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Hearthware I-Roast - Jeff Mauerman's Review
Posted: October 29, 2006, 9:25am
review rating: 5.7
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
Hearthware I-Roast
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More About This Product
Arrow The Hearthware I-Roast has 29 Reviews
Arrow The Hearthware I-Roast has been rated 6.03 overall by our member reviewers
Arrow This product has been in our review database since December 24, 2004.
Arrow Hearthware I-Roast reviews have been viewed 125,490 times (updated hourly).

Quality Reviews
These are some of the best-written reviews for this product, as judged by our members.
Name Ranking
Christopher Keene 8.67
Leland Goertz 8.50
Bob J 8.33
Mike Ferro 8.00
Alan Hurvitz 7.84

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Ratings and Stats Overall Rating: 4.0
Manufacturer: Hearthware Quality: 2
Average Price: $170.00 Usability: 7
Price Paid: $155.00 Cost vs. Value 2
Where Bought: Sweet Maria's Aesthetics 5
Owned for: 2 years Overall 4
Writer's Expertise: I love coffee Would Buy Again: No
Similar Items Owned:
Bottom Line: Sadly, a poor investment.
Positive Product Points

Straightforward to program, preset roasts are good for most purposes, east to view roast progress

Negative Product Points

Inconsistent roast results, extremely loud, difficult to clean, overly delicate contruction, poorly designed, expensive "warranty" service

Detailed Commentary

When I first got my iRoast, I was thrilled - I had been using a popper up to that point, and the viewability and batch size were a dream come true for me.  After about 5 months, though, I noticed the fan motor was starting to labor during the roast cycle, and the beans would not agitate properly in the roasting chamber.  The result was inconsistent roast, where some beans were dark and others light.  Shortly after this, the beans wouid hardly move at all, and my batches started to burn.  Thinking I had an airflow problem, I redoubled my efforts at cleaning the unit, even using oven cleaner for the more stubborn spots, but there was no improvement.

After a lengthy bout of correspondence with Hearthware (and some side emails to Sweet Maria's for clarification) I had the base of the machine replaced under warranty.  Between shipping costs for warranty parts as well as sending the unit back, it cost about $45 to get my unit working again.  Part of this cost was for the shipping of a new roasting chamber, which didn't even fit the base properly - chaff and bean bits would blow out through the bottom and onto my stovetop during every roast, so I am still stuck using my old, partially broken chamber.  Now, less than 4 months later, the fan motor is starting to fail again, and the unit is now out of warranty.

I know many people swear by the iRoast, but apart from the honeymoon period, mine has been a disappointment.  My original popper, by the way, which has seen far more roasts than the iRoast ever did, is still going strong.  I paid a whopping $3 for it at a thrift store....I think it was the better investment.

Buying Experience

Sweet Maria's was awesome throughout the process, even when Hearthware wasn't.  SM's continues to provide great products and service every time I deal with them.  A great operation!

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review rating: 5.7
Posted: October 29, 2006, 9:25am
feedback: (0) comments | read | write
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