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Discussions > Coffee > Home Roast > Need BBQ...  
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TimEggers
Moderator
TimEggers
Joined: 3 Oct 2004
Posts: 2,946
Location: Tiskilwa, Illinois
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: QM Anita, Cappuccino Amore
Grinder: Baratza Vario, Mazzer SJ
Vac Pot: Antique McKee, Santos
Drip: Pour Over, Bodum Presses
Roaster: RK Drum
Posted Fri Nov 5, 2004, 7:38am
Subject: Re: Need BBQ Roasting Advice
 

I really appreciate all your advice.  Yes I am new to this and do value your experience.  I am learning and more than that I am experimenting.  Do I expect to get a perfect roast the first time?  No.  It is a process.  This thread simply is a starting place for me.  I am speaking from inexperience here but I think I can achieve ok if not good or great results.  Will I have to change my rig?  Yeah probably but this is a process.  A process I am enjoying.  I remain hopeful despite your skepticism.  I do appreciate your advice nonetheless.  Failure is the best teacher and I am about to learn!

 
Tim Eggers
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marcus
Senior Member


Joined: 29 Jan 2003
Posts: 116
Location: NC
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale;Isomac...
Grinder: Mazzer Mini;Rancilio Rocky
Vac Pot: Bodum mini-eSantos
Drip: only at work
Roaster: BBQ drum, Heatgun
Posted Fri Nov 5, 2004, 8:27am
Subject: Re: Need BBQ Roasting Advice
 

My advice is stock up on propane.
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JonR10
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JonR10
Joined: 26 Apr 2004
Posts: 10,376
Location: Houston, Texas
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: E61 Legend, Livietta,...
Grinder: Robur, B-Vario-W
Vac Pot: Hario Tabletop, Yama...
Drip: Technivorm
Roaster: 1-lb US Roaster, Behmor 1600
Posted Fri Nov 5, 2004, 8:56am
Subject: Re: Need BBQ Roasting Advice
 

marcus Said:

My advice is stock up on propane.

Posted November 5, 2004 link

I would take this man's advice :-)  
He is responsible for getting me interesed in home roasting.

HI MARCUS!!  Nice to see ya.  

I am enjoying the journey very much now and I will always be gratefull to you for sharing your home-roasted beans with me.  Nothing has made a bigger diffference in the quality of my espresso than roasting at home.

JonR10: shot11-04-04.jpg
(Click for larger image)

 
Jon Rosenthal
Houston, TX
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marcus
Senior Member


Joined: 29 Jan 2003
Posts: 116
Location: NC
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale;Isomac...
Grinder: Mazzer Mini;Rancilio Rocky
Vac Pot: Bodum mini-eSantos
Drip: only at work
Roaster: BBQ drum, Heatgun
Posted Fri Nov 5, 2004, 11:15am
Subject: Re: Need BBQ Roasting Advice
 

Hey Jon!  Thanks for the kind words.  I saw your setup in another thread where poison was gasping for breath.  Must have been that wood :) in the foreground...

It's all about the bean (variety, blending, roast level), isn't it?  Yeah, my Isomac and Mazzer are great, but...  
I admit, I'm an espresso Geek with a capital G.  That's why I came here to learn the technique, the golden rule, the finer points of tweaking a machine.  But once you have that, home roasting is where its at, baby.  We need a Dan Kehn to apply his logical brain to the home roaster's problems.  I started with a FR+ but never went to a variac.  I went to HG/DB.  Dog bowl with a mesh colander is still my preferred method for half pound roasts.  For a pound, I use the Buzzroaster drum.  Sad to hear so many complaints.  I've had none and it works like a charm.  

The poster is right, experimentation is key because roasting is a process that can be accomplished in multiple ways.  Once you have an idea of the destination, multiple routes are available to get there and each have certain advantages.  I would just respectfully submit that grilling coffee with the BBQ lid open is a very inefficient mode of travel.  I found this board and the websites of many of its contributors to be an invaluable source in steepening my learning curve and, ultimately, saving me money.

