HomeRoast Digest


Topic: First iRoast2 experience (5 msgs / 360 lines)
1) From: Dave Ehrenkranz
Got my iRoast2 unit the other day and had my first experience using it. 
I find it a very different experience than the Zach & Dani I have used 
for 2 1/2 years.
In comparison was amazed how much more efficient it was collecting the 
chafe and cooling the beans. Also there is the ability to control the 
roasting profile which I will have to learn.
I roasted 140 grams of Mexico FTO Chiapas - Special Lot which is one of 
the eight 1/2 samples that SM shipped with the unit. I loved how easy 
it was to visually follow the condition of the beans. I did not like 
that once I added a few seconds to the third stage I was not able to 
add additional time later on in the stage. Of course now I know to make 
sure there is plenty of time in the third stage. I was attempting to 
get to Full City or Full City+ stage but believe I was somewhere in the 
City Roast stage. I certainly had lots of chafe but did not hear a 2nd 
crack even start. Gotta admit that I also didn't hear the first crack 
but strongly suspect I wasn't paying enough attention and my ears are 
not the best.
I roasted outside on my porch as I was afraid of getting too much smoke 
in the house. Heck my wife complains about the odor the Z&D unit 
produced (I loved it) but quite frankly I did not think the iRoast2 put 
out more odor than the Z&D. But then again it was outside. Also if it 
had roasted longer I suspect more smoke would be produced.
I used the preset 2 profile and probably added a total of approximately 
20/25 seconds to the third stage. Can't wait to experiment further with 
the machine.
Any advice from other iRoast2 users would be welcome.
What are the smallest quantities folks have had success roasting in 
their units? I try not to drink TOO much coffee in one day but yet want 
to roast more often.
dave

