A good macine, but I'd look at what's out there with a future on the market. PLEASE READ FOLLOW UP REVIEW about fire hazard!!
Positive Product Points
. No brainer coffee roasting - consistent results every time . Virtually smoke free roasting . Right size batch for home use . Running well after over a year
Negative Product Points
. Long roast cycle - nearly baking beans if you want a dark roast . Z&D is now referring people to the manufacturer (The Metal Ware Corp) - they're out of this business . Noisy - WHAT!!?? - I SAID NOISY!!!
I'm a pretty much straight full city roaster, so this is a great machine for me. I can fill the cannister, set it, and forget it and wind up with consistent coffee every time.
The potential downside here is that full city, for most beans, takes about 28 minutes. At this roasting time, I lose some of what makes a particular origin unique as all beans suffer a bit from "baked bread" syndrome at this length of time.
Given that Z&D appears to have given up this part of their business, there is certainly doubt cast upon the future of this machine until we are able to discern for sure what the manufacturer's plans are.
Z&D are good folks on the phone. They do a horrendous job still with their on line activity. I ordered green beans from them multiple times and experienced long shipping delays, stock out with no communication, and no order shipment at all the last time with no notification because they didn't have the varieties I ordered, and didn't deem it important to communicate that.
Three Month Followup
I've owned this machine for about 2 years now, but stopped using it for awhile when I had a good source of fresh roasted coffee.
I recently acquired 25Lbs of green beans and decided to plug it back in. On my 8th batch, the motor failed in mid roast. WARNING!!!! This machine has NO safety cut off. I was summoned to the kitchen where it was running by a household fire alarm going off. I found the chaff filter screen alight with burning coffee oils and the coffee in the bottom of the roasting chamber smoldering.
This SIGNIFICANT missing safety feature makes this a machine to watch each and every time you use it.
One Year Followup
PLEASE READ IF YOU ARE CONSIDERING A NESCO ROASTER.
After 2 failures of my original machine BOTH resulting in billowing smoke in my house, the company replaced the woefully defective unit with a new unit at half price. The company addressed the "safety" issue in 2 ways:
There is now FINALLY a cutoff which stops heating if it detects that the motor fails
They put a label on the machine telling you not to leave the room while the machine is operating - nice safety feature, no?
After 94 days (read approximately 25 batches) the NEW machine DID fail. The motor simply stopped in mid cycle. No billowing smoke this time, just NOTHING.
Once again, I called the company. I commented that I started a batch, went to my morning shower and found the dead machine when I got out. Almost a full MONTH after returning the unit, I got a call from a rep stating I could either:
Get my money back OR
They would ship me a new machine with NO WARRANTY because I had failed to follow their "stay in the room" instructions
I asked if the machine had some magic sensor that new it could void a warranty and fail if I left the room, whereupon they simply stated they'd send my money back, no more dialog.