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The Decaf "non-audible-crack" phenomenon
seehad
It's a good thing that I had a few lbs of experience under my belt when i went to roast a pound of decaf Sumatra. I have no thermometer for the beans yet and got to the point where I thought first crack was going to hit. Got the smoke but no cracks. I had a good feeling that I may not have heard the crack and decided to move forward with the roast profile i planned on. I wanted to take it to Full City+ and started smelling the smoke that happens before 2nd crack and waited a minute. Still not hearing cracks so i got nervous and pulled it. It was a little on the Full City side but it turned out to be a great roast. I found out later that the cracks are almost inaudible.

I really need to be able to see the bean temp. I'm going to get one with my SM order tomorrow.

Anyone else learn about Decaf the hard way?
 
ginny
ya know, there must be some real art to roasting decaf...

I have never mastered the art. I gave up. if my guests cannot take
full throttle caffeine, I got 7up!!

ginny

Roflmao
 
Koffee Kosmo
Roasting decaf can be tricky.

First crack does happen, often muted but decaf does roast as normal beans do.

Lack of bean husk due in part to the "water processed method" is the main cause for reduced audible sound

It was suggested once to me that adding half a dozen normal beans to the decaf mix may aid the home roaster to alert when first crack has started.

However I have not tried this so I cant say that it works.
But its worth a try

Temperature is your best method of roast control

KK
Edited by Koffee Kosmo on 03/12/2009 11:17 PM
I home roast and I like it. Designer of the KKTO
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Bezzera Strega, Mazzer Robur Grinder, Pullman Tamper Convex,
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seedlings
I read on homebarista by another_jim that very low moisture content in greens will prevent the audible cracks. He recommended just plowing through the roast relatively fast as I recall.

CHAD
Roaster: CoffeeAir II 2# DIY air roaster
Grinder: Vintage Grindmaster 500
Brewers: Vintage Cory DCU DCL, Aeropress, Press, Osaka Titanium pourover
 
John Despres
I don't seem to have any trouble hearing 1st in my Gene Cafe. I need to stay close to the roaster since it's not the gun fight at OK corral like some roasts give me.

If I use 5 minutes of warming/drying, decaf first comes at about 11:30, if no warming/drying phase, then It's about 9:30 or so...

I get my ear close to the chaff collector and study the counter top...
Respect the bean.
John Despres
Fresh Roast 8, Gene Cafe, JYTT 1k, Quest M3, Mazzer Mini, Technivorm, various size presses and many more brewers.
 
seehad
I tossed in a few regular greens last night in and got first crack at about 11:30 keeping the heat gun mostly on high. Once I started to get the first smoke at the 7 minute mark I slowed down the roast a bit. At first crack I pulled it back to just over half blast. At 1 minute intervals I climbed the temp ladder and got 2nd crack at 16:00. I pulled it at 16:15.
I just ordered the thermometer from SM (and 19 lbs of coffee) so I can monitor the bean mass.
 
seedlings
you'll like the thermometer, seehad! It's a helpful reminder of how the roast is progressing.

CHAD
Roaster: CoffeeAir II 2# DIY air roaster
Grinder: Vintage Grindmaster 500
Brewers: Vintage Cory DCU DCL, Aeropress, Press, Osaka Titanium pourover
 
Ray T
For you Behmor users try P5 for Decafs. I get a nice 1st C with a 2-2 1/2 min.untill 2nd C .The last was SM Tanzania Ruvuma Peabery 14OZ P5 minus to 5:00 Start then plus to max. FC was at 6:23 ended roast 4:40 no 2nd. Very good for a decaf Good Luck and HAPPY ROASTING!! Ray
 
Koffee Kosmo

Quote

seehad wrote:
I tossed in a few regular greens last night in and got first crack at about 11:30


Well at least that tip worked

KK
I home roast and I like it. Designer of the KKTO
Roaster Build information
https://forum.hom...ad_id=1142

https://docs.goog...lide=id.i0
Blog - http://koffeekosm...gspot.com/

Bezzera Strega, Mazzer Robur Grinder, Pullman Tamper Convex,
(KKTO) Turbo Oven Home Roaster.
 
BoldJava
Maybe I am missing something but if you toss some hi-lead greens in with decaf, you are merely getting the first crack of those few greens, not necessarily the first crack of the decaf. A look at the clock would do the same thing.

I have had beans vary on 1st crack vary by as much as 2 minutes. I don't see where this is a 'fix.' I rarely roast decaf but my assumption is that the decaf process would bend times anyways as cell structure has to be weakened during decaffing.

B|Java
Edited by BoldJava on 03/14/2009 7:53 AM
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Dave Borton
Milwaukee, WI
 
John Despres
B|Java makes a good point. Decaf roasts roughly two minutes faster on average than non decaf. Therefore you may be getting your first crack indicator after the decaf has gone through first.

My suggestion is, just like any other bean, learn the smells associated with the roast degree. As the beans begin to brown, the smells are pretty much the same as any other - first crack will come about the time the smell "sharpens" - You can actually feel it in your nose.

The thermometer will be a huge help! Let us know how it works out.
Respect the bean.
John Despres
Fresh Roast 8, Gene Cafe, JYTT 1k, Quest M3, Mazzer Mini, Technivorm, various size presses and many more brewers.
 
DaveG
Am I hearing that you would shorten the decaf roast from the normal (mine) 17 min. cycle? The 17 min. profile being the one I've always used with my Gene.

 
John Despres
Dave, some decafs are shorter than others. This might be a case of listening for the beginning of first and back done the difference at that moment. Defas are hard to predict as a rule. KVWs don't seem to shorten at all by my experience, whereas water processed decafs do shorten up by as much as 2-3 minutes.

I hope this helps.

John
Respect the bean.
John Despres
Fresh Roast 8, Gene Cafe, JYTT 1k, Quest M3, Mazzer Mini, Technivorm, various size presses and many more brewers.
 
gene
My first decaf attempt back in late Jan 09 was slightly overcooked.

Then I contacted Eddie Dove and later John Despres. Learned a lot fast.

Easier to hear cracks in GeneCafe. Just have ear near exhaust when you anticipate crack. Listen for decaf 1st cracks a lot sooner than non-decaf.

Looking back at notes from March 9 roasts:

Eth Black Sun 1st [email protected]:16
Eth [email protected]:54
[email protected]:20
Tanz Ruvuna Peaberrt [email protected] 10:45

Apr 28 last week: Tanz Ruvuma Peaberry decaf outlier crack 10:40 and main 1st C 11:20

I have started logging outlier individual cracks lately. It is so fun! as John likes to say.
 
dBndbit
I roast a lot of decaf. But I rarely have trouble hearing 1C or 2C in either my Z&D (Nesco Pro) or my modified RTO. But certainly the decafs do tend to be quieter than than the "regulars". I track density on my green beans as a predictor of probable roast times, and I believe the loudness of the cracks somewhat follows also. It may be that you just happened to get a relatively low density (possibly low-moisture) batch of green decaf. Decafs tend to be slightly less dense than regulars and, as has been mentioned, they roast a little faster. But on my machines the difference only seems to be maybe 0-45 seconds using the same temp profile.

Also, following some advice from Royal NY several months back, I tried profiles with slightly lower air temps (by 5-15F). So far I am liking the kinder-gentler decaf roasts and the profiles are now in the range of regulars.
Jim
11 years old... forever!
ReeferDoor.com
>home-built roasters and fair trade
 
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