I liked your last blend comments -- you can't go wrong with SM's Italian in there.
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TimEggers
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TimEggers
Joined: 3 Oct 2004
Posts: 2,946
Location: Tiskilwa, Illinois
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: QM Anita, Cappuccino Amore
Grinder: Baratza Vario, Mazzer SJ
Vac Pot: Antique McKee, Santos
Drip: Pour Over, Bodum Presses
Roaster: RK Drum
Posted Sat Nov 6, 2004, 1:09am
Subject: Re: Need BBQ Roasting Advice
 

Dilemma!  Ok guys you have me thinking and rethinking.  I originally wanted to grill with the lid open, but you have persuaded me to do so with the lid down.  The down side to that is that I do not have a thermocouple yet so I will not be able to monitor temperature during roasting.  Unless I set my dial oven thermometer on top of the grill, but that will not be accurate at all.  However that could provide some degree of a reference point so I could repeat results more easily.  I figure I can take some internal temperature readings at each step on my grill knobs and come up with ball park figures for each knob mark then go from there.  Crude I know but I am after function.  I do plan to get a thermocouple.  I just do not have unlimited funds right now!

I also have decided to limit my batch size to one pound.  I am going to try the cooling rack method that I mentioned above.  I do have a large metal colander and a whisk that I can use as well.  I am not ruling those out at all.  Will I be risking things too much roasting with the lid down without a thermocouple and using the cooling rack with one pound of coffee?

I really do not have a choice right now.  With my FR+8 I do not use a thermometer so I go buy cracks and what not.  I am flying blind there besides time.  Can I try this on the BBQ somewhat safely?  Man I hate to think I may ruin a pound of beans all at once.  I know I will though...

 
Tim Eggers
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TimEggers
Moderator
TimEggers
Joined: 3 Oct 2004
Posts: 2,946
Location: Tiskilwa, Illinois
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: QM Anita, Cappuccino Amore
Grinder: Baratza Vario, Mazzer SJ
Vac Pot: Antique McKee, Santos
Drip: Pour Over, Bodum Presses
Roaster: RK Drum
Posted Sat Nov 6, 2004, 5:46am
Subject: Re: Need BBQ Roasting Advice
 

I just did some temperature tests.  At the middle of the drum with the lid closed and both burners on LOW the temperature was 650F+ in less than 3 minutes.  On high with the lid open the temp was 500F.  These temperatures should work should they not?  Yes I know that temperature will change as I go up or down on the drum.  But with the lid closed won't it get too hot even on low?

My drum is 6 inches in diameter and 15 inches long (the length of my burners).  The coffee should stay towards the bottom of the drum shouldn't it?  I plan to rotate the drum fast enough to keep the beans agitated but not so fast that centrifugal force keeps the beans pressed against the outside of the drum through the entire revolution.

I figure I will start with a preheated grill, 650F plus.  Then insert the drum with beans in it.  Leave the lid closed and burners on low until I reach first crack.  Then raise the lid (the temp falls to 375 in about 6 minutes).  If I raise the lid and put the burners on high I can slow the rate of cooling even more and still maintain an average temperature of 500F.  If I open the lid and put the burners on high the temperature will fall to 500F in about 8 minutes.  So my mock profile will be something like this (hopefully):

Preheat Grill to 650F+
00:00 Insert beans and drum close lid 650F+
10:00  First crack 650F+
          Raise lid and turn burners on to HIGH go from 650F+ to 500F
20:00  Second Crack, remove beans from drum and cool in colander

I want to time it so I can reach first crack in about 10 minutes and then reach second at 16-21 minutes.  Will these temps be adequate?  Yes I know I am upsetting you lid-closed-purists here but I do not want to overheat the beans.  Like I said my grill is very hot!  From what I have read I have not seen anyone roast at anything over 650F and as low as 375F.  Perhaps it is coincidence but I can reach 650F then fall to 500F and fall to 375F with the lid open and burners on low.  Are not those key temperatures?  I seem to be able to reach those temperatures.  I know that temps will differ depending on drum height especially with the lid open.  But even on low with the lid closed I cannot achieve anything below 650F.  That is too hot for the entire roast is it not?  Are you tired of my questions and hair brained schemes? :)

 
Tim Eggers
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TheArtfuldodger
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TheArtfuldodger
Joined: 28 Jun 2004
Posts: 629
Location: Waxhaw,NC
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Saeco Classico W/ non...
Grinder: Macap-4,Zassenhaus Box
Vac Pot: Vintage, Cory, Bodum and...
Drip: Bodum French Press
Roaster: Hot Top-RK Drum
Posted Sat Nov 6, 2004, 6:09am
Subject: Re: Need BBQ Roasting Advice
 

