I made a roaster, fashioned after a cement mixer, driven by an ice cream freezer motor assembly on our gas range. (You can make smoothies and roast beans at the same time!!!, well, almost,,,,    (Iíve sent Maria a pic. She will see if could be included on the really funky homemade roaster site (is slow, sorry,  lo.
ANYWAY,,,,,,,,,,,, I just roasted one of the samples from my initial purchase.  Java Government Estate Djampit.  (actually, it was approx. 4.50 oz. Remaining from my previous sample which I roasted at Full City +).  As I heard first crack start, I withdrew from my roaster enough beans for a cup of French pressed , and at 30 second intervals continued to extract equal amounts until a few seconds into second crack (5 total) at which time I dumped the remaining roast into my cooling colander.    
Iíve bagged/ bottled,,,,, and will report back on the flavors of my totally untrained tongue after a proper rest .(the coffee beans, not my tongue).  
I know yalls just cannot wait!!!!!!!!!!
<Snip>
Steve Worman.  (Origin, Indiana, currently in Georgia, on the move to Florida). 
<Snip>

8) From: Ed Needham
Carry on Steve.  Sounds like you are off to a flying start.  Where in 
Indiana were you?
*********************
Ed Needhamģ
"to absurdity and beyond!"
ed at homeroaster dot com
(include [FRIEND] in subject line to get through my SPAM filters)
*********************

9) From: Les
Welcome to the obsession.  We are about the same age.  I have been
roasting for 21 years.  Les
On 4/17/06, woodant5  wrote:
<Snip>
ion for their mindset as it's projected.
<Snip>
ld, last one girl child, (4 total), ages 32 to 13 ĺ .  4 g'children with =
5th on the way.  Currently employed as a tool and die maker which has been =
my occupation for the previous 30 some odd years.
<Snip>
he coffee bean roasting has her approval :-).
<Snip>
  the foodtv guy Mario Brown, or whatever, said I should), and started purc=
hasing Columbian roasted coffee beans.
<Snip>
 much better than the commercial coffees I was in hooked!
<Snip>
most of) the best lager ever tasted.  Mine.
<Snip>
 I've seen on their ( Tom and Maria's) web site.  (One day I hope to house =
it in a nice wooden box to conceal the inner workings of the 2 inch pipe un=
ion I constructed from.  (laffs
<Snip>
e cream freezer motor assembly on our gas range. (You can make smoothies an=
d roast beans at the same time!!!, well, almost,,,,    (I've sent Maria a p=
ic. She will see if could be included on the really funky homemade roaster =
site (is slow, sorry,  lo.
<Snip>
hase.  Java Government Estate Djampit.  (actually, it was approx. 4.50 oz. =
Remaining from my previous sample which I roasted at Full City +).  As I he=
ard first crack start, I withdrew from my roaster enough beans for a cup of=
 French pressed , and at 30 second intervals continued to extract equal amo=
unts until a few seconds into second crack (5 total) at which time I dumped=
 the remaining roast into my cooling colander.
<Snip>
ly untrained tongue after a proper rest .(the coffee beans, not my tongue).
<Snip>
 yalls.
<Snip>
rida).
<Snip>
ribes) go tohttp://sweetmarias.com/maillistinfo.html#personalsettings<Snip>

10) From:
Steve:
welcome, I could not get to the picture of your roaster. could you send me one?
thanks,
ginny
<Snip>

11) From: raymanowen
See, Steve, now you're doing things like we would- "a roaster, fashioned
after a cement mixer."
My current misapplication involves . Throttling the exhaust blower and the gas valve provide temperature
control. I'm just designing it, worrying about making it able to withstand
500 degrees in the drum, for a small safety margin.
Maybe I should go for 600 degrees- more safety margin. No more belt drive.
Just silicone rubber idlers and friction drive
The dryer- or gas oven  is compact enough to put in the shed, OKA
McGee's closet for now.
More plans! A drum with  vanes in a gas oven. 10Kg +  Hmmm...
Cheers -RayO, aka Opa!
Got Grinder?

