HomeRoast Digest

Topic: $800 handcranked burr mill DIAMANT+ gas heated espresso (10 msgs / 310 lines)
1) From: Ted
this format, some or all of this message may not be legible.
Thanks for the comments. I read your post after finding the Country Living
online a minute ago, and it looks like the one I would buy; as good as the
Diamant and less $$ -- I'm not afraid of aluminum!
I'm interested in hand grinders not so much  for the end of the world as for
the end of electricity  -- as it is I am off-grid and entirely solar and
wind powered, so anything that saves watts is good. And these grinders seem
to be built to last forever!
Modding your Super Jolly for hand cranking!!??? LOL! Maybe I can do that for
my MiniMazzer!
And don't laugh about that methane fueled espresso maker -- I got a 1200
Gioto collecting dust waiting for plentiful summer sun before I start oozing
out espresso with it! IF ONLY I could use the heat of my propane stove to
heat it up!! 
That would be the greatest thing since replacing the Hot Top roaster with
the Back To Basic stove top roaster -- a pound of coffee for NO ELECTRICITY
! HEAVEN! All I use the HotTop for now is cooling the beans...!
(I tried writing to the maker of an arm cranked espresso maker that had a
boiler you pour the water directly into - forgot the name - they have an
eagle on top I think -- asking if I could pour pre-boiled water into the
boiler to save on electricity but thye wrote back saying they couldn't
recommend it because of the "shock" to the heating elements -- I still
wonder if it would work, maybe they were just 'cya' - ing?
For Coffee?  Not a clue, but wouldn't be my choice for that.
If for grain, they are favorably reviewed.  I've been between buying
it and the "Country Living Mill" as hand cranked complements to my
Nutrimill.   The Diamant appears to be a better mill than the Country
Living, but is twice the price.  I have read that the Diamant uses a
sleeve bearing, which isn't as nice as the (roller?) bearings in the
Country Living, but perhaps easier to fabricate a repair for if
you're having survivalist thoughts.  If the CL weren't aluminum I
would buy it, if the Diamant weren't so expensive I would buy it.  So
I just keep making flour with my Nutrimill and reading the Lehmans
catalog or the Pleasant Hill Grain web site.
Maybe I'll convert my Super Jolly to hand cranked, with a pulley for
use with a tractor PTO so I can grind coffee when the world ends.
Now where can I get a methane fueled espresso machine?

2) From:
What am I missing here?
Got frying pan, got gas roasted coffee. Using your Hot Top
as a cooler only most likely costs more then the entire roast cycle.
Ted, where have you been, I forgot using your Hot Top as a bean  cooler. There are lots of stove top espresso machines.

3) From: Randolph Wilson
I'm jealous.  Unfortunately Atlanta subdivisions frown on solar 
arrays and windmills.  But if and when we get out of here, I hope to 
get (mostly) off of the grid, and to be as independent from 
"civilization" as possible.
I'm not afraid of aluminum (food wise) but it isn't my favorite 
material for this kind of device.  It's a durability/aesthetics 
issue.  Just a personal prejudice on my part.
There is a spare parts kit for the CL  mill on one of the "the sky is 
falling" type sites that looks handy, and also I've seen improved 
feed augers, both stainless and aluminum (I definitely prefer 
stainless in this role).  The Diamant has two different burrs you can 
swap out, and I haven't seen that for the CL.  Hard to beat the price 
on the CL, that is for sure.
Yeah, I'm thinking I'll steal the motor off of my chain-saw and use 
it.  The chain-saw is the only thing I have that can inflict as much 
damage as the Mazzer.
Well, BS'ing around aside, you got me to thinking, and looking 
around.  It seems that there are propane machines (I'm sure many here 
already knew that).  Google "espresso propane" if you want to see 
Pouring cold water on a hot element I could understand avoiding, but 
hot water on a cold element doesn't sound too problematic.  Perhaps 
I'm being clueless, but it sounds like CYA to me.
Having to make espresso a summer sport is unnatural, good coffee is a 
requirement for getting through one too many bleak winter days. 
Maybe Tom will consent to sell you a moka pot or aeropress to get you 
through until you get this problem licked ;^)
  Take Care,

