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Alpenrost too cool
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ajahiel
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ajahiel
Joined: 7 Jul 2002
Posts: 6
Location: Story
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Krups
Grinder: Mazzer
Drip: Bosch Porche Design
Roaster: Ron Ryle Drum #7
Posted Thu Jan 30, 2003, 8:03am
Subject: Alpenrost too cool
 

I am on my third Alpenrost. Customer service is great replacing them, but I still have the same problem. Mine takes too long to roast. I set it on 15, let it run through the cycle, let the machine cool, then re-roast the beans for another few minutes to a dark roast. I measure with a digital scale. Ambient temp at 72 degrees. I keep it faily clean. A while back, on the Sweet Maria's coffe discussion, somebody said that you could adjust the heat by opening up the bottom of the machine and turning one (Middle)of the two trim adjusters. Has anybody had any experience with this? Can I take it to a electrician or stereo repairman? Is it a little turn? Many Turns? What direction? Clockwise or counter? Any ideas?  I am getting very frustrated....

I asked this question on the other list but the only reply I got was someone saying I was "way out of my league"...Not very helpful, I'm afraid.

Thanks,

A.
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latemarch
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latemarch
Joined: 24 Jan 2003
Posts: 55
Location: Jackson MO
Expertise: Just starting

Espresso: Isomac Tea
Grinder: Mazzer Mini
Drip: Chemex
Roaster: Ron Kyle Drum, Gene Cafe
Posted Sat Feb 1, 2003, 3:52pm
Subject: Re: Alpenrost too cool
 

Have you tried roasting less than 8 ounces of beans.  My understanding is that you can roast darker with less in the drum (Sweet Maria's).

Have fun getting the Alp open.  The torx screws have an anti tamper pin that requires a torx bit with a hole drilled in the center to open.
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CraigA
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CraigA
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 11,245
Location: Rexdale, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: PID/PressureMod 2001...
Grinder: BUNN FPG-2 DBC, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos manual, Yama 5...
Drip: Behmor BraZen, BUNN VPR-APS,...
Roaster: Refurb Behmor 1600, BBQ...
Posted Sat Feb 1, 2003, 7:58pm
Subject: Re: Alpenrost too cool
 

ajahiel Said:

I am on my third Alpenrost. Customer service is great replacing them, but I still have the same problem. Mine takes too long to roast. I set it on 15, let it run through the cycle, let the machine cool, then re-roast the beans for another few minutes to a dark roast. I measure with a digital scale. Ambient temp at 72 degrees. I keep it faily clean. A while back, on the Sweet Maria's coffe discussion, somebody said that you could adjust the heat by opening up the bottom of the machine and turning one (Middle)of the two trim adjusters. Has anybody had any experience with this? Can I take it to a electrician or stereo repairman? Is it a little turn? Many Turns? What direction? Clockwise or counter? Any ideas?  I am getting very frustrated....

I asked this question on the other list but the only reply I got was someone saying I was "way out of my league"...Not very helpful, I'm afraid.

Thanks,

A.

Posted January 30, 2003 link

Hi Adam,
I answered this question for Bob Trancho on the Homeroast list,it's in the digest version, Vol 1 #1080 45 messages, Message:45. Subject: +Alp adjustments/cleaning?
I c,c,& pasted a few of my answers to his question  below...

I gave detailed instructions on how to adjust the roast time frame window on an Alp, (even without a volt/ohm meter), but you are some what limited without one!  Before you start, do you have a multi-meter? (volt-ohm meter), you can't properly adjust the roaster without one, & do you have the earlier Version 1.0, or the newer model, Version 1.1? 1.1 has a white sticker on the bottom of the roaster.  To open up the Alp, lay the Alp down on it's back, hinges on the table. You'll need a security torx bit(T-10) to take the panel off to access the printed circuit board. Also needed is a 5/64" hex key to adjust Vr1(variable resistor, potentiometer). Vr1 is the 2nd hole, center right hand side of the board.

The Vr is 1000 ohm,*DO NOT PLUG IN*, take a resistance measurement from the center terminal point & the bottom point on the PCB printed circuit board.Lower resistance, higher current to the heater P=E x I  (P=E squared divided by R, resistance). On my Alp resistance is 578 ohms, they're different because of manufacturing tolerances/variables in electronic components, heating elements,etc.

The potentiometer Vr1 adjusts through an arc of about 270 degrees, 0 ohms to 1000 ohms. You'll be adjusting counterclockwise & the pot is very sensitive to adjustments,so you'll have to make SMALL adjustments, like the #'s on a clock face. When the hex key is in the pot hole, wherever the key is pointing to (example 10:00am), move the key counterclockwise,to 9:30am,9:00am,etc. Assemble the Alp & test the roast time with a test roast. That's the best you'll be able to do without a multimeter,borrow one or buy one, they can be fairly cheap, & this way you won't waste green by making unknown adjustments. You may get lucky & hit it spot on with the procedure I've just described though!  {:-D

Roast time frame window start & end times, #'s 1-15, starts at 16.35 mins & increases incredimentally every 15 secs per #, to 20.05 mins. Get a timer/stopwatch & time a roast. Adjust the roast window to the middle of the roast time frame window,to #8 approx 18.20 mins for start of 2nd crack. This isn't chisled in stone..., you can adjust the window for start of 2nd hotter or cooler, to your own personal preference.{:-)

I personally adjust the roast time frame setting at approximately the middle of this window, #8 (18.20 mins),(the factory setting) for the start of 2nd crack.
One unit I was working on,1st crack was at 10.45 mins & 2nd at 13.00 mins, a 28% shorter roast cycle.

