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Green Beans and the West Bend Poppery II - UPDATE
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brianl
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Posted Wed Feb 5, 2014, 1:19pm
Subject: Green Beans and the West Bend Poppery II - UPDATE
 

Hello,

I just recently purchased the west bend. Are there any essential modifications to get a good roast from it? I plan on roasting no later than second crack, if not a little sooner.

I would prefer to make no modifications but if this wont produce good roasts, I don't want to buy 4 lbs of coffee and have it go to waste (especially if I break the machine trying to modify it, haha)

Does anyone know a place that sells greens for a lb and has reasonable shipping? If the machine is completely capable without modifications, then i have no problem getting 4 lbs from sweet marias.
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roach56
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Posted Sun Feb 9, 2014, 5:50am
Subject: Re: Green Beans and the West Bend Poppery II
 

I used that same poppery unmodified for about a year. I was very happy with the roasts I got with it . The difference in flavor from stale beans to fresh is night and day. Now if your buying beans that are fresh, you might be disappointed. It takes some trial and error and the roasts go pretty fast without modifying the popper.
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brianl
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Location: Chicago IL
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Espresso: Gaggia Classic (w/PID)
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Posted Sun Feb 9, 2014, 9:28pm
Subject: Re: Green Beans and the West Bend Poppery II
 

that's good to hear. I went ahead and got the sweet marias 4 lbs sampler. averages about 7$ a lb vs the 18$ a lb i pay at the local roaster. We shall see. I don't expect to be as good as them but I hope to get passable results.
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Burner0000
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Posted Mon Feb 10, 2014, 6:13am
Subject: Re: Green Beans and the West Bend Poppery II
 

brianl Said:

that's good to hear. I went ahead and got the sweet marias 4 lbs sampler. averages about 7$ a lb vs the 18$ a lb i pay at the local roaster. We shall see. I don't expect to be as good as them but I hope to get passable results.

Posted February 9, 2014 link

Sweet maria's might surprise you. :) As for the popper if you start with 120 g (which is what I used with my Poppery 2) I got decent results regardless of what I roasted. You may notice with wet processed beans that you end up with a slightly grassier taste because the popper roasts to fast not allowing the inside of the bean to finish drying phase.  If this happens think about modding your popper for more control.  Check this out. Click  Oh and for better insulation try adding a can or aluminum tube to the top of the roaster like this.

Burner0000: 12946_coffeeroaster8.jpg
(Click for larger image)
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brianl
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Espresso: Gaggia Classic (w/PID)
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Posted Mon Feb 10, 2014, 8:46am
Subject: Re: Green Beans and the West Bend Poppery II
 

Burner0000 Said:

Sweet maria's might surprise you. :) As for the popper if you start with 120 g (which is what I used with my Poppery 2) I got decent results regardless of what I roasted. You may notice with wet processed beans that you end up with a slightly grassier taste because the popper roasts to fast not allowing the inside of the bean to finish drying phase.  If this happens think about modding your popper for more control.  Check this out. Click  Oh and for better insulation try adding a can or aluminum tube to the top of the roaster like this.

Posted February 10, 2014 link

I can't tell by the picture, but does the can have the top and bottom removed or is the bottom still on (not pictured)? I heard about adding an extension cord or two to make the roasting time a touch longer.

Thank you for the advice. I am definitely technical enough to make the modification but I usually prefer to build my way up instead of just starting with the best (hone my technique) so I might leave it unmodified for  awhile.

Just a little off topic. After using this popper what did you graduate to?
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Burner0000
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Roaster: Behmor 1600 / Sonofresco
Posted Mon Feb 10, 2014, 12:34pm
Subject: Re: Green Beans and the West Bend Poppery II
 

You can just as easily RTV glue a can to the top of the popper or cut and fit it into the hole. If your thinking of roasting outside I'd do it because a light cool breeze can stall your roast.
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brianl
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Posted Sat Mar 1, 2014, 4:11pm
Subject: Re: Green Beans and the West Bend Poppery II
 

Hello Guys, here is an update and a potential problem.

First, I have been roasting the regular sampler from sweet maria. I have had pretty good results using 85-90g of greens plugged directly into a surge protector with about a 6 foot cable. Roasts last between 6 and 7 minutes.

However, today I tried to do 85g with the poppery plugged into a 10 foot regular extension cord and had that plugged into the surge protector mentioned above. I had my first crack about five minutes but I felt like I had a lot less cracks than usual. At about 9 minutes I stopped the roast and everything looks really good with a nice dark shape and color (but not anywhere near burnt).