12) From: Aaron
on the dryer drum thing.  obviously the coupling from motor to drum is 
an issue with the heat involved.  Have you considered a chain drive, or 
perhaps even a wire rope drive?
Aaron

13) From: Steve
I just wanted to drop in and give my two cents on my new purchase.
After years of roasting with a Fresh Roast roaster I finally got the Gene
Cafe.
I have to say it is awesome! (for a Fresh Roast roaster anyway). I roasted 3
lbs yesterday. It is so much easier, quieter, has the cool digital read out,
great looking and roasts more!
At first I heard this clicking noise and thought nooooo not out of the box!
But it turned out to be this hinged flap inside. Whatever that is for I
didn't recall reading anything about it. But at least it's not broken! The
problem I do have is the rubber gasket for the drum lid keeps popping out
after I dump the beans. This may be common because I received a second one
in the box. Not a huge problem more of a nuisance.
Anyway, thanks to those who raved about it on this list and helped me
decide. I love it!
Steve

14) From: Derek Bradford
On 9/9/06, Steve  wrote:
<Snip>
It's job is to clear chaff away from the exit vent.  It doesn't always
work properly; I've had it clog twice with particularly chaffy beans
(even though the chaff collecter had been emptied), but it works
pretty well for the most part.  At first I hated it, and I still don't
particularly like it, but it's just part of the machine now, so I
don't really notice it.
Glad to hear you're enjoying the roaster.
--Derek
-- 
The Uglyroast 3! Coffee Roaster.  ...Now 85% less ugly!http://uglyroast.atspace.com

15) From: hermit
Hi Steve -
I'm still using my Fresh Roast, and it still does a great job, but I
have had my eye out for the Gene Cafe.
Keep us posted as to your progress with the machine.
Congrats on the new toy!
Regards,
Rich
<Snip>
Gene
<Snip>
roasted 3
<Snip>
out,
<Snip>
box!
<Snip>
The
<Snip>
out
<Snip>
one
<Snip>
unsvbscribes) go to =http://sweetmarias.com/maillistinfo.html#personalsettings

16) From: Eddie Dove
Kevin,
I will be more than glad to share my notes with you and can send them to you
off list if you like.  Let me know which beans you have in your stash and I
will see if I have notes on it.
Lately, I have been keeping it simple and have been getting great results,
although I am sure this will change over time.  I have been setting the
roaster to 456 F, leaving it there for the duration of the roast, roasting
just shy of where I want it and allowing the roaster to do the cooling.  I
do all of my roasting indoors under the range hood that is vented outside.
I hope this helps, and I hope I can be of more help.
Respectfully,
Eddie
On 10/31/06, Kevin St. Pierre  wrote:
<Snip>

17) From: Kevin St. Pierre
--Apple-Mail-2--687920670
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After a month of using the IR1 I've made the plunge and upgraded to  
the Gene Cafe (primarily for the increased batch size and additional  
control over the roast).  I had to sacrifice my xBox 360 to ebay but  
I'll take great coffee over video games any day...SM shipped the  
roaster out yesterday.  I was wondering if anyone who uses the gene  
cafe would mind sharing their roast techniques/notes?  Are there  
special techniques that enhance certain types of beans or is the  
roast process dictated by sight and smell alone?  I have a pound of  
Vietnam Robusta I plan on using for my first two test runs in case I  
roast into the Italian/Spanish and beyond...I also plan to roast  
Ethiopian Harar  once I've done a practice run or two.
Kevin
I bought some powdered water but I don't know what to add.	
	- Steven Wright
--Apple-Mail-2--687920670
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	charsetO-8859-1
After a month of using the IR1 =
I've made the plunge and upgraded to the Gene Cafe (primarily for the =
increased batch size and additional control over the roast).† I had to =
sacrifice my xBox 360 to ebay but I'll take great coffee over video =
games any day...SM shipped the roaster out yesterday.† I was wondering =
if anyone who uses the gene cafe would mind sharing their roast =
techniques/notes?† Are there special techniques that enhance certain =
types of beans or is the roast process dictated by sight and smell =
alone?† I have a pound of Vietnam Robusta I plan on using for my first =
two test runs in case I roast into the Italian/Spanish and beyond...I =
also plan to roast Ethiopian Harar† once I've done a practice run or =
two.
 KevinI bought some powdered water but I =
don't know what to add.		=
- Steven Wright


= = --Apple-Mail-2--687920670--

18) From: Kevin
For those using the Gene Cafe roaster, are first and second cracks audible
over the sound of the machine?  I roasted 100g of IMV (all I had left) as my
first Gene Cafe roast and took it to Vienna/French when targeting City+.  I
stopped the roast b/c the smell/look of the beans indicated I was past first
crack but I didn't hear it...
Also, if the measured voltage at the receptacle is 120V are SM's tip sheet
instructions still valid?  That is setting the roaster to 482F to ramp up
quickly to first crack and then lowering it to 460F at 1st crack or should I
cut the temp down by 10% to 435F?
Any imput would be greatly appreciated.
-- 
Kevin

