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Topic: my new CO/rotisserie drum roaster (15 msgs / 419 lines)
1) From: john
well, i just finished the 'beta' version of my new roaster. i use a zach and 
dani's for my regular roasts, but i've been wanting to switch to a method 
whereby i can roast a pound at a time.  don't get me wrong, if z and d made 
a one pound roaster, i'd buy two of them today.  but for now i've been 
tinkering with my convection oven top.
anyway, i had tried a co setup before, using a skillet and rotisserie motor 
in a typical oven-on-top configuration.  this proved ineffective due to poor 
agitation of the beans by my slow (3 rpm) motor.  i figured that a drum 
setup might provide better agitation.
so here's what i came up with.  take a look if you get a chance.  i'd 
appreciate your comments.http://www.flickr.com/photos/drakejohnand click on the 'new roaster' set.">http://www.flickr.com/photos/drakejohn/sets/1743893/or, if that doesn't work tryhttp://www.flickr.com/photos/drakejohnand click on the 'new roaster' set.
the first roast was somewhat uneven.  the oven provides plenty of heat, but 
there's a design flaw with my four fins.  the inner canister isn't a true 
cylinder, and therefore there's a gap between them and the sides allowing 
some beans to just slide around at the bottom.  i'm going to remove them, 
cut them up, and try multiple one-inch wide fins riveted to the sides.  this 
should also help compensate for the slow motor.
my half-pound test batch got to c1 in 9 minutes and was well into second 
crack by 12 minutes.
now i just need to work on a cooling system...

2) From: Michael Dhabolt
I love it.  Some really unique ideas and concepts.  Be sure to keep us
updated on this.  Have you been considering temperature indication?? 
What is your thinking on this?
Mike (just plain - in awe)

3) From: Peter Zulkowski
Great set up John!
I love how you can dump it easily and fill it easily:)
What kind of CO are you using? Wattage?
You could replace that shallow tray underneath with a deeper one that 
has a screened bottom, with a fan under it sucking or blowing air through.
Just an idea.
john wrote:

4) From: Stephen Niezgoda
It looks like a Decosonic 1200W.  I just did my first SC/TO roast with one
this afternoon.  I would recommend removing the thermostat on the CO and us=
either a simple on/off switch or a variac to control the heat.  With the
stock thermostat I could not get to first crack on a 1/2lb roast.
On 1/3/06, Peter Zulkowski  wrote:

5) From: Gene Smith
Gee, John...that thing is just full of clever ideas.  Well done!
Gene Smith
riding the wild learning curve, in Houston

6) From: Gary Townsend
john  wrote:
well, i just finished the 'beta' version of my new roaster.
John, I like your innovation! Very nice *beta* rig !~!
Advertising is the art of convincing people to spend money they don't
have for something they don't need. Will Rogers

7) From: Scot Murphy
On |Jan 3, at 2:38 PM|Jan 3, john wrote:
Oh, man, that is SO slick! The only real problem I can think of is  
the beans getting caught in the wire mesh when you dump them. That  
is, not flowing out of the hole in the middle. I would think you  
would have to make the end more conical so there would be no "lip"  
for the beans to fall on. Other than that, this is really ingenious.  
Your word for today is: PATENT.
Scot "I'll invest $20 toward your company" Murphy
"None are more hopelessly enslaved than those who falsely believe  
they are free."

8) From: john
hey guys,  thanks for all your kind words!! now, if i can just get my head 
back down to size i can respond to a couple of questions.
the convection oven is labeled 'jion loen'. i think i remember that my mom 
bought it at a kitchen expo quite a few years ago.  after getting into 
roasting last year, i called her up to see if she still had it.  sure 
enough, out in the barn and covered with several layers of dust, there it 
was... still working.
as far as temperature indication and regulation, i just wanted to see if it 
would work first. i've thought about adding a vent for control, but judging 
from the times i probably don't want to lose much heat.  i've got a cheap 
stick-type barbeque thermometer, but i'm a little stumped about where to put 
peter, i like your idea about having a cooling tray under the unit.  i think 
i'll head that direction.  i'd like to come up with a way to suck up the 
chaff in the process.
thanks again, everyone!  i'll keep y'all posted.

9) From: Ed Needham
Pretty cool.  Innovative design.  Now...
-Will the motor need to be insulated from the hot drum so it doesn't 
prematurely go kaput?
-Can you make a perforated cooling tray with a blower beneath that will suck 
the heat from the beans after they are dumped?  The blower could actually be 
configured to suck smoke out and exhaust it through a vent hose.
-Maybe add a handle to the top of the thing to move the drum around without 
-There are stainless steel food canisters at WalMart that you could use for 
a cylindrical drum.  The wire bail type lid easily comes off to leave a 
perfect cylinder.
The machine and the photography really look great.
Ed Needham
"to absurdity and beyond!"
ed at homeroaster dot com
(include [FRIEND] somewhere in the subject line of any email correspondence)

10) From: Todd Musselwhite
You are quite the craftsman.  "If the women don't find you handsome, they
should at least find you handy."  Red Green.
Ed beat me to the suggestion of a handle.
I do have a couple of questions.
You mentioned fencing wire used to hold the screen in place.  Is this
galvanized?  Galvanized metal gives off a toxic gas when heated.
How well can you see the beans?  I'm a very novice newbie and my only
experience is with popcorn poppers and I use sight and sound more than
anything to try and determine the degree of the roast.
One question posed was how to isolate the motor from the heat to prolong
it's life span.  What about the nylon washer?  Do you believe it will have
any longevity?
Again dude, you are quite the craftsman.

