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Using a Shop-Vac as a blower
roastedgourd
Willis, my roaster, is making some good headway. Really, the furnace and RC sections are pretty much complete. All I need is a blower to start doing test batches. I tested the burner assembly using my friend's 6 hp Shop-Vac and we got more than enough bean movement on a test load of soybeans (the closest thing we had to coffee beans in the shop). This made me think about using a Shop-Vac for the blower. Could I control it with a router speed controller? I don't think I've seen people using these. Is there a reason why? I was thinking of building a well insulated box to put it in to keep noise down and then use the sucking portion to pull air through my bean cooler, thus killing two birds with one vacuum. What do you folks think? Attached is a picture of the beast.
roastedgourd attached the following image:
320982_544120020281_2117266183_n.jpg

-Ian
 
Dan
Ian, I don't see why not, and many others have used vacuum motors to power a hot air roaster. Vacuum motor is the term for the motor/blower combo that at the center of shop vacuums. If you go to Grainger.com that's the keyword phrase you'd use. But beware, there is a huge variation in performance, and some shop vacs use the plastic housing as part of the blower and can't loft beans. You must test drive your shop vac first, but then you've done that with soybeans, but try again with coffee beans.
1 pound electric sample roaster, 3 pound direct-flame roaster, both handmade; modified Mazzer Mini grinder, LaSpaziale Vivaldi II automatic espresso machine. When the electricity goes out I make vacpot coffee from beans ground on my Zassenhaus hand grinder, and heat the water with a teakettle on the gas range.
 
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