19) From: Eddie Dove
Kevin,
The crack, if audible in the first place, can be heard with the Gene Cafe
where the exhaust exits the chaff collector.  Other have stated that being
in a small room, it is easier to hear the cracks by being farther away.
Lately, I have been setting mine to 456 F for the entire roast and I always
have between 120 - 122 volts at my outlets.  I did this with the Idido Misty
Valley and got fantastic flavor.  When I get home, I will find the log sheet
and forward it to you.
Eddie
On 11/8/06, Kevin  wrote:
<Snip>

20) From: Fletcher D Walters
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
Eddie,
I'd like the log sheet as well if you dont mind! Thanks
Dennis

21) From: Eddie Dove
No problem ... won't be until this evening.
Eddie
On 11/8/06, Fletcher D Walters  wrote:
<Snip>

22) From: Kevin
Thanks Eddie!
On 11/8/06, Eddie Dove  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Kevin

23) From: Kevin
Eddie,
Roughly how long into the roast do you notice first crack beginning at 456F?
-- 
Kevin

24) From: Eddie Dove
Kevin,
It really depends on the bean, but anywhere from about 10 - 13 minutes
(ROUGHLY) with an average batch size of 228 grams.  Some beans, I never hear
cracks, but I can use smell, smoke, color and time to get what I want.
Eddie
On 11/8/06, Kevin  wrote:
<Snip>

25) From: Gregg Talton
I roast in the garage and usually hear first crack much better than second -
but for me I usually watch for the smoke plume of first crack and usually
end up with my nose in the smoke as I search for second.  I also placed a
small light just behind and barely above the roaster to better see the
smoke.  My settings for the Gene Cafe are about 460 to begin and then lower
it to 446 or lower. I also have 120 at the wall.
Gregg
Charlotte, NC
On 11/8/06, Kevin  wrote:
<Snip>

26) From: Larry English
Kevin,
  My impression is that the temp setting is a maximum, so setting to 482F
but lowering it to 460F at first crack (most likely before hitting 460F) is
probably the same as just running it at 460F from the beginning.  I've found
465F to be a useful temp setting, to get City+ and Full City roasts in the
neighborhood of 15-17 minutes (in a garage with ambient temp in the 60s).
As for 435F, it seems that 1st crack occurs no lower than that temp, usually
higher, so at 435F it would take longer to get there.
  I wish I could have a probe in the bean mass but with this machine that
seems impossible - at least I can't see how to do it, since there is no one
spot in the drum that always has beans, and since I cannot see how to get a
lead from inside the rotating drum to the outside world.  So I can't get a
handle on the relationship between temp reading on console, roasting time,
and "actual" bean mass temp.
  Oh, and I sometimes hear 1st crack, never 2nd, listening near the chaff
collector end.  I'm having to control roasts based primarily on color and
smell but the occasional hearing of 1st crack helps set my expectations and
gives some clue about the relationship between temp reading and roast state.
Larry
On 11/8/06, Kevin  wrote:
<Snip>

27) From: Eddie Dove
I think I sent the Idido Misty Valley log to all who asked.  If I missed
you, please forgive me and send me another email.
Respectfully,
Eddie
On 11/8/06, Fletcher D Walters  wrote:
<Snip>

28) From: Steven Sobel
Eddie,
If you don't mind, could I get a copy of your roast log?  I find the Idido
to be my favorite coffee.  Thanks.
Steve
On 11/8/06, Eddie Dove  wrote:
<Snip>

29) From: Steven Van Dyke
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
(Still coming up to speed on my alternate computer after a hard drive =
dropped on my laptop so who knows what name will show)
I've posted it before but here's my standard Gene Cafe 'profile'
I start off with 250 grams (been doing some 'leftover' batchs of 200 and =
just did a 'leftover blend' of 309)
I set for 482 / 20 minutes.  482 because I want it to heat as fast as =
possible and 20 minutes because it's a good point for counting down =
from.
I keep an eye on things and generally at around 10 minutes (both elapsed =
and left - that's why I start at 20) I hit my first 'adjustment' point.
At this time I'm usually showing an exit air temp around 450 and the =
beans are starting to look like they're roasting. 
I dial the temp down to 456 - a good approximate 'Full City' temp =
according to Tom's chart.  Now that I'm set here the unit doesn't try as =
hard to heat the beans past this setting.  Watch the exit air temp and =
you'll see it fluctuate.
Now I start using my flashlight (Surefire G2), my nose, and generally =
pay a lot of attention.  I'm watching for the smoke column to go all the =
way down to the chaff collector (it's usually been smoking but you can't =
see it right above the chaff collector yet).  The beans are darkening to =
the region I want, the smoke is tending toward that sweetness you get =
right at Full City, etc.  And I often hear some cracks.  
There are two ways to hear the cracks.  If you bend over and hold your =
ear near the gap under the 'safety shield' you mostly hear the =
'sloshing' of the beans and can fight to distinguish the cracks.  You =
can *also* hear them 'echoing' out of the chaff collector.  In some ways =
you can hear those better from farther away - the ones that it catches =
resonate and get amplified so the less you can hear the sloshing the =
better you hear them.  There won't be many that catch for any bean I've =
roasted yet.
I generally hit my target with around 4 minutes left (after 16:00 total, =
10 at 482 + 6 at 456).
When I hit cool I flip open the safety cover to let more heat escape and =
arrange a fan to blow across the unit.  Cool still takes about 10-11 =
minutes.  I do final cool by dumping the 140 degree beans into a large =
mesh strainer and stirring them over the fan for a couple of minutes.  =
Gets 'em down to room temp *and* removes any remaning chaff.