4) From: Ted
this format, some or all of this message may not be legible.
Randolph and Rex,
let me see if I can clarify some things..
I'm not sure where the confusion creeps in Rex, but are you familiar with
the Hottop?
I had been using a Freshroast  at 1000 watts+  running continuously  and
only a piddling 3 ozs of beans to show for it really took a toll on the
solar power. In fact I was roasting "so much"
when the sun shone that I got a 2nd Freshroast, because you are supposed to
allow a cooling time between roasts and I didn't want to waste sun time, so
I alternated them..
 When the Hottop came out it was able to roast 3 to 4 times as much beans as
the Freshroast and using only 700 watts, AND the heat was trapped inside the
drum so the elements weren't even on all the time..I had to get one!
 It was many Hottop batches (well 25 or so) later that I "discovered" the
Back to Basics Stove top roaster..I roast a POUND in it at a time all on the
propane range. Then I dump the pound into the Hottop cooling tray, hit
start, hit temp, then hit start again then immediately hit eject; the
heating elements don't come on so the electric drain is low..does that
explain anything?
any one wanna buy a slightly used Hottop? ;>)
Randolph thanks for the suggestions, I did a quick search for espresso
propane but found only some on ebay for $4K and up..which is out o my
    I've got a Mokapot, alright, but I was thinking of more of a real
espresso machine; with a steaming wand, like my Gioto -- I finally found the
name of the espresso maker you can pour the already boiling water into
(maybe) : 
                  THE ELEKTRA microcasa! I looked it up at and the
electrical aspect of it looks very promising! --
   "Recovery time on the Elektra is short. The machine loses a lot of heat
through the exposed boiler, but thankfully the pressurestat is tuned tight,
and while the machine cycles often (roughly every 25 seconds), the cycle
time itself is short (about 9.5 seconds). What does this mean? It means the
machine's electrics are very much on top of maintaining boiler temperatures
and the heating element, at only 800W, does the job efficiently; that said,
the machine does lose a lot of ambient heat by nature of its design.."
  Only 800 watts! so pouring hot water into the boiler would save about 13
minutes of 800 watts, that would take my solar arrray about 40 minutes to
replace , if it is a sunny day -- that's a lot of juice saved!..
Rex, what other stove top espresso makers did you have in mind?

5) From: Michael Wascher
So, you're converting sun, to electricity, to chemical energy for storage,
back to heat? Eliminate the conversions. I googled & found lots of hits for
a solar roaster, though most were for a specific roaster in Bend Oregon:http://www.makezine.com/blog/archive/solar_roast_coffee.jpgOn 3/20/06, Ted  wrote:
"Life is just one damned thing after another."
  - Elbert Hubbard

6) From: b cook
Hey, Ted, I hope this doesn't totally hijack your thread but do you happen
to keep profile temps for roasting a pound in your Back to Basics roaster?
I picked one up at a thrift store and did my first roast yesterday.  I only
used 12 oz of beans by volume according to Tom's directions.  I'd love to
hear your method for doing a pound at a time.  I had to pick out a handful
of charred beans.  What was left looked inconsistent but tasted pretty
good.  My prior roasting has all been in fluid bed roasters.
On 3/20/06, Michael Wascher  wrote:
ll on

7) From: Michael Wascher
Jeez, where do you guys find these thrift stores? I stopped by one near
Trenton last weekend. A bunch of run down Mr. Coffees, a percolator from th=
$60, and a suitable popper with a $15 price tag!
On 3/20/06, b cook  wrote:
s of
 on the
o get
 all on
, hit
"Life is just one damned thing after another."
  - Elbert Hubbard

8) From: b cook
Believe me, Michael, I've done a lot of thrift store scouring and come up
with nothing.  The day I found that whirly-pop I went to probably 8 thrift
stores in Austin.  I enjoy doing it though.  It's fun when it pays off.
On 3/21/06, Michael Wascher  wrote:
ots of
ll on the
o waste
 to get
in it at
ately hit
is out o

9) From: Bill Morgan
Brad, it looks like you and I are flying on similar Austin orbits. 
Maybe one of these days we'll get into a tug of war over a Mazzer!
There are a few Goodwill/thrift stores on my drive home from work that
I try to hit at least once a week and a few more on an alternate route
that I try to take once or twice a month.  Also, I keep an eye open
for such stores when I'm in other, less-visited parts of town.
In about a year and a half of this routine I've picked up:
6 or so Poppery II's  (I've quit buying these)
2 Poppery I's
2 new-style Popcorn Pumpers
1 old-style Pumper
2 Turbo ovens (found the same evening in different stores!)
1 Stir Crazy
1 Krups steam toy "espresso machine"
3 bread machines suitable for PeterZ-style PGR surgery
I'm still seeking:
A real grinder
A real espresso machine
A Variac
A vacuum pot
1 or 2 more Poppery I's for spares
The quest is never-ending!
On 3/21/06, b cook  wrote:

10) From: b cook
I don't live in Austin though so I don't really do that a whole lot.  I liv=
in Waco.
Were you among those that responded to my post about the Breville Cafe Roma
espresso machines at the big Goodwill on Burnett?  Another list member told
me she called and they were already sold out a day or two after I posted
that.  Someone probably came in and bought them all to sell on Ebay or
brad cook
On 3/21/06, Bill Morgan  wrote:

HomeRoast Digest