2) From: Bugtrack505
Hi, Dave.
I've had my IR2 for a couple of weeks.  It's my first roaster although
now I'm in the process of building a SC/CO.  I'll use the IR2 for my
home coffee (only brew on the weekends; don't need a lot) and the SC/CO
for work where I burn through about a pound a week.
I've found a couple of custom profiles that I like a lot.  There a
several on the CoffeeGeeks forum to try out.  So far these are working
best for me:
1. 5 min @ 320
2. 4 min @ 375
3. 2 min @ 385
4. 1 min @ 400
5. 3 min @ 410
I find hitting the cool button somewhere between 2:00 and 1:30 remaining
works best.  The beans start getting pretty dark pretty fast once stage
5 is hit.
I think this one is from the SM website:
1. 3 min @ 350
2. 3 min @ 400
3. 4 min @ 450
In both cases I use the SM website's recommended 6oz instead of the 5.3
or so Hearthware recommends.
Roger
Dave Ehrenkranz wrote:
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3) From: Larry English
Hi Dave,
  I've been roasting with iRoast2 for about 8 months. A couple of weeks ago
it malfunctioned and was sent back to Hearthware for repair/replacement.  I
ordered and am now using a Gene Cafe - but I intend to use the repaired iR2
for some roasts.  Here are a few thoughts on iR2.
  I can not hear either 1st or 2nd crack with this unit - I heard them fine
with the little FreshRoast+ I started with but not with iR2 at all.  So I
installed a thermocouple temperature probe (from Sweet Maria's, of course)
and use that as my primary guide, with color and smoke as secondary clues.
My hearing is not good - significant high-end loss - and I use hearing aids,
but they help not at all with hearing the cracks.
  I've tried a lot of profiles, but recently have settled on minor
modifications to the Preset 2 profile, which is about 5-6 minutes set high (
e.g. 440), then another 5-6 minutes lower (e.g. 400), then the remainder of
the 15 minute max higher again (430 for chaffy coffees like the
dry-processed beans, 455 for decafs).  All my profiles are 15 minutes long,
and I just hit Cool when ready - adding time at the end is just a nuisance.
I've also used profiles more like what Roger suggested - lower at first and
increasing each 4-5 minutes, with good success.  It is important to note
that the iR2 will ALWAYS hold the temp down for the first 3 minutes of any
profile, at 350.  So your first stage temp will really kick in starting at
the 3 minute mark.  I've seen some profiles with a 3-minute first stage, but
that really doesn't do anything.
  Load sizes - 140 grams works well for almost everything, 150 is OK for
wet-processed coffees, 130 or so for some dry-processed coffees that are
especially chaffy.  Roger suggests 6 oz (around 168 grams), but that hasn't
worked well for me.  Too heavy a load can slow down the effect of the fan
moving the beans through the chamber, so you can get hot-spots and a few
burned beans. Heavier loads roast quicker, in general.  I've roasted small
loads down around 90-100 grams with no problem, but they tend to take a
little longer.  If you are getting uneven roasts, reducing load size may
even that out, though some beans just seem to roast unevenly no matter what.
  I roast outside when the weather permits, but inside if at night or with
cooler weather, in which case I position iR2 under the range hood and use
the adapter that fits atop the unit to connect a length of flexible 4" dryer
vent hose directly up to the hood fan.  That provides and extra benefit
during cooling cycle - I just crank up the fan to draw more air through the
chamber.  Some have placed the roaster near a winder and used vent hose to
divert smoke out of the room.  With my new Gene Cafe, though, I've moved my
roasting headquarters to the garage, since I can't figure out a way to
capture and remove the smoke from that guy.
Larry
On 10/20/06, Bugtrack505  wrote:
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4) From: Dave Ehrenkranz
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Larry and Roger,
Thanks for the comments. They are appreciated and helpful.
I did notice after about 3 minutes the motor/fan noise definitely 
changed. First I thought it may be a bug with the machine, now I can 
understand it is simply the process and is normal.
I will hold off trying to use a thermocouple/temperature probe and rely =
on visual inspection. Or is the temperature probe superior.
Again, thanks
dave
On Oct 21, 2006, at 12:34 PM, Larry English wrote:
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Larry and Roger,
Thanks for the comments. They are appreciated and helpful.
I did notice after about 3 minutes the motor/fan noise definitely
changed. First I thought it may be a bug with the machine, now I can
understand it is simply the process and is normal. 
I will hold off trying to use a thermocouple/temperature probe and
rely on visual inspection. Or is the temperature probe superior.
Again, thanks
dave
On Oct 21, 2006, at 12:34 PM, Larry English wrote:
Hi Dave,
  I've been roasting with iRoast2 for about 8 months. A couple of
weeks ago it malfunctioned and was sent back to Hearthware for
repair/replacement.  I ordered and am now using a Gene Cafe - but I
intend to use the repaired iR2 for some roasts.  Here are a few
thoughts on iR2. 
  I can not hear either 1st or 2nd crack with this unit - I heard them
fine with the little FreshRoast+ I started with but not with iR2 at
all.  So I installed a thermocouple temperature probe (from Sweet
Maria's, of course) and use that as my primary guide, with color and
smoke as secondary clues.  My hearing is not good - significant
high-end loss - and I use hearing aids, but they help not at all with
hearing the cracks. 
  I've tried a lot of profiles, but recently have settled on minor
modifications to the Preset 2 profile, which is about 5-6 minutes set
high (e.g. 440), then another 5-6 minutes lower (e.g. 400), then the
remainder of the 15 minute max higher again (430 for chaffy coffees
like the dry-processed beans, 455 for decafs).  All my profiles are 15
minutes long, and I just hit Cool when ready - adding time at the end
is just a nuisance.  I've also used profiles more like what Roger
suggested - lower at first and increasing each 4-5 minutes, with good
success.  It is important to note that the iR2 will ALWAYS hold the
temp down for the first 3 minutes of any profile, at 350.  So your
first stage temp will really kick in starting at the 3 minute mark. 
I've seen some profiles with a 3-minute first stage, but that really
doesn't do anything.  
  Load sizes - 140 grams works well for almost everything, 150 is OK
for wet-processed coffees, 130 or so for some dry-processed coffees
that are especially chaffy.  Roger suggests 6 oz (around 168 grams),
but that hasn't worked well for me.  Too heavy a load can slow down
the effect of the fan moving the beans through the chamber, so you can
get hot-spots and a few burned beans. Heavier loads roast quicker, in
general.  I've roasted small loads down around 90-100 grams with no
problem, but they tend to take a little longer.  If you are getting
uneven roasts, reducing load size may even that out, though some beans
just seem to roast unevenly no matter what. 
  I roast outside when the weather permits, but inside if at night or
with cooler weather, in which case I position iR2 under the range hood
and use the adapter that fits atop the unit to connect a length of
flexible 4" dryer vent hose directly up to the hood fan.  That
provides and extra benefit during cooling cycle - I just crank up the
fan to draw more air through the chamber.  Some have placed the
roaster near a winder and used vent hose to divert smoke out of the
room.  With my new Gene Cafe, though, I've moved my roasting
headquarters to the garage, since I can't figure out a way to capture
and remove the smoke from that guy. 
Larry
On 10/20/06, Bugtrack505
<<0000,0000,EEEEbugtrack505>
wrote:
I've had my IR2 for a couple of weeks.  It's my first roaster =
although
now I'm in the process of building a SC/CO.  I'll use the IR2 for my
home coffee (only brew on the weekends; don't need a lot) and the
SC/CO 
for work where I burn through about a pound a week.
I've found a couple of custom profiles that I like a lot.  There a
several on the CoffeeGeeks forum to try out.  So far these are =
working
best for me:
1. 5 min @ 320
2. 4 min @ 375
3. 2 min @ 385
4. 1 min @ 400
5. 3 min @ 410
I find hitting the cool button somewhere between 2:00 and 1:30
remaining
works best.  The beans start getting pretty dark pretty fast once
stage 
5 is hit.
I think this one is from the SM website:
1. 3 min @ 350
2. 3 min @ 400
3. 4 min @ 450
In both cases I use the SM website's recommended 6oz instead of the 5.3
or so Hearthware recommends.
Roger
Dave Ehrenkranz wrote:
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homeroast mailing list
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To change your personal list settings (digest options, vacations,
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--Apple-Mail-6-617238775--

5) From: Bugtrack505
I've decided to stick with visual inspection.  I suspect it takes a few
pounds to perfect the process either way.   I'll give thermometers a try
if I'm finding I can't get consistent results.
Roger
Dave Ehrenkranz wrote:
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