30) From: raymanowen
"...the measured voltage at the receptacle is 120V" may be misleading, guys=
.
You could use a 500 foot extension cord and hook it directly to the 120v ta=
p
of the distribution transformer for your subdivision. Measure 120v going in
to the 500-footer, and measure 120v at the other end. When you put an
electrical load on it, you won't have any 120v
With no load on the wiring, you could string it to the moon and back and
still have 120v on your DVM. My point is- how much power is your roaster
getting when it's running?
I just checked a bathroom outlet- it's 122.5v open/ 117.7w/1800watt hair
dryer load. A 4.8v drop with 15a load = 0.32 ohms total line resistance.
(10ga copper in my new place, not 14ga)
If you vacation to Hawaii, turn your thermostat down over the winter and
back home in February, don't bother setting the thermostat to 90į to warm=
 up
fast. That's like pushing harder on the throttle to get it to accelerate
harder or run faster. Doesn't work on the  * * * Bronco.
A Variac won't solve this problem
Cheers -RayO, aka Opa!
Got Grinder?

31) From: Kevin
The receptacle voltage is 120 prior to turning on the GC.  The GC is the
only load on the circuit when I roast (no extension cord used, roast in the
basement on the basement circuit, 15A breaker).  In this scenario, wouldn't
the voltage supplied be 120V?  The voltage will drop once the GC is on, but
that shouldn't affect the GC b/c it's the only load.
The GC will be affected when subsequent devices attached and turned on to
this circuit, as will the subsequent devices.  Is this correct?
The thermostat analogy below is valid depending on how the control loops ar=
e
tuned in the HVAC system.  With an HVAC system controlled by PLC's and used
to control pharmaceutical manufacturing equipment for example (tablet
coating pans/tablet dryers), turning the temp up higher will ramp the heat
faster.  The greater the temp differential, the more the PLC will open the
steam valves to heat (chilled water valves to cool) (PLC sends a signal to
the valve actuator which opens the valve).  Once the temp approaches the se=
t
point, the PLC will gradually (and proportionally) close the valve to
prevent an overshoot of the set point (using fuzzy logic).  Office spaces
are typically not tuned like this simply to save $$ but when you have the
same company install the office HVAC and manufacturing HVAC you never
know...
Though, there is no PLC in the GC so a higher temp setting will not ramp th=
e
machine to temp faster...I'm guessing in the GC it's a simple bi-metallic
strip used for a thermostat b/c of manuf. cost...
On 11/9/06, raymanowen  wrote:
<Snip>
0v
<Snip>
ut
<Snip>
.
<Snip>
rm up
<Snip>
-- 
Kevin

32) From: John B. Webster
Can someone experience with the Gene Cafť send along a few suggested =
roast
profiles.  Thank you.
John Webster

33) From:
John:
write to eddie dove, "Eddie Dove" , and =
he will give you some fabulous profiles,
also read his review on the homeroasters.org forum.
ginny
---- "John B. Webster"  wrote: 
<Snip>
 roast
<Snip>
ribes) go tohttp://sweetmarias.com/maillistinfo.html#personalsettings

34) From: John B. Webster
Thanks Ginny.  Last night Eddie was kind enough to PM me and forwarded a =
very extensive file of profiles.  Very impressive and I suggest that =
anyone with a GC contact Eddie.  At a minimum, it will take months and =
many pounds off the learning curve.