11) From: Alchemist John
That is a sweet design.  Kudos.  What is the outer shell made 
of?  Aluminum pot?
My only suggestion is insulation.  It can make quite a bit of 
difference in control during different ambient temperatures.
At 13:59 1/3/2006, you wrote:
John Nanci
AlChemist at large
Zen Roasting , Blending & Espresso pulling by Gestalthttp://www.chocolatealchemy.com/

12) From: Brett Mason
John - way to go...  It's a beauty!  Sorry it took me so long to get
around to view it...
On 1/3/06, john  wrote:
ribes) go tohttp://sweetmarias.com/maillistinfo.html#personalsettings<Snip>
Brett Mason
   _(( )_  Please don't spill the coffee!

13) From: john
thanks again for all your suggestions... i can't wait to carve out time to 
get back out to the garage!  i hope it's ok to combine responses.  i don't 
seem to get back to my computer so often lately. JUST KEEP SCROLLING!
----- 1 -----
From: "Ed Needham" 
Sent: Tuesday, January 03, 2006 11:52 PM
    - i tried to keep a close eye on the motor housing as i was roasting. 
much of it is plastic.  it seems that the gears and such are situated on the 
far side of the housing. also, there are 1/2 inch spacers between the 
housing and the metal bucket (it's actually a ss waste can from walmart). 
it stayed pretty cool considering it's proximity.
    - i like that idea A LOT. i want to incorporate some kind of mechanism 
to separate the chaff from the beans, too.  i might need a bigger shop vac 
;).  i made a cooling tray for my zach and dani's like what you're 
describing. it's a round cake pan that i drilled a ton of holes in and 
mounted in a wooden box.  i attach a shop vac to it which sucks air through 
the beans.  but, it's just big enough for the 1/4 pound batches. plus, i 
want something inetgrate to the frame... like what you're suggesting.
    - i had planned on putting a handle up there using that exposed nut/bolt 
from the support eye bolt, but i couldn't find one that fit just right.  for 
now i'm using the motor as a handle, but i'm afraid that over time that will 
weaken the mounting screws. i'd like to find something that looks like a 
frying pan handle, about 6 inches long.
----- 2 -----
From: "Todd Musselwhite" 
Sent: Wednesday, January 04, 2006 12:51 AM
    - ugh... need to fix that.  i couldn't find my copper wire, so i just 
used what i could find.  uh... copper's ok, right?
    - if you use a light, you can see through the glass ring of the 
convection oven top to the beans. this is nice early on, but after that it 
was time, sound and smell.
    - i think it's ok, but i'm going to keep an eye on it.  it seemed to 
stay pretty cool... to my surprise.
----- 3 -----
From: "Alchemist John" 
Sent: Wednesday, January 04, 2006 7:10 AM
    - the outer shell is a ss waste can from walmart.  the inner canister is 
also ss and from walmart.  like ed was saying, maybe i should have used the 
true cylindrical canister instead of the bell-shaped one.
    - that's a good point.  i roast in my garage, but the bigger factor is 
that my garage is in southeast texas. it hasn't been cold since before 
christmas, so i'll have to wait to see how it will stand up to lower temps. 
what would you suggest as an insulator?  also, is there soft, safe, 1/4 
tubing that i could cut long-ways and fit around the top of the outer bucket 
as a seal to the co top?
thanks again, everyone, for your help! sorry for the long post.

14) From: Angelo
I'm wondering if this design, with the heat coming from the side, might not 
result in the heat being "trapped" in the upper part of the drum and not 
enough getting "under" the beans.
Since you mention the Z&D roaster, have you thought of making a 
"king-sized" version of it? The CO could be pointing upward, sending the 
heat around an auger, agitating/lifting the beans through the heat. Of 
course, with the wider auger in this roaster, the beans coming in contact 
with the hot metal would be heated from conduction as well as by the flow 
of hot air. The best (worst?) of both worlds.?
Also, the outer container could be of various materials, clear and/or 
opaque. It could also be  insulated, thereby
needing less heat.
I'm not too clear as to how the motor might be connected to the auger. It 
seems that it would need to be kept out of the air flow, so maybe a belt or 
chain would be necessary...
Just some thoughts...

15) From: john
wow, angelo, that's a great idea! i never thought of it that way. hmm.
great. just when i get one built, i have to start over! ;)

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