Posted Wed Aug 13, 2008, 7:56pm Subject: Re: Gene Cafe Owners - Do You Love Your Gene Cafe?
Funny you should ask.
Well Eddie it was your web site and your information that led me to purchase this unit. I have not kept track of just how much coffee I have roasted with it but it has been one heck of a lot. And well, it's just tick, tock, tick................. Coffee the way it should be.
Thank you for leading me to such a wonderful machine.
Thank you so much for the kind words! It is greatly appreciated!
Since my original post, my Gene Cafe has roasted just shy of 225 pounds of coffee in 426 roasts and most of that was in an 8 month period. Once upon a time it roasted 18 hours straight for Christmas presents. For an "off the shelf" roaster, I believe the Gene Cafe to be one of the best, and certainly one of the best for learning to roast and having control over the roast. This is one reason why it still maintains a prominent place in my arsenal of roasters.
In the USA (I don't know about the other places around the world), the Gene Cafe also has excellent support by a really great guy named Tim Skaling. At times he is swamped with work, but he really cares about his customers and takes care of them; all I've ever had to do is call him.
It is really good to read all of the positive posts about the Gene Cafe! Keep 'em comin'!
Posted Sat Aug 8, 2009, 2:40pm Subject: Re: Gene Cafe Owners - Do You Love Your Gene Cafe?
i've had mine since november, roasting about a pound/week, generally 200 grams/ batch. my heater went recently but Tim replaced it under warranty so i am good to go. what do i like: i like that it is so thoroughly manual, which allows me to feel close to the roasting process. its a look, listen, and smell process that never ceases to be fun. i also find the batch size perfect for me. i graduated to the gc from a fresh roast, which is still my backup, but its batch size means roasting everyday, a bit much. at two years it will have paid for itself so that is my hoped for longevity. I would also thank Eddie for the advice on his site and his generosity with profiles and results.
DavecUK Senior Member Joined: 21 Sep 2005 Posts: 1,326 Location: UK Expertise: I love coffee
Posted Sat Aug 8, 2009, 4:17pm Subject: Re: Gene Cafe Owners - Do You Love Your Gene Cafe?
My Gene is now 2.5 years old, roasted around 140kg, still going strong. It in fact looks pretty much the same as a 2 month old unit. I clean the chamber, split chaff collector and clean and vacuum brush the gauze below, once every 9 months (I don't roast indoors, hence no lint build up. I changed the heating element as part of the dimmer control modifications (stage 1 and 2) last November time. The existing 240V UK element was still fine after more than 18 months of use. I replaced it with a 230V element as part of the modification strategy. If you are a Gene owner I think these modifications should be of interest and I would never go back to the old way of roasting!
If you fully modify it, in essence you get a fully controllable roaster, for rate and ramp as well as temperature without any on/off switching of the element. The need for a Variac (ever) is nullified in the UK/Europe and I think the same could be true for the US, because I notice a 100V option on the Korea website, which must mean 100V heating elements are available. The heating element should also last MUCH longer. You will then see the whites of their eyes in a darkish roast ;-)
I suspect in the US the problem with what appears to be early heating element failure...is the Gene is simply drawing too much power from time to time, signs of this are:
"Element Switching" (before preset temp reached, you'll hear a tick), this will be the overheat sensor at the exist of the heater box switching off the element.
More than 1230W consumption when running (most of the time I can roast at 1180W and in very very cold weather I only need 1220W. Obviously in colder weather you can draw more power, because the heating element is kept cooler.
Unfortunately with very little information or discussion from the US side, it's simply a guess until someone posts some typical consumption figures and starts watching to see if they are getting "element switching"
Posted Fri Aug 14, 2009, 3:48pm Subject: Re: Gene Cafe Owners - Do You Love Your Gene Cafe?
I have mine for about 1 month. It is really good (i have been popcorning so far). Mine is at celcium . I usually preheat then emergency stop to fill the beans 4 mins to half heat then i raise to max heat until the first crack
After first crack i usually give 2 to 3 mins for the roast to complete ,ending at emergency stop again and cooling it using a large fan i have . (it takes about 40-50 sec to room temp)
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