I guess my question is whether this new roast is safe to drink as I pretty much only heard like 5 cracks. Everything looks as it should but wanted to hear input before I sat down and cupped it. I know using an extension cord helps extend the roast but do you think this is overkill having the extension cord and the surge protector that had a 6 foot cable? Should I just do one but not both?
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dspear99ca
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Posted Fri Mar 7, 2014, 3:06pm
Subject: Re: Green Beans and the West Bend Poppery II
 

brianl Said:

Hello Guys, here is an update and a potential problem.

First, I have been roasting the regular sampler from sweet maria. I have had pretty good results using 85-90g of greens plugged directly into a surge protector with about a 6 foot cable. Roasts last between 6 and 7 minutes.

However, today I tried to do 85g with the poppery plugged into a 10 foot regular extension cord and had that plugged into the surge protector mentioned above. I had my first crack about five minutes but I felt like I had a lot less cracks than usual. At about 9 minutes I stopped the roast and everything looks really good with a nice dark shape and color (but not anywhere near burnt).

I guess my question is whether this new roast is safe to drink as I pretty much only heard like 5 cracks. Everything looks as it should but wanted to hear input before I sat down and cupped it. I know using an extension cord helps extend the roast but do you think this is overkill having the extension cord and the surge protector that had a 6 foot cable? Should I just do one but not both?

Posted March 1, 2014 link

Drinking it isn't going to hurt you if that's what you're asking.  I have the same popper, and you will find it has a few (predictable) quirks.  

It's very sensitive to ambient temperature.  Use it outside in the winter and it might never get you to first crack.  It will take longer for sure.  I roast outside in my garage to get away from the smoke inside, I put it inside a blue recycle bin with a 2x6 across the top and a piece of plywood on top of that.  I take off the plywood at about 2min... it just allows the popper to heat up.

The first roast is always different than subsequent roasts in a session.  I target 85g for my roasts using a scale to measure it out, and always warm the popper up for 30s to 1min before dumping in the beans.  It OFTEN, but not ALWAYS, takes a bit longer on the first roast for first crack to start.

Different beans will differ WILDLY in how long it takes to get to 1st and 2nd crack AND the appearance of the beans at any given stage of the roast.  Especially with blends (I order a lot from sweet marias too) you have to do some experimentation with time and cracks because with multiple types of beans sometimes the 1st crack of one overlaps the start of 2nd crack of another.  YMMV.

As for using an extension cord, just bear in mind that dropping the voltage on an AC motor (which is what an extension cord does) makes the motor work that much harder and generate that much more heat (and I'm not talking about the heating element which is SUPPOSED to get hot, I'm talking about the MOTOR).  It is not good practice if you want your popper to last.  But, the popper is cheap so... your call.  If you want to mess with the temperature, it's pretty simple to put in either a variable pot switch on the heating element or even a simple on-off switch... this also allows you to cool the beans in the popper with forced air. 8-)
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brianl
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Location: Chicago IL
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Espresso: Gaggia Classic (w/PID)
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Posted Mon Mar 10, 2014, 6:49am
Subject: Re: Green Beans and the West Bend Poppery II - UPDATE
 

thank you for the help.

I just don't think i've been able to get 2nd crack (unless it happens during 1st crack and I can't discern the difference). Was your poppery II unmodded? How long does your 1st crack last? I see mine going for 1 minute to almost 2 minutes on some origins.

I've heard different things about 'preheating' without temperature control. Do you at least have a  prob? Is it important that the first minute or two of roasting gets heated up pretty quick?
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brianl
Senior Member


Joined: 1 Dec 2012
Posts: 409
Location: Chicago IL
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: Gaggia Classic (w/PID)
Grinder: Baratza Vario
Drip: chemex
Posted Sat Mar 15, 2014, 6:53pm
Subject: Re: Green Beans and the West Bend Poppery II - UPDATE
 

Okay I'm debating whether to get a Fresh Roast SR500 or a Nesco Air Roaster. I have considered the Behmor 1600 but the lady friend will absolutely not allow that (currently live in an apartment so no shed to go hide out in, haha).

Are any of these worth the update? Or should I just wait until I can get a drum roaster? It seems like the fresh roast is relatively quick while the nesco is longer. Does the extra length give the coffee more time to develop?

does this article seem consistent with people are experiencing?

Click Here (www.wired.com)
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