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Thread: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

  1. #1
    Senior Member Coffee2Di4's Avatar
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    Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    So, Pete bought me home the drum for the new Tabletop BBQ roaster Friday just over a week ago. No window in the front of it yet, but were getting there slowly.

    On the Saturday, we set to testing it out with some greens in the drum, and the DataLogger poked in. Let the BBQ heat up to about 250 degrees before popping the beans in. Figured about 20 minutes for roasting time.

    Time to first crack - circa 35 minutes / second crack circa 42 minutes. They looked dark and very oily when they came out but I thought, "oh well, thats the way they must come out of the roaster."

    Took a sniff of them on Tuesday night (usually, I love my sniff tests!) and they smelled akin to cat wee... *shudder*. Oh well, Ill leave them for a full week before pottying them (no cupping in our household! ;) ) Might be just that Ive never tried these beans before...

    Made my first coffee today with them this afternoon when I ran out of the last of my Sulawesi and TalkCoffee Urban Blend.

    *blech* *ptooey* [smiley=thumbdown.gif]

    They taste as bad as they looked and smelled. Fortunately I roasted up the last 400g of my Sulawesi today, so I guess Ill be using them well and truly before the 3 day resting period!!!

    Can anyone think of anything Ive obviously done wrong in my BBQ roast?

    Petes drum has blades on it, so it agitates the beans well but the poor bbq spit is battery driven and seemed to be awfully slow - would this have an impact? He does have a motor that hes adapted to mains that will be a bit more high powered, but couldnt lay his hands on it after our move. Will this make a difference, do you think?

    Cheers
    Di

  2. #2
    Senior Member Koffee_Kosmo's Avatar
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    Re: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!



    Quote Originally Posted by 4A6D7B6971020 link=1244361222/0#0 date=1244361222
    Petes drum has blades on it, so it agitates the beans well but the poor bbq spit is battery driven and seemed to be awfully slow - would this have an impact?He does have a motor that hes adapted to mains that will be a bit more high powered, but couldnt lay his hands on it after our move.Will this make a difference, do you think?
    I am aware that commercial drum roasters run at 50 to 60 rpm
    Your suspicions may be right to slow

    KK

  3. #3
    Senior Member GregWormald's Avatar
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    Re: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

    And 35 minutes to first crack is very slow. Id be aiming for nothing more than 15 to first, and another max of 7 or so to second.

    Greg

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    Re: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

    Dont loose all hope your parcel should in Tuesdays mail with an extra baggy of Pre Roasted that should hold you for a few days while the Sulewesi rests a bit more ;)

    Sounds like Baked Beans to me :P did a few larger roasts in the Hottop that ran 24 minutes and not as good as the ones around 20. Drop a PM to Fatboy and see what times he is running in his.

  5. #5
    Senior Member Coffee2Di4's Avatar
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    Re: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

    Thanks Tim, woo hoo - youre a saviour!

    :-*

    I think I got my measurements, time wise, from FatBoys original thread with the 20 minutes to second roast, but Ill check directly with him because I think the thread was from a little while ago and he may have revised since then.

    Greg - I was pretty sure it was a goner once it went past the 20 minute mark and no FC, so I wasnt particularly surprised it tasted (and smelled) like cat wee but I held out a little spark of hope because it was a bean I hadnt tried before and thought it might have been its particular characteristic...

    :)

    Thanks also, KK - Ill get Pete to make a concerted effort to look for the 240v adapter and get it turning a bit quicker next time - hopefully this will improve things.

    Cheers
    Di

  6. #6
    Mal Dimal's Avatar
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    Re: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

    Gday Di,

    Were you able to run the CS Software to monitor the profile? This would be useful in understanding where things might have gone wrong and a guide into how much thermal energy is required to keep a roast on track... :-?

    Mal.

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    Re: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

    Sounds to me Di, that you are losing a lot of heat. Taking that long to get to first crack says to me that heat was to low and the beans baked not roasted.
    I know you said you warmed the BBQ up, but did you have the drum pre- heated? Or was it cold when the beans went in.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Coffee2Di4's Avatar
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    Re: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

    Hi Mal - no roast profile, unfortunately: I dont yet have a laptop to plug it into and that will have to wait a while until I recover from my recent purchases, unfortunately!

