[Homeroast] IRoast 2

Christopher Navarro cnavarro2 at gmail.com
Tue Dec 7 07:51:51 CST 2010


I've been experimenting with my cast-iron skillet since my IRoast gave out
with reasonably good results after a few missed batches.  I wish I had done
this before so I could compare my results against the IRoast and better
understand the differences in the roasting methods.  I might pick up a
popcorn popper to experiment with too while I'm figuring out which direction
to go next.

Chris

On Sat, Dec 4, 2010 at 11:18 AM, <msmb at suddenlink.net> wrote:

> My IRoast -1, which recently died, gave me several years of excellent
> roasts, probably over 300 pounds.  At one point I roasted probably around 20
> pounds for my daughter's wedding party within one week, doing several roasts
> per day and waiting only 15 minutes between them.  It was a an excellent
> machine, and several weeks since it broke I am pretty much where you are.  I
> have been trying out an air popper and find that if you want a very cost
> effective device it works pretty well.  Thus far I have only invested in the
> popper (about $4 at my local thrift store) and an infrared thermometer.  For
> cooling I use a small but very powerful fan and find that it is even faster
> than my I-Roast was.  The only thing that is missing is a controller for the
> temperature, which I have not yet had the time to deal with.  But even
> without it there are are several possibilities for controlling temperature.
>  See Tom's video on using a popcorn popper for installation of a switch that
> will provide some control over the two heat elements.  Again, I haven't had
> time to deal with it and the simpler possibility is just to use a power
> strip with an on/off switch.  Once you get the beans up to temperature you
> just turn it on and off about every 5 seconds.  The temperatures will
> fluctuate within a range, but this is no different from my I roast as well.
>  You can keep them within a 5 of 10 degree range.  The problem here, so far
> as I can see is if you allow the temperature to go down too much and the
> beans are not turning then you are baking them.  The other possibility is to
> just let the device run, with a continual increase in temperature up to its
> upper level (around 475 degrees). You do get to that upper level very
> quickly and the total time of your roast will be 5 or 6 minutes.  I admit
> that my roasts are not as good, as sweet tasting, as with the I-Roast.
>  Perhaps the temperature controller and my increasing proficiency will help
> that.  But while you figure out which roaster to get it is an excellent
> method for home roasting.  The amount of beans that you can roast is about
> the same as what is used --at least what I used-- in the I-roast; 86 grams.
>
>
> ---- Christopher Navarro <cnavarro2 at gmail.com> wrote:
> > I'm usually just a fly on the wall on this list, but now I have a reason
> to
> > post, I could use some information.  I think my IRoast 2 finally gave
> out.
> > I noticed with my last 2 roasts that the cool cycle wasn't cooling nearly
> as
> > fast as all my previous roasts and I had to resort to using a metal
> colander
> > to finish the process.  At the end of today's roast I knew the machine
> was
> > done because it had a strange smoke coming out that I've smelled before
> when
> > old computer monitors die.  With some minor investigation I discovered
> that
> > when I plugged the roaster in the heating element came on without
> touching
> > any settings on the roaster.  The heating element must have been staying
> on
> > during the cooling cycle.  Another good reason to watch the entire roast
> > from start to finish every time.
> >
> > This was my first roaster and has provided me with just over two years of
> > great coffee so it was well worth the money.  The good news is now I have
> a
> > reason to research and buy a new roaster, which will probably either be a
> > Behmor or Gene Cafe based on budget and what I have read about them thus
> > far.
> >
> > A question I have for people who own the Behmor and/or Gene Cafe.   Can
> you
> > give me an idea of the durability of your machine (i.e. about how many
> > roasts were you able to do before it gave out or if it hasn't given out
> yet,
> > how many roasts have you done with it?  With my IRoast I logged about
> 220+
> > roasts, I roasted about every 3 days, give or take.  I have roasted
> heavily
> > chaffed coffees and peaberries, which seems like it might be a problem
> based
> > on Tom's review so I am curious to get an idea of your experiences with
> each
> > roaster, what you like and don't like.  Thanks for taking the time to
> > provide feedback.
> >
> > Regards,
> > Chris
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