35) From: Kevin
John,
Click on the link below in my signature.  I haven't updated the blog in a
while but the profiles should help you out.
-- 
My home coffee roasting blog:http://homecoffeeroastblog.blogspot.com/Kevin

36) From: Eddie Dove
Do make sure you check into Kevin's blog ... he is much more
consistent at recording good cupping notes than I am ... seriously.
Eddie
-- 
Vita non est vivere sed valere vita est
Roasting Blog and Profiles for the Gene Cafehttp://southcoastcoffeeroaster.blogspot.com/On 7/18/07, Kevin  wrote:
<Snip>

37) From: John Despres
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
I  love my Gene Cafe. I'm still learning it and have completed 25 
batches. The GC only roasts about a half pound - I measure by grams; 
more accurate measure at 230 grams per batch. Since it roasts such small 
amounts, I get to go back and do it again. I'm just now figuring out 
lighter roasts. At first everything was coming full city plus or darker. 
There wasn't anything wrong with these roasts, but I'm learning many 
beans prefer a bit lighter roast for the brighter flavors. I've never 
tasted blueberry like many folk here.
The toughest learning curve is the first crack. It's difficult to hear. 
I installed an exhaust fan in the basement above my roasting station 
that runs about 70 decibels. I've since covered it with a cardboard box, 
open at one end to draw smoke out and covered the box with insulation I 
had left over from wrapping steam pipes in the basement. I can hardly 
hear the exhaust fan now but it still takes concentration to hear the 
1st crack. In the FR8+ the 1st came like a pistol crack yet the GC 
produces a very quiet 1st.
Question for the list: Is there something that can be done to increase 
the volume of the 1st crack? I.E. lower/higher temp at the start for a 
few minutes? Lower/higher temp at the middle? Lower/higher temp at the 
end. Most of my roasts take about 13-15 minutes. I have logs of every 
roast so if posting that will help you understand, please let me know.
I've only produced one bad batch that I reroasted to a reasonably good 
end. On the 16th (batch #20) I roasted 230 grams of Kenya Kirinyaga - 
Thimu Peaberry (sample pack from SM when I bought the GC). I preheated 
to 200, set the temp at 350 for 5m reached it at 3m, at 5m bumped it to 
400, reached at 7m, at 9m bumped it to 450. First crack (I think, hard 
to tell) was 10:20 and I went to cool at 11:30. The beans were still 
quite small, yellow with a bit of brown coming on, still rock hard and 
the crunch test said they were not roasted. I put them in a jars to let 
them rest just because...
So - Yesterday, I preheated to 200 again, set the temp at 350, reached 
at 4m at 5:30m bumped to 425, reached at 9:14, at 10m bumped to 
full(482), 1st (again?) at 12:05 began cooling at 12:45. It smells good 
in the jar but haven't tasted it yet. I will later this morning. If I 
don't return it's from double roasted Thimu Peaberry.
Tom's tip sheet suggests starting the roast at 482 which is the highest 
possible on the GC and dropping the temp later in the roast after the 
1st. (http://www.sweetmarias.com/prod.genecafe.shtml) 5th bullet point 
down.
Then I discovered Eddie's blog ( http://southcoastcoffeeroaster.blogspot.com/) with more info on the GC 
- I haven't read it all but did try a couple of his profiles, much to 
the same result as any other roast. I don't get it. Everything's a bit 
darker than I think it should be.
Now - Here's the thing. I truly have no idea what I'm doing. Am I 
ruining the beans? I doubt it because these brews are wonderful. Am I at 
perfection? I have no idea... I can go to the gas station and get a cup 
of moderately drinkable brew and compare - my roasts win, but I'm 
certainly not ready to enter any roasting competitions. That's why I'm 
offering a cup here and not coffee. I'm an artist, not an accomplished 
roaster. (yet).
Ideas? Suggestions?
John Despres
Kamran wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
John A C Despres
Hug your kidshttp://www.sceneitallproductions.com

38) From: Floyd Lozano
Not an expert in the GC, but i think miKe mentioned that a Kenya roast
appears darker than their roast level actually is.  If you have a profile
you currently use that is consistent, take advantage of that - start
chopping time off the end to see what roast level results.  A lot can happen
in 30 seconds!
-F
On Dec 18, 2007 7:23 AM, John Despres 
wrote:
<Snip>

39) From: John Despres
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
I just roasted the rest of the Kenya Kirinyaga - Thimu Peaberry. I spent 
more time on Eddie's site and found his review of the GC and the tip to 
stay close to the chaff collector. I rearranged things a bit so I could 
stand at the left end near the collector and, lo and behold, the first 
crack was right there! I also used Eddie's suggested generic profile for 
the GC preheating to 300 instead of 200. The munch test seems to be 
good, although I'm not a fan of eating coffee beans, the flavor is good. 
It's resting now. I'll have a comparison to the first batch later today. 
I've already sampled the first double-roasted so it'll be interesting to 
see what the difference may be.
JD
Floyd Lozano wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
616.437.9182http://www.sceneitallproductions.com

