[Homeroast] THE home roaster

Edward Bourgeois edbourgeois at gmail.com
Wed Dec 15 17:00:53 CST 2010


I've had lots of requests for my homebuilt and they are willing to pay
the price I've said I would have to charge but without a way to avoid
liability I just say no. But sure wish I could say yes. I'm to old and
not willing to go through the 8 years of hell Joe did to get the
Behmor to market.

On Wed, Dec 15, 2010 at 5:16 PM, Hank Perkins <hankperkins at gmail.com> wrote:
> I build stuff for a living.  The electronics here are not rocket science.  The mechanicals are. There is enough complexity here to manufacture a drum roaster even with design software such as Solidworks would require either a high price, or a high quantity. Unit 1 would be very expensive. The Quest looks fairly complex to assemble.  Touch labor is another consideration.
>
> This does not even consider UL testing which is very expensive. Now, you don't have to be UL approved but if you are not you better have some good product liability insurance and without testing approvals that is expensive.
>
> The Behmor is not UL approved but it is ETL approved.
>
> Tom, just don't ask me to send the Quest back!
>
>
> On Dec 15, 2010, at 3:22 PM, Edward Bourgeois <edbourgeois at gmail.com> wrote:
>
>> Tom said, "One way to approach this that might get around some legal
>> hurdles (because a really GOOD home roaster is probably not going to
>> be idiot-proof, and I am sure would be classified as a fire hazard by
>> some agency) is to make a kit".
>> This is what I've never heard a good explanation on. How can we work
>> around UL and avoid a life of prison coffee if we sell a roaster or
>> kit to someone. A friend of mine is a lawyer but not product liability
>> which she says is extremely complicated and confusing.
>>
>> On Wed, Dec 15, 2010 at 4:11 PM, Tom & Maria - Sweet Maria's Coffee
>> <sweetmarias at sweetmarias.com> wrote:
>>> It's something we have batted around for a long time. It comes up
>>> recurrently. Honestly at one point there seemed to be almost TOO much
>>> interest in home roasting, mostly by those who wanted to strike it rich by
>>> inventing THE home roasting machine. But their ideas of good features always
>>> seemed to be , well, everything I would find either useless, or ineffective.
>>> The problem with trying to create a reasonably priced home roaster is that
>>> it takes a skill set I don't have. I can dream it up but I can't make it go
>>> ... then add to that the huge problem with actually getting it manufactured
>>> right, and not going over budget ... it's not easy. It makes me have some
>>> appreciation for Behmor although I see it's faults. I would not want to make
>>> an appliance to convince people who would normally not roast their own
>>> coffee that they should. I would want to make one for those who DO roast
>>> their own coffee, to allow them to do it better. The Quest M3 is not really
>>> what I would have in mind, but it does have the right feature set. And of
>>> course it is also not really a home machine at all, not a home appliance,
>>> nothing you would ever find among blenders and toaster ovens. One way to
>>> approach this that might get around some legal hurdles (because a really
>>> GOOD home roaster is probably not going to be idiot-proof, and I am sure
>>> would be classified as a fire hazard by some agency) is to make a kit. If it
>>> was build around some commonly available heat source, and you had to put it
>>> together, but gave control of heat/air, manual control of roast curves,
>>> physical sampling from the roast chamber, and cooled outside the roast
>>> chamber in 4 min or less, that would hit most of my targets. One
>>> disagreement I might find with other home roasters would be batch size. I
>>> think that a 150-300 gram batch is ideal. Many are going to want 1 lb. I
>>> think the best thing about home roasting is freshness and variety. So I like
>>> smaller batches. But if you can roast and cool at the same time in a machine
>>> like this, I think most would be okay with a 1/2 lb batch.
>>>
>>> Tom
>>>
>>>> Tom,
>>>> Thank you for your incite and wisdom that only comes from hours and hours
>>>> doing what you do with the wonderful tools/roasters at your disposal.
>>>> Regarding your comment,
>>>>  "Getting really good at targeting that roast degree is difficult; doing
>>>> it
>>>> in a Behmor is even harder. That (and cooling within the same space you
>>>> roast in) are my gripes with most home roasters, and those factors make a
>>>> difference in successful results."
>>>> Have you had the opportunity to consult on home roaster design and
>>>> engineering concepts with a manufacturer?
>>>> Just seems like of all the professionals I know of you would be the first
>>>> I
>>>> would come to.
>>>> Thank you again for so much of the roasting/targeting picture from your
>>>> perspective and how much or little the machine matters.
>>>> Makes me want to drag out the popper and play again and compare like you
>>>> described, same bean different roast systems.
>>>> Cheers,
>>>> Joseph
>>>>
>>>> On Tue, Dec 14, 2010 at 11:48 AM, Tom & Maria - Sweet Maria's Coffee <
>>>> sweetmarias at sweetmarias.com> wrote:
>>>>
>>>>>  I appreciate this conversation and have been holding back from weighing
>>>>> in
>>>>>  here. People are entitled to their opinions, and home roasters have
>>>>> never
>>>>>  held back. I look at each roaster as something unique, each with ups and
>>>>>  downs. I think you can get good roasts in many of these machines. There
>>>>> was
>>>>>  a real change around here when I decided I could no longer roast all my
>>>>>  samples on a home roaster. The volume of samples was just too great, and