    Marty - no the drum was cold, I didnt even give a thought to pre-heating! Actually, to tell you the truth, Pete took charge of the roasting (and I didnt want to interfere to much, since hed put the effort into building the drum) so all I did was give him the temperature the drum should get to and be maintained at and the approximate time. *Next time, Ill get him to pre-heat the drum also.

    I dont think its the lack of heat in the BBQ because it maintained a steady 250 degrees (well, until I ramped it up to about 320 degrees towards the end in an effort to encourage the beans) and youre able to regulate the heat with three closeable vents at the top that he built into the BBQ, so you can make reasonably minute adjustments to the heat through them and not have to play around with the gas regulator particularly.

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    Re: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

    Not knowing anything about your drum design, you might want to look at how air flows through the drum - its a very important component in drum roasting.

  10. #10
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    Re: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

    Because of the different nature of bbq roaster to corretto roasting you may need to start with a higher heat.
    Fatboy should be able to help you with some more tips.

  11. #11
    Senior Member fatboy_1999's Avatar
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    Re: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

    I would tend to agree with many of the thoughts earlier on.
    Sounds like they got baked.
    Could be due to volume or RPMs of the motor

    I run my drum off a windscreen wiper motor (front, not back) and it goes at around 55rpm from memory.

    How much did you roast?

    My drum currently does around 1KG green each roast. It could probably stretch to more, but Im happy with this amount.
    There needs to be room to move in the drum and preferably somewhere for chaff (but not beans) to escape.
    Of course, not all chaff escapes or burns off during roasting, but Im sure the holes help.

    20 minutes is around the mark for me with 1kg. Perhaps 25 for the first roast on a cold day with a SHB, but any longer is a concern.

    Hope thats useful.

    Brett.

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    Senior Member Coffee2Di4's Avatar
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    Re: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

    Thanks Brett - got your PM through halfway through this post, so many thanks for that!

    I did around 500g - the drum is about the same as yours, by the looks of it (Im guessing around 20-25cm long (with the two end caps on) and about 15-20cm diameter. Its pre-perforated metal of some type and the holes are about 3mm in diameter or so, which seem to be the perfect size. Petes got two agitators on each side. Some chaff came through the perforations, but most came out at the cooling phase with my two sieves.

    I wish I could give you all a bit more information about the drum but, with Pete being away and him knowing all the technical stuff, I cant get too specific (and he pinched the camera, also!)

    PM read now from Brett - yes, I think I agree with you that the RPM was a huge factor, so Ill gete Pete onto fixing that up: even he thought at the time that the turning was way too slow. Ill also go higher in my temps and pre-warm the drum and see how that goes.

    Stay tuned for more updates next weekend!

    Thanks all for your tips - well get this beastie working if it kills me (or all my beans, anyway!)

    Cheers
    Di

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    Re: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

    Ciao.

    Sounds to me Di, that you are losing a lot of heat. Taking that long to get to first crack says to me that heat was to low and the beans baked not roasted.

    Interesting points here. *I am far from an expert, but did notice (with a recent attempt) that roasting at a slightly lower temperature resulted in a very (very, very) long roasting time, with pretty crook smells at the end. *On that basis, my punt would be that your temperature was too low.

    Also, I noticed that when doing smaller roasts (in my Gene Cafe, talking 200g, rather than 300g) that first and second crack are harder to pick, and results arent as good with the smaller batches. *Anyone got thoughts (and sorry if this is hijacking the topic)?

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    Re: Ugh, it Tastes as Bad as it Looks and Smells!

    Behmor Coffee Roaster
    I think youve got 3 factors afecting you:
    1-Cold drum and heat loss
    2-RPMs too slow
    3-Too much coffee for the 2 conditions above.

    Try less green, say 200g and add a blower of some sort to evenly distribute the heat



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