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Coffee Roasting Methods Discussion

@LabGuy if you really like coffee and have the space to roast and a little spare time every few weeks then I feel confident that you will find it a positive experience. You can do your own math as to how long it will take for a given roaster to "pay for itself" and break even on the purchase, but beyond the bare economics you get to experiment with different origins and different roast levels while enjoying freshly roasted beans which can be difficult to find. So you may be able to justify it on both an purely economic level as well as the "priceless" experiential level.

Behmor roasting is pretty easy in that I can start a roast and walk away for 12-14 minutes and go do something else without paying attention to it; like unloading the dishwasher, putting away the clothes, starting laundry, etc. Any short but mindless task that does not distract too much from the roasting process. I have had one small chaff fire in mine due to inattention but it did not get out of hand. Beside the fire hazard it is essential to be next to the roaster as it enters 1st crack in order for you to target the final roast level.
Thanks for the encouragement. DW and I plan to order a roaster next month so I will probably be hitting up this forum a lot in the future.
 
I live in 3 areas of the country (not at the same time) so I have 3 electric coffee roasting machines (one in each location)

I'm still in the sweltering south so I'm still using my Hottop B2K +
 
Hello all, been enjoying coffee for a few months now, experimenting with different ways to make it... and finally am starting to think abiut roasting my own. I notice that the "Behmor" brand of roaster gets lots of love... is there a reason for that? I was googling a bit and was looking at the Freshroast sr500...
 
Behmor is simple to use and reasonable priced.

It's a good place to start.

No experience with Freshroast so can't comment
 
As @turtle noted the Behmor gets love because of its price and ability to roast a pound at a time. Enough to supply coffee to most households without needing to constantly roast like might be needed if using the freshroast.

My Behmor 1600 has produced 200+ roasts and I am satisfied with it, but I don't have anything to compare it against. I have read where some people have had reliability problems with newer Behmors, but I also don't know if that was anecdotal.
 
i just had a look at the behmor, for some reason I had it in my mind that it was over $1k... but at around $400... its pricey, but as a hobby/once a year splurge, doable... I will use up my cachet of preroasted beans and make a move. I will do more research on methods/tips for the behmor. I dont drink much coffee (2-3 cups a week?) so I dont need such a volume, but if its simply a better machine/last longer, then I can make it work.
 
Thanks Mick... I'm torn.. the Freshroast does seem easier to use.. I shall sleep on it some more and keep reading/googling. I guess I'm intimidated by all the buttons/setting whereas the freshroast seems simpler and is just two dials.
 
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There are a lot of buttons on the Behmor but there is not much control. The interface is a series of multiple choice questions with a button for each option. Where in comparison most gadgets would have a single button that one would need to press multiple times to choose. For example instead of providing direct access to select batch size (three separate buttons) an alternate design would have a single batch size button that one pressed three times to cycle thru the 1/4, 1/2, and 1 pound options.

To do a basic roast all one needs to do is select the batch size and start.
 
just to add a little bit

Batch size
P-2 button
Start
At 1st crack press C button (Rosetta stone on the plus model)

Perfect city / city+ roast.

This should work for 80-90% of your coffee roasting needs.

I still am not sure what all of the rest of the options are and honestly don't concern myself with them.

That method rocks for me on all beans I've tried that way

.
 
The plus upgrade will allow you to read temps at 2 internal locations. wall and exhaust tube

You can use a direct read IR meter on the outside. opening up the door to read inside is not a good idea
 
I was using the Behmor regularly for a couple of years but sadly it has died. Just not heating up enough anymore and I don't feel like updating. (although my wife encouraged me to get a nice Hot Top which is another story......I won't spend that much though).

Anyway I went back to some fresh roasted commercial coffees, a lot of Aldi's German Roast and the occasional popcorn popper for espresso. That lasted a couple of years.

Now I'm starting to experiment with using a cast iron wok on the kitchen stove. So far I'm pretty happy with the results, I've doing about a half pound at a time and they don't roast even but the quality in the cup seems to be there. It's still too soon to give a real opinion. I'll have to keep you guys updated if anyone is interested.

BTW, doesn't the Behmor give a rather muted taste in the cup ? I always liked it but it had it's own characteristics ime.
 
