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Discussions > Coffee > Home Roast > Ultimate roaster  
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CoffeeRoastersClub
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Posted Sat Jan 26, 2013, 10:34am
Subject: Re: Ultimate roaster
 

sversimo Said:

Why do you prefer a fluidbedroaster? Looks good.


Here is a picture of my  prototype

Posted January 25, 2013 link

Sverre,

Is the muffin fan you are using drawing the exhaust smoke out of the roaster?  (seems like it is).  Is there a chaff removal system under it?

Len

 
"Coffee leads men to trifle away their time, scald their chops, and spend their money, all for a little base, black, thick, nasty, bitter, stinking nauseous puddle water." ~The Women's Petition Against Coffee, 1674

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germantownrob
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germantownrob
Joined: 2 Dec 2007
Posts: 2,156
Location: Philadelphia
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Duetto 3, A Dead Oscar
Grinder: Vario-W, Preciso w/Esatto,...
Drip: Brazen
Roaster: Diedrich IR-1, HT B
Posted Sat Jan 26, 2013, 7:02pm
Subject: Re: Ultimate roaster
 

So if there is one thing the home roasters really want is larger batch size, 1lb, that is not in the commercial price range. I myself went for a commercial 1kg because 1lb was a little small at certain times, but it seems 1lb would satisfy most. The Quest really gives the home roaster a machine that almost mimics what my 1kg gas machine can do except the one complaint I hear is airflow, that is also my complaint about the HotTop.

When I considered 1kg machines it was to pair with a larger machine down the road, efficiency was a factor for the long term for me, it might not be the same for the average home roaster. My 1kg IR burner uses 8000 BTUs an hour at max setting, atmospheric burners use much more then that, this means the IR-12 from Diedrich is Green compared to its competitors, from a home roaster stand point it probably means little but for consumers buying beans it means a lot in this day and age. Diedrich's air intake to the drum it pre heated by bringing it into the burner area (and through heat syncs on the larger models) to pre heat the intake. Other then the Diedrich design it is hard to imagine what can make it more energy efficient, especially of electric is the heat source. When it comes to electric and efficiency it is hard to beat a design like oldgearheads.

I like roasting manually but people like technology and it sells. Would I like full automation at times? Yes, if it worked perfectly but the automation systems I know of to use on 2kg on up machine start at a price higher then I think you would plan to sell your machine for. Automation I imagine is a bit tricky to get correct for the drastic environments the machine would live in, heck I roast in 100f temps down to 34f temps, think you can get the programming right to give me identical results? I seriously don't think Diedrich takes this into account with their $10k automation.

Assembled or not? Either way sales are lost. If it constructed in such a way that that is an option that saves a buyer money I think a small amount of sales would go to folks that would put it together. Lets be honest I can build just about anything but I have two young children, my free time is limited so choices have to be made where I spend my time so buying assembled in many cases is for me. Recently a gentleman here made a 2kg+ drum machine on his own, he did his home work, opted for IR burners, I don't think it has cooling, and it is a nice looking machine, he built it for under $3k, a comparable Diedrich is over $7k, closer to $11k delivered, not sure his time was calculated in. Plenty of designs and helping hands around the coffee forums for people to build their own, only a few do. Sell it ready to use, if the design allows for some assemble at home for better shipping then pass the saving on to those that want it.

I love that somebody wants to give the home roaster something that they are wanting. HotTop has been trying to give us a 1lb roaster for a few years, hasn't happened yet. Diedrich unleashed the HR-1 a few years back, didn't last long. Toper has the electric Cafemino 1kg machine for many years now, maybe they got it right this year. If an electric drum roaster that could do 1lb or more with excellent results more of them would exist already. Oldgearhead has a great efficient design for a 1lb fluid bed roaster, Sivetz's, RIP, spent a little time looking into fluid bed roasting and he might have some info out there.

I am not the market you are looking to sell to, but I was a couple of years ago. The hole in the market for home roasting is quality 1lb roasts, a home roaster may desire more then 1lb but does not need it. Manual is very important, Geeking it out with the ability to data log or even automate will open a wide market of a few home roasters but it better be correct for a variety of environments for plug and play to work.

