[Homeroast] variac basics

msmb at suddenlink.net msmb at suddenlink.net
Sat Nov 13 23:31:15 CST 2010


Thanks a lot.  I realized that I no doubt have transformers in devices all around my house ("sure got the tiger by the tail").   I discovered Tom's video on using a popcorn roaster and there is information there also about the switch.   I imagine that what you really will end up doing is "working the switch," turning it on and off to try to keep a constant temperature and ending up with profiles within a range (first stage between 220 and 250 degrees, for 4 minutes, second stage between 300 and 350, etc.),  I am not sure the I-roast was really any different in this.  Thank you for the information.


---- silas coelho <silascoelho1 at gmail.com> wrote: 
> Variac is also know as variable auto transformer, and basically what does is
> to adjust the output voltage as a PROPORTION of input voltage, and I
> enphasize proportion, because if your input voltage (115 Volts/127 Volts or
> even 220 Volts) changes, the output is also going to change.
> When connected to our popcorns it will control the total power of the
> popcorn maker,
> 
> The issue is, unless your input voltage is constant (seldom the case) your
> output power is going to change over time (means your temperature + motor
> speed for the fan as well). But it does the work for  most of cases, giving
> you a bit of control of the temperature for the poppers. If you want to go
> even further, a suggestion will be to adapt a switch to turn on/off the
> heater on the popper allowing you to have a 'cool down fan' (depending on
> the popper it will require much more then just switch)
> 
> Hope will not be against the list police (no competition here) Radio Shack
> and similar stores would have variacs, I will  divide 1250w/114 Volts giving
> around 11 A, but going to the safe side stick to the 15 A (it is a lot)
> 
> 
> regards
> 
> Silas
> 
> 
> 
> 
> 2010/11/13 <msmb at suddenlink.net>
> 
> >
> > After a good number of years I today tried roasting with an air popper once
> > again.  I came across a 1250 Watt Proctor Silex one that was left in a
> > rental property and couldn't resist the temptation of trying it.  I was
> > amazed at how quickly it heated up and how powerfully it kept the beans --86
> > gramms, same thing I used in my I-roast--  swirling around and ultimately
> > how evenly it roasted.
> >
> > is it overkill to use a vaciac with this kind of roaster?  if it is not,
> > can someone tell me about vaciacs; I have the scantest knowledge of what
> > they are (I was just reading a bit online).  I take it that if I were to buy
> > one i should get one that plugs into a whall outlet and that has an outlet
> > into which I plug the popper.  Then there is typically a dial that you turn
> > in order to set and  control the wattage of the popper and that by doing
> > this you can carefully control the heat.  I assume that after using the
> > popper enough you will become accustomed to what point on the control keeps
> > the popper at a given temperature.  Is all fo this correct?
> >
> > Tne next question is what the capacity should be for a variac that will
> > control a 1250 w device.  if i understood correctly I would divide 1250 by
> > 84.5, which suggests a 15 AMP variac.  But that seems like a lot doesn't it?
> >
> > Then the next question, if it is permitted in this forum; where do you
> > purchase a variac?
> >
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