Pan roasting once a week was the norm before the advent of "big coffee".

I've pan roasted but prefer the consistancy of a heavy commercial machine that is easy to control.

I'll agree, Behmor provides the least satisfying coffee taste of the 3 electric roasters I use. It is heads and shoulders above "shelf" pre-roasted.

I find Behmor to be the most difficult to produce consistent results. Not impossible, just more difficult. I equate it to roasting coffee with a paper bag over your head wearing boxing gloves.

.
 
Pan roasting once a week was the norm before the advent of "big coffee".

I've pan roasted but prefer the consistancy of a heavy commercial machine that is easy to control.

I'll agree, Behmor provides the least satisfying coffee taste of the 3 electric roasters I use. It is heads and shoulders above "shelf" pre-roasted.

I find Behmor to be the most difficult to produce consistent results. Not impossible, just more difficult. I equate it to roasting coffee with a paper bag over your head wearing boxing gloves.

.
That seems like a good assessment from my short time with the Behmor. I will probably go with a Hottop when it needs to be replaced. However, it still produces great coffee, especially when you play with the manual settings. It just doesn't allow for true consistency.

Sent from my DROID Turbo using Tapatalk
 
I am literally a paper bag hat wearing Behmor user. But I still love it. I have the older five preset-profile Behmor model which is more difficult to use than the new Plus model. But compared to buying coffee in the grocery store or even at some local roaster it is better/cheaper than coffees I can buy locally. I am happy enough with my old Behmor even if I might like one of those 1K/2K Japanese/European roasters that keep popping up. The 1-2K purchase price seems like a steep curve even for those who love coffee.
 
I am literally a paper bag hat wearing Behmor user. But I still love it. I have the older five preset-profile Behmor model which is more difficult to use than the new Plus model. But compared to buying coffee in the grocery store or even at some local roaster it is better/cheaper than coffees I can buy locally. I am happy enough with my old Behmor even if I might like one of those 1K/2K Japanese/European roasters that keep popping up. The 1-2K purchase price seems like a steep curve even for those who love coffee.
101% in agreement with you and I recommend a Behmor to any and all looking to get started without having to take out a loan. It is still the best roaster in its price range.

I can get good to decent roasts but it is more difficult and "focus intensive" than it is with a roaster that has a way to remove the finished roast to cool. This has been my failure (notice I say "my failure"). I seem to always underestimate the roast and over roast, getting to city+ and Vienna when I want a light roast.

Given enough time (and losing my fear of under roasting) I will feel more comfortable using my Behmor 1600+. For now it has been relegated to "cabin duty" where it gets used only a few months out of the year. I could not justify replacing it with a new $1300 hottop and no way Jose would I want another $10k commercial machine as I DO NOT want to be forced to roast coffee commercially to pay the mortgage I would have to take out to get something that expensive.

If I had not come across all 3 of my roasters after they had been involved with roasting fires (and acquired them for nothing or nearly nothing in cost) I seriously doubt that I would bother roasting coffee at all. Now that I have been roasting for a number of years I would never stop.

All that said, I still prefer using the Behmor over sourcing artisan roasted locally and would rather drink water over "shelf" coffee.

.
 
Pan roasting once a week was the norm before the advent of "big coffee".

I've pan roasted but prefer the consistancy of a heavy commercial machine that is easy to control.

I'll agree, Behmor provides the least satisfying coffee taste of the 3 electric roasters I use. It is heads and shoulders above "shelf" pre-roasted.

I find Behmor to be the most difficult to produce consistent results. Not impossible, just more difficult. I equate it to roasting coffee with a paper bag over your head wearing boxing gloves.

.
When you say heavy commercial machine....you have one ?
Pan roasting once a week was the norm before the advent of "big coffee".

I've pan roasted but prefer the consistancy of a heavy commercial machine that is easy to control.

I'll agree, Behmor provides the least satisfying coffee taste of the 3 electric roasters I use. It is heads and shoulders above "shelf" pre-roasted.

I find Behmor to be the most difficult to produce consistent results. Not impossible, just more difficult. I equate it to roasting coffee with a paper bag over your head wearing boxing gloves.

.

You have a heavy commercial machine ?
I tried to find your coffee info but I'm too lazy. You have quite a few posts. LOL
 
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