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Topic: This Ol' Dog Just Learned a New Trick (5 msgs / 149 lines)
1) From: Dave Kvindlog
Went over to Brett Mason's house last night to divide up some SM greens and
learn a new roasting technique - HG/DB.  We roasted 2 batches: one of his
while I watched, then one of mine - solo.  I think I could like this method.
I started a year ago roasting with a hot air popper.  Fell in love with this
"hobby" (addiction?) and will never (willingly) drink other coffee now.
I've taken the CSA Pledge.  But roasting in a hot air popper doesn't produce
enough volume to meet my family's increased consumption.  I can't afford a
Behmor yet, so have been thinking about either HG/DB, HG/BM, or Drum
Roasting.
Brett kindly loaned me his HG/DB setup and I'm going to practice a bit.  Any
good websites out there for me to get a few tips from?  Perhaps I'll find a
BM at my local thrift store and try that route too.  But I really liked that
interactivity that this process requires.  I like how I am really in control
of the roast too.  I can also see the value of adding an IR thermometer to
the process to increase feedback, to keep the roast from stalling or ramping
too fast.
The Costa Rica Dota Peaberry Special in my cup this morning is very nice.
It's fun to learn new tricks!!!
-- 
Dave Kvindlog
iHomeroast
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
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2) From: Bill
Dave, I love this roasting method, as I often say.   I think that it is an
essential means for any roaster to try.  There is no comparison to the
hands-on approach of this method.  I love watching the development of my
beans.  And as I've said before, I really like using an IR thermometer to
track temp.  I've been surprised at how accurate it is (not sure that's the
right word...I mean that based on its temps I can predicts what's going on
and what's coming next)...
So congrats!  This is the site that I found most helpful to learn the
basics.  As far as I can tell, there are a few sites that are like HG 101.
 There are no sites that teach anything more advanced.  Not sure if there is
anything more advanced...http://homeroaster.com/heatgun.htmlbill
On Tue, Mar 11, 2008 at 9:07 AM, Dave Kvindlog  wrote:
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3) From: raymanowen
"...surprised at how accurate it is (not sure that's the
right word...I mean that based on its temps I can predicts what's going on
and what's coming next)"
Bill, that's the exact definition of the correct measuring device for your
application. What more could you want? I would only suggest that you get a
spare IR thermometer- an exact duplicate of your present device- and compare
the two indications from time to time on a sample roast. Always keep a fresh
spare battery on hand for your "work" meter
They will indicate the same roast trends, but can't give the identical
readings, digit for digit. I'm still waiting for funds and a Harbor Fright
sale to coincide. Currently, the tips come from you!
Cheers and thanks -RayO, aka Opa!
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On Tue, Mar 11, 2008 at 2:24 PM, Bill  wrote:
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4) From: Bill
RayO
I've been really surprised how well 2 AAA batts are holding up in this
thermometer.  I have 20 roasts under its belt, checking temps on ave 15
times per roast.  So that's at least 300 temps, plus the 15 second backlight
(which you said would be the real battery-eater).  So yeah, I've got extra
batts ready to roll with it.  Right now, I'm waiting to buy a backup
heatgun, but the backup thermometer isn't a bad idea at all...
And you're right that the actual temp doesn't matter, so long as I'm using
the same thermometer.  And my 1st crack temps seem to be "ballpark" correct,
compared to other roasters.  So overall, I'm really happy with it.
I roasted 6 pounds last Monday.  The last one was a Yirga Cheffe that I
wanted to keep as lightly-roasted as possible.  I cut temps at 400 F,
creeped through first crack, let 1st finish, and ended the roast at 422 F...
a definite city roast.  I couldn't have dreamed of doing that without the
thermometer...
bill
On Fri, Mar 14, 2008 at 10:43 AM,  wrote:
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5) From: raymanowen
The IR thermometer has absolutely no interaction with the process you're
measuring. Any hot body (beans, you hope) emits IR "light", invisible, the
same electromagnetic energy form as radio waves.
Just like a gorgeous sunrise or sunset- whether you look at it or not has no
effect on it.
Thermocouple wires are visible, so you can see the junction that generates
the Seebeck voltage that you measure with a microvoltmeter. The voltmeter,
calibrated in degrees of temperature, only reads the potential developed at
the junction.
The lead wires themselves are relatively cool and soak heat away from the
hot junction. The measurement is more precise if the leadwires are heated by
the same process you're trying to measure at the junction, especially if the
thermocouple is in a well or metal sheath. Cold wires near the junction form
a thermal super highway. Interaction is ++Ungood.
If the insulation on the wires becomes abraded and the wires short out,
there's the new junction. Even if the wires short through a third conductor
like a rough hole in sheet metal, that's enough- New Junction. It's not any
kind of interaction with the process, just a poor installation.
Just remember- the IR thermometer is like a camera taking pictures in light
you can't even see, so the focal point is never certain. But I like it.
Cheers, Mabuhay -RayO, aka Opa!
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On Fri, Mar 14, 2008 at 9:28 PM, Bill  wrote:
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