HomeRoast Digest


Topic: Roaster Run-Down. (18 msgs / 501 lines)
1) From: Les
I just got a nice batch of new coffees.  I always enjoy reading the
"Tiny Joy."  However, I had a "love - not-so-much love" reaction to
the article on "Roaster Run-Down".   I totally disagree that there are
no super reliable and long lasting roasters.  I didn't see small
commercial roasters listed.  I have one.  It is super reliable,
repeatable, and easy to use.  Mine does not have "dumbed-down
pre-programmed settings" either!  It is built like a tank, and if I
take good care of it, my grandchildren will be roasting on it.  Yes it
was expensive, but in terms of value, it was a bargain.  Should
everyone go out and spend in the 4 figures?  You have to evaluate how
serious you are about this hobby.  In my life, I have spent more on at
least 3 other hobbies that didn't bring anything close to the daily
satisfaction that homeroasting does.    The other consideration is the
reality that we are getting the top tier beans from Sweet Marias.
Don't they deserve to be roasted on the best roaster that you can
afford?   Since I have roasted on all the the roasters mentioned in
the article and a few that are not, I think I  am qualified to talk
about the roasters.  In my opinion the Behmor, Gene Cafe, and Hottop
can all produce real good coffee.  All of the others are great for
seeing if you enjoy the hobby.  Sure there are folks out there like
Alchemist John and Plain Mike who can build their own awesome
roasters, but for the rest of us we need to buy what is out there.
Getting a small commercial roaster is an awesome way to go for the
serious homeroaster.  It covers all the flaws that Derek and Maria
talked about.  How much money have you spent on a grinder, espresso
machine, other brew methods, and the stash?  It all starts with the
bean.  Tom brings us the best beans around.  Second that bean has to
be roasted right.  The next important thing is the grinder.  Following
the grinder, you can get an awesome cup of coffee with a pour-over.  I
would give up my espresso machines and Techivorm and replace my
expensive grinder with a Zass and keep my small commercial roaster if
it came to that.  Hindsight is 20/20 and I am speaking with 23 years
of roasting experience.
Les
P.S.  I have been coaching a List member that has a new small
commercial roaster, and he is giddy about how awesome it is working
for him!
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2) From: Lynne
Damn. As I was reading this, I'm thinking - Les has *my* roaster... it's
lastest
me years, will probably last more years. No repairs, also doesn't have any
'dumbed-down pre-programmed settings'.. Also built like a tank (in it's
simplicity -
I could - and have - drop it on the floor and it won't break). Extremely
reliable,
and if I had to - it would fit in my tote bag.
Yep, love my little ten dollar stove-top roasting pan...
:P
Lynne
On Tue, Dec 16, 2008 at 12:15 AM, Les  wrote:
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3) From: miKe mcKoffee
I "want" to disagree and say roasts from a split wired dual variable voltage
profile controlled popper can compare, but I can't. I "want" to disagree and
say the same for a HotTop, but I can't. I once believed differently prior to
on hands direct bean comparisons. Both can come close, even maybe very
close, to the quality from a commercial drum roast but not quite. IMO both
the Behmor and Gene Café are in an even lessor league.
Which is not to say don't be unhappy with what you roast with, any more than
I'm unhappy I don't have a GS3 on my kitchen counter! (Though the single
group Slayer when it's released will replace that home AND (multi-group)
professional drool factor:-)
Kona Konnaisseur miKe mcKoffeehttp://www.mckoffee.com/Ultimately the quest for Koffee Nirvana is a solitary path. To know I must">http://www.NorwestCoffee.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.
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4) From: Les
Lynne,
I knew someone would come back with the good old stove-top roasting
method. (How much did your stove cost?)   An awesome method that takes
a lot of skill!  I have used it many times.  One of my favorite
methods was introduced to me by Pecan Jim.  Roasting over a fire with
an Adrock popcorn popper.  I even PIDed my Adrock.  Yup!  I added
sophisticated heat control.  Since paper burns at 455 degrees about
the perfect temperature for roasting, I added a Paper Incendiary
Device (PID) to my Adrock.  It really does help you find the zone.
You just attach a strip of a paper bag at to the basket, and when it
flames you are at the 455 degrees!   I think I learned more about
roasting with the Adrock than any other method.  All of the variables
are in flux all of the time, what a ride!   On a more serious note, my
small commercial roaster allows me to do totally repeatable complex
profiles that can't be done on any of the other roasters mentioned in
the article.  I can repeat a roast profile within 2 degrees throughout
the roast and end within 15 seconds of the roast before.  That kind of
stability, power, and repeatability costs money.
Les
On Mon, Dec 15, 2008 at 9:22 PM, Lynne  wrote:
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5) From: Lynne
 Les  wrote:
<Snip>
Nothing.. for me. Ha - I'm in an apartment... even my electricity is
included in my rent (got a sweet deal). I have to say, it's the best stove
I've had, except for my (sniffle, sniffle) gas stove when I had my own home.
This is a good quality, flat, glass top type. I really love it.
<Snip>
Now I would LOVE to try that. Haven't gone camping (couldn't do it here,
obviously) for years.
