HomeRoast Digest

Topic: FreshRoast Plus (23 msgs / 605 lines)
1) From: Ted Kostek
I recieved the FreshRoast Plus for Christmas, and I'm still experimenting
with it. Despite many nice features, however, I've been having trouble
duplicating my old roasting results.  In particular, I'm disappointed with
my Harar roasts.  The best I've been able to get a fruity aroma, but I can't
get it into the cup.  I assume the problem is related to the extra speed of
FR+ vs my old roaster.
Have others had difficulties dialing in their FreshRoast Plus?
I assume this subject has been discussed at some point.  Can some one
provide a pointer into the archives?  They weren't easily searchable last
time I looked, but if some one could say "Check back x wks", that would be
considerable help.
Ted Kostek
765 494 2146 (desk)
765 494 1489 (engine room)
765 494 0787 (fax)
"Always keep in mind that your own resolution to succeed is more important
than any other thing."  Abraham Lincoln
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2) From: John Abbott
I too moved from a FR to FR+ and the difference was very noticeable.  I
hacked the FR to make it digitally controlled, and the difference became
greater.  Several of us have modified the FR roasters to slow the process.
The "no hack" version would be to drop into the cool cycle for a couple of
seconds per minute and then turn the timer back on.  The hack version would
be to interrupt the power to the heating coil using a switch - the
"dedicated beyond hope" version would be to interrupt the fan, and power and
control each with a variac.  My resolution? I bought a HotTop :O)
John - the adventure goes on!

3) From: Ben Treichel
Try from the about mid January to now. We've talked more about mod's 
than repeatability with an un-moded FR or FR+. Also, if your not doing 
this, weigh your green, put a thermometer in the roasting chamber.http://sweetmarias.com/prod.roastkits.shtmlTed Kostek wrote:
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4) From: Jim Schulman
Hi Ted,
The easiest trick is to turn the roaster 
completely off for a minute at various points 
(this is less traumatic to the beans than going to 
the cooling cycle). Here's the effect of doing it 
in various spots:
-- Just before the first crack: (or when you hear 
the first pops of it) this evens up the roast, it 
will also give the origin flavors an extra kick.
-- Just as the first crack begins to winds down: 
this will lengthen the roasting time, increase 
body and sweetness, but also reduce the origin and 
roast flavors a little bit
-- End of roast: Let the roast coast to a finish, 
i.efor full city stop it at the first pops of the 
second, and only go to cool when the color is what 
you want. This is subtle, but I think it does good 
things to the roast flavors, taking off bitter 
Jim Schulman
On 17 Feb 2003 at 9:11, Ted Kostek wrote:
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5) From: Jason Molinari
Jim, with a WBII, i don't have a variac or anything, cna i basically unplug the popper for 30 seconds-1 min, at the points you're talking about ? or do you need to keep the air going and shut the heat off?
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6) From: Jim Schulman
Hi Jason,
In my increasingly unhumble opinion (I'll have to 
work on that ;)
If you just shut the heat off, the air cools the 
beans, so never do it for more than 10 seconds. 
When shutting off air and heat, the beans cool 
very slowly and the roast continues at an 
attenuated rate. It's not ideal, but it's 
certainly better than overly fast roasts on bright 
beans. I've never heard of beans scorching when 
doing this, although it could conceivably happen 
on roasters with a lot of hot metal in contact 
with the beans,
In a fast airroaster like FRs or poppers, I think 
this is the only way to get 2 sorts of roasts: a 
light city roast for acidic beans without the 
overwhelming grapefruit/caturra attack; and a 
roast optimal for espresso with blends that have 
more than just Brazils in them. 
On the other hand, for roasts to full city plus, 
where you want lots of bright and roast flavors, 
full speed is the only way to go!
On 17 Feb 2003 at 17:13, Jason Molinari wrote:
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7) From: floyd burton
Jim-one of your prior posts on roasting said something about the roasters at
Intelligentsia almost turning off the heat at a certain point in the roast.
Do you remember at what point they slow down the heat?  Looking to apply
your methodology to my gas drum roaster.

8) From: Jim Schulman
Hi Floyd,
They were unwilling to give me the exact profiles, 
but they did volunteer that they generally reduced 
the heat throughout the roast (this may be a 
peculiarity of the heat retaining cast iron 
drums), and that they liked to have about 5 
minutes of roast time after the first crack start. 
They also said they often the heat off completely 
in the last few minutes.
They have someone skilled minding all their 
roasts, and there's a temperature readout, a bean 
thief, a gas control and a dump lever where he 
sits. So my guess is they play it by ear.
On 17 Feb 2003 at 18:24, floyd burton wrote:
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9) From: floyd burton
Jim-five minutes after start of first crack-wonder how far they go into
second crack-I am still learning with the drum but for now am stopping the
roast just after the start of the second crack.
I store my beans in about 50F temperature and after a few days I see some
very tiny oil spots on a few of them-guess that means they are just into
second crack or does it mean anything.
Oh-my "HowToRoast" word file is up to about 15 pages-most of the content has
you as the author-thanks much.