40) From: Richard Ferguson
Have you tried hooking up a cone to the GeneCafe exhaust?  I haven't done this
yet but I plan to in the near future.  When I ordered mine I also received the
larger chaff collector that will attach nicely to 3" ducting.  I want to duct
the exhaust outside but still have nice audio feedback.  I am thinking if I
put a small hole in the side of the ducting and attached a simple cone, it
should act as an amplifier.  Kind of like playing an old record with a piece
of paper and a needle.  If I actually get this to work i'll post some
pictures, but till then it may be worth a shot.
richard
<Snip>

41) From: Phil Bergman Jungle Music
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
Could someone please comment specifically on how to "pre heat" the Gene
Cafe.  Thanks.
Phil

42) From: John Despres
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
I set my temp to 325, you may set yours to whatever you like, set the 
timer to 5 minutes or so and start it with the drum empty and in it's 
roasting position with no beans in it. During that time I choose and 
weigh my beans, start my log sheet and wait for the temp to come up. I 
start with a slightly higher temp because the drum cools some as I'm 
adding beans and resetting the start time.
Some run a warm up this way and let run the cooling cycle which ends at 
140 degrees. You, of course, may choose whatever pre heat temp you like.
John
Phil Bergman Jungle Music wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
616.437.9182http://www.sceneitallproductions.com

43) From: Scott Bukofsky
I run the Gene Cafe empty for 5 minutes, then cool to 212 by using the
emergency stop.  At this point I add the beans and roast as usual.
The Gene Cafe is interesting with respect to first crack.  It can be tricky
to hear.  I have been playing around with this a lot lately, and have found
some interesting things.
I used to not pre-heat the GC, and first crack was extremely difficult to
hear.  My theory is that a lot of heat goes into warming the machine and
less into the beans, and as a result the coffee dries out a lot before first
crack.  With low moisture, the crack is not explosive at all.  Compare this
to something like an iRoast, which heats everything so fast that you get
violent first crack due to all the moisture in the bean.
Interestingly, since I started using the pre-heat before roasting in the GC,
first crack has been much louder and easier to hear.  My theory is that
since the machine is already warm, the heat is going into the beans instead
of the glass and metal, leading to a different amount of drying (less), and
a faster and more violent first crack.
Does this make better coffee?  Hard to say.  My feeling is that with the
pre-heat things are at least more consistent, and I think the taste is
positively improved.
Hopefully some real coffee experts can chime in and tell me if my theories
are off base or not.
-Scotto
On Dec 19, 2007 9:04 AM, Phil Bergman Jungle Music <
phil.bergman> wrote:
<Snip>

44) From: Eddie Dove
To preheat the Gene Cafe, I would set it to 300F and let it run
(empty) while I got everything else ready - 5-10 minutes.  When I was
ready to roast, I would do an immediate stop (press and hold the red
button), remove the drum, load the beans, reinsert the drum and start
the roast.
Hope this helps ...
Eddie
-- 
Vita non est vivere sed valere vita est
Roasting Blog and Profiles for the Gene Cafehttp://southcoastcoffeeroaster.blogspot.com/On Dec 19, 2007 8:04 AM, Phil Bergman Jungle Music
 wrote:
<Snip>

45) From: John Despres
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
I now set my temp to 325, you may set yours to whatever you like, set 
the timer to 5 minutes or so and start it with the drum empty and in 
it's roasting position with no beans in it. During that time I choose 
and weigh my beans, start my log sheet and wait for the temp to come up. 
I start with a slightly higher temp because the drum cools some as I'm 
adding beans and resetting the start time.
Some run a warm up this way and let run the cooling cycle which ends at 
140 degrees. You, of course, may choose whatever pre heat temp you like.
John
Phil Bergman Jungle Music wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
616.437.9182http://www.sceneitallproductions.com

46) From: gin
John:
Eddie Dove did an extremely hands on review of the gene cafe, go tohttp://homeroasters.org/php/news.phpto check it out.
it is a different review then Tom's superb review.
ginnyhttp://homeroasters.org/php/news.php---- John Despres  wrote: 
<Snip>

47) From: Phil Bergman Jungle Music
Scott, Eddie, John and Others,
Thank you for your comments.  I will try preheating today.
Phil

48) From: Phil Bergman Jungle Music
Gentlemen,
Now it's about 45 minutes later.  I preheated the Gene Cafe to 350 degrees
for 5 minutes.  Roasted SM's Panama Carmen Estate.  At about 12 minutes I
heard tons of first crack.  First crack continued for about 1.5 to 2
minutes, and then stopped.  I waited about 30 seconds more and terminated
the roast at 14.5 minutes (before second crack); this was much qucker than
my usual roast with the GC.  This gave a good city roast.  I'll be tasting
it in a day or two.  But those "quiet first cracks" (described in this
thread)were really easy to hear and not quiet at all. Thanks.
Phil

