I have no idea if it is common for new members to introduce themselves, so if I am breaking a rule, please forgive me. Hello, I am Ken B, and I am an addict. (oops, wrong list) Wait, what? It IS the right list. ;-) I am new to the list, and to home roasting. in general. Whenever I take up new things, I try to be quiet and learn as much as I can from people who went before me, and hence, I subscribed to the list. I am not new to coffee, being a 50-something year old programmer, but I am new to different coffees, and I enjoyed them so much I decided to take up home roasting last October. I have already sent the Fresh Roast Plus back for repair. (it cracked a glass chamber, then the top of the base unit) I used this as an excuse to buy an I-Roast 2, since it is programmable. (sic) I just finished my first profile, and if it is not too much of a problem, I have a question. I used Tom's profile in the pdf, 350 for 2 min, 400 for 3 min, and 460 for 4:30, roasting an El Salvidor Siberia. He says this produces a City to City+ roast. I stopped the roast at 3:35 in the last stage, and the coffee looks like a perfect Full City to my (admittedly untrained) eyes. With the I-Roast, I cannot hear the cracks like I could in the Fresh Roast, so it is hard for me to say where the crack stages were. It may be that I have a higher line voltage? It is ~116-120 volts most of the time. I found with the fresh roast I also needed less time than the documents said. I only roasted one batch with the I-Roast before buying a dryer vent to run the exhaust outside. Running around the house trying to unset 4 fire alarms was no fun. :-) Using the preset-2 on the I-Roast, it produces what I would call a Vienna roast...dark, but not like a French roast. With India Malliali, preset-2 roasted darker than 6:30 (the most I ever roasted it) in the Fresh Roast, and produced quite a bit more of the French Roasty smell...not burnt, but has been hot. I used it for espresso and cappuccino and it was quite good! It also produced the same type of roast for a Brazil Fazenda Jacaranda. Again, since this is a good espresso coffee, I used it for espresso. Then I wanted to brew some for the drip coffee maker. (Yeah, I know, but I hate thinking, standing and waiting in the morning) I do not have a scale, so I used 2 level 1/2 cups of beans for all my roasts. I tried Tom's profile, and as I said, cut it at 3:35 in stage 3. (see picture) Temperature was 70 degrees. Humidity was ~40%. Does this look like Full City to anyone? I am still trying to calibrate my eyes, but it looks like it to me. coffee-1.jpg was shot with natural light on bright white paper. coffee-2.jpg was shot with flash. Neither have been edited for brightness/contrast from the original exposure on the Canon-XTi. If anyone could give me some guidance, I would appreciate it.http://www.onlymysite.net/images/misc/coffee-1.jpghttp://www.onlymysite.net/images/misc/coffee-2.jpg Has anyone else had these issues with the I-Roast? Are they issues? Does anyone have some profiles they could share? Ok, I will shut up now and go back to reading like a good newbie. :-) Best Regards, Ken
On Jan 5, 2008 6:28 PM, Ken B wrote: <Snip> Welcome! --MikeW -- "About the time we think we can make ends meet, somebody moves the ends." --Herbert Hoover
Hey Ken-- Welcome! I've been using the I-roast for a while and if there's one thing I've learned, it's that most of them run a bit hotter than the setting. There doesn't seem to be a lot of consistency between them, unfortunately, so while I'm more than willing to share profiles with you, I'm afraid you'll still have to tweak it for a good result. In fact, if you go into the archives of this list you should be able to find all sorts of shared profiles for the IR. If not, let me know and I'll be happy to get my profiles to you. Couple of little things: Color certainly gives some indication of level of roast, but the kind of bean you're roasting also has an effect. So, the darker the color does not necessarily mean a greater degree of roast. I try to use sound more than anything with smell not far behind. A little trick I use to better hear the cracks is to get my ear right next to (NOT ABOVE!) the screens in the top. Also, different beans will require you to roast different volumes, depending on bean density, processing, etc. All this is going to require a lot of trial and error on your part. One great way to go is to get the Sweet Marias sample pack. That allows you to try different types of coffees and do some experimenting to see what works for you. While doing so, only change one variable at a time so you can dial in your machine. Ultimately, your tastes will determine how and what you roast. My guess is that even your "mistakes" will end up tasting better than most of what's out there. The big payoff, though, is when you really nail that perfect roast, and then can repeat it because of your scrupulous note-taking. There are so many on this list with way more experience and knowledge than me, so don't be afraid to ask for help. Good luck, and enjoy! Rich M On Jan 5, 2008, at 5:28 PM, Ken B wrote: <Snip>