10) From: Oaxaca Charlie
 Hi , I'm not Jim, of course, but if you have the right momentum
going with a few lbs roasting in your heavy drum then you can
definately lower the heat after first crack and probably turn it
right off at the beginning of second. Stop there or go as far as
you like, the roast shouldn't stall and you're less likely to
burn em up. Works for me.
--- floyd burton  wrote:
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11) From: floyd burton
Thanks Charlie-I really liked the flavors of the coffee's we had at
Intelligentsia last year and I think their object is to extend the roasting
time between first and second crack and to wherever you want to stop the
roast.  Like the results I am getting now but can always improve.
Charlie when you see just a very few flecks of oil on the beans-does that
mean into second crack or does it mean anything.

12) From: Jim Schulman
On 17 Feb 2003 at 20:09, floyd burton wrote:
Most of their coffees are darkish full city 
roasts, probably just to a rolling second but not 
further, since there's not much oil on the beans. 
They roast all beans separately, even for blends, 
but I didn't see much variation in their roast 
Thanks, but I have no clue how much of it applies 
to more than my roaster and my taste. Most of my 
experiments are more head scratchers than proof of 
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13) From: Oaxaca Charlie
--- floyd burton  wrote:
 Well, offhand I'd say "yes",oil flecks would be unusual before
second crack. Very hot temps, extra oily beans (there's a
subject for a new thread...) and , of course, city roasted beans
that have been stored too long could bend that rule. Are the
beans pretty smoothed out and developed, too? Nice and brown,
maybe a satiny sheen? Probably at least early second crack.
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14) From: Rick Farris
Floyd wrote:
It means they're just starting to go stale.
-- Rick
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15) From: Rick Farris
Floyd wrote:
I'm not Charlie, Floyd, but you left out the important piece of information
that you included in your earlier post.  I quote:
	"after a few days I see some very tiny oil spots on a few of them"
Note the "after a few days" phrase.  If that were "after a few minutes" it
would mean that you were well into second crack.  After a few days it means
that your beans are beginning to go stale.
-- Rick
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16) From: Jim Schulman
Hi Rick,
you wrote:
One man's "stale" is another's "just right." When 
I was growing up in Germany, the folk wisdom was 
that beans which weren't oily were either too 
fresh (few days out of the roaster) or too stale 
(few weeks old). A friend who lives there now says 
the mass market roasters coat the beans with 
soybean oil to convince the public they're still 
fresh. BTW, the commonest roast level there is 
Full City.
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17) From: Rick Farris
True enough, but we're not talking about the old country, we're talking
about definitions generally believed by home roasters.  In this forum and in
a.c, beans are pretty much believed to be at their best at 24- to 48- hours
and to go downhill afterwards.  To home roasters who don't roast beyond full
city, a sure sign that the beans are going stale is that oil begins to
appear on them.
Actually, the surest sign is that the beans are a few days old. ;-)
-- Rick

18) From: Oaxaca Charlie
 You have a good, point, Rick, but if "a few days old" means 3
or 4 days, then the limited amount of pre-first crack roasts I
do never show any oil. It takes a week or more. Barely full
city, just into second crack roasts do show flecks of oil after
3 or 4 days .
--- Rick Farris  wrote:
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19) From: Jim Schulman
On 17 Feb 2003 at 23:16, Rick Farris wrote:
I prefer 3 to 6 days for espresso. The raw edges 
disappear, and the mouthfeel of the emulsified 
oils are best at that point.
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20) From: Rick Farris
Charlie wrote:
I almost always roast a few seconds into second crack, and it takes my beans
about a week to start showing flecks of oil.
The OP (Floyd?) is doing multiple roasts to calibrate/tune-in his multiple
pound  BBQ roaster.  I'm betting he's got so much roasted coffee laying
around that when he says "a few days," it's more like 5- to 7- days.
-- Rick
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21) From: floyd burton

22) From: floyd burton

23) From: Ed Needham
Cute gal in the leather shop??? I bet she gets your free coffee on a regular
basis.  Might have to bring a pre-made thermos and a couple of mugs.  Don't
forget to recharge your pacemaker batteries. 
Ed Needham
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