HomeRoast Digest

Topic: Cleaning the Gene (9 msgs / 200 lines)
1) From: Donald Varona
After about 6 months of use with the Gene Cafe roaster, the canister 
built up a significant coating of brownish carbon residue on all of the 
internal stainless-steel metal parts.  I couldn't figure out how to 
clean off this smoke-brown very well.  I tried several things:
1.  Simple soap.  Nope, didn't budge.
2.  Urnz tab solution soaking.  No difference.
3.  Significant elbow grease with a stainless steel cleaner.  After 
about 20 minutes of scrubbing, the removable partition is shiny again.  
The oddest part:  rubbing with my fingers and the powdered cleaner (in 
paste form) produced the best results.  The sponge tends to soak up the 
cleaner into its crevices.  Perhaps a toothbrush would work better, but 
I didn't have any handy.
I don't want to use something like steel wool or a greenie, as those 
tend to scratch.  As well as the powdered cleaner works, it is even more 
difficult to use on the ends of the container, which, although the 
coating is less severe, are much more difficult to clean manually.
Another idea I had is an enzymatic (i.e., non-lye) oven cleaner, but I 
didn't try that yet.  Do any of you have any Gene canister cleaning tips 
to share?

2) From: Michael Mccandless
Simple Green works well on the Hottop.
On 6/9/07, Donald Varona  wrote:

3) From:
Hi Donald:
Contact Eddie Dove, here or on homeroasters.org and I am sure he can help with your problem
---- Donald Varona  wrote: 

4) From: Eddie Dove
Once upon a time, I too got frustrated with trying to clean the drum
and the plate.  In a huff, I reached into the cabinet below the sink
and pulled out the Fast Orange hand cleaner by Permatex that I use on
my hands to remove grease and grime.  I slathered it on and let it sit
for a bit, maybe 15 minutes.  I grabbed the metal plate and a
stainless steel brush and without much effort, everything came off and
it looked like new.  I used my fingers to gently rub on the glass drum
portion and all of that came off too.
When I reported this to this list, Aaron admonished that this was
probably not a very bright thing to do since the cleaner contains
pumice and the glass is PYREX.  It seems that the pumice could make
micro-scratches in the high-stress (?) glass and cause it to break
during roasting ... or something like that ... Aaron and others know a
lot more about that kind of stuff than I do.
All of this is to say, I bet some of the hand cleaner one could get
from the automotive store without the pumice, or the same type of Fast
Orange without the pumice, would work.  I just haven't gotten around
to testing this theory.
Hope this helps and let us know what your discover.
Vita non est vivere sed valere vita est
Roasting Blog and Profiles for the Gene Cafehttp://southcoastcoffeeroaster.blogspot.com/On 6/9/07, pchforever  wrote:

5) From: Rich
You can buy the Fast Orange hand cleaner both WITH and WITHOUT the pumice.  Buy the stuff 
WITHOUT.  Or, just buy the concentrated orange extract cleaner.
On Sun, 10 Jun 2007 10:18:25 -0500, Eddie Dove wrote:

6) From: Aaron
a greenie should not scratch glass.   have you tried citric acid,  or
vinegar possibly.   some rubbing alcohol would take the grease off but
make sure it is very dry before you roast, dont want to ignite any
pockets of that left over.
I know with my swiss golds, they get gunky and I use the cleaner sodium
carbonate and an ultrasonic cleaner, hit them for about 3 minutes and
they come out like new.
Id be careful with bleach as it can attack many plastics.... might want
to try some ammonia too but again try on a small piece to make sure it
wont affect the plastic / bakolite..
thing is, there is not going to be any miracle cleaner really that will
just magically dissolve all the gunk (that I could legally or morally
give to you that is)  without a good few hours of soaking and elbow
grease afterwords.   Sodium Meta Bisulphite and Tri Sodium Phosphate
(TSP can be found in brew shops for equipment cleaning) might work too.
Heres a stupid idea from redneck part of town... ie where I live.
Get yourself a 2 gallon plastic bucket like you'd wash a car with.  fill
it with hot soapy water, let the thing soak a few hours, and hit it with
a pressure washer / or take it to the self wash car wash, wash your car
and when you are on the rinse cycle, pressure spray your roasting
drum.... that should blast the crap out of it....
a bottle brush would work and a toilet brush works well too (please use
a clean one) but with them be careful the metal wire holding the
bristles in doesn't scratch your glass.  One of those hand held pot
scrubber nylon bristle stiff brushes might work too... a toothbrush will
work but will take a bit of brushing... thing with a T brush  most folks
get the soft ones for their teeth  (or tooth in my part of town)  but
for your purposes, get a medium or hard bristle one you need the
stiffness to really get down into the nooks and get the crunchies out.
My I roast gets very nasty as well on the bottom, and these methods have
worked well for it.  the buildup is almost like hard tar after a while
if you neglect it too long.
Hope this helps, and Eddie is right on the Pyrex, and hi stress types of
glass.   if you scratch them internally, they can get goofy on you and
just shatter without warning one day.  the intense heat we bring them up
to for roasting, and the fact that it is heated / cooled unevenly put a
lot of strain on it and weak spots will cause an area to bust at.

7) From: Kevin
Garage/Automotive cleaner sans pumice: Goop.  It works pretty well and has
no abrasive to scratch the Pyrex.  Just make sure you wash the Goop out with
regular soap and water after the drum has been cleaned.

8) From: Rich
Goop is also available with pumice, read the label before application to tempered glass.
--Original Message Text---
From: Kevin
Date: Sun, 10 Jun 2007 15:39:24 -0700
Garage/Automotive cleaner sans pumice: Goop.  It works pretty well and has no abrasive to scratch the 
Pyrex.  Just make sure you wash the Goop out with regular soap and water after the drum has been 

9) From: David Liguori
How clean does the thing really need to be?
Has anyone tried running it through an automatic dishwasher?  Works wonders on the FreshRoast chamber.
I would be very careful using any kind of harsh cleaner on that rubber bumper on the chaff paddle, or have a lot of spares.
I have yet to figure out how to remove the partition, apparently most of you have.
At this point mine is about 25 roasts old, the chamber has only gotten an occasional wash and scrub with soapy water, and there's no significant build-up yet.  I've never gotten an answer from anyone on whether the chamber is "dishwasher safe".
David Liguori
Donald Varona wrote:

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