IMO it is hard to beat what the mini 500 delivers for $3000 max delivered. Drum diameter,drum length, fins size in drum, drum rpm,  all effect the roast, I expect a commercial company to have this figured out so all of their roaster are proportional to each other. If you want experienced home roasters interested then these details need to be worked out for the heat application being used. Roasting with gas has such a quick response time to temperature changes, electric is like driving on ice, need to think ahead and go slow. What if a PID dropped the temp in timing with how long the element(s)took to cool at first crack, this may be a cool geek feature that sells electric and keeps home roasters from bothering commercial companies.
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swines
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Joined: 17 Aug 2005
Posts: 161
Location: New Mexico
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Andreja
Grinder: Cimbali Jr. ; Macap
Drip: Capresso MT-500; Melitta
Roaster: Diedrich HR-1
Posted Tue Jan 29, 2013, 3:36pm
Subject: Re: Ultimate roaster
 

Diedrich unleashed the HR-1 a few years back, didn't last long.

That's because the cost model for that roaster didn't work for Diedrich.  They were spending as much time manufacturing the HR-1 for retail price of about $5,000 as they were for commercial roasters.  The HR-1 was diverting manufacturing labor away from the professional roasters which, in turn, reduced the company profits.

They had originally hoped it could be used as a sample roaster.  The initial name for the machine was the SR-1 for sample roaster - 1lb.  But, the electric IR heating elements didn't duplicate the response of the IR gas roasters - so, you could not use use it for profile development that could then be transferred to larger roasters.  At that time, Stephen Diedrich was being treated for cancer and was not at the manufacturing facility.  The management decided that they would rename the roaster the HR-1 and continue manufacturing it.  When Stephen Diedrich got back to work, he looked at the machine's costs and effect on the manufacturing of the larger machines and cancelled the product.

The HR-1 itself is a wonderful roaster.  While expensive,  it may be the home roaster's dream machine for quality of both the roasts that come out of it and the machine itself.  It is an extremely high quality machine that weighs about 80 pounds.  The term "tank" is often used to describe a product that is heavy-duty and over built.  The term is totally appicable to the HR-1.  It is a miniature version of a commercial drum roaster built with commericial level parts and design - just in a smaller package.

Operation of it is just like a manual commercial drum roaster.  The way you use the machine is to keep track of the roast temperatures at 30 second intervals and manually log them on a roast log.  By logging the time and temperature you are watching the degrees / minute of heat rise, so you know the speed of the roast.  You watch the bean development through a small window in the front of the roaster and use the trier to check the beans' development as you approach the desired roast level.

If you carefully log time and temperature, then subsequent roasts are easily repeated - you don't need PID controls and computers.

The one quirk to the machine is that the IR heating elements are extremely sensitive to voltage level so that the use of a Variac is imperative for control of the roaster.  If you do not have a Variac, the roast control is not linear as you change from Low, Medium, High heat levels.   Low heat is one IR element, Medium is two IR elements, and High is three heating elements.  On a standard 15 amp circuit, you can watch the voltage drop proportionally to the heating level.  With the Variac, you bring the voltage back to 120 VAC and the heating stays linear as additional IR elements are added as the heat is increased.

PID's and computer controls are really not needed if you want to learn roasting and become involved in the process.  Personally, I'd be more interested in putting money into better build quality, and a more robust design than electronic controls.
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germantownrob
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germantownrob
Joined: 2 Dec 2007
Posts: 2,156
Location: Philadelphia
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Duetto 3, A Dead Oscar
Grinder: Vario-W, Preciso w/Esatto,...
Drip: Brazen
Roaster: Diedrich IR-1, HT B
Posted Sun Feb 3, 2013, 5:43am
Subject: Re: Ultimate roaster
 

Swine I did not mean to say the HR-1 does not work and that is why Diedrich stopped making it. I suspect selling to home roasters for expensive machine involves a lot of hand holding, this is why I believe they changed how they sell the IR-1 as well. Last I heard the Ir-1 costs more then the IR-2.5, I suspect the IR-1 is only being built with their data logging to maintain a geeky status of Lab Roaster and to weed out home owners from buying it.

Now that I use gas I would not want to go back to using electric, I no longer have to think in heat delay from a burner and can get almost instant response from a burner adjustment.

