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  • Afterburners - are they the best option?

    With an "off the shelf" afterburner costing up to 10k (ouch) you can understand why I am looking for alternatives! Are afterburners the best or only option to eliminate smoke and odour produced from coffee roasting?

    Im looking for something to complement my 3kg roaster when I move it to its new home (I havent found one yet) and came across the following do it yourself version of an afterburner, said to be able to be built for around $1.5k.

    I keep mulling over some crazy (?) idea in my head that keeps telling me if the smoke were directed through a recyclable water misting system then this might also work well, but havent come across anything.

    Any advice, alternative suggestions would be much appreciated!






  • #2
    Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

    Dennis (and everyone else)...

    Now you can see why there is such a price difference between green beans and the roasted variety.... the investment to get them to turn brown (without landing you in jail) is considerable.... and that needs to be recovered by the roaster...

    Not too sure that "homemade" afterburners.... or even more so "homebrew" designed scourers will meet with the approval of the authorities.... Possibly some of the more experienced professional roasters can shed some light on that..... but Im sure there are very tight regulations on that for commercial use....

    Im just glad home roasting doesnt require all this fancy (expensive) gear.... well not yet anyway : :

    Comment


    • #3
      Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

      I think "landing you in jail" is a bit rich JavaB. I was well aware of the costs and implications before setting out on this venture. I also hasten to add that I am prepared to outlay the money that is required to do this properly, and think this has already been demonstrated by my choice of roaster.

      Like any piece of coffee associated equipment, Im sure there must be different pros and cons regarding makes, systems, etc. regarding afterburners. So I dont see my query as being any different to when someone asks about various coffee machines, grinders, etc.

      Just thought it a good idea to consider any alternatives that may exist, and obtain the advice of others, so that I wouldnt have any regrets in the long term regarding my ultimate choice.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

        That 400,000 BTU burner is very serious, Dennis, several times the average domestic gas-burning appliance.

        To supply the volume of gas to it may require some very large and expensive pipes, and the greater the distance from the meter, the bigger the pipe....

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        • #5
          Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

          Absolutely Robusto. If there is an environmentally friendly, cleaner, more energy efficient means of doing this Id be keen - even if it is a more expensive set-up.

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          • #6
            Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

            Hi Dennis

            On Google search with the words ... scrubber coffee roaster.
            A scrubber usually has plastic or zeolite balls that are surface wetted by a recirculating water flow or spray and this creates a large surface area which can adsorb odours and fine particulates. Many companies in Australia could design a scrubber to match your setup. A scrubber will take less power that a burner.
            I built one during my PhD for removing silane gas.
            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wet_scrubber

            Mike

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

              Originally posted by Dennis link=1200468648/0#4 date=1200479364
              Absolutely Robusto. If there is an environmentally friendly, cleaner, more energy efficient means of doing this Id be keen - even if it is a more expensive set-up.
              Dont know about energy efficient or environmentally friendly but this type of kero afterburner could work.... 8-)





              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

                Thanks Mike!

                Mr Macc - Im guessing that afterburner belongs to a jet engine! Should do the job ;D

                Comment


                • #9
                  Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

                  Originally posted by speleomike link=1200468648/0#5 date=1200480715
                  Hi Dennis

                  On Google search with the words ... scrubber coffee roaster.
                  A scrubber usually has plastic or zeolite balls that are surface wetted by a recirculating water flow or spray and this creates a large surface area which can adsorb odours and fine particulates. Many companies in Australia could design a scrubber to match your setup. A scrubber will take less power that a burner.
                  I built one during my PhD for removing silane gas.
                  http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wet_scrubber

                  Mike
                  Agree,

                  A purpose built Scrubber should work very well and with a simple maintenance schedule should be quite economical to operate as well.....

                  Mal.

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                  • #10
                    Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

                    Originally posted by Dennis link=1200468648/0#7 date=1200481373
                    Thanks Mike!

                    Mr Macc - Im guessing that afterburner belongs to a jet engine! Should do the job ;D
                    Oh Yeah! Strap one of those babies to your roaster and itll be doing Mach 2 before it leaves the Shire.



                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

                      Well said speleomike.....the scrubber is an alternative to the afterburner.

                      regards,
                      Attilio
                      aka FC, first / original CS site sponsor.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

                        Hi Dennis,

                        I was going to say that Im surprised that people with no experience try to answer these questions, but I decided not to say it.

                        Im also wondering where the 400,000 BTU comes from? From my research the IR3 is a 12,000 BTU Roaster, which makes more sense given my 10kg roaster is 54,000 BTU.

                        I walked and continue to walk a fine line between making a sound business/financial decision and looking after the environment. After speaking with local council, the EPA and many roasters I decided to install my roaster without an afterburner, however I do have a cyclone and an efficient flue system.

                        So far so good - Ive checked with neighbours and there are no concerns about smoke. Better still, Im content that Im not harming the environment too much - the amount of smoke coming out of the flue is no more than running a wood fire (which many homes run flat out in winter) and I dont roast 24/7 - when I get to a point where I need to roast more than a few hours a week Ill reassess and look at moving into an industrial area or a shop. Sometimes I think its even better roasting where I am because I roast when everyone goes off to work - in a retail or industrial area there will be heaps of people around. The only downside Ive found so far is that I make too much noise to roast in the middle of the night and I also dont roast when the neighbours have clothes on the line!!

                        In conclusion Dennis, if you want an afterburner I would buy the afterburner from the same manufacturer you bought your roaster from so you can be assured that the two fit and work together efficiently.
                        However, my experience and research to date tells me that you dont need an afterburner for a 3kg roaster unless of course your local council or EPA requires it.

                        Good luck!

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

                          Thanks for all the comments so far - keep em coming!

                          The BTU per hour afterburner recommended and manufactured by Diedrich btw is 300,000. Nice looking unit with the highest price tag Ive come across...

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

                            Originally posted by fenners link=1200468648/0#11 date=1200484332
                            Hi Dennis,

                            I was going to say that Im surprised that people with no experience try to answer these questions, but I decided not to say it.
                            And then did anyway.

                            Im wondering which particular posts you found surprising?

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Re: Afterburners - are they the best option?

                              Sorry I do see where Robusto got the 400,000 BTU from...cheap to setup, expensive to run.

                              I would like to know at what point running an afterburner becomes a more environmentally friendly option.

                              Would it be correct to think the emissions from a 3, 5, 10, 15 kg ?? roaster would be less harmful to the environment than the actual running of the afterburner to break down those emissions.

                              This page gives some indication of emissions based on pretty heavy usage:
                              http://www.baaqmd.gov/pmt/handbook/s11c03ev.htm

                              I would love to see some more stats and comparisons with other industry if anyone comes across it.

                              Comment

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