49) From: John Despres
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
Congratulations, Phil.
At what temperature did you start the beans roasting?
John
Phil Bergman Jungle Music wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
616.437.9182http://www.sceneitallproductions.com

50) From: raymanowen
"Here's the thing. I truly have no idea what I'm doing."
That's exactly where you start to learn, John.
Long story, but 30 odd years ago, I really knew nothing about how to roast
and brew coffee. With a Melitta Aroma Roast, Grind Master blade grinder and
a large Hotel and Restaurant coffee maker and hundreds of filters, I
attracted a lot of people to my battery charger shop in the old
Gardner-Denver building.
My friend, John got some pristine espresso machine- did I want it? Part of
an auction lot he won, but he had no use for it. From some cruise ship being
remodeled in dry dock, the story went.
I didn't know how not to wreck it, so we just moved it into the shop and I
never touched it. I had visions of powering up a dry machine and wrecking
some dry heaters and pumps. Not.
"Am I ruining the beans? I doubt it because these brews are wonderful."
[There you go!]
"Am I at perfection? I have no idea... I can go to the gas station and get a
cup of moderately drinkable brew and compare - my roasts win, but I'm
certainly not ready to enter any roasting competitions."
[After a few international roasting competitions- roast offs- you'd place
well with your open mind.] Service stations no longer exist, and the money
changers behind the counters of gas stations might place well at the
international lifting device competition.
"That's why I'm offering a cup here and not coffee. I'm an artist, not an
accomplished roaster. (yet)."
Maybe not quite yet...
Cheers, Mabuhay -RayO, aka Opa!
An artist can become an accomplished roaster. A button pusher can become an
accomplished button pusher...
On Dec 18, 2007 5:23 AM, John Despres 
wrote:
<Snip>

51) From: John Despres
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
Thanks, Ray! That's very nice. All in all, I'm having a great time. If 
there's a day that goes by during which I don't learn something, that 
day is wasted. The learning curve here is fairly steep, but I'm enjoying 
the climb.
John
raymanowen wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
616.437.9182http://www.sceneitallproductions.com

52) From: Phil Bergman Jungle Music
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
John,
Since this was an experiment to shorten the cycle (and hear first crack) on
the GC, I preheated to 350.  I quick stopped it and put in the beans and set
the roast temp to maximum (482).  The first recorded temp on restarting was
about 230.  The temp was 460 when I started hearing first crack and maxed at
478 when I stopped the roast.  I was surprised that it did take the 12
minutes to get to first crack.  I let it go a bit beyond this but didn't
want to go too far nor overroast.  That's why I only waited 30 seconds past
the end of first crack.  I did a quick stop to the roast and cooled the
beans in a colander.  With previous roasts, in doing the usual cool down,
the beans tend to get darker during the cooldown.  But, with the quick stop,
it held them right at City.  I'll cup the beans tomorrow.  Summary: I got a
quicker roast and heard first crack easily.
Phil

53) From: John Despres
This is a multi-part message in MIME format.
Thanks, Phil. I may play with this profile myself this afternoon.
John
Phil Bergman Jungle Music wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
John A C Despres
Hug your kids
616.437.9182http://www.sceneitallproductions.com

54) From: Tomenid
I've just started using mine and find that there's great fluctuation  
depending on room temperature, so one has to watch the process very closely. Set  at 
the max (482) I find that the first crack happens (depending on room temp) at  
between 11 and 12 minutes, using when the machine has made it to 465. Let 
first  crack go a bit and then push cool for C, let it go nearly to the end of 
first  crack, push cool for C+, let it go a minute or two past first crack for 
FC, a  little more for FC+ and let second crack begin for Vienna, let it finish 
for  French and a touch more for Italian. But beans and temp will cause 
variations. I  had a great FC+ to Light Vienna for an aged Sumatra going this 
route. The Gene  Cafe takes quite a while to cool, so you're coasting into your 
final  roast.
 