<Snip>
Come to think of it, I've learned by that method many times - when I left
pans on the stove and forgot about them. Ms Absent-Minded here...
<Snip>
Seriously, I'm jealous. But even if I had something like that, I doubt I'd
be able to operate it. I do so much better by 'sensing' - that's why I love
roasting stove-top; it appeals to the artist in me. I'm the opposite from
scientific, I think. Too many details confuses me... yet another reason I
couldn't go into this as a business.
Unfortunately, this also means that the slightest thing that might bother me
could upset my roasts - and have.  But when I hit it right, as I have lately
(with the right greens, of course) - do I *ever* enjoy it!
I must say, though, when I have greens that need special treatment - I'm
afraid of ruining them. It's then I wish I was more precise, had a more
scientific method of roasting. But part of that is my own insecurity - the
preciousness of the greens actually scare me!
Lynne
(who needs to get to bed, but is waiting for her son to return from the
all-night CVS with some tylenol to dull this awful TOOTHACHE - OW!!! I think
Scotch would have been a better treatment for it...)
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6) From: Jim Gundlach
On Dec 15, 2008, at 11:42 PM, Les wrote:
<Snip>
If you have a digital thermometer with a fairly long thermocouple, it  
is easier to add a thermometer to the Androck than any of the other  
roasters I have tried.  And, a dual probe model lets you measure the  
temperature on the fire side as well as the temperature in the bean  
mass.  While not as innovative as the Paper Incendiary Device, it does  
let you keep measuring the temperature once you back down from 456  
degrees.
    pecan jim
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7) From: Alchemist John
Are you getting or wanting to get a Slayer?  What do you know about it?
At 09:41 PM 12/15/2008, you wrote:
<Snip>
John Nanci
AlChemist at large
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8) From: Heiko
Les,
you made me curious. Can you give a little more details as to what kind
of roaster you are using?
Thanks
-Heiko
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9) From: Heiko
Les,
you made me curious. Can you give a little more details as to what kind
of roaster you are using?
Thanks
-Heiko
Les wrote:
<Snip>
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10) From: Les
I have a USRC (United States Roaster Corp.) half kilo drum roaster.
Les
On Tue, Dec 16, 2008 at 1:40 PM, Heiko  wrote:
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11) From: Keld Soele
2008/12/16, Jim Gundlach :
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12) From: Jon Segal
Which roaster do you have?  Just curious.  How much would a small commercial
roaster run?  I'm considering getting one.  I have a Gene Cafe and have been
enjoying for the last 6 months.  I've already roasted over 60 batches.  I'm
pretty sure between drinking the product and making gifts that I'm a lifer
with this hobby.  I love it.  Never enjoyed coffee more than the last 6
months.  Best way to start the day!
Jon
On Mon, Dec 15, 2008 at 11:15 PM, Les  wrote:
<Snip>
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13) From: michael brown
also, les, how much can you roast at a time on this mini comercial roaster?=
<Snip>
omeroast> Subject: Re: [Homeroast] Roaster Run-=
Down.> > Which roaster do you have? Just curious. How much would a small co=
mmercial> roaster run? I'm considering getting one. I have a Gene Cafe and =
have been> enjoying for the last 6 months. I've already roasted over 60 bat=
ches. I'm> pretty sure between drinking the product and making gifts that I=
'm a lifer> with this hobby. I love it. Never enjoyed coffee more than the =
last 6> months. Best way to start the day!> > Jon> > On Mon, Dec 15, 2008 a=
t 11:15 PM, Les  wrote:> > > I just got a nice batch=
 of new coffees. I always enjoy reading the> > "Tiny Joy." However, I had a=
 "love - not-so-much love" reaction to> > the article on "Roaster Run-Down"=
. I totally disagree that there are> > no super reliable and long lasting r=
oasters. I didn't see small> > commercial roasters listed. I have one. It i=
s super reliable,> > repeatable, and easy to use. Mine does not have "dumbe=
d-down> > pre-programmed settings" either! It is built like a tank, and if =
I> > take good care of it, my grandchildren will be roasting on it. Yes it>=
 > was expensive, but in terms of value, it was a bargain. Should> > everyo=
ne go out and spend in the 4 figures? You have to evaluate how> > serious y=
ou are about this hobby. In my life, I have spent more on at> > least 3 oth=
er hobbies that didn't bring anything close to the daily> > satisfaction th=
at homeroasting does. The other consideration is the> > reality that we are=
 getting the top tier beans from Sweet Marias.> > Don't they deserve to be =
roasted on the best roaster that you can> > afford? Since I have roasted on=
 all the the roasters mentioned in> > the article and a few that are not, I=
 think I am qualified to talk> > about the roasters. In my opinion the Behm=
or, Gene Cafe, and Hottop> > can all produce real good coffee. All of the o=
thers are great for> > seeing if you enjoy the hobby. Sure there are folks =
out there like> > Alchemist John and Plain Mike who can build their own awe=
