[Homeroast] Using a Variac to control a GeneCafe

Edward Bourgeois edbourgeois at gmail.com
Wed Aug 17 09:15:36 CDT 2011

If you set it on 120v 100% you will get the full line voltage. If your
variac doesn't have a meter you will need a Kill-A-Watt meter($20+-)
to plug into the variac output and the Gene into the KAW.  If your
line plus demand pulls your voltage down below 120v you will need to
set on 140v and adjust. up until you get to your desired voltage.  A
varic doesn't hold the voltage steady. Line or demand  fluctuations
will require adjustments along the roast. Be aware that the display on
a KAW meter will not light up when the voltage applied is below around
93 or so volts. Start low and adjust up and once you hit above that
your display will appear and continue til you get where you want.

On Wed, Aug 17, 2011 at 8:30 AM, Ken Knott <esprcorn at hotmail.com> wrote:
> I have access to Variac's so I thought I might give them a shot to control my Gene CAfe.  I understand that power fluctuations at the outlet are common and can make a significant difference in controlling your roast profile's conistency.
> So...  My Variac's can be set to 120V or 140V.  I imagine I would want to use 120V.
> Second questions.  From there, I can set my Variac from 0 to 100%.  As wall outlet are supposed to provide 120V, am I correct in that I would set it to 100% and then plug in the old GeneCafe?  I'd rather not fry my GeneCafe if possible...  :)
> Thanks in advance,
> Ken
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Ed Bourgeois aka farmroast
Amherst MA.

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