Tom
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55) From: Jeff Holder
Tom,
Thanks for your reflections on your Gene.  I've run about 3 pounds of coffee
through mine.  My first roast which was a decaf I made charcoal out of.  The
subsequent roasts have ended with better results.
Jeff
On Sun, Sep 7, 2008 at 3:26 PM,  wrote:
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56) From: Larry English
Tom,
 You can hold the red button down until it says "E" (emergency stop, I
guess) and dump the beans into something for cooling - I use a perforated
baking sheet over a down-draft fan but there are lots of techniques that
cool the beans much faster than Gene does.  As soon as I dump the beans I
replace the drum, hit the blue button (off), then again (on), set some time
on the timer, hit the red button to start, then again to resume the full
cooling cycle, so the whole machine gets itself down to 140F.  I've been
doing this for quite a while with no (apparent) damage to the machine.
  And I also get variation in roast times, even what seems to be identical
external conditions and the same beans.  But my times are pretty much like
yours - most roasts I do are at C+ or FC and run in the 15:30 to 17:00
range.  Of course, I always empty the chaff collector after every roast.
Also, for consistency (attempted, anyway) I run the roaster empty for 2
minutes set at 300F.  I always roast in a closed garage and ambient temps
range from the 50s to low 80s, mostly in the 65-75 range.  And my roast
sizes are in the 220-230 gram range.
Larry
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57) From: MikeG
Tim at Fresh Beans Inc says that running the cooling cycle helps
assure the temp sensors last a long time.
My practice is as described below.
On Mon, Sep 8, 2008 at 9:01 PM, Larry English  wrote:
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58) From: Tomenid
Tom,
You can hold the red button down until it says "E" (emergency stop,  I
guess) and dump the beans into something for cooling - I use a  perforated
baking sheet over a down-draft fan but there are lots of  techniques that
cool the beans much faster than Gene does.  As soon as I  dump the beans I
replace the drum, hit the blue button (off), then again  (on), set some time
on the timer, hit the red button to start, then again to  resume the full
cooling cycle, so the whole machine gets itself down to  140F.  I've been
doing this for quite a while with no (apparent) damage  to the machine.
And I also get variation in roast times, even what  seems to be identical
external conditions and the same beans.  But my  times are pretty much like
yours - most roasts I do are at C+ or FC and run  in the 15:30 to 17:00
range.  Of course, I always empty the chaff  collector after every roast.
Also, for consistency (attempted, anyway) I run  the roaster empty for 2
minutes set at 300F.  I always roast in a closed  garage and ambient temps
range from the 50s to low 80s, mostly in the 65-75  range.  And my roast
sizes are in the 220-230 gram  range.
Larry
 
Thanks, Larry, I find that I can never go up to 17 minutes, perhaps because  
we're at 6100 feet, and the altitude has some affect. Just like the IRoast you 
 can pretty much ignore the suggested settings. I just start paying close  
attention after 11 minutes. The last batch I did the first crack took either a  
long time or it was very quiet because these beans rushed (Sumatra) rushed to 
a  French Roast in under 16 minutes (leading me to suspect the first crack was 
 quiet because it took another minute or so before it started steady 
cracking,  whereas the other day I got quite a nice FC+ with the same beans at just 
about  the same time. Generally I'm pretty happy with the Gene Cafe--with the 
IR2 (I  roar louder) I could never hear the cracks and had to rely on color and  
guess work. If you use preset 2 you will always get charcoal.
 
Tom
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59) From: Frank Parth
Tom,
One thing I do to get consistency is to pre-heat the GC before the first round of beans. I just turn it on for 4 
minutes with no beans in there, stop it, pull the container, then fill it with beans and restart.
I've heard several people say you should let it cool down naturally and don't just shut it down after the last loadof 
beans. When my beans are down to about 300 degrees I'll dump the beans and restart the cooling cycle to let it slowly 
cool down.
A couple of times I've measured the outside temperature of the container and it's consistently about 40 degrees below 
what the built-in temperature gauge shows. I'm sure the inside temp is even lower. So it takes some experimenting to 
find what works best for each bean.
HTH
Frank Parth
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60) From: Jeff Holder
Frank,
Thanks for the suggestion.  I've put about 6 pounds through the GC at this
point and am discovering that you just have to experiment a bit.  Several
folks on the SM list has been helpful to share various profiles.  Your input
has been helpful.
Jeff
On Tue, Sep 9, 2008 at 9:45 PM, Frank Parth  wrote:
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61) From: Larry English
Just one more observation - with all the attempts to standardize my process,
I still get variation from roast to roast - same beans, same load, same
ambient temp, enclosed space.  I record the time at which the temp reading
is 440F, and temp and time at 1st crack - still get variation.  So there is
no push-button process (nor did I expect one).  But after a couple of years
with the Gene Cafe I'm able to get repeatable roasts, though probably with
slight variations a good cupper would pick up.  Works for me, though ...
Larry
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62) From: g paris
 Hi Tom:
You may want to look at what Eddie Dove has to say and perhaps download his
profiles for the Gene Cafe.http://homeroasters.org/php/forum/viewthread.php?forum_id6&thread_idG3Eddie has done extensive work with the Gene...
good luck,
ginny
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