some> > roasters, but for the rest of us we need to buy what is out there.>=
 > Getting a small commercial roaster is an awesome way to go for the> > se=
rious homeroaster. It covers all the flaws that Derek and Maria> > talked a=
bout. How much money have you spent on a grinder, espresso> > machine, othe=
r brew methods, and the stash? It all starts with the> > bean. Tom brings u=
s the best beans around. Second that bean has to> > be roasted right. The n=
ext important thing is the grinder. Following> > the grinder, you can get a=
n awesome cup of coffee with a pour-over. I> > would give up my espresso ma=
chines and Techivorm and replace my> > expensive grinder with a Zass and ke=
ep my small commercial roaster if> > it came to that. Hindsight is 20/20 an=
d I am speaking with 23 years> > of roasting experience.> >> > Les> > P.S. =
I have been coaching a List member that has a new small> > commercial roast=
er, and he is giddy about how awesome it is working> > for him!> >=> > Homeroast mailing list> > Homero=
ast> >> >http://lists.sweetmariascoffee.com/li=stinfo.cgi/homeroast-sweetmariascoffee.com> > Homeroast community pictures =
-upload yours!) :> >http://www.sweetmariascoffee.com/gallery/main.php?g2_i=temId=7820> >>> Homeroast=
 mailing list> Homeroast>http://lists.sweetmar=iascoffee.com/listinfo.cgi/homeroast-sweetmariascoffee.com> Homeroast commu=
nity pictures -upload yours!) :http://www.sweetmariascoffee.com/gallery/ma=in.php?g2_itemId=7820
Windows Live™: Keep your life in sync. =http://windowslive.com/explore?ocid=TXT_TAGLM_WL_t1_allup_explore_012009Homeroast mailing list
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14) From: miKe mcKoffee
Les has a US Roaster Corp 1 pounder. Cost wise figure about 12 to 15
Behmors. Longevity wise it'll out last those 15 Behmors and many more. Roast
control and roast quality wise it's no contest, no off the shelf home
roaster including a HotTop can match it.
Disclaimer: I don't have and have never used a USRC .5k, however I regularly
hammer a USRC 3k:-)
Kona Konnaisseur miKe mcKoffeehttp://www.mckoffee.com/Ultimately the quest for Koffee Nirvana is a solitary path. To know I must">http://www.NorwestCoffee.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.
Pacific Northwest Gathering VIIhttp://themeyers.org/HomeRoast/">http://home.comcast.net/~mckona/PNWGVII.htmSweet Maria's List - Searchable Archiveshttp://themeyers.org/HomeRoast/
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15) From: raymanowen
"...I didn't see small commercial roasters listed.
[It wasn't written to small commercial roasterys]
I have one.
[Most Do not. It would require a permit and probably a zoning variation to
install and operate, along with a rider on your Home Owner's Insurance
policy...]
It is super reliable, repeatable, and easy to use.
[So is mine, but it's not "Set it and Forget It"]
Mine does not have "dumbed-down pre-programmed settings" either!
[My controls are Binary- On or Off.]
It is built like a tank,
[Does it really have Caterpillar tracks, a Turret and run on JP-4? You must
get a real Bang out of roasting.]
...and if I take good care of it, my grandchildren will be roasting on it.
[I fancy they might become Custom Roasters, perhaps being Artisan Roasters
and Baristas!]
Yes it was expensive, but... it was a bargain."
[What is expensive, compared to the OnStar GPS equipped Land Barge that you
have to replace every 5 years due to Engineered Obsolescence?]
Also making the Toy analogy, companies have learned to make counterfeit toys
that look and work kinda' like the real thing. No Snap-On tools or Quincy
compressors in the home shop.
Got a Hardinge tool lathe or Miller welder in the basement shop of your
castle? Your bench vise is not going to be a Wilton, but made in "another
country," bought at *ToolsR Us*.
My roaster won't be the best somebody else has to offer, but the first
prototype will utilize the unaltered RK Drum.
Out of respect for Ron, I'll use the drum as supplied in a stable
temperature muffle with Grand Slam cooling of my own design. The main
component will be the RK Drum.
Vast Ideas and mock-up, Plan is (log 3.16) Vast. (Not half vast)
Cheers, Mabuhay and Magandang Hapon -RayO, aka Opa!
Your old roaster could serve as an educational toy for the kids!
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16) From: Les
I often roast a half kilo.  I know one person with a roaster just like
mine that has done more, but I promised to keep it a secret.  More
important to me is that it will do an excellent half roast with now 8
awesome profiles developed and it will do a half kilo with 14 awesome
profiles developed so far.  I agree with Mike's assessment of the
quality of the roast produced by my roaster.
Les
On Fri, Jan 9, 2009 at 12:40 PM, miKe mcKoffee  wrote:
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17) From: Les
Correction:  Should be "half-pound" roast.
Les
On Fri, Jan 9, 2009 at 3:32 PM, Les  wrote:
<Snip>
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18) From: Lowe, David
I've not been "on the list" (or even lurking very much) for the last
year or so. (Been subscribed, but over-run and not reading much.) I
decide to "take a look", poke around a bit and discover that Les got a
new roaster early last year. Wow, it sounds like quite the machine!
Makes me think I ought to start saving my nickels and dimes...
Dave Lowe


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