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Thread: Hottop Fire

  1. #1
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    Hottop Fire

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    I was roasting some Sidamo Guji today, I wanted to let it go a fair way in to SC to how it would go. *I get a lot of chaff off this, I was peeping in the front window watching and listening with my finger over the eject button and boom the chaff collector was on fire. * So pulled it out, which ejected the beans and blew it out, that was a mistake because burning chaff flew everywhere, it was pretty funny, burning embers flying everwhere, my mother is staying at the moment and she was sweeping the garage out (thx mum) and I yelled its on fire, and she was going to belt it with the straw broom, the beans looked alright though.

    Anyone else had a Hottop fire?

  2. #2
    Senior Member topshot's Avatar
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    Re: Hottop Fire

    Yep, Ive had one a couple of months back *:-?
    At the end of a roast (harrar = lots of chaff), the fire started just after I ejected the beans.
    Same place, in the chaff tray. All I did was pull the tray out and let it burn out, about a minute or so ;)

    The resulting coffee was dam good though :)

    Warren.

  3. #3
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    Re: Hottop Fire

    Not yet but I am wary of it, I saw a few photos of a Hottop burnt out totally. Got to watch for a build up of chaff fines at the 5 oclock position thaty seem to get stuck on the main chamber just above the tray too.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Hottop Fire

    Can I ask if the units were absolutely clean before the roasts when these fires occurred?

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    Re: Hottop Fire

    Yep it had just been cleaned out. It was the 5 roast of the day.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Dennis's Avatar
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    Re: Hottop Fire

    Quote Originally Posted by 303F253E3F38313A3F2C372432676F6164560 link=1244112919/4#4 date=1244154081
    Yep it had just been cleaned out. It was the 5 roast of the day.
    I think thats strange. Do you think it had anything to do with unlucky number 5, or perhaps if you can suggest a design modification to Greg for feedback to the manufacturer?


  7. #7
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    Re: Hottop Fire

    The only thing I can think of is it had about 280 grams of beans, I poured a few more out. I dont ussually worry if the weight goes over 250 by 20 to 30 gms. Maybe the extre few beans may have done it. These ones had heeps of chaff. It was at the end of the roast the HT was reading 217 but SC wasnt going fast enough for what I was aiming for, so I cranked the heat all the way up and the fan was on full and she was smoken like crazy and boom she was on fire.

    It was pretty funny, its probally one of those "you had to be there to laugh moments"

  8. #8
    Senior Member topshot's Avatar
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    Re: Hottop Fire

    Hi Dennis,

    Quote Originally Posted by 47666D6D6A70030 link=1244112919/3#3 date=1244123088
    Can I ask if the units were absolutely clean before the roasts when these fires occurred?
    My unit is cleaned after every roast, vacd and wiped.

    As mentioned with other units, only happens with beans which produce a lot of chaff and at around the 215-220 deg mark.

    Ive only had the one fire in about 30 roasts!

    Might be Hottop should have a fire extinguisher option ;)

    Warren.

  9. #9
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    Re: Hottop Fire

    Hottop are certainly aware of the potential for this. They go to quite some lengths in the manual to warn about the potential for this - page 2 contains nothing apart from a big red warning notice about this risk, page 5 mentions one should keep a bottle of water handy (so theres Warrens fire extinguisher! ;D) and page 33 refers to the importance of vigilant cleaning of the device. Its also the reason there are three built-in safety circuits to make sure the operator is physically there if things are getting too hot too quickly (when those circuits are triggered, the roast will auto-eject if you dont press a button within a given period of time apart from the last one which is an auto-eject).

    Having said that Ive never had one myself and have done quite a few different depths and volumes of roast so Ive not bothered with that since about roast 3. I dont tend to clean it out that often either. I guess the reality is that such an outcome is possible with any device like this, particularly with very chaffy beans, but the occurrences are (thankfully!) few and far between. The design of the Hottop which allows chaff to be retained inside the drum cavity is one of the weaknesses I referred to in the review.

    FL: You said roast 5 of the day - so youd cleared all the stray chaff out inside the unit or only emptied the chaff tray? Page 33 of the manual goes to some lengths to describe the process if you missed it. Id be very surprised if there was enough chaff from a single roast to do this, but I guess anythings possible. Do you know what the temperature on the display was doing (roughly) around this time? BTW hows the rest of the unit??

    Greg

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    Re: Hottop Fire

    Yes I cleared the chaff there was none in there at the start. I dont have an air compressor so I start up the Stihl 2 stroke industrial blower with the chaff tray out the front off, the blower just indling is enough to clear it.

    I didnt post this to nock the Hottop, I thought it was funny. I have done 52 roasts in it. I like it. I clean it. I would recomend it. I wouldnt give it away for anything, well maybe a 2kg roaster for my shed.

  11. #11
    Senior Member topshot's Avatar
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    Re: Hottop Fire

    Quote Originally Posted by 6174636176736A6A6B6768060 link=1244112919/8#8 date=1244190636
    page 5 mentions one should keep a bottle of water handy *
    Water ---- Great with an electrical device :o :o :o :o

    Anyway, Im of the opinion it was just a one off experience ::)

    I still love using the Hottop and continue to do so. :)

    On a quick note, Ive been roasting for 6 months now with my model "P". Since adding the DMM mod, I have gained a lot more control with it, its easy to surf the temps if you have to which I tend to do near the end of a roast ;)

    I will still recomend a Hottop to anyone :)

    Warren.

  12. #12
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    Re: Hottop Fire

    Quote Originally Posted by 29322D2E3532295D0 link=1244112919/10#10 date=1244197779
    Quote Originally Posted by 6174636176736A6A6B6768060 link=1244112919/8#8 date=1244190636
    page 5 mentions one should keep a bottle of water handy *
    Water ---- Great with an electrical device :o :o :o :o
    Uh, I should clarify for those who dont have the manual...

    "Always have a spray bottle filled with water on hand when roasting to quench a fire if the beans ignite upon ejection"
    So were not talking about drowning the machine here! Just a precaution, which as I said Ive never needed and chances are you never will again either. Yeah I find doing a surf near the end with the P is helpful, and a lot easier to control with the bean mass probe for sure!

    FL: Do you know what the temperature was doing by any chance at this point?

  13. #13
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    Re: Hottop Fire

    No, I dont normally look at the temp, I look at it to make sure its going up at the speed I want, then I go off sight and sound, I hit the eject button when it looks and sounds good.

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    Re: Hottop Fire

    Behmor Coffee Roaster
    Perfect! Thats pretty well exactly how you should be able to roast too. One thing I love about the Hottop is how easy it makes this sensory roasting. I always log my roasts but I really only refer to the readouts from the bean mass probe to confirm things are going as they should and to confirm the program changes are going to come at the right points. When it comes to the critical last few minutes of the roast its all by sound for me.

    Im roasting 300g of PNG Sigri as I type and the bean mass probe hit 160 exactly on the 11 minute mark, which is when I move the fan to 75% and the heater down to 60%. The previous milestones were within 0.5oC of their target at the 6 and 8 minute marks respectively. Its great to have this sort of confirmation that things are on target but eventually its down to the eyes, the ears and the brain!

    Greg



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