Ken, Welcome to the list! What you describe on your IR2 seems fairly typical. Preset 2 will produce char, unless you manually stop it. Using less than the two scoops of beans will slow it down (less mass to block the airflow). Using slightly less than what the IR manual recommends will probably be the most important tweak you can do. As far as hearing the cracks, try standing a few feet back. It was my experience that my first few roasts, I was overwhelmed by the roar of the motor, and couldn't hear the cracks, but after a while, I became somewhat attuned to the sound of it, and was able to hear them. (either that or I became tone deaf at the pitch of the motor..) Lately, I've taken to popping the chaff collector lid (the small one on top) if I think the roast is running too hot, to let out some chaff. I also pop this lid and let the metal chaff collector just float during the cool cycle, gives a faster cooldown. (just don't grab it with your bare hands..I have some big lab gloves I use). enjoy! --mike On Jan 5, 2008 6:28 PM, Ken B wrote: <Snip>
Mike, Michael amd Rich, Thanks to all for the welcome. I look forward to reading the information on the list, and yes, I did go back through the archives some. There is a LOT of data out there! I will continue to work my way through it. I take it you do not use the exhaust Mike? The dryer hose covers the little lid, and if you popped that loose, you would have no venting. Somewhere down the road, I will figure out a way to roast somewhere where I do not need to vent, but right now, I roast in the kitchen, and my hood fan does not vent outside. Hence, the dryer hose out the window. I will try your suggestion of standing back from the unit. I tried standing close, and could not tell the difference between the crack and the beans bouncing off of the little metal turret thing, when I could hear anything over the roar of the motor. With the Fresh Roast, the crack was very easily distinguished. Rich, since yours also runs hot, I would appreciate the profile information. It will give me a good starting point for further experimentation. If you use a profile from one of the "cool" ones, I assume that would be frustrating. I will also try raising my head up. I tried to put my ear fairly close to the roast chamber, and that just made the motor noise worse. Anyway, thanks to all for the welcome and the suggestions. All in all, I think that this will be a lot of fun to resolve, because at least my experiments have still been drinkable so far. :-) Best Regards, Ken Mike Koenig wrote: <Snip>
Ken B, Welcome to the list and thank you for the post. We love posts about home coffee roasting ... The El Salvidor Siberia [sic] should be excellent! ( ;-) I couldn't resist!). El Salvador coffees are some of my favorites and I have four different varieties in the stash. When we are new to roasting, color can be very deceptive because the color can vary so much from bean to bean for the same level of roast. Granted, if you finish the roast and the bean is still green or yellow, it is probably a generally good indicator of a very light roast. After roasting any particular bean and resting it the amount of time your desire, brew it with your chosen method. If you decide that it is indeed an exquisite elixir, go get the beans and study them noting the color, and general appearance as this will be a good future reference. In the interim, it would be most beneficial to make note of time, smell & smoke (if possible with that hose) and definitely the behavior and timing of 1st and 2nd cracks (if roasted that far). For the pictures you referenced, the amount of oil and sheen on the surface of the bean, and to some extent the color as well, is a fairly good indicator of the level of roast achieved with that batch when compared to the examples on Tom's document titled "An Updated Pictorial Guide to the Roast Process." (This can be found at the following URL: <http://www.sweetmarias.com/roasting-VisualGuideV2.html>) Comparing your pictures to those in Tom's document, the roast appears to be past Full City, perhaps Vienna or a bit more. Please continue to let us know of your home-roasting experiences and again, welcome to the list! Respectfully, Eddie -- Vita non est vivere sed valere vita est Home Coffee Roasting Blog and Referencehttp://southcoastcoffeeroaster.blogspot.com/On Jan 5, 2008 5:28 PM, Ken B wrote: <Snip>
Hi Ken Let me add my welcome to the list, and assure you you'll find a lot of good info from the good folks here (as you already know). I am relatively new to roasting (started in August or Sept.) with the IR2 and my voltage runs the same as yours. I routinely stop the roast several minutes before the end. I use Tom's profile, slightly modified to lengthen time to first crack by about :30, so my programmed roast time is 10:00 rather than Tom's 9:30. Several people have already mentioned good suggestions, so I'll not repeat them; but I will add one more observation of my own. I find the amount of chaff produced to be an important factor in determining roast levels. Of course, you have to get to know a coffee to anticipate the amount of chaff, but I would encourage you to make note of it with your various roasts and you will begin to see a correlation in your roast times. I realized this after roasting several decafs for my wife, and the different times needed for them. More heat is generated by more chaff blocking the collector, so some roasts go faster than others. Perhaps this may help a bit - Happy roasting! And again, welcome! RG At 08:01 PM 1/5/2008, you wrote: <Snip> "I have measured out my life with coffee spoons." ~T.S. Eliot