I can't imagine automation being able to replace a roast master, somebody has to program it and there is so many little tweaks to be done to keep the same bean from roast to roast, day to day, week to week, year to year that automation needs to be smart enough to handle these variable or corrected by user.
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swines
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Joined: 17 Aug 2005
Posts: 161
Location: New Mexico
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Andreja
Grinder: Cimbali Jr. ; Macap
Drip: Capresso MT-500; Melitta
Roaster: Diedrich HR-1
Posted Sun Feb 3, 2013, 6:28pm
Subject: Re: Ultimate roaster
 

I suspect selling to home roasters for expensive machine involves a lot of hand holding, this is why I believe they changed how they sell the IR-1 as well.

Possibly, but judging from the roasting class I took at Diedrich - probably less than the people buying commercial roasters.  The difference being, there's a lot more profit to work with when you sell a commercial roaster, so the time spent assisting the buyer is not as much of a percentage of the profit when compared to a home roaster.  The IR1 is virtually a gas version of the HR1 with data logging.

I asked the general manager of Diedrich how many HR1 roasters they sold and he said they were averaging about two per week - this was in May of 2005 so it had been out about 6-8 months at that time.  A friend of mine, who is also a home roaster, bought one after my trip to Diedrich and roaster order, and he has been as pleased with his as my wife and I have been with ours.

I totally agree that a gas roaster is far more controllable than the electric IR system used in the HR1 as the response window for a gas roaster is so much smaller than the electric roaster time window.  The system lag is what it is - and you just have to build that into your roast profiles.  If we could have plumbed gas to the roaster location, we probably would have gotten an IR3 instead of the HR1.  But, that would have taken ripping out the entire ceiling and parts of two walls to pull off - not something I wanted to do for a "hobby."

My wife is on roast 800 at this point (800 pounds of coffee!), and really knows how to drive the little beasty to get any result you want out of it for roast level and profile.  She hits 15 minutes  + / - about 45 seconds on the first roast of a new bean type - and knows what to do to correct it to 15 minutes exactly for subsequent roasts.

While nearly the price of an IR3 at the time we bought the HR1, it is built exactly like every other Diedrich roaster - except for the electric IR heating elements.   There is no other "home roaster" that I have ever seen that is the equal of the HR1 for build quality and controllability - once you learn its quirks and response time window.

What I can see automation doing for you is allowing you to easily log the roast profile and examine it after the first roast of a new bean type.  Once you know the corrections, depending upon the automation system, you can tweak the profile directly and then load it back into the roaster for subsequent roasts.  It certainly speeds up the roast process for commercial roasting as you only have to monitor the machine instead of manually working with it for the entire roast.  

This ensures repeatable quality for the volume roaster with a minimum of work.   For the home roaster....?   I can see little value.  If this is supposed to be a hobby - then learn how to roast coffee instead of playing with a computer.
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sversimo
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Joined: 20 Jan 2010
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Location: Norway
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Izzo Vivi PID
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Posted Tue Feb 5, 2013, 10:01am
Subject: Re: Ultimate roaster
 

Yes, the fan is drawing the exhaust smoke out of the roaster, and the box itself is the chaff collector, you empty it by removing a plug underneath. This system works okey, but its not ideal, so changes will come.

I知 aiming for somewhere in the range of 1-2 lbs max. Hopefully the new heating elements I知 waiting on will allow up to 1kg. (1.9lbs) (3x1000W)
The Diedrich looks to be a very fine machine, but its expensive. I知 guessing that they use very robust parts, motors, etc. Can someone verify this?

And I知 also guessing that its hard to find replacement parts, and doing the actual repair. yes/no?

So what im think; in order to reduce costs, I could use standard parts that are easy to find, and design the machine so that the repair is easy to do.  

IMO I don稚 think the mini 500 would be any problem to beat, give me 5 months, but in order to make it a challenge im going to make a roaster that beats the Diedrich HR1 as well, both on price and performance. Boom, now I have said it
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swines
Senior Member


Joined: 17 Aug 2005
Posts: 161
Location: New Mexico
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Andreja
Grinder: Cimbali Jr. ; Macap
Drip: Capresso MT-500; Melitta
Roaster: Diedrich HR-1
Posted Tue Feb 5, 2013, 7:21pm
Subject: Re: Ultimate roaster
 

The Diedrich looks to be a very fine machine, but its expensive. I知 guessing that they use very robust parts, motors, etc. Can someone verify this?



