HomeRoast Digest

Topic: Long voyage starts with a single shot (6 msgs / 187 lines)
1) From: sho2go
I've been struggling lately to get a good pot of coffee, or shot of
espresso.  I've tried different remedies to no avail; the shots/cups were
always bitter.  Got a new Innova grinder;  momentary difference then back to
bad.  Cleaned my espresso machine, no help.
Bought a Rosto roaster, got worse.  Sent the HWP back to hearthware, along
with $43 for a new motor and board.  When it came back, believe it or not it
had the same motor and board, untouched.  A little phone conversation
resulted in HW sending me a new base.  Now the beans turned black in a
couple minutes; clearly getting too hot to quickly.  What to do?  The Rosto
won't get hot enough, and no amount of time or blocking the vent gets more
than a bitter, baked roast.  So its going back.  Took the 2 HWPs apart, and
did some swapping:  the board and heater coil from the old one into the new
one with new motor.  VOILA!!  I finally have a combination that works.
Pulled my first shot of espresso that has berry aromas with a chocolate
aftertase, in months.  The profile in the HWP is perfect; according to the
Pelize (sp?) it gets to 380 in 3-1/2 min., 400 in 4 min., then a slow climb
to 445 in 8 min or so.  First crack typ. starts at 4:15, ends around 6min;
second starts at around 7 to 8 min.  Never could even get a second in the
Rosto.  Lovin' life again, its so fine, in case its not obvious we got a
buzz going here............(caffeine).
If anyone stuck through this rambling discourse, thanks.
homeroast mailing listhttp://lists.sweetmarias.com/mailman/listinfo/homeroast

2) From: John Abbott
	Its amazing what the right (or wrong) profile will do for a bean.  I had
settled into a very comfortable rut with a Fresh Roast and then Fresh Roast
Plus and was completely satisfied with the results. I tried a Caffee Rosto
for a couple of weeks and wasn't impressed. Then I had the opportunity to
get a pre-release model of the HotTop - and after a bit of rebuilding - the
roasts it produces just blew away everything I'd done before.
John - enjoying a Cona Kona

3) From: sho2go
Yeah, its a complex chain of events that leads to the perfect cup.  First I
thought it was the espresso machine, then the grinder, but its all of those
working together, even brewing temp.  I wasn't letting my espresso machine
get hot enough.  Good to hear you like the Hot Top; the reviews I've seen
seem to run hot and cold.  What did you do in the "rebuilding" process?  I'm
waiting for the new Hearthware roaster; but in reality I think some
modifications may be necessary on any "home" machine for best results.

4) From: John Abbott
	There were several problems with the machines as received by the early
adopter group. I don't think any of us had all the problems.  My problem was
in a mal fitting drum that allowed beans to drop into the system below the
drum. The drum scraped on the front plate.  After a roast cycle, one had to
kill the power and let them machine become completely cool to start another.
I modified the drive motor mount and my problem was minimal after that.  A
couple of months ago I received a new face plate (far end of the drum pivots
here) and a new controller chip.  Subsequent to those changes I have had
nothing but great roast after great roast and completed five back to back
roasts with it on Sunday (or Monday - time blurs).  Because of our law suite
over dumb things like holding a McDonalds cup between your knees (buying
coffee from McDonalds was the real crime) HotTop is having problems getting
a US distributor due to the excessive amount of surface heat on the unit - 9
of 16 burned ourselves!  So after a rocky start, it seems to have become a
great unit - but maybe too late.
John - still sucking on Cona Kona

5) From: Ed Needham
In the future, if you decide the HWP is too hot or too cool, there is a
resistor that Hearthware can send you that is easily replaceable, and it will
vary the roast.  Some of us a while back toyed with the idea of a three way
switch that allowed changing the heat profile on the fly.  I don't think it
happened though.  Did anyone do that mod?  Results?
Ed Needhamhttp://www.homeroaster.comed

6) From: sho2go
Thanks, Ed.  Wonder why they didn't mention that?  I thought about reverse
engineering the board, but decided it wasn't worth it.  Since I have a brand
new board that is too hot, it would be worthwhile to play with it.  The old
one works so well I hate to mess with that one.

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