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Thread: Popper roasting question

  1. #1
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    Popper roasting question

    Gene Cafe Coffee Roaster $850 - Free Beans Free Freight
    Hello all,
    I am new to home roasting, just started with a homemaker popcorn maker, I have found that i cant get any roast over 4 mins without burning the beans. I live in brisbane and, as you can probably imagine the ambient air temp during the day is about 27 or 28 degrees. My question is if I were to use dry ice to cool the air going into the popper would the increased level of carbon dioxide from the dry ice sublimating affect the quality of the roast? The dry ice would also be handy to rapidly cool the beans after the roasting....

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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Hmm, Im also in Queensland, and have yet to burn the beans, despite running the popcorn popper for over 10 minutes a batch

    Not sure if dry Ice would work, you could try it and find out

    The trick Ive been doing of late is having a fan blow directly up into the guts of the popcorn popper (basicly put a box fan on the table underneath the popper and turned it up to "high")

    that, and batches of less then 100gm green-weight

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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Quote Originally Posted by 4554475C5F5047454A4750260 link=1320518555/0#0 date=1320518555
    Hello all,
    I am new to home roasting, just started with a homemaker popcorn maker, I have found that i cant get any roast over 4 mins without burning the beans. I live in brisbane and, as you can probably imagine the ambient air temp during the day is about 27 or 28 degrees. My question is if I were to use dry ice to cool the air going into the popper would the increased level of carbon dioxide from the dry ice sublimating affect the quality of the roast? The dry ice would also be handy to rapidly cool the beans after the roasting....
    Looks like your popper is a hot one.
    There are lots of tricks to slow down a roast but some depend on which popper you have.

    What have you got and can you upload a picture of it?

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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Gday CCM

    You might research how people have drilled holes in the popper base/sides to get extra airflow.

    You can also tilt the popper at about 30-45 degrees and jiggle it until about 1st crack or so. Keep your top hand still and gently and rapidly jiggle the hand holding the base. This will get the beans tumbling and get some more air through them, slowing things down. You can try increasing quantity a little as well if this works. It can also help if you finish the roast with the popper sitting on a slight angle.

    These changes worked for me, almost doubling roast times and allowing an increase in quantity.

    Good luck and keep us posted on your progress. [smiley=wink.gif]

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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Hello all,
    The popper is a $20 K-mart job, Homemaker brand 1200 watt. It is brand new and I have only done about 5 roasts in it so far so maybe it is still breaking in (if popcorn makers do that?). I will try the box fan idea and tilting it to see if that makes any difference. Thanks for your advice and tips, much appreciated!
    P.S. Im still curious to try the dry ice method to see how it turns out.....

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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Ive tried ice (not dry ice) and there seemed negligible difference.

    As mtee said, drilling holes is a very effective way of cooling down a popper therefore lengthening roast times.
    I dont think poppers "break in".

    I bought a Kmart one to experiment with but havent gotten around to that.

    Just had a look at it.
    Typically it could do with more air intake holes and Im sure some holes towards the top of the body would help dissipate trapped heat.

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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Hi Guys,
    I think the most accessable solution would be to increase the volume of air passing through the popper, as already suggested.
    My suggestions are:
    1. Enlarge the small louvers towards the base of the oven chamber.
    This could be done by carefull use of a blade screw driver or similar.
    2. Stir the beans using a wooden chopstick or stick right from switching on until they are able to maintain this movement due to the poppers air flow. Stir in the direction of the poppers natural vortex and hopefully stiring will not be required for long into the roast as during the roast the beans density will decline.
    Good Luck Roasters
    Lindsay

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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Yes I too just bought this coffee roaster and noticed it runs quite hot:

    I dont have scales but:

    First roast: one scoop of the supplied measuring cup. first crack at around 2min 10 secs. Didnt notice a gap between first and second crack but stopped at roast at 5min when things started smoking a bit and was violently popping. Well into second crack.

    Second roast: drilled about 30 holes in the clear plastic cover, running a pedestal fan on max. Two scoops of beans. Me thinks too much beans as was not agitating well. First crack at 2min 30 secs. Finished at 5 min again. A little patchy this roast but most beans probably just past first crack.* *

    Next attempt think maybe: 1.5 cups of beans same setup.