*P.S.* (I've added this in) --> If your roast is at say #15 (20.05 mins),& you want to adjust to roast time frame window #8 (18.20 mins),in secs this is 1,205 & 1,100. 1100 divided by 1205 = .913, 91.3%. 100% -91.3% =8.7%. Vr1 does not adjust in a linear fasion so I call it approx 10% . Whatever your resistance measurement on Vr1 is you'll bring the resistance down counterclock wise this 10%, say
from 900 ohms - 10% or 810, 800 ohms. 2nd crack should now be within #8 (18.20 mins). The difference between #8 to #12 is exactly +1 min,[4,15 sec roast #'s.(60 secs)], & 8 to #4 is exactly -1 min,[4,15 sec roast #'s.(60 secs)]. As you can see, adjustment is very sensitive/finicky to adjust to the stock roast time frame window #8. All the Alps I worked on could be brought back to factory spec (#8).
The condition of some of these roasters were beyond belief... burnt black inside,
{:-O  no cleaning whatsoever, & they were brought back to a "factory refurbished" level for resale. I had no scorching or tipping of the control bean I'm using, Swissmar's Columbian Estate (not estate by the way!!) This machine was roasting very hot & was adjusted accordingly to the proper time frame roast window (#8).

I'm doing repair & service refurbishing work as an interm off premises sub-contractor for (Canada) Swissmar (Swissmar Imports Ltd) 35 East Beaver Creek Rd., Unit 6  Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada L4B 1B3  1-(905)-764-1121. The(USA) Swissmar Imports Inc  6391 Walmore Road Niagara Falls, NY. 14304 1-87-SWISSMAR (1-877-947-7627) warehouse is where all the US roasters are shipped to for warranty work/replacement. All the roasters are then shipped to the Canadian address. Believe you/me, there's enough of them! Heat is regulated by a thermocouple attached to the heating element, proper adjustment of potentiometer/variable resistor (Vr1),& by the ambient air temperature correction sensor on Ver 1.1.

The thermocouple is spotwelded to the left front section of the heating element, under the stainless retaining clamp & has no bearing on being defective, or gunked up with dust/chaff/goo and limiting the roast somehow. The heating element,if viewed in a darked room, will *GLOW* orange & all particulate matter is burned off. The thermal fuse & thermostat are also not affected by particulate matter.You say you keep it clean, is the stainless reflector on the lid, inside the roast chamber clean & shiny? The Alp relys on & needs these reflective surfaces to help it roast evenly & consistently. The Alp is also weight sensitive..., are you weighing 8oz roasts to 225-227 grams?

For experienced roasters, you can roast less than 8oz, described on Tom Owen's excellent site here. I have also roasted 265gr (9.35oz) so that the finished roasted weight was an even 225-227gr (8oz) Cheers!

 
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http://www.facebook.com/craig.andrews.169

Excellent coffee doesn't just happen!
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nsxbill
Senior Member


Joined: 26 Mar 2003
Posts: 10
Location: Cameron Park
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Miele System,Silvia,S27
Grinder: Rocky(2)  MD40
Vac Pot: Bodum
Drip: Senseo Deluxe
Roaster: Hottop Programable and my...
Posted Wed Mar 26, 2003, 6:26pm
Subject: Re: Alpenrost too cool
 

I purchased an Alpenrost that was used about 3 times from private party on Ebay.  I ran 4 batches through it and it died.  Will Alpenrost repair this roaster without an original proof of purchase?  Anticipating that I will be up a creek, I went ahead and picked up one of the Hottop roasters, and awaiting arrival now.  I wish I would have read this discussion prior to purchasing the Alp.  I really enjoyed the 225 g. capacity and it did a pretty good job for this rookie, but now know after reading posts here and my own experience that it has significant problems.

I am definitely new at this, and after discovering this and a couple of the other home roaster bulletin boards, got excited about roasting beans at home... I am a coffee nut..even ran a 220v circuit into the master bedroom to use our Cabinet based Miele Coffee System while kitchen is being remodeled.

Any insight on getting the Alp repaired?  Thanks.

