HomeRoast Digest


Topic: when do you stop for a City roast? (8 msgs / 166 lines)
1) From: Mike Koenig
Lately I'm finding myself having a hard time nailing a perfect City
roast.  ( I'm roasting in a HopTop B model, and I don't have a bean
temp thermocouple yet)
I think I developed a fear of "premature ejection" after stopping a
few batches too early, so lately I think I've taken a few coffee's
that deserve a city roast a bit too dark by waiting until all of first
crack has ceased.
For those who roast by sound, sight and smell,  do you stop your city
roasts while there are still a few laggard beans in first crack?  The
hottop temperature display is only marginally helpful here, since the
onset temp of first crack can vary a bit depending on a number of
factors.  (maybe it's time to hack my HotTop and put a bean probe in)
It's amazing how this hobby works,  I'm getting some of the best
coffee I've ever roasted since I got my HotTop,  but I quickly get
accustomed to the higher quality and begin seeking more improvement.
--mike
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2) From: Sean Cary
I use an SC/TO and stop after I am pretty much done with first crack and
just about to start 2nd (few errant 2nds)
On Mon, Sep 22, 2008 at 3:50 PM, Mike Koenig  wrote:
<Snip>
-- 
Sean M. Cary
Major USMC
Tempus Fugit, Memento Mori
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3) From: Brian Kamnetz
I roast with a heat gun and generally follow a profile attributed to
Jim Schulman. First usually takes about 1 1/2 mins, and my bean cooler
stops the roast pretty much immediately, so though I roast by guess
and by golly, I can pretty much stop the roast at City. The range
between City and 2nd crack is a crap shoot.
Brian
On Mon, Sep 22, 2008 at 3:50 PM, Mike Koenig  wrote:
<Snip>
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4) From: David Martin
I use a heat gun also.  For me 1c lasts for about 2min, sometimes a
bit longer; I think this is because I pull back on the heat somewhat,
after 1c starts, to avoid over-ramping and going directly into 2nd.
I'm not sure if this stretching of 1c is a good thing or bad. I often
get a lot of 'laggard' cracks as well, which seem to go on for a long
time, and when this happens I have trouble knowing how to
differentiate between C and C+.
-Dave
On Mon, Sep 22, 2008 at 2:03 PM, Brian Kamnetz  wrote:
<Snip>
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5) From: Bonnie Polkinghorn
Mike,
Sometimes a practice roast can help, roast and note time of outliners of
first crack, first crack, first crack ending, second beginning.  That's if
you order more than a pound.  I find if I have only one pound, I need more
educated guessing than test roasts.
Then, you will know how long the space is between 1c and 2c, and you can
approximate your City, City +, FC and FC+ for the next time.
Of course, there are always other variables involved, even the temp and
humidity of the day you roast, but for me, this method seems to work.
Good luck!
Bonnie P.
On Mon, Sep 22, 2008 at 12:50 PM, Mike Koenig  wrote:
<Snip>
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6) From: Brian Kamnetz
Dave,
I do pull back a bit at first crack. I am often tempted to pull back a
bit more, but it is tricky, because the beans are releasing heat
anyway as they crack, and in the past I have pulled back too far and
worried a bit more about whether I have stalled the roast, so these
days I sort of chicken out. I roast only once a week, half a pound at
a time, and it is usually several weeks before I roast the second
half, so I don't know for sure what differences my changes do or do
not make. But that's part of the zen, at least as I accept the
definition: "All awakening is ok."
Brian
On Mon, Sep 22, 2008 at 5:24 PM, David Martin  wrote:
<Snip>
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7) From: Bill
Mike,
yep, I ruined at least 2 batches of Ethiopian Yirgacheffe shooting for a C
and stopping too quickly.
Hack.  hack.  hack.  I love the precision that I get from my tc in the
beans.  i like the tc in the exhaust as well...  all of these things help me
to nail the roast.  so i'd get a tc in the beans.
bill
On Mon, Sep 22, 2008 at 3:41 PM, Brian Kamnetz  wrote:
<Snip>
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8) From: Ben Lowery
Mike Koenig wrote:
<Snip>
If you can swing it, definitely get a TC into the bean mass. If you have 
a extremely tool, it's a pretty easy, if slightly time consuming job to 
cut a couple holes into the hopper cover and slide a TC in that way. I 
was roasting without one for a  couple weeks and then finally broke down 
and picked up a probe from Omega and a multimeter from Amazon. It's 
really insanely helpful to have that TC. If you start logging your 
roasts, you can really get some nice repeatability and prediction.
All that said, if I had it to do again, I would definitely get a data 
logging temp monitor instead of the thermocouple capable multimeter. As 
a hack, I've got a digital camera on a interval timer taking pictures 
every 10 seconds and then I transcribe the data, but a real logger would 
make things a lot easier.
--b
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