The roaster is built exactly like the commercial Diedrich roasters.  All of the parts, the motor, fan, bearings, etc. are heavy duty, commercially available parts.  The drum motor is a syncronous gear motor.

And I知 also guessing that its hard to find replacement parts, and doing the actual repair. yes/no?

Finding parts would not be a problem with the HR1 as all of the parts are commercially available.  The heat control is a custom built system, but even that would be simple to repair as it is a three position switch with multiple terminals wired to the three separate IR heating elements.  The IR heating elements are commercially avialable units if one needs to be replaced.

The "trick" to the Diedrich roaster is that it works exactly like the Diedrich commercial units with air controls, and preheats the air as it enters the roaster.  The air circulates around the drum and can be kept fully contained (20% fresh air), partially exhausted (50/50 fresh air), or fully exhausted - 90% fresh air circulation.

This allows you to control the heat not only through the number of heating elements, but how the air circulates through the roaster.

So what im think; in order to reduce costs, I could use standard parts that are easy to find, and design the machine so that the repair is easy to do.

All of the parts in the Diedrich are commercially available.  The roaster shell, drum, internal air channels, air controls, trier, cooling tray, handles, knobs, etc. were custom produced by Diedrich  specifically for that unit.  Look at the IR1 on the Diedrich website.  That IS the HR1 with gas burners and a slightly modified cooling tray (the bean pouring chute at the front).

IMO I don稚 think the mini 500 would be any problem to beat, give me 5 months, but in order to make it a challenge im going to make a roaster that beats the Diedrich HR1 as well, both on price and performance. Boom, now I have said it.

What you have to understand is that EVERY HR1 was custom built.  For example, our roaster has a polished stainless bean tray, polished stainless front plate, and other polished stainless trim parts.  The roaster is powder coated dark green with gold pin striping around the entire machine - and, yes, the pin striping was hand done - not done with tape.

That was part of Diedrich's problem - it was a home roaster with the same type of customization available in the commericial roasters - and all of that added to the price.  It also took 5 months from the time it was ordered until it was delivered.

My understanding is that they had enough orders, that the management had to decide whether they would hire more people and setup an assembly area dedicated to the HR1 - or discontinue it as it was impacting their ability to manufacture the full size roasters.

You have to understand that they have shearing equipment, rolling / bending equipment etc.  All of that gets tied up and taken away from large roaster production when they had enough orders in-house for a production run of HR1 roasters.

When they were approaching an order rate of one per day - that could tie up the equipment for several days - meaning they weren't making the more expensive, higher profit commercial roasters. So, although they were making some profit, they were still losing money as the profit was not as large on the HR1 as a commercial roaster.

I certainly hope you are successful.  I would like to see a home roaster available with the quality and roast control of the Diedrich HR1 - there should be place for one in the market.  

Please post more information on your development as this should be very interesting.
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RoastinRey
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RoastinRey
Joined: 7 Feb 2013
Posts: 9
Location: Fresno
Expertise: Pro Roaster

Roaster: 1kg Toper Cafemino - Gas
Posted Thu Feb 7, 2013, 7:30pm
Subject: Re: Ultimate roaster
 

I am new here but not new to roasting. I have been roasting on a Toper Cafemino gas roaster since May 2012 (iRoast since 2008) and so far am very pleased with the results. I have received positive comments about my coffee from about 99.9% of my customers, those with negative or dislike comments usually prefer the darker roast profile. I have been following many post here and on other websites with interest and must say that so far the Cafemino has proven to be a work horse and has produced the most excellent tasting coffee. It was relatively easy to master the roaster and I can get repetitive results. I do own a datalogger but have never installed it. I think craft roasting is the way to go.

RoastinRey: 014.JPG
(Click for larger image)
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sversimo
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Joined: 20 Jan 2010
Posts: 16
Location: Norway
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Izzo Vivi PID
Grinder: Rancilio Rocky
Posted Tue Apr 23, 2013, 1:04pm
Subject: Re: Ultimate roaster
 

I would like to say a thank you to all of you who have contributed with comments, questions and answered the survey!

I added one last photo of the prototype from a outdoor testing, 500 grams of Colombia coffee.  ( 8 degrees outside)

sversimo: IMAG0769.jpg
(Click for larger image)
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