Welcome to the List, enjoy the Journey! Right List? See:-)http://www.mcKonaKoffee.comURL to Rosto mods, FrankenFormer, some recipes etc:http://www.mckoffee.com/Ultimately the quest for Koffee Nirvana is a solitary path. To know I must">http://mdmint.home.comcast.net/coffee/csa12steps.htmKona Konnaisseur miKe mcKoffeehttp://www.mcKonaKoffee.comURL to Rosto mods, FrankenFormer, some recipes etc:http://www.mckoffee.com/Ultimately the quest for Koffee Nirvana is a solitary path. To know I must first not know. And in knowing know I know not. Each Personal enlightenment found exploring the many divergent foot steps of Those who have gone before. Sweet Maria's List - Searchable Archiveshttp://themeyers.org/HomeRoast/ <Snip>
There is no single correct, or even best way to roast, age, grind or brew coffee. I, for one, could never remember it anyway. -ro On Jan 5, 2008 4:28 PM, Ken B < coffee> wrote: <Snip> -- "When the theme hits the bass, I dance the Jig!" - -Virgil Fox at the Mighty Wichita (ex- NYC Paramount) WurliTzer- 1976
Thanks again to all the folks who said hello and offered suggestions. I appreciate the welcome and the suggestions. Eddie, you are correct. When I ground the roasts from yesterday, they were definitely well beyond where I want them to be. More French Roast than anything. Thanks for the reference to the pictures Tom put out. This should help me get a little closer anyway. I used 325 for 3 min, 400 for 2 min and 460 for 3:30 for these, so that would appear to be way too hot. I will try today with 325 for 3, 390 for 2 min and 455 for 4:30 min, and reduce the amount of the beans, as has been suggested in the archives and here. The hose does not stop you from smelling the roast, nor does it do away with every bit of the smoke, but it does help keep the fire alarms from going off. I will try the suggestions for listening and see if I can distinguish the cracks. I think that would help more than anything. With the Fresh Roast it was easy to distinguish the cracks, and I got some very drinkable coffee from it. I read in the archives about noise canceling headphones, and I may try those too. I think I will use some of my stash that is not my favorite for testing though. I am getting low on the ones I really like, and would like the iRoast to produce usable results with what I have left of them. :-) Heh, and yes, I caught the spelling error just as I hit send. A programmer who does not use spell check...very, very sad. :-D Best Regards, Ken Eddie Dove wrote: <Snip>
Rich...I just wanted to let you know that your technique for hearing the crack worked perfectly for me. I roasted my first batch today, and clearly and distinctly heard the first crack. It said 373 on the internal thermometer and happened right at the end of stage 2. I used a profile of 325 for 3 min, 390 for 2 min and 450 for 4:30 min. on 6 oz by volume of beans (three level 1/4 cup measuring cups) I wanted to see if what I heard correlated to what is in the pictures Tom posted, so I cut the roast at 15 seconds after first crack, or about 10 sec into stage 3. The beans I took out matched Tom's pictures perfectly for #8, first crack underway. But from this, it looks like the roast is still going too fast. So, my next batch (in an hour) will be the same profile, but I will listen for the second crack and cut it 10 seconds after I hear it. I HOPE it works as well, because then I will have a clue as to how to get decent roasts out of this beastie, at least for one coffee. :-) Thanks for the tip! Best Regards, Ken Rich M wrote: <Snip>
All well and good Ken but use your eyes and nose and ears and watch for the smoke all tell you something. The next batch of beans you get may roast way different than this batch and your temps will go right out the window for time seems no 2 beans roast the same way is what I have found out, learn to trust your instincts lot depends on how hard the bean is how much moisture is in the bean and the bean temp when you start to roast and roaster temp all play a part in your roasting so its part science and art to roasting that keeps it interesting........
Hi Ken, Welcome to the list! My name is Bob and I'm a...., uh..., Homeroaster. I have an IR1 that has since been retired in favor of a Behmor. Here's my 20m$ on the IRoast: Buy a scale. I always run 130g loads. Anything heavier didn't agitate well and the roast went too quickly. I also use the scale for brewing rather than a scoop. There's a good one on this page: http://www.sweetmarias.com/prod.roastkits.shtmlYour line voltage is actually normal to somewhat low. 120Vac is nominal. I wouldn't worry. Slowing down the roast helped me significantly. I don't recall who pointed it out, but adding some time to the intial stage brought out a lot of flavor and body. I played around quite a bit and finally settled on the following profile: 320deg for 5min 380deg for 6min 405deg for 4min The key was adding 2min to the often-seen 3min first stage. It almost never gets into the 3rd stage very far before I start the cool cycle. Good luck, Bob
Hi Ken... Hello, my name is Dave, and I too am a coffee addict (though many of us call ourselves coffee "snobs" on this list -- don't ask why). Glad to meet you. Hope you get as much info and pleasure from the friendships you'll form on this list. Some truly great folks here. Dave Kvindlog iHomeroast Cedar Rapids, Iowa On 1/5/08, Ken B wrote: <Snip>
Hi, Ken B. Welcome to the list! Let us know how your further roasts turn out. As you pointed out, the best part is the variety! I'm due to share some results as well very soon... John Ken B wrote: <Snip> -- John A C Despres Hug your kids 616.437.9182 Scene It All Productions JD’s Coffee Provoked Ramblings
Hi Ken, Welcome to the list and to homeroasting. There are lots of interesting and helpful folk on this list. Ken S...