Tim,
I think you will be surprised at your ability to monitor your roast with the lid down. If you are roasting in the back of your garage you should be able to monitor the smoke. You should notice an increase in the smoke just before first crack and then about 15 seconds before second the smoke will increase again. Unless your rig is extremely noisy which I don't think will be the case with the hand crank. You should not have any problem hearing the cracks.
In regard to your mock profile I think I would shoot for a Max of six minutes from the on set of First Crack and the beginning of second.
And I would keep the colander handy. I think you will be surprised how long the beans will continue to cook while they are still in the drum.
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TimEggers
Moderator
TimEggers
Joined: 3 Oct 2004
Posts: 2,946
Location: Tiskilwa, Illinois
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: QM Anita, Cappuccino Amore
Grinder: Baratza Vario, Mazzer SJ
Vac Pot: Antique McKee, Santos
Drip: Pour Over, Bodum Presses
Roaster: RK Drum
Posted Sat Nov 6, 2004, 6:35am
Subject: Re: Need BBQ Roasting Advice
 

So do I just leave the lid down and the burners on low until first crack?  Then depending on the time ramp up with the lid still down to reach second crack in around six minutes?  I was worried that 650F was too hot, for any part of the roast.  Should I just stay on low the whole time and see what times I hit first and second crack?  If second crack happens late then perhaps slowly turn the burners up until I reach second crack in a good time?

I know I ask a lot of questions!  I am new to bbq roasting and the whole process is abstract to me.  It will be until I try it.  You mentioned the increase in smoke depending on the roast stage, will I see or hear anything else that I do not in my FR+8?

 
Tim Eggers
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marcus
Senior Member


Joined: 29 Jan 2003
Posts: 116
Location: NC
Expertise: I love coffee

Espresso: La Spaziale;Isomac...
Grinder: Mazzer Mini;Rancilio Rocky
Vac Pot: Bodum mini-eSantos
Drip: only at work
Roaster: BBQ drum, Heatgun
Posted Sat Nov 6, 2004, 8:35am
Subject: Re: Need BBQ Roasting Advice
 

FWIW, here's what I do.  I have a Sam's Club Members Mark Grill (one of those big stainless jobs with 3 burners), a 2lb buzzroaster drum and the cheapo rotisserie kit with the 6rpm motor.  There is a "temperature monitor" built into the lid of the grill which purports to be a thermometer.  I don't use a thermometer, TC, or anything technical.  I preheat the 3 burners to high until the monitor shows 500.  I insert my drum with 1lb beans (I never exceed 1lb because I only have a 6rpm motor).  The burners are fairly low and are covered with large ceramic plates, I don't have a problem with scorching, but I tend to lower the center burner to med anyway.  In 11 to 12 min I have first crack starting.  It lasts about a minute and a half.  Prior to end of first crack, I turn everything down to low and when I'm sure I've gone through first crack, I open the lid for 5 seconds or so to extend 2d crack a bit.  Close the lid and get to 2d crack by 16 to 17 min.  Pull the drum out and dump coffee into the turbocooler, a wonderful colander-bucket-shopvac contraption.  

My motor is loud but I alway hear first and second cracks.  You can tell by the roast smoke where you are.  Opening the lid to check the status is not fatal but it's not that helpful either.  Go with your ears and your nose.  Use the force, Luke.  I burned my 1st pound.  It was a learning experience.
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TheArtfuldodger
Senior Member
TheArtfuldodger
Joined: 28 Jun 2004
Posts: 629
Location: Waxhaw,NC
Expertise: I live coffee

Espresso: Saeco Classico W/ non...
Grinder: Macap-4,Zassenhaus Box
Vac Pot: Vintage, Cory, Bodum and...
Drip: Bodum French Press
Roaster: Hot Top-RK Drum
Posted Sat Nov 6, 2004, 8:53am
Subject: Re: Need BBQ Roasting Advice
 

For a two pound roast I preheat to 500 insert drum temps drop about 60-80 degrees. It takes about six minutes to get back to temperature. Hit First crack around eleven minutes. I cut the heat all the way back to low. Temperature drops about thirty degrees. Let coast into second crack. If I don't get to seconded crack with in three minutes I increase the heat to force second crack. Once second starts I cut the gas and let second continue until I pull the drum. You need to be ready to pull the drum when you have a pound plus hitting second crack things move rapidly.

Have you installed a diffuser yet? If you find your temperature climbing to fast just crack the lid to slow it. Good Luck keep us posted.
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