    Interested in other peoples reports.

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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Hello All
    I have managed to stretch the roasting times out to about 6 mins by drilling a few holes in the side and top of the popper, placing the popper on an angle and roasting in the early evening when its cooler and I am finding that the resulting coffee has less of the sour/fruity taste and more of a rich chocolately taste. I purchased an infrared temperature gun from jaycar to measure the temps as I figured a thermocouple in a popper may give a reading of the air temp instead of the bean temp. So far so good and I am having a great deal of fun trying out different roasting profiles in the cup :)

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    Re: Popper roasting question

    How many scoops are you doing each time crazy cat? Do you happen to have a picture of where you drilled. Im still tossing up if I should drill the actual popcorn maker itself. Having taken the thing apart I dont think this is a very safe option.

    I did the angle trick as well but had a few issues with beans falling out of the chute corner. I tried to cover that corner with foil but had problems with beans getting wedged between the foil and the popcorn maker.




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    Re: Popper roasting question

    A picture would be nice people (if you can) as that makes feedback so much easier.

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    Senior Member shapeshifter's Avatar
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    Re: Popper roasting question

    I have the stick thermocouple sticking into the side of mine, sits about half way down the beans when they are in there and sticks out about half the radius, I use approx 80 - 100 grams each time, 100 grams when I measure them :)

    I find it is very consistent.

    I tried the gun but melted it trying to get consistent readings I had a laugh

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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Hello All
    Here is my (slightly) modified popper, I have found that the few holes in it are able to let out enough heat to slow the roasting process down a little, especially if there is a fan blowing under it. Shapeshifter, I guess your experience should serve as a bit of a warning for me, Im sure the minister for finance would be quite unimpressed if I were to ruin a $100 temp gun withing days of getting it!


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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Not enough holes.

    I aim for about 10 min to first crack.

    Have you added more holes underneath?
    If you look closely youll see that half the vents underneath are not open.

    Careful though as there is wirung under there.
    Take the bottom off as best you can (one screw may go through the pcb) and then drill holes in the bottom.

    You need to get more cool air in (help it breathe).

    After that you can experiment with adding more holes to let the excess overheated (for what you need) air escape.

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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Has anyone tried dumping after 1st crack, holding beans in the collander for 1 or 2 minutes without trying to cool them, then reintroducing the beans to the popper to continue to 2nd crack, then final dump and cool?

    Aim is to extend the period where the beans are very hot after 1st and before 2nd.

    My popper is a hot one, sometimes reaching 2nd crack before 4 minutes.

    It has 4 extra 8mm holes in the base and 10 x 8mm holes around the body- top and bottom.


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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Quote Originally Posted by 775249495F5641330 link=1320518555/14#14 date=1323474801
    Has anyone tried dumping after 1st crack, holding beans in the collander for 1 or 2 minutes without trying to cool them, then reintroducing the beans to the popper to continue to 2nd crack, then final dump and cool?
    No because the aim is for a continual rise in temp; no stalling or decreasing.

    If your popper is still running too hot you could do with a lot more holes.
    Those few in the pic are not doing much.

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    Senior Member shapeshifter's Avatar
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    Re: Popper roasting question

    I tried it once, well not purposely, I thought they were done enough dumped them, looked and went umm nope not done, put back in and tried for more, didnt happen and the beans ended up in the bin :)

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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Quote Originally Posted by 6A7178697C6A71707F6D7C6B190 link=1320518555/16#16 date=1323575589
    I tried it once, well not purposely, I thought they were done enough dumped them, looked and went umm nope not done, put back in and tried for more, didnt happen and the beans ended up in the bin :)

    Interesting, I have experienced the opposite.......
    http://www.bestcafes.com.au/forum/home-roasting-all-about-the-culture/infrared-temperature-gun-for-roasting/

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    Re: Popper roasting question

    Ill let you know in a couple of days.

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    Behmor Coffee Roaster
    Ha! you haven't even started to cool it yet!
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