>>>>> I
>>>>>  needed a multi-barrel roaster that could roast and cool at the same
>>>>> time.
>>>>>  But I still use most all the roasters (I even have a Poppery 1 on the
>>>>> bench,
>>>>>  across from a vintage  3 barrel electric Probat and a 3 barrel Gothot
>>>>> gas
>>>>>  roaster). I do not "profile" sample roasts - it's a straight line from
>>>>> start
>>>>>  to finish, within a range of about 9-11 minutes, with minor adjustments
>>>>> in a
>>>>>  session if I find the roast times creeping up or dropping off. I use the
>>>>>  green coffee batch size to adjust the roast as well. If I roast a batch
>>>>> in
>>>>>  the Quest (or the Poppery 1 for that matter, or I Roast or Behmor or
>>>>> Hottop)
>>>>>  I don't expect it to be better or worse. I expect it to be slightly
>>>>>  different, that's all. We compare roasts regularily- I did 6 separate
>>>>>  batches of a decaf arrival in the Probat (imagine how much time it would
>>>>>  take in one behmor!) and we did a Behmor batch as well. Behmor cupped
>>>>> quite
>>>>>  favorably. My Probat allows me great control, as the quest m3  does, as
>>>>> well
>>>>>  as much greater opportunity to ruin the coffee as well. In not of this
>>>>> are
>>>>>  we talking about larger batch roasting, which we do a bit of in the L-12
>>>>>  Probat, and on that we use several basic adjustments to air and gas
>>>>> during
>>>>>  the roast. The key on the L-12 is to have it properly installed, and
>>>>> very
>>>>>  clean ducting because it has low air flow. I think the L-12 roasts are
>>>>> nice,
>>>>>  but I feel that the critical factor is what you are putting in, the
>>>>> coffee.
>>>>>  I can say for sure that i MIGHT like an L-12 batch of a particular
>>>>> Kenya,
>>>>>  but it will have a different taste profile than my sample roasts.
>>>>> Usually I
>>>>>  produce many sample roasts of each coffee, and if I toss one L-12 batch
>>>>> on
>>>>>  the table with these many sample roasts, I guarantee you I will find one
>>>>> of
>>>>>  the sample roasts I like better.
>>>>>
>>>>>  My point is this; It might seem that it's about the machine, and the
>>>>>  operator. True, it is. But you have no chance of quality without putting
>>>>> in
>>>>>  good ingredients, and without targeting a specific end point. With small
>>>>>  (home roast size) batches, I get many snap shots of the same coffee, and
>>>>>  several seconds difference in degree of roast is where some coffees can
>>>>>  really shift. Getting really good at targeting that roast degree is
>>>>>  difficult; doing it in a Behmor is even harder. That (and cooling within
>>>>> the
>>>>>  same space you roast in) are my gripes with most home roasters, and
>>>>> those
>>>>>  factors make a difference in successful results. To a large degree,
>>>>> other
>>>>>  differences are secondary. If a Behmor no longer meets your needs and a
>>>>>  Quest might, fine. That would be like me at the point I found I could
>>>>> not
>>>>>  possibly produce enough samples in a home roaster. A Quest is not a
>>>>> Behmor.
>>>>>  A Quest is not a 3 barrel Probat nor an L-12. All are tools with
>>>>> different
>>>>>  capabilities. It depends on what you are trying to do with them. The
>>>>> thing I
>>>>>  find endlessly amusing is that you can produce AMAZING coffee in an air
>>>>>  popper.
>>>>>
>>>>>  There is not one right way. If you spend 4x as much money, you can still
>>>>>  produce horrible coffee. People do it every day on $250k of roast
>>>>> equipment.
>>>>>  With care, and accepting some limitations, a $2 thrift store find can
>>>>> result
>>>>>  in great coffee.
>>>>>
>>>>>  Anyway, just trying to chime in with some perspective from a different
>>>>>  place... now I am going to go roast a Guatemala sample in the Behmor!
>>>>>  --
>>>>>  -Tom
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>  ____________________________________________________________________________
>>>>>  "Great coffee comes from little roasters" - Sweet Maria's Home Coffee
>>>>>  Roasting
>>>>>              Thompson & Maria - http://www.sweetmarias.com
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>  ____________________________________________________________________________
>>>>>    Sweet Maria's Coffee - 1115 21st Street, Oakland, CA 94607 - USA
>>>>>            phone/fax: 888 876 5917 - info_at_sweetmarias.com
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>  _______________________________________________
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>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>
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>>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> --
>>>> Ambassador for Specialty Coffee and palate reform.
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>>>
>>> --
>>> -Tom
>>>
>>> ____________________________________________________________________________
>>> "Great coffee comes from little roasters" - Sweet Maria's Home Coffee
>>> Roasting
>>>              Thompson & Maria - http://www.sweetmarias.com
>>> ____________________________________________________________________________
>>>    Sweet Maria's Coffee - 1115 21st Street, Oakland, CA 94607 - USA
>>>            phone/fax: 888 876 5917 - info_at_sweetmarias.com
>>>
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>>
>>
>>
>> --
>> Ed Bourgeois aka farmroast
>> Amherst MA.
>> http://coffee-roasting.blogspot.com/
>>
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>
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-- 
Ed Bourgeois aka farmroast
Amherst MA.
http://coffee-roasting.blogspot.com/



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