Bill in California
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DrGno
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Joined: 18 Feb 2004
Posts: 10
Location: Boston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Cimbali Jr.
Grinder: Rocky
Roaster: Alp
Posted Wed Feb 18, 2004, 12:12pm
Subject: Re: Alpenrost too cool
 

I just purchased a Alpenrost and after four trys I am having trouble achieving a dark roast (or an even roast for that matter).  I looked on the bottom of the unit and did not see the "white sticker" mentioned by CraigA so I jumped to the conclusion that it was a v1.0 model, but I have been assured by the distributor was manufactured with the last 3-4 months and is the "current" model.

Any thoughts?  I used all the tips from CoffeeGeek, SweetMaria's and alt.coffee, including digital scale, cleaning after each roast, making sure the drum is seated correctly etc...

Should I need to try to apply CraigA suggestions for tuning the roasting window on these V1.1 models?  

Thanks,
Dino
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CraigA
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CraigA
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
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Location: Rexdale, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: PID/PressureMod 2001...
Grinder: BUNN FPG-2 DBC, Baratza...
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Drip: Behmor BraZen, BUNN VPR-APS,...
Roaster: Refurb Behmor 1600, BBQ...
Posted Wed Feb 18, 2004, 12:43pm
Subject: Re: Alpenrost too cool
 

Hi Dino,

When the new run of Version 1.1 came out, they did have the white sticker on the bottom., I guess after a certain # in the production run they stopped putting the sticker on. Mine had the sticker on it when I got my 2nd unit in mid May 2002. When did you purchase the unit? With 4 trys on it, it's still under warranty & you shouldn't open it up & adjust/calibrate it. Seems silly not to do this simple adjustment, as it would save the hassle of having to return the unit for a new one under warranty.
Those trim pots (potentiometers) can get out of wack during shipping, or quite possibly not calibrated correctly at the factory.

 
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DrGno
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Joined: 18 Feb 2004
Posts: 10
Location: Boston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Cimbali Jr.
Grinder: Rocky
Roaster: Alp
Posted Wed Feb 18, 2004, 3:23pm
Subject: Re: Alpenrost too cool
 

Thank Craig,

I just bought it Saturday on Ebay from a company called A2ZHomeCenter.  They listed it as brand new, but I couldn't help thinking they might be shady so when it performed so badly and I didn't find the sticker I basically jumped the gun and accused them of sending me a V1.0 unit.  I got a very wounded reply claiming that they are a SwissMar distributor and had contacted their account rep and been assured that it is the current version and had been mfd in the last 3-4 months at the latest.  They asked me to contact SwissMar (and gave me thier account rep's contact info) directly to resolve the issue.  I haven't called yet since I'm not home and couldn't provide the serial number and other details.

So it seems likely I'll have to send the unit back to SwissMar....I'd hoped those days were over.

/Dino
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el_cabong
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el_cabong
Joined: 11 Aug 2003
Posts: 396
Location: The Land of Enchantment
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Quickmill Vetrano
Grinder: Mazzer Mini,  Rocky
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Drip: Capresso CoffeeTEC
Roaster: HWP, HG/CIB, SC/CO
Posted Wed Feb 18, 2004, 3:44pm
Subject: Re: Alpenrost too cool - Thanks CraigA
 

Just a quick note of thanks to CraigA for his earlier post of instructions on how to adjust the Alpenrost. My decidedly second generation Alp would barely make second crack when set to 15. In about an hour after roasting two batches, I had it dialed in. Works like a champ now, although I use cracks and a temp probe, not the numeric values on the Alp to guage roast.

Thanks again Craig.

Joel
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CraigA
Moderator
CraigA
Joined: 19 Dec 2001
Posts: 11,245
Location: Rexdale, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: PID/PressureMod 2001...
Grinder: BUNN FPG-2 DBC, Baratza...
Vac Pot: Bodum Santos manual, Yama 5...
Drip: Behmor BraZen, BUNN VPR-APS,...
Roaster: Refurb Behmor 1600, BBQ...
Posted Wed Feb 18, 2004, 5:11pm
Subject: Re: Alpenrost too cool - Thanks CraigA
 

el_cabong Said:

Just a quick note of thanks to CraigA for his earlier post of instructions on how to adjust the Alpenrost.

Thanks again Craig.

Joel


That makes it all worthwile, thanks guys! {:-D

(Canada) Swissmar (Swissmar Imports Ltd) 35 East Beaver Creek Rd., Unit 6  Richmond Hill, Ontario, Canada L4B 1B3  1-(905)-764-1121. The (USA) Swissmar Imports Inc  6391 Walmore Road Niagara Falls, NY. 14304 1-87-SWISSMAR (1-877-947-7627) warehouse.

Did they give you one of these contact numbers Dino?

 
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DrGno
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Joined: 18 Feb 2004
Posts: 10
Location: Boston
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: La Cimbali Jr.
Grinder: Rocky
Roaster: Alp
Posted Wed Feb 18, 2004, 6:15pm
Subject: Re: Alpenrost too cool - Thanks CraigA
 

Yes,

They gave me 1-877-947-7627 and an extension and name.   I can send to you in email if you're interested but am reluctant to post on an public forum.

thanks!
Dino
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